It’s a question I get quite a bit:
Are there any other substitues for meringue powder besides egg whites? Can you make royal icing with anything besides raw egg whites or meringue powder?
Having experimented with quite a few royal icing recipes has helped me find my favorite, but all my icing experiments either called for meringue powder or egg whites, so I turned to you on Facebook to ask for advice. Thanks for all of the responses! Here is the link to the answers.
I’ve put together a summary of all the information for you below. I haven’t tried these, so would love to hear your feedback if you have! Please feel free to share more info. in the comment section.
When making royal icing, is there a substitute for meringue powder or egg whites?
1. Create an egg white substitute with gelatin and hot water
Creating an egg substitute by dissolving unflavored gelatin in hot water, letting it set, and then using it in place of egg whites, is one option. This was of the first answers on Facebook by Bakes-A-Lot (Thank you!), who shared a link to Yahoo’s Answers, which in turn linked to Wilton.com’s discussion forum. I was unable to find the actual discussion on Wilton’s site, but the recipe and gelatin egg substitute recipe can be found here. (Thanks as well to Maria!).
2. Substitute meringue powder or eggs with dried/dehydrated egg whites
Instead of meringue powder, use dried egg whites. Thanks to Janice Wong for sharing the link to LilaLoa’s recipe. Thanks as well to Pamela, who shared that they’re called Actiwhite in South Africa. Also important to note, another name for powdered egg whites is egg albumin. (Thank you Estefania and Jeni Cakes).
3. Use pastuerized egg whites
Thanks to Tessa for sharing that she uses pastuerized egg whites in a carton for any meringue she needs. She adds a little cream of tartar or lemon juice to stabilize. Tessa, I’d love to hear more about this option. I have tried it before and found that my icing didn’t whip up as nicely. Would love to hear more feedback!
4. Use “No-Egg” Replacement Powder
5. Omit the binding/stabilizing agent altogether
Marie has made royal icing with just powdered sugar, flavoring and color (and I’m guessing water?). Thanks, Marie for sharing on Facebook. Looking forward to experimenting! Has anyone else tried this? I’m guessing it would work nicely for flood icing, but maybe not for a gingerbread house icing, which needs to be like a thick, sweet edible glue.
- If you’re looking for a royal icing recipe with egg whites, here’s the one I use; Royal Icing Made with Egg Whites
- And with meringue powder; Royal Icing Made with Meringue Powder
- Depending on where you live, there may be similar products to meringue powder, with different names. For example, thanks to Casey on Facebook, and Belle of Belleissimo Cookies for sharing that they use a product called Pavlova Magic instead of meringue powder. Belle, who is in Australia and unable to find the meringue powder there, says:
I use a product called Pavlova Magic instead of meringue powder. It’s basically meringue powder, as its designed to make meringues (Pavlovas). I use a straight substitution for the same amount as the recipe calls for… It works great for me as I am in a small(ish) country town without any decorating supply stores and this product I can get at my grocery store.
Hope that helps!
Notes on these Halloween Cookies:
- I used the images from these Recollections stickers for a few of my cookies (stickers found at Michael’s):
- Some of the sugar decorations are royal icing transfers. Here’s a tutorial on how to make them.
- Here’s a video on making royal icing transfers.
- Royal icing transfers are delicate. I usually make extra of each design. For the jack-o-lantern above, I only made one, and the brim of the hat chipped off a bit.
- Because I need help in the drawing department, I used my Kopykake Projector to make the icing transfers.
- The ‘scrolled’/'plaque’ and ‘wavy’ cookie cutters are from Coppergifts.com
- I was inspired by Julia Usher’s tombstone for my gravestone cookie below.
- The cookies are made with this gingerbread recipe
Have fun baking!
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