By Michele Robert Poche

Allergies, cholesterol, salmonella, lifestyle… there are many reasons a person may elect to remove eggs from his diet, but it’s not always easy. Eggs are a staple in the production of many dishes and baked goods. So finding a substitute would be tricky, right? 

That’s what I thought until I took on this eggs-ceptional challenge. There are literally dozens of alternatives for eggs. Because they offer many different properties (cohesion, moisture, leavening), the substitute you use may depend largely on your recipe.

I opted to make cookies. (My family just loves my “food experiment” articles.)

Oatmeal Raisin Cookies


  • ½ cup unsweetened applesauce*
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 1 egg (see substitutes)
  • ½ tbsp. vanilla 
  • 1 tsp. baking powder
  • ½ tsp. cinnamon
  • 1 pinch salt
  • 1 cup + 2 tbsp. flour
  • 1 cup raisins
  • 1 ½ c. rolled oats


  1.  Preheat oven to 350°. Spray baking sheet with cooking spray.
  2.  Blend applesauce (or butter), sugar, egg, vanilla, baking powder, cinnamon and salt.
  3.  Add flour. 
  4.  Gently fold in raisins and oats. 
  5.  Drop in rounded spoonfuls and bake 12-15 minutes, depending on size. 
  6.  Cool completely.

* The recipe calls for 1 stick (½ c.) butter but I substituted applesauce. Reluctant? Trade out only half the butter.

Then, I picked four egg alternatives: olive oil, chia seeds, pumpkin purée, nut butter. Here’s how it went.


Which was best? Honestly, they all performed well and the results were pretty consistent. The olive oil was easiest to use but yielded the least flavor. The chia seeds created a chewier cookie with more of a granola bar texture. And the pumpkin and nut butter were the fan favorites with the most (somewhat discernible) flavor.

Now, I just need to figure out what to do with the six dozen cookies that remain. Sigh.

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