vegan cookies

Baking can be challenging if you are a vegan. No dairy and no egg – two major ingredients when it comes to baking sweet stuff. But fear not – I have a few simple solutions for you that are pretty much foolproof.

The dairy part of the equation is pretty simple. You can try substituting butter with olive oil or coconut oil, often with fairly satisfying results. You will likely end up with a slightly denser cake, but I am quite partial to these anyway.

Replacing eggs in a recipe though can be a little trickier. I am yet to find a replacement for egg white that will create a pavlova or meringue. However, there are several egg alternatives that are quite ingenious. My latest discovery is chia seeds, which actually create an egg white-like consistency when they are combined with a liquid. However, they do however absorb moisture during cooking so you may need to increase the liquid in a recipe to compensate for this.

Baking is a science and a lot of it is a matter of trial and error, but when it comes to finding out what does and doesn’t work, lets just say I can tell you quite a bit about the latter. Egg replacement options usually work in recipes that require up to 3 eggs – anything over that and you will end up with a bit of a sloppy mess. Eggs work to bind baked foods that also give rise to the product – the rise isn’t vital but the bind is.

So, here are a few options for you if you are looking to use eggs to bind your cookies, cakes or pastry:

Mashed banana
This is one of my favourites as I always seem to have a ripe banana stashed in my freezer and they only take an hour or so to defrost. Simply mash 1/2 a medium sized banana and use that in place of one egg.

Chia seeds
These are a little more fancy, but I think they do a really great job. Mix 1 tablespoon of chia seeds with 3 tablespoons of water and allow to stand until they are the same type of consistency as egg white.

Pureed fruit
Apple sauce is probably the simplest one to use as it can be found in the supermarket but feel free to use whatever you have available to you, pureed berries are really yummy as well. One egg is equal to 1/4 cup of pureed fruit.

You need to grind these then mix them with 3 tablespoons of water, they work in a similar way to the chia seeds.

If you are wanting to use egg to leaven you baked goodies then you can mix one tablespoon of coconut oil or olive oil with 2 tablespoons water and 1 teaspoon baking powder.

vegan baking

A cup of this and a cup of that cake

I love this cake as it is so quick and easy to make. You can substitute the banana for apple puree and the chocolate chips for your favourite nuts. Also, I use coconut sugar but you could easily use brown sugar.

  • 1 cup shredded coconut
  • 1 cup gluten free self raising flour
  • 1 cup chocolate chips
  • 1 cup coconut sugar
  • 1 cup mashed banana (about 3 large ripe)
  • 1 cup almond milk

Preheat oven to 180C (350F/Gas 4). Grease and line a loaf tin with baking paper.

Put the coconut, flour, baking powder, chocolate chips and coconut sugar into a bowl. Stir in the mashed banana and almond mix and mix to combine.

Bake for 40 minutes or until a skewer comes out clean when inserted into the centre.

Serves 6 -8

Peanut butter cookies

  • 125g  (4oz) coconut oil
  • 125g (4oz) brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup (125g/4oz) peanut butter
  • 2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 tablespoon white chia seeds mixed with 3 tablespoons water, stand for 10 minutes
  • 1 3/4 cup gluten free plain flour or 1 cup buckwheat flour & 3/4 cup brown rice flour
  • 50g/1 3/4 oz) raw peanuts or almonds

Preheat oven to 180 C (350F/Gas 6).

Beat the coconut oil and brown sugar and light and creamy. Add the peanut butter, vanilla and chia seed mixture beat until smooth.

Fold in the flour and peanuts. Spoon tablespoons of the mixture onto the prepared trays, bake for 20 minutes or until golden brown.

Makes 12


chia seeds, dairy free cakes, easy gluten free cake, egg free baking, gluten free baking, Vegan baking

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  • петя спасова

    simply great ideas jodythe cake is easy and i could make it and the cookies look good…

  • Salim George Khalaf

    I would appreciate your publishing (or weblishing in this case) cookies and cakes recipes that are good for diabetics — low in carbs or with flour substitute (soy flour or almond flour) and sugar substitute (like Splenda).

    Here in the US, knowing that childhood obesity, in addition to adult overweight, diabetes will explode among the general population more than ever before. Chefs, as well as food manufacturers, would do well to think about this and plan for various low carb products and recipes.

    Jamie, I admired your filling a school bus in California with the sugar consumed in public schools. I did not know what happened eventually since the program went of the air in the eastern USA.


  • Alice Shopland

    Lovely to see vegan baking on here! Your mention of egg-free meringues made me smile, because I have developed a recipe for just such a thing. We currently sell them here in New Zealand and are about to start exporting to Australia.

  • Fern Demeo

    Jamie and Jody- It is so heartening to see influential people like you posting about vegan baking, and in the process, shedding light on the the hidden suffering that millions of farm ‘food’ animals experience each year. Thank you for your post and for helping to bridge the gap between the way we treat our beloved pets, and the way we treat equally sentient ‘food’ animals :)

  • Di Thomas

    Jamie Pleeeeease GO VEGAN Imagine the change your influence could bring <3

  • Laurenm

    Wow the cup of this and that cake is lovely, just made it for my mum. Thanks :)

  • Erik Wolf

    Nice to see Jamie’s on board with the future of food, and we could not agree more. We do a Future of Food conference every year in Portland, Oregon called FoodWorx.

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