Replacing eggs, butter, cream, and other animal byproducts commonly found in baking is probably the most challenging part of vegan baking, and it can be daunting starting a vegan diet or baking for a vegan friend. While it may seem like nothing works as well as a real egg, or tastes as good as real butter does, these nine replacements may end up proving you wrong. And the best part? You can eat the batter without worry. Take that, Salmonella.

1. Chia Seeds (or Flaxseeds)


Photo by Becky Hughes

Chia seeds are high in fiber and protein and can be used as an egg substitute in baking. Mix 1 tablespoon of ground chia seeds with 3 tablespoons of water then set the mixture in the fridge for 15 minutes for an egg substitute. The same amount of ground flaxseed also works just as well.

2. Bananas


Photo by Katherine Carroll

Vegan ice cream from the super market can get pretty pricey, but banana ice cream is a cheap and easy substitute. Overripe bananas can also be used as an egg alternative; one medium-large banana equals two eggs.

3. Apple Sauce


Photo by Kendra Valkema

Apple sauce can be used in place of oil, butter, or eggs when baking and is especially good in cakes and brownies. Other fruit purees, such as pumpkin, pear, or peach puree also work well.

4. Coconut Cream


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Coconut cream is usually labeled coconut milk in stores and can be used to make vegan ice cream or whipped cream. It will add a slight coconut taste to it, but sometimes that’s just the right flavor to kick your baked good up a notch.

5. Avocado


Photo by Samantha Thayer

Avocados really are the college student’s best friend – from avocado toast to guacamole, it seems like they can do no wrong! But even the most avid avocado fans may not know that avocados are a good substitute for butter or oil in baking due to their high fat content. It can even be used to make chocolate mousse or chocolate truffles.

6. Oreos


Photo by Kelly Logan

Somehow, Oreos are vegan, so use them in literally everything and anything. You can even have them for breakfast with this vegan oreo pancake recipe.

7. Nut Butters


Photo by Lily Allen

Peanut butter, almond butter, cashew butter, sunflower butter, etc. all have different tastes, but they can all be used in of eggs to bind things together when baking. Just beware, different nut butters have different textures and flavors that may change the way your baked good ends up tasting.

8. Dates


GIF by Thomas Sireci

Dates are a great natural sweetener. Let a few dates sit in hot water for a couple hours, then blend it all together to get date syrup, which you can use in place of honey or sugar, or to top your pancakes.

9. Silken Tofu


Photo courtesy of Jimmy Tan

As crazy as it sounds, 1/4 cup of silken tofu can replace 1 egg when baking. Blend silken tofu until it’s completely smooth and no chunks or small grains are left. Add some water or other wet ingredients if it is not blending properly.