Aquafaba is a vegan egg replacer that’s changing the world of vegan cooking. Not only does aquafaba replace egg in recipes like a dream, it’s basically free. Here’s a guide to getting started with this magical vegan egg replacer!
Vegan meringue is just one of the awesome uses for aquafaba – the juice that you’d normally drain and toss from cooked beans. This discovery is kind of revolutionizing vegan cooking, and it’s beautiful.
Aquafaba seems to be the name the vegan community has landed on for bean juice. It certainly has a better ring to it than bean juice, doesn’t it?
The liquid from certain canned beans has the right balance of proteins to do a lot of the things that eggs do in a recipe.
Folks have been using it to make all kinds of vegan meringue recipes: pies, cookies, cakes. But there are some other cool ways to use this stuff, too.
I have shared a couple of my own recipes using aquafaba, and there are so many ways to use this stuff. It’s a brand new discovery, so folks are still testing, experimenting, and creating amazing vegan recipes with this all natural, inexpensive egg replacer.
Using Bean Liquid as an Egg Replacer
You can use the liquid from canned or home cooked beans to make aquafaba. I’ve been seeing the best results from chickpeas and white beans, but folks have also used red bean, black bean, and pinto bean liquid to replace eggs.
If you’re using the liquid from homemade beans, you’ll want to simmer it on the stove until it thickens to an almost eggwhite-like consistency. With canned beans, you can use it as-is.
The quick and dirty for making aquafaba egg replacer: For things like cookies, cakes, and breads, three tablespoons of chickpea or white bean juice is all you need to replace an egg. If your recipe calls for a large egg, use four tablespoons.
I used aquafaba as an egg replacer in my waffle iron brownies recipe. You guys, it worked like a charm! For this use, you don’t even need to beat the liquid. Just add it straight.
Making Vegan Meringue with Aquafaba
For a vegan meringue recipe, your ratio of bean liquid to sugar should be around one part liquid to 1 1/3 parts sugar. You can get away with 1 1/4 parts sugar, though.
Start low – you can always add more sugar if you’re not getting the stiff peaks you want! I see recipes that say to add the sugar after you have soft peaks, but I had success adding most of the sugar right from the get, then adding more as needed.
I know – this is a lot of sugar. Meringues are mostly sugar, and so far no one’s found a way around that. Whether you use egg or aquafaba, sugar plus the protein is what gives you stiff, shiny peaks.
Folks are still testing things like quiche, strata, and other recipes where eggs play a bigger role. I haven’t played with aquafaba quiche yet, but it looks like some people are having success there using aquafaba, chickpea flour, and black salt. I’ll definitely post if I come up with my own aquafaba vegan quiche!
How to Freeze Aquafaba
You can freeze aquafaba. It will keep for a few days in the fridge, but to store it for longer, you can keep it in the freezer. To freeze:
- Pour into ice cube trays.
- Pop out the frozen cubes and transfer to an airtight container to freeze long term.
Your aquafaba cubes will keep for about six months in the freezer. Defrost overnight in the fridge or in the microwave. Since one standard ice cube tray section holds two tablespoons of liquid, you can use two aquafaba ice cubes for one large egg.
OK, so those are the basics, but with something so new, it’s nice to have recipes to jump off of. Below are vegan meringue recipes and then some examples of other ways you can use aquafaba.
Vegan Meringue Recipes
Using aquafaba to make vegan meringue was how this all started, so I wanted to share a few vegan meringue recipes that folks have been making first.
- My white bean vegan meringue recipe made perfect, beautiful cookies.
- The Gentle Chef made a beautiful lemon meringue pie that works with white bean or garbanzo bean juice.
- Goose Wohlt – the fellow who started this vegan meringue revolution – created a lovely coconut key lime pie for Pi Day.
- Like a Vegan used chickpea liquid to make a vegan pavlova.
- Wallflower Girl used chickpea aquafaba to make royal icing without eggs.
- And, of course, I couldn’t leave out the macarons! Check out these peaches and cream macarons from Floral Frosting!
Beyond Meringue: Recipes Using Aquafaba as Egg Replacer
I am floored by some of these uses, y’all. Seriously.
- Somer at Vedged Out wanted to see how aquafaba worked as a straight up egg replacer, no whipping. And she made the best chocolate chip cookies EVER. This is the recipe that proved that straight, unwhipped bean liquid could replace eggs in baking.
- Why buy expensive vegan marshmallow fluff at the store, when you can use Seitan is My Motor’s five ingredient recipe?
- This marshmallow party is pretty awesome, and Seitan Beats Your Meat (best blog name ever?) blew my mind with her homemade Lucky Charms.
- Kohlrabi & Quince used a mix of chickpea and pinto bean liquid to re-create her favorite Easter cookie recipe from her childhood.
- This was the first savory recipe I’ve run across using aquafaba: Peanut Butter & Vegan’s vegan mayo!
- Somer is also working on a vegan strata recipe using chickpea liquid in place of the egg. She hasn’t posted that one on her blog yet, but I’m looking forward to it!
Have you done any experimenting with bean liquid in place of eggs? I’m so impressed with how people are working aquafaba magic!