How to replace eggs in baking, based on function.

There are ever growing reasons to find egg replacements in a bakery setting. One aspect is savings: while egg prices rise and fluctuate, many egg replacers can come at half the cost. A few other reasons are supply chain issues, allergies or for vegan baking.

The functions of eggs in bakery goods include:

  • Emulsifying: natural emulsifiers in the egg yolk
  • Gel forming: the coagulation of egg produces a gel
  • Binding: brings together and helps hold the batter system together
  • Aeration: produces foams that are essential for volume
  • Sensory: contributes to color, flavor, appearance, texture and quality of bakery goods
  • Wetting agent: eggs provide moisture to dough or cake batter

How to replace eggs based on function

Eggs work as thickeners and binders in baking. In bakery goods, egg white proteins are responsible for good foaming capacity, stabilization, elasticity, etc.  Egg yolks are mainly responsible for emulsification. Here are replacement suggestions.

Protein

Isolated protein from chickpea, beans, peas, lentils and lupins have been reported to have fat binding, water holding capacity, solubility, gelling, foaming, and emulsifying properties. Whey protein is a well-known gelling agent and contributes to emulsification in the bakery system. Wheat gluten plays an important role in the bakery goods for holding the structure. It will help the dough rise by trapping gas bubbles during fermentation and provide the unique texture for the final bakery goods.

Dairy proteins are also known to provide the building function in dough and batter systems. They are classified into whey proteins and milk proteins. Whey protein can function as the building agent in the dough system for holding structure.

Other replacements

  • Hydrocolloids or gums: improves the viscosity of the product, therefore entrapping more air. This results in an improved volume.
  • Fiber: usually contains fibrous composition for entrapping water and oil droplets. So, fiber could provide water-binding capacity and emulsification property. Some fibers such as citrus or maple can provide mouthfeel for textural purpose.

For more tips on how to replace eggs, download our free technical paper!