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Vegan baking essentials

12 Oct 2022 • 4 min read


Looking to switch to a plant-based diet? One thing that you may be concerned about is how you can adapt your favourite baking recipes to be vegan.

When you are used to baking with lavish amounts of butter, eggs, milk or cream, it can be hard to imagine finding credible vegan alternatives.

But the good news is that many before you have been through vegan baking trials and tribulations, working out what essential tips and ingredients you need to keep in mind and in your kitchen for you to get your best bake on!

We take a closer look at some of the essential baking ingredients you might want to stock up on.

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The best vegan egg replacement

Finding a baking egg replacement may seem like a challenge, but when you realise that there are actually a few options for this, you may be able to relax a little and get into the vegan baking groove.

Here are some options for you to consider:

  1. Vegan egg replacer

These typically come in powder form, which you mix with water to create an egg-like substance.

Bobs Red Mill Gluten Free Egg Replacer and Orgran No Egg, for example, are both used in this way, and are recommended for use in cakes and meringues as a vegan egg substitute for baking.

The H&B Vegan Egg Replacer is also a great baking egg replacement, which can also be used to cook up scrambled eggs and omelettes!

  1. Flaxseed egg replacement

To use ground flaxseed meal as an egg substitute for binding your bakes together, mix up the equivalent of one egg using a tablespoon for flaxseed meal with three or more tablespoons of water.

Leave it to rest in the fridge for 15 minutes while it thickens, and there’s your egg, or “flegg”!

Its consistency is like a vegan egg white substitute.1

  1. Ripe bananas

Mashed up ripe bananas (roughly one banana replaces one egg) are great for sweet bakes and have the added benefit of substituting a little of the sugar too.

They are not just perfect for banana bread, so you can also try using them in pancakes and brownies too. Yum.

Believe it or not, there are even more options our there for vegan egg replacements, check out 10 of the best egg alternatives for vegans for more ideas.

The best vegan butter for baking

Now that you have got your egg substitute sorted, you are probably wondering what to use as a butter replacement.

And you might be happy to hear that you may not need to substitute much butter if using a flaxseed egg substitute.

Do try to experiment and see what works for your recipes.2 If you do need butter, it is really easy to substitute.

Here are a few butter alternatives:

  1. Olive Oil

Olive oil is especially good for gingerbread or spice cookies as the olive oil can boost that spicy flavour.3

  1. Vegetable oil

Try swapping vegetable oil gram for gram instead of butter.

  1. Nut Butters

Nut butters add both the buttery texture and nutty nutrition to your baking

  1. Vegan spread

A vegan margarine can mimic butter quite well in baking

  1. Coconut Oil

Coconut oil is great for adding the thickness that butter does. Looking for some ideas to try out vegan baking with coconut oil, check out 5 vegan cake recipes using coconut oil and you will quickly see why it is such a popular substitute.

The best vegan honey alternatives

Occasionally, those looking to swap out processed sugars might reach for honey instead.

But since vegans avoid all animal products, including from bees, you will need to find another option if you, or the vegan you are catering for, chooses not to eat honey.

Agave syrup and maple syrup are the two most popular substitutes, but why not also experiment with molasses or malt extract? Find out more about vegan honey alternatives to bring a little more sweetness to your baking.

The best vegan chocolate for baking

If you are looking to use chocolate as one of your vegan baking ingredients, make sure to avoid chocolate that includes any milk products or derivatives.

You might find the Vegan Trademark4 on the packaging, or other wording or symbols to help guide you. Find out more in this handy guide to vegan chocolate.

The final say

Now you are all set to whip up a vegan storm in the kitchen, check out all our vegan baking essentials to stock up.

Whether you are switching to vegan baking for your own dietary requirements, baking for other vegans, or just experimenting with new baking techniques, we’ve got you covered.

The advice in this article is for information only and should not replace medical care. Please check with your GP or healthcare professional before trying any supplements, treatments or remedies. Food supplements must not be used as a substitute for a varied and balanced diet and a healthy lifestyle.

Last updated: 12 October 2022




Author: Bhupesh PanchalSenior Regulatory Affairs Associate

Joined Holland & Barrett: Apr 2019

Masters Degree in Toxicology and BSc Hons in Medical Biochemistry

Bhupesh started his career as a Clinical Toxicologist for Public Health England, advising healthcare professionals all around the country on how to manage clinical cases of adverse exposure to supplements, pharmaceuticals, cosmetics, industrial chemicals and agricultural products.

After 7 years in this role and a further year working as a drug safety officer in the pharmaceutical industry, Bhupesh joined Holland & Barrett as a Senior Regulatory Affairs Associate in 2019.

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