Are you a vegan baker? These 13 vegan egg wash options are easy and provide that special finishing touch to your vegan pastries!
Not too long ago I was baking some homemade empanadas. I wanted to brush them with something to create that golden brown glisten that is uniquely distinct to baked goods.
But what could I use? I needed an egg wash alternative. Obviously, I couldn’t use typical egg whites, or a whole egg. I needed a vegan egg substitute. That was when I dug into my vegan baking books, and did some research on options that would create that same final product.
What I found were quite a few options that were super simple. All of the recommendations used ingredients I had in my pantry and fridge. These simple egg wash substitutes work for both savory dishes and sweet bakes!
Pick and choose what works best for your recipe based on the items you have on hand!
Why use an egg wash in baking?
Egg wash is used to make pastries shiny, and helps create a golden brown finish. In addition, if you are adding any toppings to your pastry, it serves to help the toppings stick. For example, brushing egg wash on bread, and sprinkling with poppy seeds, allows the seeds to stick rather than fall off during the baking process.
It is also used in baking to bind pastry together. For example, hand pies that use two folds of pastry to wrap around filling.
What is vegan egg wash?
Vegan egg wash does not use egg, but acts in the same way as a traditional egg wash would in baking. It helps toppings stick to your pastry, binds pastry together, and creates a shiny glowing golden brown finish.
This is my simple go to wash for any sweet baked items I’m making. It’s super simple, and is ready to go in only 2 minutes!
Add the maple syrup and unsweetened almond milk to a small bowl.
Whisk together with a fork or small whisk.
Using a pastry brush, lightly coat your pastry. You may need to reduce bake time slightly, as the sugars in the wash cook and brown more quickly.
Yes! You can make an egg wash without eggs. If you find yourself in a bind while baking, and don’t have any eggs left, or you are preparing vegan baked goods, it is simple to create an alternative wash that will have the same end result.
Yes, you can use a vegan egg replacer to create an egg wash. Combine the replacer with water or dairy-free milk. Whisk together, and brush on the surface of your pastry.
More Substitutes for Egg Wash
Oils: If you are not opposed to using oils in your baking, they work well. I suggest using coconut oil, or olive oil. Although, you could use a vegetable oil or canola oil if that is what you have at home. You will get a nice golden brown finish, however, it doesn’t achieve a good shine.
Vegan Butter: Melted butter, like Earth Balance baking sticks, are another option. Use a pastry brush to lightly coat your baked goods. Butter will give a golden brown finish, but not the same type of shine.
Plant Milk: Using a plant-based milk such as almond milk, soy, or oat will provide your baked goods with a golden brown sheen. Avoid using milks with added sugars.
Agave Syrup or Maple Syrup: One of the most popular substitutes, as mentioned above. Agave nectar and maple syrup are quite sweet. This combination works best for sweet baked goods, like these puff pastry pop tarts.
Aquafaba: If you’re not sure what aquafaba is, you’re about to find it! Aquafaba is the liquid in a can of chickpeas. Whenever I make a recipe with chickpeas, I reserve the aquafaba to use in other recipes such as this chocolate mousse. It makes for an excellent egg replacer. It whips up to create merignue, but it’s also a wonderful substitute to use for savory baked goods. It will help your pastry achieve a golden brown sheen!
Soy Powder: Combining soy powder with soy milk, is another simple substitute if you have it on hand. Use a 1:2 combination. One part soy powder, to 2 parts soy milk. Use an unsweetened no flavor added soy milk.
Flax Egg: If you’re familiar with vegan baking then you know that making a flax egg can replace regular eggs in your baked goods. It can also work as an egg wash. Combine 1 tbsp of ground flaxseed with 2.5 tablespoons of water. The end result will have flecks of flax, but if you’re okay with that, it will help create a golden shine.
Chia Seeds: Similar to flaxseeds, you can combine 1 tablespoon of ground chia seeds, with 2.5 tablespoons of water, and whisk together. It will create a beaten egg like consistency.
When To Use
Use these alternative egg washes for the following recipes.
- Vegan Dinner Rolls
- Puff Pastry Recipes
- Hand Pies
- Vega Pie Crusts
- For best results, if you are making a savory goods, refrain from using a substitute that uses a sweetener.
- Each egg wash substitute will have a slightly different end result. I recommend giving different methods a try to see which one yields the result you are looking for.
- Sugar browns quickly in the oven. So you may need to reduce your baking time.
- Melt any hard oils before using.
- Use a pastry brush to gently apply.
More vegan baking tips!
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Vegan Egg Wash
- 1 tsp maple syrup or agave syrup
- 2 tbsp unsweetened almond milk or other unsweetened dairy free milk
- Add the maple syrup and almond milk to a small bowl.
- Whisk together with a fork or small whisk.
- Using a pastry brush, lightly coat your pastry.
- Bake according to the recipe directions.
- If you are making a savory bake, refrain from using a substitute that uses a sweetener. Instead try melted coconut oil, or melted vegan butter.
- Using this egg wash substitute will result in browning more easily as the sugars heat more quickly in the oven.
- Use a pastry brush to gently apply.