Top 5 Meringue Powder Substitutes

by John Staughton (BASc, BFA) last updated -

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Meringue powder substitutes may be necessary, as this ingredient can be hard to purchase outside of specialty baking stores, and it is rare to find it stocked in the average pantry. Even when it is available, it is often expensive and may contain undesirable levels of sugar or artificial ingredients. However, there are a few meringue powder substitutes that will work in a pinch and help you keep your reputation as a master in the kitchen.

This finely-textured powder is a mix of dried egg whites, cornstarch, sugar, and stabilizers that was created as a replacement for raw egg whites in baking. When mixed with water, it is used in meringues, icings, and other desserts where whipped egg whites would otherwise create a stiff texture and form peaks on the surface. Generally more food-safe than raw eggs, meringue powder is often used in commercial bakeries, but it can be found in recipes for home bakers as well.

Meringue Powder Substitutes

Knowing what meringue powder substitutes to use will help complete many baking recipes that call for this specialty ingredient. The best meringue powder substitutes include the use of raw egg whites, egg white powder, corn syrup, aquafaba, and agar among others. Let us take a look at them below.

Aquafaba meringues on a cake stand

Aquafaba meringues, a vegan treat Photo Credit: Shutterstock

Raw Egg Whites

In spite of the food-safety risks, many bakers prefer egg whites over the meringue powder that they are intending to replace! You can simply switch back – use 1 room-temperature egg white for every 4 tablespoons of meringue powder and water mixture.

Egg White Powder

This is only composed of dried egg whites, without the sugar or other ingredients in meringue powder. It will still recreate the texture of meringue, but additional sweeteners may be necessary to mimic the flavor of this dessert ingredient.

Corn Syrup

An egg-free alternative, corn syrup can be used in place of meringue powder in recipes for royal icing. The texture and flavor will be somewhat different, but it is less expensive and safer than egg white when cooking a delicate dish.

Aquafaba

This simply refers to the liquid that beans and other legumes have been cooked or canned in. When whipped into a recipe in place of meringue powder, it will peak and stiffen in a similar way, without adding eggs, although the flavor may be notably different, so use this with caution in certain recipes.

Agar

A gelatin derived from seaweed, this ingredient can also be difficult to find but may be mixed with water in the same way as meringue powder, resulting in the same stiff texture.

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About the Author

John Staughton is a traveling writer, editor, publisher and photographer with English and Integrative Biology degrees from the University of Illinois in Champaign-Urbana (USA). He co-founded the literary journal, Sheriff Nottingham, and now serves as the Content Director for Stain’d Arts, a non-profit based in Denver, Colorado. On a perpetual journey towards the idea of home, he uses words to educate, inspire, uplift and evolve.

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