Learn how to make a flax egg, plus get tips for where this very simple vegan egg replacer will and won't work.
Egg replacers are key to vegan baking, and there are so many to choose from! A flax egg is one of my favorites, because it's easy to make using one shelf stable ingredient.
Do flax eggs really work?
The short answer to this question is: usually.
In general, you can use a flax egg to replace up to two eggs in pretty much any oven recipe.
Eggs serve different -- sometimes overlapping -- purposes in different recipes. Eggs work as a binder, meaning that they are what keep your cake from falling apart. They also add moisture and help with leavening.
A flax egg works well as a binder and to add moisture to a recipe. When it comes to leavening, it's not such a champ.
Using a flax egg replacer can yield a slightly denser result than an animal egg. In most cases, this isn't a big deal at all.
If your recipe calls for more than two eggs, you may start running into structural issues when you substitute flax. I do this anyway on occasion, like with boxed cake mixes, which usually call for three eggs. Your cake will be a bit softer than normal but still delicious.
For dishes like meringue, quiche, or angel food cake where eggs do a lot of heavy lifting, a flax egg will not work. Rather than veganize a recipe for these, I'd look up a vegan recipe from a trusted source.
What kind of flax to use
You can use either brown or golden flax meal to make a flax egg. The type doesn't matter, but you must use flax meal.
Whole flax seeds will not work. Flax seeds have a tough outer hull that will not allow them to absorb water.
The flax absorbing moisture is what turns your mixture from any ol' slurry into an egg replacer.
Does it really need to thicken?
No! A lot of flax egg recipes say to let the mixture thicken, but you really don't have to do that. The flax meal will absorb plenty of moisture as you mix your dough.
How to make a flax egg
- 1 tablespoon flax meal - see note
- 3-4 tablespoons water - see note
- In a small bowl, whisk together the flax meal and the water. Use just like you would an animal egg in baking recipes.