Many people drop one animal-based food at a time, saving eggs until last. But it can make a lot more sense to go egg-free right at the very beginning. That’s because eggs typically contain more misery-per-mouthful than practically any other food. A hen requires about thirty hours to lay just one egg. Additionally, most hens worldwide are confined to tiny cages that completely frustrate all of their natural impulses. Even free-range eggs farms utilize disturbing practices ranging from grinding male chicks alive. And all egg farms, both factory farm and cage-free, systematically send aging hens to slaughter.
Despite what the industry would have you believe, eggs are certainly no health food. They’ve got no fiber, and loads of saturated fat.
Avoiding eggs might at first appear difficult, since they show up in all sorts of baked goods: pancakes, muffins, waffles, cakes, pies, and puddings. Yet despite the fact that eggs may seem ubiquitous, they’re remarkably easy to avoid. When you think about it, there two main reasons to use eggs. The first is in foods like scrambled eggs, omelets, and souffles—in each of these cases eggs are the main ingredient. Secondly, food companies and restaurants commonly use eggs in relatively small quantities for binding, moistening, or glazing. As we’ll now see, it’s easy to replace eggs for both of these uses.
Egg-Free Cooking and Baking
Regardless of whether eggs are the star of the meal or a bit-player, they’re usually easy to replace. Scrambled tofu is an outrageously good alternative to scrambled eggs. And you can likewise find super-eggy omelet recipes made entirely from vegan ingredients. To equip yourself with the ultimate arsenal for bypassing eggs, you can turn to cookbooks like Vegan Brunch or Whole Grain Vegan Baking. Most general-purpose vegan cookbooks feature egg-free recipes for cookies, brownies, cakes, pancakes, and muffins.
You can even go egg-free while using recipes that call for eggs. Just swap in vegan products like Egg Replacer. In some cases, when eggs are used for moistness, simple ingredients like applesauce, mashed bananas, chia seeds, or flax seeds can replace eggs while providing additional flavor. For more information on egg-free cooking, check out our vegan baking guide.
If you’re looking to capture the flavor of egg yolks for recipes like quiche, French toast, or custard, there’s an easy solution: a vegan product called The Vegg imparts a flavor indistinguishable from egg yolk—without all the fat, cholesterol, and animal cruelty. Even when you’re buying packaged food, it’s easy to avoid eggs. Most natural food stores sell vegan versions of just about every product that typically contains eggs: cookies, muffins, waffles, even mayonnaise.
Eggs may be ubiquitous in Western cooking and processed foods, but they’re surprisingly easy to remove from your diet. With the obvious exceptions of sunny-side up and hard-boiled eggs, you can effortlessly replace eggs without anyone but the hens noticing the difference.