The right vegan egg wash substitute can put the perfect final touch to your bake. Whether you're baking bread, cakes, croissants, or more, I found affordable and easy-to-find vegan egg replacements that work for practically any dish. Egg wash without egg? No problem!
💌 Why You'll Love These
For best results, different types of bakes require different egg substitutes.
Here are my 6 tried & tested vegan egg wash replacements including:
- Pros and cons of each egg substitute
- Detailed instructions on how to use them
- Recipe ideas for reach replacement
- Perfect for sweet & savoury bakes
- Suitable for frying, bread, pastries, cakes, and more
All of them are easy-to-find worldwide and affordable!
Let's find the perfect egg wash replacement for your next bake!
🍁 Maple syrup or agave syrup
Pure syrups are perfect for creating crunchy caramelised flavour on the top of your baked goods.
These egg substitutes work best for pastries (croissants, Danish pastries) and cakes (see my pear cake above).
I also like to use maple syrup for my blueberry scones to create a caramel-like glossy topping.
Pro: Lovely golden brown colour on your bake, glossy finish, sweet flavour.
Con: The sweet flavour makes it less suitable for savoury bakes. The higher sugar content might also make it burn quicker.
How to use: 5 minutes before your dish has finished baking, glaze it with your favourite syrup. Use a plastic or wooden brush to apply the glaze evenly. If you don't have a brush you can make it yourself using parchment paper.
Don’t glaze before baking because the maple syrup could burn if left in the oven for too long.
🥨 Maple syrup and plant milk
A mix of maple syrup and plant milk will give you a classic brioche-style egg wash.
You can choose any plant milk you wish such as soy, oat, almond, hemp, or others. I tend to avoid coconut milk due to its strong flavour.
This alternative to egg wash is super easy to customise. For a sweeter glossy finish add more syrup compared to milk. If you want less colour and just a hint of sweetness add more milk.
As a general rule, I like to mix half a tablespoon of the syrup with half a tablespoon of plant milk.
The syrup will give it a glossy shine whilst the milk will dilute the sugary consistency of the syrup. This will ensure a beautiful shiny finish.
Pros: Shiny finish and sweet caramel flavour. It will work with any syrup and any plant milk, making it very adaptable to whatever you have at home.
Cons: Slightly sweet, which makes it less suitable for savory bakes. Not as shiny as pure maple syrup. Lastly, if you're making just a simple bread roll and don't have any syrup at home, it might not be worth running to a shop just for that. In that case, simply brush with plant milk.
🥛 Plant milk
Plant milk gives your baked goods a nice golden to deep brown colour without a sweet aftertaste or shine. The fat content in the milk is what gives the bread its golden colour.
As always, feel free to choose your favourite plant milk such as soy, almond, oat, hemp, or similar.
Top tip: A milk glaze is also ideal for adding a little bit more moisture into your dough during its second rise.
Brush the dough with some plant milk after it has been shaped and cover before leaving to rise. The milk will make sure your dough does not dry out.
Pro: A plant milk glaze has a neutral taste and is not sweet (make sure you opt for unsweetened milk) but still gives the golden colour.
Con: Gives less colour than syrup. You won't get that signature shiny egg finish. If you’d like a shiny finish make sure to go for a syrup-based glaze.
How to use: A plant milk glaze is best for any bake that might benefit from a neutral-tasting glaze as it will give you the colour but not the sweet taste that a syrup gives.
Brush your bread before it goes into the oven and bake according to recipe instructions.
🧈 Vegan butter
Butter gives your bread a slightly crispy crust and adds more flavour and richness to your bakes.
It works with both savoury and sweet dishes because it adds a deep flavour that is neither sweet nor savoury.
A butter glaze works well on a simple bun or brioche-style burger buns especially if you want to neutralise some of their sweetness.
Pro: Adds rich flavour to any baked good whilst also giving the bread some more colour.
Con: There are many different types of butter so not every version of vegan butter will work in the same way. In addition to that, vegan butter is also less easily available in some parts of the world. If you're looking for a cheaper alternative then using plant milk might be a better option.
How to use: Melt the butter either in a pan or a microwave until it becomes liquid. Glaze before baking.
🫒 Vegetable Oil
Oils are another great way to add some flavour to your bakes.
You have so many flavours to choose from and can also add flavoured/infused oils. Make sure the flavour isn’t too concentrated or it will overwhelm your bake.
Some of my favourite choices are olive oil and hemp oil. Hemp oil works very well with savoury doughs, while olive oil is the perfect all-rounder.
Moreover, olive oil also complements citrus flavours as well as herbs like rosemary, thyme, and oregano.
Oils are a fantastic option when baking focaccia or flavoured bread/rolls.
Pro: Oil is a kitchen staple and adds a light but rich flavour to your bake. Plus, it gives a golden brown colour and a slightly crisp finish.
Con: It might leave your bake slightly greasy and will not work as well if you want to add another topping like seeds or herbs.
How to use: Glaze your bakes before they go into the oven and bake according to instructions.
Aquafaba is the leftover liquid from a can of chickpeas.
This neutral-tasting egg replacement is super versatile. It's cheap, doesn't have a flavour, and works well in many vegan bakes.
Pro: Super versatile. Cheap. Great for sweet or savoury bakes. Doesn't add any flavour.
Con: Doesn't deliver the same golden finish. Might create more waste - if you're not using any chickpeas in the recipe, it might not be worth it to open a can just for a few teaspoons of chickpea water.
How to use: Open a can of chickpeas. Drain the liquid into a cup/bowl. Then brush over your baked goods before baking.
Alternatively, you could simply dip a brush into a can of chickpeas, making sure it ends up covered in chickpea liquid. Saves some time and effort!
Enjoyed reading about all the possible vegan egg wash options but looking for more recipe inspiration?
Here are some crowd-pleasing recipes that never fail to amaze vegans and non-vegans alike.
How to Make Vegan Egg Wash Substitute & Replacements for Baking
- Pastry brush wooden or plastic
Maple egg wash
- 1 tablespoon maple or agave syrup
Maple and milk egg wash
- ½ tablespoon maple syrup
- ½ tablespoon non-dairy milk
Non-dairy milk wash
- 1 tablespoon non-dairy milk such as soy, almond, oat, hemp, etc
Butter egg wash
- 1 tablespoon non-dairy butter
- 1 tablespoon vegetable oil such as olive, sunflower, hemp, etc
- 1 tablespoon aquafaba liquid from a chickpea can
Maple egg wash
- 5 minutes before your dish has finished baking, brush it with the syrup.
- Don’t glaze before baking because the maple syrup could burn if left in the oven for too long.
Maple and milk egg wash
- In a small bowl, mix maple and non-dairy milk.
- Use a brush to coat the buns/bakes well before they go into the oven and bake according to the recipe.
Plant milk wash
- Brush your bread before it goes into the oven and bake according to recipe instructions.
Butter egg wash
- Melt the butter either in a pan or a microwave until it becomes liquid. Glaze before baking.
- Glaze your bakes with oil before baking and bake according to instructions.
- Open a can of chickpeas. Drain the liquid into a cup/bowl. Then brush over your baked goods before baking.