Flaxseed meal can replace quick breads’ eggs, oil

A decade ago, when I first started writing about alternative baking methods, egg replacers still posed something of stumbling block.

One of my most reliable, knowledgeable sources was known to say that nothing can really replace an egg. I wonder all this time later what she would say about aquafaba, the chickpea water lauded in a previous post.

She usually recommended 1 tablespoon flaxseed meal mixed with 3 tablespoons water as a substitute for 1 beaten egg. But that goo, of course, won’t whip up like egg whites — or aquafaba, for that matter — which relegates its use to quick breads and the like.

Flaxseed meal is more redeeming in my recipes as an oil substitute. I’m often baffled by the quantity of oil called for in certain batters, particularly those published in the 1980s and ’90s before butter made its triumphant comeback.

Although it has an egg, my standby Betty Crocker recipe for blueberry muffins calls for ¼ cup vegetable oil. Blech! In that case, flaxseed meal is a simple swap and adds healthful fiber and a delicious, nutty flavor to the finished muffins.

Pancakes and waffles are another obvious repository for flaxseed meal. It certainly could stand in for the oil in the following eggless pancakes if the soy or almond milk, listed as optional, was incorporated.

I’ve often used nut or soy milks in pancakes that my husband claims to like even better than those made with milk. I think it’s because they tend to be a bit thinner and crispier around the edges.

Tribune News Service photo

Vegan Pancakes

1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour

2 tablespoons granulated sugar

2 teaspoons baking powder

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 tablespoon oil

1 teaspoon vanilla

2 tablespoons soy or almond milk (optional)

Into a large bowl, sift together the flour, sugar, baking powder and salt. In a small bowl, whisk together the oil, vanilla, optional soy or almond milk and 1 ¼ cups water. Make a well in center of dry ingredients and pour in wet ingredients. Stir until just blended.

Heat a lightly oiled griddle or skillet over medium-high heat. Pour batter in 6-inch puddles onto griddle or skillet. Cook until bubbles form in batter and edges are dry; check underneath to see if bottom is lightly browned. Flip and cook until browned on other side. Repeat with remaining batter.

Makes about 8 to 10 (6-inch) pancakes.

Recipe courtesy of Tribune News Service.

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    Sarah Lemon

    Sarah Lemon covers the Rogue Valley’s food scene with an enthusiasm that rivals her love of cooking. Her blog mixes culinary musings and milestones with tips and recipes you won’t find in the Mail Tribune’s weekly A la Carte section. When ... Read Full
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