Veg Out! Baking without Eggs or Dairy

Jennifer Pantin
by Jennifer Pantin
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Veg Out! Baking without Eggs or Dairy

Lorimer Street Kitchen
If you’re anything like me, you have a sweet tooth, and a weakness for baked goods. But for many, it’s tough working baked sweets into a diet—whether its because of calories, cholesterol, or food allergies. Dairy and eggs are two frequent culprits.

It’s very simple to substitute eggs and dairy in baking. Here are some of the most common ways.


Milk is generally used to add liquid and fat content to a recipe. Unless you are creating whipped cream, milk isn’t that important to the structure of the baked good and it’s easy to substitute.

Milk Any dairy milk can be substituted with non-dairy milk in baking. Common substitutions are soy, almond, cashew, rice and coconut milk. Good to keep in mind: soymilk tends to be sweeter than dairy milk, and full-fat coconut milk can be creamier than regular milk.

Buttermilk Non-dairy milk can quickly be used to make a buttermilk substitute. Simply add ½ a tablespoon of lemon juice or white vinegar to a cup of non-dairy milk, stir and let sit for 5-10 minutes. Voila! Buttermilk. Just as with it’s dairy counterparts, non-dairy milks with higher fat contents will create thicker buttermilk.

Whipped Cream A simple way to substitute whipped heavy cream is with full-fat coconut milk. Simply chill the can overnight and remove the separated solid cream. Using a mixer, whip the solid cream on high with a ¼ cup to ½ cup of powdered sugar. The coconut milk cream will become firmer and hold stiff peaks, just like whipped heavy cream.


The function of eggs in baking is to provide structure to the baked good. Some surprising ingredients can be used to replace eggs and still provide firmness.

Whole Eggs There are a bunch of great options here. Banana: 1 banana can be used in place of 2 eggs. Flax Egg: Mixing 1 tablespoon of flax meal with 2 to 3 tablespoons of water, and leaving the mixture to sit for 5 minutes will create a jelly-like substance known as a flax egg—it’s a great substitute in baking. Potatoes: ¼ cup plain mashed potatoes can also be to replace one egg in a recipe. Pumpkin: ¼ pureed pumpkin can stand in for a single egg in baking, depending on the flavor of your recipe. Yogurt (or soy yogurt): ¼ cup yogurt can be a healthy substitute for a single egg in baked goods. If you’re also avoiding diary, soy and almond milk yogurts work, too. Tofu: Tofu is a great option in recipes that call for several eggs. Whip or blend soft tofu and use ¼ cup of the mixture to replace each egg. EnerG Egg Replacer: A store bought mix made from potato starch, tapioca flour, and leavening agents, this stuff can be used in recipes where eggs are the star, such as quiches, custards and curds!

Egg Whites Notoriously difficult to replace, egg whites help make baked goods light and fluffy. While it won’t replicate the original texture, the best substitute I’ve found is agar powder. For each egg white, dissolve a tablespoon of agar powder in a tablespoon of warm water, whip it, allow it chill, and then whip it again.

Ready to try your hand at substitutions? This simple Pretzel Crusted Chocolate Peanut Butter Loaf I created just for MyFitnessPal swaps out dairy and eggs, all while maintaining texture and flavor. Share it with friends and everyone will think you’re a baking star! (The recipe is in the database for easy logging!)


Sounds yummy! Who’s making this for a treat this week?

About the Author

Jennifer Pantin
Jennifer Pantin

Writer, lawyer, and healthy-eating proponent, Jennifer Pantin loves experimenting with new, healthy recipes in her Brooklyn kitchen. Her blog, Lorimer Street Kitchen, is where she shares this passion for food and the belief that healthy recipes can be good for you and delicious, too. Connect with Jennifer and Lorimer Street Kitchen on FacebookTwitter, and Google+.


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