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How to Use Aquafaba In Recipes In Place of Egg Whites

I've seen aquafaba in the ingredient list of fancy cocktails and vegan baked goods, but I didn't learn what it was until recently. This mysterious viscous liquid is actually the water made from cooking legumes, and it's an amazingly effective replacement for egg whites. Here's how to use aquafaba in place of egg whites in recipes.

What is Aquafaba?

Aquafaba, also called "bean liquid" or "bean water," is made when when legumes are cooked. During the cooking process, certain proteins, carbohydrates and plant solids mix with the cooking water, with results in a thick liquid. This liquid is vegan, gluten-free, and allergy-friendly, making it ideal as an egg substitute.

Although this works with any legume, the aquafaba from chickpeas (or garbanzo beans) is most commonly used as an egg substitute in dairy free recipes. The bean liquid from cooked chickpeas is clear, and slightly yellowish, just like egg whites. This is part of the appeal of using it rather than brown bean liquid. Plus, it whips well and has a great texture for replacing egg whites.

Although you can make your own aquafaba by cooking chickpeas, it's easier to simply open a can of chickpeas and use the liquid inside. Although chickpea liquid may smell a little beany, once you add your aquafaba to a recipe you shouldn't notice any bean flavor.

How to Use Aquafaba In Place of Egg Whites

To replace eggs with aquafaba, you'll use three tablespoons of aquafaba for one large egg, or two tablespoons for large egg white. Although you can use salted beans, it's best to use unsalted, since the extra salt might change the flavor of your recipe.

When adding aquafaba to a baked good where it'll be baked in or used as egg wash, simply use tablespoons of the chickpea water right from the can of beans. If you're using it for whipped egg whites, you'll whip the aquafaba just like you would egg whites, with a hand mixer or stand mixer.

If it appears too watery, reduce the bean liquid by simmering it on the stove top over medium low heat, until it has thickened. Its consistency should appear similar to that of runny egg whites. Let it cool to room temperature before using in a recipe.

Although this egg replacement works great in many egg-free recipes like vegan chocolate chip cookies, brownies, and macarons, it's not the best option for stand-alone egg vegan recipes like scrambled eggs or egg salads. Stick to using the bean liquid as a supplement to recipes where it'll be mixed in with other ingredients.

If you find yourself with too much aquafaba after using it in your recipe, refrigerate it in an airtight container for a few days. If you won't be using it up in the next few days, freeze it for a longer shelf-life. One easy tip is freezing it in cubes in ice cube tray that each contain 1 tablespoon. This, way, it'll be easy to measure when you next use it to replace eggs.

What Are Some Recipes That Use Aquafaba?

1. Vegan Lemon Meringue Pie

Vegan meringues are one of the most popular aquafaba recipes, because they're so easy and taste so good. Whipped aquafaba is the perfect replacement for the whipped egg white in a meringue, and it forms stiff peaks just like the real thing. This lemon aquafaba meringue recipe is vegan and tastes delicious.

Get the recipe here.

2. Vegan Chocolate Mousse

This fudgy vegan mousse is a delectable way to try out using aquafaba. With a total time of about 20 minutes and only three necessary ingredients, it's hard to believe that something so easy can taste so yummy. Garnish with whatever you think sounds good, from chopped nuts to pomegranate seeds.

Get the recipe here.

3. Vegan Whiskey Sour

Egg whites are an essential part of a whiskey sour for the foam, along with other classy cocktails like Pisco sours and Tom & Jerrys. Aquafaba perfectly mimics the texture of an egg white, so it's a great replacement for a vegan cocktail.

Get the recipe here.

4. Vegan Mayonnaise

Just because you're eating a vegan diet doesn't mean you stop wanting yummy dairy products like mayonnaise, cheese and ice cream. This vegan mayo uses aquafaba for its creamy, fluffy texture.

Get the recipe here.