This page is created in honor of all Vegan Holidays!
Milk: Milk in cooking provides flavor, moisture, and thickness. Replacing milk with water frequently results in less rich foods, and so a plant milk should be considered.
Soy Milk: "Soy milk can generally be substituted directly for milk in any recipe, though it does not curdle in the same way cow's milk does when heated. There are a massive variety of soy milks available; the best tend to be refrigerated brands, such as Organic Valley, Silk, Whole Foods private brand, Alpro, and Trader Joe's private brand."
Other Non-Dairy Milks: "Other non-dairy milks include oat milk, almond milk, hemp milk, coconut milk, and rice milk."
"Coconut milk is a wonderful substitute for milk and cream in many recipes. It has a thick, rich and sweet taste, which suits some vegan cream sauces and cream soups well. It also doesn't become grainy like soy milk. However, it is one of the few plants that has saturated fat in it, so it is wise to use it in moderation."
"Rice milk is relatively watery and grainy. Oat milk can be very thick and creamy. Almond milk is also somewhat watery, but has a rich flavor. Unlike soy milk, which comes in an unsweetened variety, these other non-dairy milks are high in sugars. When using them to replace milk, you will want to cut down on any other sugars in the recipe."
Any recipe can be made just as well using one of the cow's milk substitutes mentioned above, but it is important to consider the different qualities of the milks in order to decide which will best suit the particular recipe.
Buttermilk: "Add one tablespoon of lemon juice or vinegar to one cup of soy milk or rice milk. Stir, and let stand for 10 minutes."
Margarine: "Most margarines are made with hydrogenated oils, which are generally considered to be bad for human health, as they higher bad cholesterol levels. Margarine is also made by emulsing stabilizers such as protein powder, starches, or gums with oil. This technique may be better for human health, but is not widely adopted. For most purposes, GFA Brands' Earth Balance or Soy Garden make an excellent butter substitute. Most margarines also contain some sort of milk by-product to make them taste more like butter. (ie. Whey, Lactose, Sodium Lactate, Casein - a milk protein derivative etc.) Earth Balance and Soy Garden are made from non-hydrogenated oils."
"In some recipes, butter is a major ingredient, as in icing, and margarines often leave a greasy feeling in your mouth if used as a substitute; this is because the melting point of margarine (33-43 °C, depending upon formulation) is often higher than the temperature of the human body (37 °C), while the melting point of butter is below it (32-35 °C). In these situations cocoa butter can be used, since it has a melting point closer to that of butter (34-38 °C). See Ochef.com's answer to "Is There a Difference Between Butter & Margarine?" for more information."
Vegetable or Canola Oil
"If a recipe calls for one stick of butter (1/2 cup), use 1/3 cup of oil."
Flax oil: "Use it as a topping for potatoes, rice, popcorn, etc. Used in eggplant or tempeh dishes, some people think that it can create a "fishy" taste for appropriate dishes, but this is not the opinion of everyone. Not generally heated or used for cooking."
Nut butter: "Nut butter can be made from almonds, cashews, or other nuts. Peanut butter, though technically made from a legume, is also considered part of this category. When replacing butter with a nut butter, use the same amount as listed in the recipe."
Applesauce: "Use for sweet baking only. Use the same amount you would for butter. Especially yummy in brownies! For muffins, etc., replace up to 3/4 of the butter with applesauce, using vegan butter for the rest."
Prune Puree: "Use in the same way as applesauce: Puree 1/2 cup of pitted prunes with 1/4 cup of water. You will want to reduce the amount used, or the final product may be too moist. If the recipe calls for a half cup use 1/3 cup instead. You may also want to add a little oil, maybe a tablespoon per cup of fat needed, because a little fat goes a long way in taste and texture."
Cheese: "Most substitute cheese is made of soy, though there are also nut varieties. Beware: some soy cheeses contain casein/caseinate, a milk derivative."
"A recommended vegan cheese, noted for its cheese-like taste and the fact that it melts well (including on pizza) is Follow Your Heart's Vegan Gourmet Cheese Alternative, as well as Teese vegan cheese, in mozzarella flavor (http://www.teesecheese.com/). Other brands include Tofutti's Soy Cheese Slices, Cheezly, and VeganRella (VeganRella's sister brands, TofuRella and AlmondRella, contain casein)."
"The Rella brands are all made on the same machinery, as noted in this mailing list post."
"Cashew cheese or nutritional yeast "cheese" sauce may also be appropriate for some dishes."
"Replace cottage cheese or ricotta cheese with crumbled tofu in lasagne and other dishes. Adding a little miso can give a "bleu cheese" flavor."
"An excellent vegan cream cheese is Tofutti's Better than Cream Cheese, which is available in various flavors and without hydrogenated oils."
Cream: "Alpro make a good cream substitute, which has a very similar texture to real cream and tastes quite similar. A new nut-based (soy-free) cream substitute is MimiCreme, with virtually all its calories coming from healthy almonds and cashews."
"Coconut milk also is a great substitute for cream in many baking recipes."
Yogurt: "There are a variety of soy yogurts ("cultured soy") available that can be used in place of dairy yogurt including Whole Soy, Silk, Alpro and So Nice."
Sour Cream: "A vegan sour cream is Tofutti's Sour Supreme, a non-hydrogenated variety is Tofutti's Better than Sour Cream."
Mayonnaise: "A popular vegan mayonnaise is Follow Your Heart's Veganaise, available in canola oil ("original"), expeller-pressed canola oil, grapeseed oil, and organic expeller-pressed soybean varieties. Another very good vegan mayonnaise is Nayonnaise, which is lower in calories and fat. There's also a Trader Joe's private label vegan mayonnaise."
Eggs: "Eggs have a varied role in cooking; as a wash they provide a glossy texture to breads, when the whites are whipped they provide volume, sometimes (as in pancakes) they are simply traditional and play no structural role, other times they are used to make mixtures stick together."
"Vegan egg replacements are generally not good for washes or where they are a major component, as in meringue."
In Baking: The following amounts are intended to replace 1 egg.
- 1 1/2 tsp. Ener-G Egg Replacer + 2 tbsp. warm water (multipurpose baking)
- 1/4 cup tofu, add to blender with enough water/soymilk to blend smoothly
- 1/3 cup Applesauce (muffins, brownies, and cake)
- 1/4 cup Soy Yogurt (Quick breads, muffins, cakes)
- 1/3 cup Pumpkin Puree (for pies and baking)
- 1/2 small mashed Banana (for quick breads, muffins, cakes, and pancakes)--helps browning
- 1 heaping Tbsp. Soy flour plus 1 Tbsp. Water (muffins, cookies and cakes)
- 1 Tbsp. ground flax plus 2 Tbsp. Water; mix well before using
(Note that the strong flavors of some substitutions such as banana or pumpkin will come through in the finished dish.)
For Binding: "To bind things like burgers, use mashed potatoes, bread crumbs (blended), blended tofu, cooked rice/oatmeal, or tomato paste.
Other: "The following can be used well in certain recipes, to replace 1 egg:
- Tofu: 1/4 cup of Silken Tofu blended. For dense cakes, brownies and the like, use only 1/2 cup to replace 3 eggs for lighter/fluffier baked goods, and add a teaspoon of arrowroot or cornstarch for cookies to keep the right texture. Bad for pancakes. Leaves no taste.
- Flax Seed "Gloop": 1 tablespoon flaxseed, finely ground in blender or coffee grinder or 2.5 tablespoons pre-ground flaxseed + 3 tablespoons water (for pancakes, breads, and other baking) -- distinct earthy granola taste great for things like pancakes, and whole grain items, such as bran muffins and corn muffins. It is perfect for oatmeal cookies, and the texture works for cookies in general, although the taste may be too pronounced for some. Chocolate cake-y recipes have mixed results, I would recommend only using one portion flax-egg in those, because the taste can be overpowering.
- Arrowroot powder: Agar powder: Use with recipes that call for egg whites. For each egg white, dissolve 1 tbsp plain agar powder in 1 tbsp water. Whip, chill and whip again.
- Ener-G Egg Replacer: A versatile, commercially available egg replacer made from potato starch, tapioca flour, and vegan leaveners. You can find it at natural/health food stores. One whole egg = 1 tsp Ener-G® powder + 2 tbsp water. Tastes chalky.
To make something similar to Ener-g:
o Mix together 1 tsp Baking Powder, 1/2 tsp Baking Soda, 2 Tbsp Flour, 3 Tbsp Water.
o A heaping tablespoon of soy flour or bean flour mixed with a tablespoon of water.
o 2 tablespoons of cornstarch beaten with 2 tablespoons of water.
- Baking powder mixture: 1 tsp baking powder, 1 Tbsp water, 1 Tbsp vinegar; or 1 1/2 Tbsp water, 1 1/2 Tbsp oil, 1 tsp baking powder
- Yeast mixutre: 1 tsp yeast dissolved in 1/4 cup warm water
Honey: "While some near-vegans eat honey, it is an animal product and strict vegans choose to avoid it. Some good substitutes include:
- Agave syrup / Agave nectar: a general-purpose liquid sweetener derived from the agave plant. It is produced by Sweet Cactus Farms and Madhava, among others.
- Maple syrup: a syrup produced by the Maple tree.
Meat: "Meat can be replaced with varying degrees of success by tofu, tempeh, seitan, textured vegetable protein, vegetable or nut mixtures, or a commercially available meat substitute such as tofurkey, soyrizo, or soy taco."
"Many Asian foods stores have false meat available. False squid is especially realistic, but there is also false chicken, pork, duck, and fish. These are usually made from gluten, but often also have soy ingredients."
Fish Sauce: "Fish sauce is made of fish. This cookbook has a recipe for vegan fish sauce.
Worcestershire Sauce: "Worcestershire sauce is traditionally made with anchovies. There are many vegan Worcestershire sauces including varieties by Edward & Sons Trading Company and Annie's Naturals. Some grocery store brands of Worcestershire sauce are also vegan.
Broth & Bouillon: "Chicken or beef broth can be replaced by a vegetable broth or by vegetable bouillon cubes such as Organic Country Bouillon Cubes."
- Post Punk Kitchen: Vegan Baking (includes reviews of various methods of substitutions)