Quiche is an enormously popular breakfast or brunch dish that is relatively easy to make at home, as long as you have the right ingredients; typically, these ingredients include milk.
There are many reasons that you may want or need to leave the milk out of the quiche, though—you might be cooking for someone with an allergy or intolerance (or you may have one yourself), or you may simply not have any dairy milk in the house.
In this article, we’ll cover some of the basics of quiche—what it is and what it’s made of—and then we’ll look at different ways of making quiche without milk.
What Is a Quiche?
As you may have surmised from its name, quiche is a French dish: a kind of tart. It is usually in the shape of a pie, and like pie, it has a pastry crust.
The filling for a quiche can be made of many things, but typically savory foods, such as meat, cheese, and vegetables. Whatever the filling, it is mixed with egg.
Although French in origin, quiche is quite popular worldwide as a breakfast food especially. It appears on many brunch menus as well.
Chefs and home cooks alike get very creative with quiche, adding all sorts of combinations of ingredients to it. One of the most famous is the Quiche Lorraine, which is made with bacon and cheese.
Quiche is a great way to use up leftover eggs or other ingredients that are going to go bad. Next, let’s take a crash course in how you make a quiche.
How Do You Make a Quiche?
There are lots of different methods to making quiche; in fact, it is something of an art form for cooks. We’re just going to cover some of the basics here.
First, start with a pie crust. You can use homemade or store bought.
Next, cook your ingredients, if necessary. Most of the time you’ll sauté everything together on the stove until it is cooked.
You can’t just throw the eggs in; you have to make an egg custard, which involves mixing the eggs, milk, and heavy cream. You whisk them together vigorously until they are fully combined and fluffy.
This mixture of milk, cream, and eggs gives quiche its quintessential texture and consistency.
Then you fill it, bake it, cool it, and most importantly—eat it!
Can You Make Quiche Without Milk?
The short answer—yes! However, you’re going to have to use some kind of substitute for milk.
Otherwise, if you combine the eggs and the savory ingredients alone, you’ve made an omelet in a pastry dish, not a traditional quiche. It will still taste just fine, but it will not have the consistency of a quiche.
A word of caution: in many cases, simply substituting dairy milk for a non-dairy alternative is not going to yield the best results. Even though some milk substitutes (such as almond milk or soy milk) have a similar look and even taste as dairy milk, the chemical makeup and consistency are very different.
For that reason, we recommend that you use a recipe that specifically calls for the type of milk you want to use.
At the same time, you might have a favorite quiche recipe and may not want to switch, or you might be trying to make a quiche of your own design. Since there are so many non-dairy milk alternatives, let’s look at some of the best for making a quiche.
Substituting Milk in a Quiche
As we have said, there are many milk alternatives available. Let’s look at some of the best for making quiche.
Soy milk is one of the best substitutes for milk in quiche or any recipe. This is because it has a thick consistency and taste similar to regular milk.
Flax milk and rice milk are also fairly similar, though nut milks such as almond milk and cashew milk will also work. The bottom line is that pretty much any alternative milk will work in a quiche.
Usually, it will come down to what you have in your pantry. If you’re substituting dairy milk, it will almost always be the same measurements.
One last word of caution before we move on: make sure that, whatever type of milk you use, you use unsweetened. Sweetened soy milk, almond milk, or others might taste good in cereal or coffee, but they will throw off the taste of something savory such as quiche.
You can definitely make a non-dairy quiche if your recipe calls for cream. We recommend using non-dairy cream; like milks, there are many non-dairy creams made from a variety of ingredients.
One option for eliminating the dairy in your quiche is to simply add an extra egg and some water, at a ratio of one large egg for every half cup of water. Whisk the eggs and water together vigorously until you get the consistency of quiche made with milk.
Be aware that if you eliminate the cream, you’re also eliminating a big source of fat in your quiche, which gives it a lot of flavor. To make up for that, try pan-frying your filling ingredients in a generous amount of non-dairy butter or coconut milk.
Is There Such a Thing as Vegan Quiche?
If your reason for seeking a non-dairy quiche is animal rights or ethics, then you’re probably hoping to substitute the most essential ingredient in quiche, as well—the eggs.
To make a vegan quiche, most people substitute the eggs with some kind of vegan egg substitute, which most markets carry in the dairy section. Or you can make your own using tofu, chia, flax, or a number of other ingredients.
One final note of caution about vegan quiche: make sure the pie filling is vegan, too! You can make your own or find a pre-made vegan pie crust at specialty food stores.
Feel free to experiment with ingredients, including milk alternatives, for the perfect quiche of your own. Most importantly, enjoy eating it!
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.