There are a number of different ways to substitute eggs in a recipe. Eggs offer a variety of integral components to baking, including binding of ingredients, moistness and leavening. There are several ways to imitate the properties of eggs, and listed below are the top four used by most bakers; it takes some experimentation to figure out the best method for a recipe, but through great failure comes great knowledge!
1. Flax Seed
When ground flax seed is combined with water, it creates a goopy, cohesive substance that looks a lot like an egg white. Flax seed is a great binder and provides a similar moisture content to an egg, but it doesn’t have any leavening properties. It is great for cookies & cakes that have additional leavening ingredients, like baking powder or baking soda. This method will leave small specs of flax seed in your finished baked goods, and it is important to note that it may impart a slight flaxy taste too, so is not the best option for delicately flavored desserts. The basic recipe I use is:
1 tablespoon ground flax seed + 3 tablespoons warm water = 1 egg.
Combine in a small bowl and whisk for 1 minute, and then let sit for at least 5 minutes before using.
VeganBaking.net has an amazingly informative article about the how and why of flax seed and explains the chemistry of how it works; I highly recommend reading it: http://www.veganbaking.net/recipes/egg-replacers/flax-seed-egg-replacer .
Tofu, Applesauce & Dairy-Free Yogurt
Pureed silken tofu, applesauce and yogurts can provide a wonderful moistness to your baked goods. They don’t have any leavening properties, and they are only mild binders, but it can work really well in some situations, mostly with cakes, brownies or pies.
Tofu leaves almost no taste which is great for cakes, and you can decide if you want to use plain yogurt or a flavored one in your dessert. Applesauce, of course, will impart an apple taste to your baked goods, so only use it where it works with the recipe.
Use ¼ cup pureed silken tofu (puree in a blender until completely smooth) in place of one egg. Use the same formula for applesauce and dairy-free yogurt. A common silken tofu to use is www.morinu.com. If you are using applesauce, make sure to use a high-quality one. Watery applesauce does little to help a recipe, so look for the thicker, denser varieties.
Vinegar & Baking Soda
Combining vinegar and baking soda creates a fizzing bubbly reaction and can work really well at providing leavening to your baked goods. It doesn’t have any binding qualities and only provides minimal additional moisture, but it can work wonderfully in some cake recipes, usually ones that have an additional binder.
The substitution is: 1 teaspoon baking soda + 1 tablespoon vinegar = 1 egg
Commercial Egg Replacer
There are several commercial egg replacers out there, the most common being Ener-G & Bob’s Red Mill, and they are great egg substitutes, providing binding, some additional moisture and leavening. Use as directions state on the package.