Did you know that you could make true royal icing without eggs? No? Me neither. I knew about glaze icing which uses confectioner’s sugar, corn syrup, lemon juice and some liquid (milk or water). It is similar to royal icing but doesn’t give the control or decorating options that royal icing gives a baker.
I wanted to try to make a vegan royal icing that would taste as good as my regular recipe and was easy to control.. A friend recommended that I join a Facebook group devoted solely to aquafaba. She is vegan and said that aquafaba is a common substitute for eggs in vegan recipes. The word aquafaba is the common name for the cooking liquid of beans and other legumes like chickpeas.
I didn’t have to do much experimenting. I did a lot of reading but in the end I decided to try my regular recipe but substitute the aquafaba for the pasteurized egg whites in my recipe.
These cookies were all decorated totally with vegan royal icing. Even if you don’t follow a vegan lifestyle you should give this a try. All you have to do is keep a can of chickpeas in your pantry and if you are ever out of eggs or meringue powder you will have an excellent, inexpensive substitute.
On a side note, if you want a really yummy, healthy snack roast the chickpeas that you now have left over.
To make roasted chickpeas rinse and drain the chickpeas. Spread the chickpeas on a clean towel to dry. When dry, mix them with about a tablespoon of olive oil and any of your favorite seasonings. My grandson used Old Bay. I used just salt but the sky is the limit and only limited by your taste buds and imagination. Spread them on a foil or parchment lined sheet pan. Roast for about 20 minutes at 400 degrees. We like them really crunchy so I roast them a little longer but you should experiment to see how you like them best. This is a picture of them after they came out of the oven. You won’t be sorry you tried them!
I hope you will let me know if you try it and if you liked it.
- 4 cups confectioner’s sugar
- 1/2 tsp cream of tartar
- 1 can of chickpeas, drained. Save the liquid (save the chickpeas)
- 1/2 cup aquafaba (measured from the drained chickpea liquid)
- 2 T corn syrup
- 1 T water (if necessary)
- 1 tsp. White gel food coloring (optional)
- Mix confectioner’s sugar and cream of tarter in your mixer bowl. With mixer on low speed, add the aquafaba, water and the corn syrup. When it has all come together as a big lump in the bottom of your bowl, turn the speed up to high and beat for about 2 minutes. If it’s too thick, add some water. I like my icing super thick so you have the option to thin to your desired consistency for everything from flooding to roses. You will notice your icing will get whiter and glossy. That’s when it’s done. I always add white food coloring to my base icing at this point. Mix until combined. I have noticed that I no longer have discoloration on my cookies since I started adding white gel color but it's totally optional.