Can you or should you use egg beaters in baking?
- Katie Nell
This is just out of curiosity, on my part. I really know nothing about egg beaters and have never bought them. I work with a girl that doesn't like to buy eggs because they don't "keep" long enough for her to use them. She baked some cookies last night and some banana bread last night, using egg beaters, and neither came out... the cookies "tasted bad" and the banana bread "was flat as a pancake!" Now, she doesn't cook or bake much, so I was wondering if it was the fault of the egg beaters or something else. Just curious!
I'm afraid I know nothing about cooking with egg beaters (my first thoughts on reading your title were, "But I use egg beaters all the time! How else could I 'whip egg whites until stiff'?"!), but you've aroused my curiosity; do egg beaters last inordinately longer than eggs? Because eggs last quite a long time, up to ten days out of the fridge (this is a personal decision, I know this is controversial in the States) and even longer in the fridge.
If egg beaters do last longer than eggs would, it's because they've got some preservative added to them. Not a pleasant thought, and might chemically affect your baking.
I don't want to cast doubt on your colleague, but maybe she said that as an excuse so she wouldn't have to revert to the "I'm watching what I eat, so I don't allow myself the pleasure of a aimply yet perfectly cooked egg" reasoning.
re: Katie Nell
Eggs do last a long time and most times, you can buy a 6-pack which goes really quickly, especially when you're baking!
I recently used packaged egg whites for an angel food cake and they turned out to be a disaster! I had good cake for the top half, but the bottom half was a weird sort of sweet scrambled egg!
Eggbeaters are just colored egg whites. You can subsitute them in baking, as a lower fat option, when the eggs are used for a binding agent. This will yield fine results, but it will be different...less rich, moist, etc. Even though they are whites, they don't whip up well, so you can't use it to make whipped egg white desserts, though some have had some success with other brands, although CI cautioned this month that in their tests none of them worked well.
Both products are missing the fat that the yolks would have provided. She needed to either add oil or a fat substitute of somesort to make up for that.
My mother has substituted egg beaters for eggs in her hermits recipe for years. They come out better and less dry with the eggbeaters!
Egg beaters do have an expiration date on their package, I'm not sure how long they last, but I do know you can freeze them.
OK, I'm joining the fray. I use egg substitutes in all my lowtech baking.
I use a no-yolk product by Nu-Laid (the egg producers) which I get at TJ's, with good results. This is the best whole egg substitute, flavor-wise, that I've found. They are just fine in the heavier baked goods like cookies, scones, quick breads, etc. Don't have a problem with rising. I don't bake lighter butter-type cakes anymore, as I've cut out white sugar (inflammatory response problem, which is why no yolks, either)) and don't like the so-called sugar baking substitutes.
The flavor of said baked goods is very good, don't notice a difference or lack of flavor at all. I do use fresh ingredients and whole flours so that may make a difference, too.
These eggs also make fine 'scrambled' or curdled eggs.
I do miss the wonderful yolk richness of an over easy or coddled egg, but my joints are much happier without them. A day without pain is a day to feel blessed.
But--I would encourage you to try these eggs if you are interested. What really matters is if YOU are happy with the results. I am a scratch baker and they suit my needs just fine.