Vegan meringues are made without egg whites, which are a traditional ingredient in meringue recipes. Instead, aquafaba, the liquid from a can of chickpeas or white beans, is used as a substitute. Here’s a basic recipe for vegan meringues:
- 1 can (15 ounces) chickpeas or white beans
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon cream of tartar
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract (optional)
- Food coloring (optional)
- Prepare Ingredients:
- Drain a can of chickpeas or white beans into a bowl to collect the aquafaba (the bean liquid). You’ll need approximately 1/2 to 2/3 cup of aquafaba from the can.
- Whip the Aquafaba:
- Using an electric mixer, beat the aquafaba in a clean, dry bowl on high speed until it becomes foamy and starts to form soft peaks. This may take 5-10 minutes.
- Add Cream of Tartar:
- Sprinkle the cream of tartar over the foamy aquafaba and continue to beat it on high speed.
- Gradually Add Sugar:
- Slowly add the granulated sugar to the aquafaba mixture, one tablespoon at a time, while continuing to beat. This process can take another 5-10 minutes. The meringue will become glossy and stiff with peaks that hold their shape.
- Add Vanilla and Food Coloring (Optional):
- If desired, add vanilla extract and food coloring to the meringue and gently fold them in.
- Pipe or Spoon onto Baking Sheets:
- Preheat your oven to 200°F (93°C). Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. You can pipe the meringue onto the paper using a pastry bag or simply spoon it onto the paper in small mounds.
- Place the baking sheet in the preheated oven and bake the meringues for 1.5 to 2 hours, or until they are dry, crisp, and firm to the touch.
- Turn off the oven and leave the meringues in the oven with the door slightly ajar to cool completely. This helps prevent them from cracking.
- Once the vegan meringues are completely cool, remove them from the parchment paper. They should be light, crisp, and sweet. Serve and enjoy!
Vegan meringues can be enjoyed on their own, used as a topping for pies or desserts, or even crumbled over ice cream. They are a wonderful plant-based alternative to traditional meringues, and their taste and texture are remarkably similar.