Meringue Powder Alternatives
Meringue powder is a common ingredient in many desserts, including meringue pies and cookies. Unfortunately, it can be challenging to find in stores, so many people choose to make their own meringue powder substitute.
Luckily, there are a few substitutes that can be used in its place.
What is meringue powder?
Meringue powder is a type of flour made from dried egg whites. It is used as a thickening agent and helps create a light, airy texture in baked goods. It can also be found in the baking aisle of most supermarkets.
Meringue Powder Substitutes and Alternatives
Pasteurized Egg Whites
Pasteurized egg whites make an excellent substitute for meringue powder. They have the same basic properties as meringue powder but are much easier to find and use. Pasteurized egg whites are also cheaper than meringue powder, making them a good choice for budget-minded cooks.
On the other hand, pasteurized egg whites will not whip up as stiff as meringue powder and may not be as stable at high temperatures. This means they may start to weep or collapse if used in recipes requiring baking or broiling. If you are concerned about this, you can add a stabilizer such as a cream of tartar to help the egg whites hold up better.
With some know-how, you can use pasteurized egg whites to make delicious meringues that will impress your friends and family.
Egg White Powder
Egg white powder is made from dried egg whites and can be easy to find. However, there are some things to keep in mind when using egg white powder as a meringue powder substitute.
The most significant difference between meringue powder and egg white powder is the amount of sugar needed. Therefore, you’ll need to add less sugar when using egg white powder as a substitute. Otherwise, your meringue will be too sweet. Another thing is that egg white powder doesn’t have stabilizers as meringue powder does.
Also, remember that egg white powder is a perishable ingredient, so it should be used within a few weeks of opening. Once opened, store egg white powder in an airtight container in the fridge.
Aquafaba is the liquid from cooked chickpeas and can be used to make meringue. It’s a natural product, easy to find, and relatively inexpensive, making it a perfect choice for meringue substitute.
On the downside, aquafaba can be harder to work with than meringue powder. It can be tricky to get the right consistency, and it doesn’t always hold up as well in baking.
Start with a smaller amount than you think you need because aquafaba will triple in volume when it’s being whipped. Using a metal bowl and whisk is also essential, as this will help the aquafaba to whip up more quickly.
Flaxseed is a must-try substitute for meringue powder in many recipes. It has a similar texture and is a good source of fiber and omega-3 fatty acids, so it has health benefits that meringue powder does not.
Flaxseed can have a strong flavor. If you use flaxseed as a substitute for meringue powder, it is best to start with a small amount and add more to the taste.
When cooking with flaxseed, it is essential to simmer it at a low temperature. This will help to prevent the flaxseed from burning and becoming bitter. It can also be used in many recipes, including meringues, cookies, and cakes.
Agar-agar powder is a common ingredient in Asian cuisine and can be used as a substitute for meringue powder in many recipes. However, there are some significant differences to keep in mind when using agar-agar powder instead of meringue powder.
Agar-agar powder is made from dried algae and has a similar texture to meringue powder. However, it is not as sweet as meringue powder and has a slightly bitter taste. Additionally, it doesn’t dissolve in water as quickly as meringue powder, so it is essential to add it to recipes slowly and whisk it well to avoid clumps.
Agar-agar powder can be found in most Asian grocery stores or online. It is a versatile ingredient that can be used in many different recipes and is a good alternative to meringue powder for those looking for a less sweet option.
One pro of using arrowroot powder is it is a natural thickener without the need for additional chemicals or artificials. Arrowroot powder is also known for its binding properties, such as in a meatloaf or veggie burger.
A con of using arrowroot powder as a meringue powder substitute is that it does not work well in recipes that require a lot of air to be incorporated into the mix (such as meringues or souffles). If you use it to replace meringue powder in a recipe, be sure to use a smaller amount and add it gradually until you reach the desired consistency.
Remember that it should never be boiled, as this can cause it to lose its thickening properties. Arrowroot powder is also best added to recipes at the end of cooking, as it can become clumpy if cooked for too long.
Chia seeds have been used as a meringue powder substitute for many years. Some people prefer them because they are a natural source of fiber and protein and are gluten-free. It can also help stabilize blood sugar levels, regulate digestion and promote regularity.
On the other hand, chia seeds can be challenging to work with, as they tend to clump together when wet. They can also be tricky to measure, as they are often sold in bulk, resulting in a slimy or gritty texture.
To avoid clumping, add chia seeds to liquids slowly and whisk them well. It is also best to grind them into a powder first to ensure a smooth texture.
You can use chia seeds in various recipes, including baked goods, smoothies, and sauces. Experiment to find the best way to incorporate them into your favorite dishes.
Gelatin is a thickener and stabilizer in many desserts and gives the meringue its characteristic light and airy texture.
However, gelatin has some drawbacks. One is that it can be clumpy and hard to dissolve. Another is that it is not vegan-friendly.
Make sure your gelatin is fully dissolved before adding it to the egg whites when making meringue. If it isn’t, the meringue will be lumpy and won’t hold its shape. To dissolve gelatin, place it in a bowl of warm water and stir until it is completely dissolved. Then add it to the egg whites and continue with your recipe.
Xanthan gum is much cheaper and can be easily found in grocery stores. It also doesn’t require any special equipment or ingredients; all you need is xanthan gum and water.
However, it can be tricky to get the right consistency – too much xanthan gum and your meringue will be rubbery; too little, and it will be runny. It also doesn’t have the same protein-rich properties as meringue powder, so it won’t be able to give your meringue the same stable structure.
To use xanthan gum as a meringue powder substitute, slowly mix xanthan gum, and water in a 1:1 ratio. Then, whip the mixture for at least 5 minutes to ensure it is thoroughly mixed. Finally, add extra sugar and adjust accordingly.
With a little trial and error, you can successfully use xanthan gum as a meringue powder substitute.
When it comes to meringue powder substitutes, mashed bananas are a popular choice. And for a good reason! Bananas are relatively inexpensive and easy to find, and most people already have them on hand.
The texture of your meringue may be slightly different. Bananas tend to be denser than meringue powder, so your final product may be a little thicker. In addition, the flavor and texture of your meringue will be affected by bananas, which won’t work as well as meringue powder if you’re looking for a stiffer meringue.
Overall, mashed bananas are still considered a good meringue powder substitute. However, keep in mind the texture and flavor changes that come with using them. And if you need a stiffer meringue, look for another substitute.
Aquafaba is a relatively new ingredient that has recently gained popularity as a vegan-friendly. It can also be used in many ways as a meringue powder substitute.
Some potential disadvantages to using it as a meringue powder substitute are that aquafaba may not produce as stable meringue, and it can also have a slightly different flavor.
When using aquafaba as a meringue powder substitute, experiment with different techniques to see what works best. Then, with a few attempts, you can get the proper method to make a delicious meringue from aquafaba.
Cream of Tartar
The most significant advantage of using a cream of tartar is that it’s readily available and relatively inexpensive. Additionally, it can add a bit of acidity to a recipe, which can be beneficial in some cases.
However, cream of tartar is not as stable as meringue powder and may not hold up as well in recipes that require baking or extended cooking times. Additionally, cream of tartar can impart a slightly bitter flavor to a dish, so it’s important to use it sparingly.
Be sure to add less cream of tartar toward the end of the recipe so that it doesn’t have a chance to impart its flavor too early. Don’t forget that it can also add acidity to a dish, so you may need to adjust the other ingredients accordingly.
What is the Best Substitute for Meringue Powder?
When it comes to meringue powder substitutes, there are a few options available. You can use cream of tartar, egg whites, or aquafaba.
Each of these substitutes has its own pros and cons, so it’s essential to choose the one that will work best for your recipe.