Boxed cakes or boxed cake mixes are super convenient to bake a delicious cake. They’re super easy, take little time, and require little preparation and ingredients. It’s no wonder these products are famous in many homes. Plus, they’re an ideal way for novices to get their hands into the pastry aspect of culinary fun.
Most boxed cake recipes demand the addition of eggs, and while this need seems normal in baking, it may come with drawbacks for some. But it doesn’t mean the end of your baking fun, as you can still find substitutes for eggs. And once adjusted, these alternatives will offer the same advantages expected from eggs in cake recipes.
Why Add an Egg to Boxed Cake?
Boxed cake mixes are no different from regular cakes, except you don’t make them from scratch. The flour, sugar, and other ingredients are pre-mixed, so you only need to prepare the batter for baking. But many brands still call for eggs, which is expected since it isn’t something that can be added beforehand. But why does a boxed cake or any other cake batter need egg in the first place?
Eggs play a significant role in how a cake comes out after baking, and their importance can never be overemphasized. But for clarity’s sake, we’ll summarize their functions.
Structure- See the solid form of the cake batter? Eggs help to make that happen. The proteins in these foods bind with the other ingredients and thicken, forming a rigid build and shaping the cake.
Flavor- If you’ve had enough cakes on your menu, then this fact won’t be new to you. Eggs also contribute a richness in taste to cake recipes, including boxed cakes. The yolk’s fat and the watery whites combine to offer a tasty effect to the final product.
Moisture- Remember the egg white? Well, it also works at keeping the cake moist and tender after baking. Eggs contain a significant amount of water, and most of it is in its white. And without it, cakes come out with an unpleasant dryness and crumbly chew.
Nutrients- Not only do eggs help the physical structure of cakes, but they also nourish their content. Eggs are naturally loaded with vitamins and minerals, which is why they’re considered a superfood. And these elements and perks are infused into cakes when they’re added.
Appearance- Notice that enticing brown color on a freshly finished cake? Well, that’s possible because of the egg. The proteins gently cook under the stead heat of the oven, creating a glazy brown texture on the recipe.
Reasons for Needing Egg Substitutes in Boxed Cake
Yes, the importance of eggs in all cake recipes has been established. But it doesn’t mean every boxed cake can add it to the mix. You may feel this statement is crazy considering the many advantages we’ve just listed. But like any other food, eggs do have some drawbacks;
Allergy- Believe it or not, some people are born with an egg allergy. And such persons can’t eat ea eggs for health reasons.
Vegan Diet- If you’re baking for someone who doesn’t eat animal products, then you’ll have to skip the egg in a boxed cake mix.
You’ve Run Out- Of course, there’s also the case where you didn’t realize your egg supply is exhausted. And you’ve mixed the boxed cake into the batter before discovering it.
Whatever tight spot that may call for a replacement, you don’t have to fear. Substitutes for eggs in a boxed cake are available, and many are probably next to you as we speak.
Substitutes for Eggs in Boxed Cake
When picking a substitute for egg in a boxed cake recipe, you’ll need to keep a few factors in mind. First, the replacement must be able to provide structure for the ingredients. It must also be able to allow a rich browning on the cake’s surface. Then, there’s the nutritional supplement expected from eggs. And finally, it must be as readily available and induce a rich dose of flavor and moisture.
The good thing, however, is these alternatives tick all these boxes and more.
With this substitute, you’ll add flavor, texture, and nutritional benefits to your boxed cake. Applesauce is also easy to find, as most of us have a jar of it in our fridge. Plus, it’s a great source of moisture and a perfect alternative if you have an egg allergy. And it’s a commonly consumed ingredient in vegan dishes, so they get a plus on that aspect.
When using applesauce in boxed cake batter, a quarter cup is enough to substitute one egg. But ensure to never use it for more than a cup, which is the amount needed to replace four eggs. The reason is too much of it acts like eggs in cake batter, making the texture rubbery. And always go for the unsweetened variety, so the flavor isn’t overwhelmed by a sugary taste.
Yogurt makes a great and healthy protein replacement for eggs in boxed cakes. And because it’s a fermented product, the sugar content is much reduced. You can expect a smooth texture and rich taste from this substitute in the cake. And it also encourages a decent amount of density in the structure upon finish.
A quarter cup of plain yogurt is enough to replace one egg in boxed cake mixes. And we say plain-flavored because the alternative will add a significant taste to the final result.
For decades, vegans have been adding pureed bananas to baked goods. So why not include them in a boxed cake mix? Ripe mashed bananas improve the boxed cake’s flavor and add a rich dose of moisture and firmness to the batter. Plus, your cake will be packed with potassium and vitamins from the fruit. And it’ll also contribute a decent amount of browning as the cake bakes in the oven.
Use a quarter cup of mashed ripe banana to replace one egg. That amounts to half a small banana, but you’ll get the measurement eventually.
Because of its protein content, silken tofu helps build a stable structure in the boxed cake batter. And its mild taste is also almost unnoticeable, making it an exciting ingredient to replace eggs. Also, it’s the ideal replacement if you’re accustomed to the taste. And its creamy texture supplies moisture to the batter, making the finished work come out tender and soft.
You’ll need to puree silken tofu before incorporating it into the cake batter. And ensure only to use a quarter cup for every egg called. But note that silken tofu holds lots of moisture and shouldn’t replace more than two eggs in boxed cakes. Plus, you need to constantly check for doneness as it’s not an ingredient that browns like eggs.
Flaxseeds have been called ‘faux eggs’ for decades and with good reason. When mixed with water, they develop a gelatinous consistency that resembles and behaves like beaten eggs. It’s why they’re excellent at building stability and structure in boxed cakes. And they’re a fantastic source of fiber, proteins, and fatty acids.
But with flaxseeds, your boxed cake may come out with a noticeable nutty flavor. But if you’re using a mix that includes nut-based flour like almond, it’s the perfect fit. Blend one tablespoon of ground flaxseed with three tablespoons of water to make this egg substitute. You’ll also need to let the mixture sit for a minute and thicken before beating it into the gel-like consistency.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Do boxed cake mixes really need eggs?
It helps to note that adding one gives a better result, even while you can prepare your boxed cake without eggs. But you can also consider these substitutes if, for some reason, eggs are out of the question.
What happens if I forget to put eggs in a box cake mix?
Eggs help to leaven the cake batter, among other things. And if this element is what you seek, the added baking powder will take care of it. You may also notice a difference in browning, but it doesn’t necessarily mean it’s terrible.
What can you substitute for eggs in a boxed cake mix?
While these substitutes will work just as well in your boxed cake recipe, other options are available. You can also consider mayonnaise, which also contains eggs. Or you can select from diet soda to protein powder or baking soda and vinegar.
Many boxed cake mixes can work without eggs. But in recipes that need it, not having one can be a disappointment. Still, a lack of eggs isn’t the only reason why you may need a substitute. It’s why these alternatives are available for choosing, and many will satisfy your dietary and health needs in place of eggs in your boxed cake mixes.