I recently had to do a food science project and decided to experiment with chia seeds. Sometimes it can be really difficult to find a suitable egg replacer for baked products, whether it be that you’re vegan, you have an egg allergy, or you just wanna switch things up. I have now discovered that chia gel is the way to go!
Here’s a little background on chia seeds:
- Chia is an edible seed that comes from the desert plant Salvia hispanica, a member of the mint family that grows abundantly in southern Mexico
- Chia seeds have more Omega-3 fatty acids than any other plant food, even flax seeds.
- So rich in antioxidants that the seeds don’t deteriorate and can be stored for long periods without becoming rancid
- It was the third most vital crop for the Aztecs, who viewed it as a superfood and valued it so greatly that it was often used as currency. Aztec warriors are thought to have sustained themselves for a whole day on just a Tbs. of chia.
- Chia seeds also provide calcium, phosphorus, magnesium, manganese, copper, iron, niacin, and zinc
When you soak chia seeds in water, it forms a gel, which I decided to test out as an egg replacer in a cake recipe for my experiment. I then had panelists rank the chia gel cake to a basic yellow cake (the control). The chia gel cake ended up getting great reviews. So if you’re in need of an egg replacer in baked goods, go for the chia gel! It is an easy way to get an extra boost of Omega 3s!
How to make chia gel and use it as an egg replacer:
*Place 1 tablespoon of chia seeds in a cup and add 3 tablespoons of water (increase amounts depending on how much you need). For example, 1/2 cup of seeds would need to soak in 1 1/2 cups water. Allow the mixture to sit for about 20 minutes. 1/4 cup of hydrated chia seeds equals approximately 1 egg. I would also suggest grinding the chia seeds into a powder before making the gel. This will give a much better texture.
Here is a picture of the chia gel cake I made. I did not grind mine into a powder first, which is why it has a poppy-seed cake look to it. I def. wish I had made mine into a powder first. You may also need to bake the product for a little bit longer than if you were using eggs.