Ever wondered how to make and use a flax egg? We’re here to help. Flax “eggs” are a cornerstone ingredient in vegan and egg free baking. We use flax eggs as an egg substitute in many of our vegan baked good recipes.
Just getting started with vegan baking? Here’s what you need to know.
What is a flax egg?
A flax egg is a common vegan egg substitute, made by stirring together ground flax seed (flax meal) and water to form a gelatinous substance. Flax eggs act as a binding ingredient in vegan baking recipes and provide structure. Flax eggs should not alter the desired taste or texture of your recipe if used correctly.
Although they’re not always the perfect 1:1 substitution for real eggs, flax eggs work well in a wide range of both sweet and savory vegan recipes. It’s important to note that flax eggs require flax meal and not flax seed, which leads me to…
What’s the difference between flax seed and flax meal?
Flax meal is simply ground flax seed. Unground flax seeds should never be used as a substitute for flax meal. Flax seeds will not gelatinize nearly as well, and they will also alter the texture of your final product. (Nobody wants to bite into a cupcake to find gritty flax seeds!)
Note that it’s important to store both flax meal and flax seeds in the refrigerator; they are both extremely perishable and will go rancid quickly. Pre-ground flax seed is especially perishable and shouldn’t be purchased in large quantities unless you’re certain you’ll use it before the expiration date. You can also store flax meal and flax seeds in the freezer – they’ll last up to a year.
Flax meal is typically available at most specialty health stores, but if you’re unable to find any, you can always order online. Alternatively, you can easily make flax meal at home by grinding flax seeds in a spice/nut or coffee grinder.
Flax meal made in a spice grinder may not be quite as fine as a store-bought version, but that’s perfectly okay. Just check to ensure there are no full flaxseeds hiding at the bottom! Check out the photo below to see what homemade flax meal looks like.
Chia vs. flax eggs
Chia eggs, made from ground chia seeds, can be used as a 1:1 substitute for flax eggs. If you cannot have flax seeds due to an allergy (or simply don’t want to use them), chia is a fantastic alternative.
Similar to flax meal, ground chia seeds can be purchased at specialty health stores or online. Both chia seeds and flax seeds are excellent sources of fiber. Chia and flax are also excellent plant-based sources of omega-3 fatty acids.
Chia, unlike flax, is much easier to consume in its whole state. We often use chia seeds as a binding ingredient in recipes like this rhubarb compote, this homemade granola, and chia pudding (one of our favorite breakfasts!).
How to make a flax egg
To make a flax egg, simply stir together 1 tablespoon of flax meal with 2.5 tablespoons of water. Let the mixture sit for 15-20 minutes, stirring once or twice, until the flax meal absorbs the water. The final result should be gelatinous and not at all watery.
If for some reason your flax egg isn’t setting up after 20 minutes, stir in a bit more flax meal. After the flax egg has set, you can add it directly to the recipe as usual.
In some cases, we add flax meal straight to a recipe (without adding water) and let it absorb liquid that’s already in the recipe. These homemade veggie burger patties are the perfect example. We add two tablespoons of flax meal to the patty, which helps bind everything together without adding too much moisture.
Recipes that use flax eggs
We use flax eggs most commonly in vegan baking recipes. Check out a few of our favorite recipes below!
- Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies (Vegan, GF)
- Carrot Cake Cupcakes (Vegan, GF)
- Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Banana Bread (Vegan, GF)
- Brownies with Chocolate Ganache Frosting (Vegan, GF)
- Apple Walnut Cake with Cinnamon Glaze (Vegan, GF)
We hope you enjoyed this tutorial! If you’d like to see more tutorials/how-to’s on Crowded Kitchen, we’d love for you to comment below.
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Flax “eggs” are a cornerstone ingredient in vegan and egg free baking. We use flax eggs as an egg replacement in many of our vegan baked good recipes.
- 1 tbsp flax meal (ground flax seed)
- 2.5 tbsp water
- Stir together ground flax and water.
- Let the mixture sit for 15-20 minutes, stirring once or twice, until the flax meal absorbs the water. The final result should be gelatinous and not at all watery.