You may be allergic to eggs, unable to eat them because of health issues, or you might have just run out of them and you don’t even have one egg at home to cook with. Don’t worry, you can still whip up a batch of brownies without them.
Yes, there are substitutions you can use for eggs (as well as the other main ingredients) when you want to make brownies. Some you may already be aware of, others are items you may already have at home but never even thought of as an alternative.
What Is the Purpose of Eggs in Baking?
Most people have their favorite recipes that they bring out when they are ready to cook or bake something special. Many recipes we have used so much in the past that the recipe card we use is wrinkled and even may have a little bit of the ingredients still on them.
One thing is a common ingredient in baking and that is an egg or two (or even three!). But what is it about the egg that makes the recipe, especially brownies, so special?
Eggs contribute a number of important purposes when baking. They are used many times to bind the other ingredients together to make one cohesive unit rather than a bowl full of random items.
In many recipes, especially brownies, eggs are used to add moisture to a recipe. If a recipe doesn’t have enough moisture it can turn out to be a crumbly, dry mess.
And as a leavening agent, eggs provide air so that your brownies will rise just enough and have the right texture for the delicious treats that they are.
How to Replace Eggs in a Brownie Recipe
While there are products on the market that are packaged and marketed as egg replacers, there are also many items you may already have at home that you can use as a substitute for eggs when making brownies.
When Used as a Leavening Agent, You Can Substitute the Following:
- Yogurt or buttermilk – use 1/4 cup of yogurt or buttermilk to replace each egg when making brownies. This will help to make the brownies airy enough as well as keep them moist.
- Vinegar and baking soda – you can mix 1 tablespoon of white distilled vinegar or apple cider vinegar with 1 teaspoon of baking soda to replace one egg in your brownie recipe.
When Used for Added Moisture, You Can Substitute the Following:
- Pureed fruit – when used to add moisture to your recipe, use 1/4 cup of fruit to replace each egg. Choose from unsweetened applesauce, mashed bananas, dates that have been softened, pureed prunes (you can use baby food), or raisins that have been plumped up. You may have to bake your brownies a little bit longer.
- Oil and baking power– combine one teaspoon of oil (vegetable or corn oil is recommended) with two tablespoons of water, and two teaspoons of baking powder as a replacement for one egg.
- Nut butter – you can choose between almond, cashew, or peanut butter to replace an egg in your brownie mix. Substitute 3 tablespoons of nut butter for each egg called for in your recipe. Make sure the nut butter is creamy and not chunky.
- Carbonated water – adding 1/4 cup of carbonated water to replace each egg when making brownies can be used as a leavening agent as well as provide moisture to the recipe.
When Used for Binding Ingredients, You Can Substitute the Following:
- Pureed fruits – you can replace each egg with 1/4 cup of unsweetened applesauce, canned pumpkin, mashed bananas, or pureed prunes.
- Pureed vegetables – you can replace one egg with 1/4 cup of mashed avocado to bind the other ingredients together.
- Silken tofu – use 1/4 cup of silken tofu, whipped, for every egg it is replacing. This substitute provides a nice smooth texture.
- Aquafaba – this product is the liquid from canned beans. You can purchase aquafaba already sold in the grocery store or use the liquid from a can of beans or chickpeas from your home. The liquid has almost the same consistency as an egg white. You can take 3 tablespoons of aquafaba to replace one egg. It is suggested that you use the liquid from black beans or red kidney beans when making brownies. Check out Aquafabulous! (amazon) for more ways to use aquafaba in recipes.
- Arrowroot – this powder has the same consistency of cornstarch. Use 2 tablespoons of arrowroot combined with 3 tablespoons of water to take the place of each egg.
Additional Replacements for Eggs in Brownies:
- Flaxseed – flaxseed is a vegan replacement for eggs. When making brownies mix 1 tablespoon of ground flaxseed powder with 3 tablespoons of water when replacing each egg.
- Vegetable oil – this method is only good if you are replacing one egg or your brownies will be too oily. Add 1/4 cup of vegetable oil to replace one egg when making brownies.
No matter what the reason you have for replacing eggs when you are making brownies just make sure you use one of the substitutions above.
Do not try to make your recipe by omitting the egg without the substitution or you will not be happy with the result. If you are using a boxed mix you can use any of the above substitutions as well.
Speaking of box mixes, make sure to try one of these creative ways to spice up a brownie box mix!
Make-Ahead Brownie Mix
If you don’t already have a favorite brownie mix, here’s one you can put together and keep on hand for whenever you get that urge for chocolate at its finest.
In a large jar that is quart-sized, add the following ingredients: 1 1/4 cups of granulated sugar, 3/4 cups of all-purpose flour, 1/2 cup good quality cocoa powder (or use a substitute), 1/2 teaspoon of salt, 1/2 cup of chocolate chips if you like your brownies extra chocolatey (this is optional).
When you are ready to bake your brownies, pre-heat your oven to 350-degrees F, and spray an 8-inch baking pan with cooking spray. Add the dry ingredients into the pan, then add 2 eggs (or the egg substitutes), along with 1/2 cup of vegetable oil and 2 tablespoons of water.
Mix together until well blended. Bake for 25 to 28 minutes or until a toothpick inserted comes out clean. Cool, cut, and serve. Enjoy!
If you somehow end up with leftovers, be sure to try one of these unique ideas for using up leftover brownies!
Sarah is the founder of Baking Kneads, LLC, a blog sharing guides, tips, and recipes for those learning how to bake. Growing up as the daughter of a baker, she spent much of her childhood learning the basics in a local bakery.