10 Nutritious Aquafaba Recipes

A bowl of aquafaba next to a bowl of chickpeas

Getty Images / vaaseenaa

Aquafaba is the liquid found within a can of chickpeas. Aquafaba can also refer to the liquid in other types of canned beans, but it is mainly in reference to canned chickpeas.

The word “aquafaba” breaks down into “aqua” for water and “faba” for beans. Essentially, it is bean water. However, when paired with other ingredients, you can’t taste the bean flavor at all. For best results, be sure to use the aquafaba from a can of unsalted chickpeas.

Aquafaba can be used as a binding agent or egg replacement in many egg-free recipes. This opens up a door of possibilities for people with egg allergies, or people who eat a vegan or egg-free diet.  

These nutritious aquafaba recipes will inspire you to ditch eggs for this inexpensive bean liquid in meringues, mayonnaise, mousse, and more.

Vegan Pancakes

stack of pancakes with maple syrup

Serious Eats / J. Kenji López-Alt

While pancakes are traditionally made with eggs, vegans and people with egg allergies have been swapping out eggs for creative alternatives for years. The latest craze? Aquafaba. This vegan pancake recipe by Serious Eats is a prime example.

Pancake batter is usually split into dry ingredients and wet ingredients. The ingredients that make pancakes non-vegan (and off-limits for people with allergies) are usually eggs and milk. Instead of eggs, this recipe calls for four tablespoons of aquafaba. While some aquafaba recipes require you to whisk the aquafaba until it is airy, this recipe does not, making it quick and easy.

Vegan Meringues 

a plate of meringues

The Spruce Eats / Leah Maroney

Meringues are a simple but delicious dessert usually made with a base of just two ingredients: egg whites and sugar. If eggs aren’t part of your diet, this can be tricky. Fortunately, this dessert can be replicated by replacing eggs with aquafaba. Learn how by following this vegan meringue recipe by The Spruce Eats.

You’ll need four ingredients: aquafaba, cream of tartar, sugar, and vanilla extract. This recipe is easy but it does require a bit of elbow grease to whisk the aquafaba to become light and fluffy. If you have a hand mixer, it will do most of the work for you.

Meringues made with egg whites can only be whisked for a certain amount of time otherwise they will collapse, but there is more room for error with aquafaba. Once the ingredients are combined, the mixture will need to be baked for two hours.

Easy Vegan Mayonnaise

mayonnaise with lemon and chickpeas

Serious Eats / J. Kenji López-Alt 

There are many ways to make (or buy) vegan mayonnaise, but this recipe by Serious Eats only takes two minutes. The base is various vegetable oils, but a few tablespoons of aquafaba provides plenty of starch to create an emulsion. For texture, add a few whole chickpeas to the mix.

Add all ingredients to a blender and blend until smooth. You can keep this egg-free mayonnaise in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to one week. Use the creamy spread for burgers, potato salad, dip, deviled eggs, and more.

Vegan Cinnamon Rolls

These cinnamon rolls by Vegan Richa only use one tablespoon of sugar and one tablespoon of maple syrup to sweeten the rolls. They’re also egg-free and dairy-free, so vegans and people with allergies can enjoy them.

Four tablespoons of aquafaba are used as an egg substitute in this recipe. The author notes that if you don’t have canned chickpeas on hand to access the brine, you can make your own aquafaba at home by pressure cooking dried chickpeas. While this aquafaba recipe takes about an hour to make, the delicious end result is worth it.

Lemon Basil Hummus


Getty Images / Jonathan Lovekin

There are many ways to make hummus. While chickpeas are the most popular base, you can also make hummus with other beans, lentils, and even green peas. This hummus recipe by The Spruce Eats has a unique twist since it uses aquafaba to give the hummus a silky smooth consistency.

When you make hummus, you usually add all ingredients to a food processor or blender and slowly add water or other liquid to thin it out. If you prefer a creamy hummus to a coarse one, use aquafaba instead of water. Add it in small amounts until you reach the desired texture.

Vegan Aquafaba Meringue Frosting

cake with meringue frosting

Serious Eats / Nik Sharma

If you’re a fan of the light and fluffy texture of meringues, you will enjoy a meringue frosting. This meringue frosting recipe by Serious Eats is made with aquafaba instead of egg whites.

This recipe is easy and comes together in just 35 minutes, but you will need a food thermometer. This recipe works best when the aquafaba and sugar mixture is heated to 183°F (84°C). After that, add cream of tartar for a fluffy meringue that holds its shape and cardamom for flavor. This frosting can be used on cakes and pies—all without eggs!

Vegan Pumpkin Bread

loaf of pumpkin bread

Simply Recipes / Sara Bir

Many recipes for pumpkin bread call for eggs, but this one by Simply Recipes does not. Instead of eggs, it uses ground flaxseed. However, the author notes that you can use aquafaba instead, which is an inexpensive alternative that works just as well in egg-free baking recipes.

To use aquafaba in this recipe, omit the flax and water and add ½ cup of aquafaba liquid in step three. This recipe takes 80 minutes from start to finish, but only 20 minutes of that is prep time. This simple substitution only takes a minute or less, making it a quick recipe to whip up.

Easy Vegan Macaroons

These vegan macaroons by Minimalist Baker are a treat for anyone who avoids eggs. They’re made with seven simple ingredients: shredded coconut, aquafaba, cream of tartar, maple syrup, vanilla extract, sea salt, and coconut oil. The optional chocolate coating requires just dark chocolate and coconut oil to make.

The recipe is straightforward and easy to follow, but you will need to whisk the aquafaba either by hand or with a stand mixer. This dessert is worth the extra step. Bring these to a party and everyone will be shocked that they are egg-free.

Vegan Cardamom Meringue Cookies With Strawberry Compote

meringue cookies with strawberry compote

Serious Eats / Nik Sharma

Aquafaba from canned chickpeas is a great ingredient to have on hand if you enjoy desserts and baked goods made with meringue. This recipe by Serious Eats sounds like it is straight off a cooking show: Vegan Aquafaba Cardamom Meringue Cookies With Strawberry Compote.

This recipe makes simple aquafaba meringue cookies flavored with cardamom but the strawberry compote adds a healthy and sweet element. Mix the berries with mint, basil, sugar, lime zest, and lime juice and use the resulting compote as a topping for the cookies.

Vegan Chocolate Mousse

While aquafaba is mainly used in baked goods and meringue, it can also be used to make other desserts like this chocolate mousse recipe by Delightful Adventures. This mousse is rich, creamy, and decadent—no eggs required.

The mousse itself is made from just four simple ingredients: chocolate chips, aquafaba, apple cider vinegar, and vanilla extract. You can also make an optional cherry sauce for added flavor and antioxidants from the frozen cherries.

A Word From Verywell

The next time you open a can of chickpeas or other beans, don’t disregard the brine inside. Strain the chickpeas and collect the liquid in another bowl. This bean liquid, aquafaba, can be used in a variety of recipes, especially vegan ones and those that are egg-free for people with allergies.

Common aquafaba recipes include breads, meringues, frostings, cookies, pancakes, and more. There are many ways to use this versatile, inexpensive, and unique ingredient.

By Lacey Muinos
Lacey Muinos is a professional writer who specializes in fitness, nutrition, and health.