Anna Jones’ vegan recipes for aquafaba meringues and pancakes (2024)

Thanks to Bake Off, aquafaba has hit the mainstream. It’s an ingredient I rely on when baking for vegans. Aquafaba (Italian for “bean water”) is the liquid left over from cooking legumes and pulses, most often chickpeas. When whipped, it magically transforms into a meringue-like consistency. It can be used in place of eggs for anything from a scone to a Victoria sponge. It also makes logic-defying meringues and amazing mayonnaise.

Aquafaba meringues with caramel and citrus (pictured above)

These are a revelation: egg-free meringues that have a perfect texture and chew. Ideally this would be done in a stand mixer (because they’re the most powerful), but an electric hand whisk will do. This recipe will work with any fruit and dairy-free cream, yoghurt or creme fraiche.

Prep 30 min
Cook 2 hr
Cool 2 hr
Makes 10–12 large meringues

Flavourless oil (such as groundnut)
1 x 400g tin chickpeas
150g golden caster sugar
1 ½ tsp cream of tartar
Seeds from 1 vanilla pod or 1 tsp vanilla paste

For the caramel and citrus
2 tangerines, mandarins or satsumas
1 yellow grapefruit
100g caster sugar
Whipped coconut cream mixed with vanilla paste, to serve

Heat the oven to 110C (90C fan)/230F/gas ¼. Line two baking trays with nonstick baking paper and rub with a tiny drop of oil. Drain the chickpeas and measure out 150ml of chickpea water (aquafaba). Put the chickpeas in the fridge or freezer to use later. Pour the aquafaba into the bowl of a stand mixer (or a large mixing bowl), add a pinch of salt and whisk on a high speed until white and very stiff.

In a bowl, combine the sugar and cream of tartar. Turn down the mixer speed a little, then add the sugar to the aquafaba one tablespoon at a time, making sure that each has dissolved before you add the next (you can check this by rubbing a little of the mixture between your fingers – if it’s grainy, keep going). Add the vanilla, then whisk on high for another couple of minutes. The meringue should now be looking very thick and glossy.

Spoon 10–12 piles of the meringue mixture on to the baking trays, making sure they have a little space to spread. Bake for two hours until crisp on the outside, turn off the oven and leave the meringues inside to cool completely – do not open the door while the meringues are cooking or cooling. The meringues will keep for two to three days in a sealed container.

Cut the citrus into segments or slices using a serrated knife. Catch any juice in a bowl and reserve. To make the caramel, heat the sugar in a heavy-based pan over a medium flame. Shake the pan so the sugar levels out. Allow the heat to melt the sugar and, gently swirling it (don’t stir), turn up the heat and cook until the sugar turns a deep golden. Remove from the heat and add a little tangerine zest.

Serve the meringues with the whipped cream, drizzle with the caramel, and top with the citrus pieces and a dash of the reserved juice.

How to use aquafaba in baking

Make sure it’s thick enough. If you’re using tinned chickpeas, the chances are it will be, but it can vary from brand to brand. If you’re cooking your pulses from scratch, make sure you discard the soaking water and always cook your beans in fresh water. Cook and cool the beans, then drain, reserving the precious liquid. If the liquid isn’t gloopy, reduce it by about a quarter. Make sure your aquafaba is well sieved; you don’t want to end up with pieces of chickpea in your meringue.

Rules of thumb are: one tablespoon aquafaba = one yolk; two tablespoons = one white; three tablespoons = a whole egg.

So, in a cake that calls for three eggs, you would use nine tablespoons (or 135ml) of aquafaba. One 400g tin of beans will yield around 150ml of aquafaba.

Aquafaba always needs to be whisked before being added to cakes. Ideally use a stand mixer or electric whisk. Put in a scrupulously clean bowl, and whisk, just as you would with egg white to make meringue. The aquafaba is ready to use when it’s holding its own and forming soft peaks with the whisk.

Aquafaba pancakes with roast squash, pickled onions, chilli and thyme oil

This base can be used for sweet or savoury pancakes. They are a great basic pancake for vegans – or anyone with a can of chickpeas. I’ve gone with a savoury squash and herb oil topping here, turning them into a proper dinner. You could even roast the leftover chickpeas with the squash if you’d like to include them in the recipe. To take them down a sweet route, stew some apple or pear, and serve with coconut yoghurt, maple syrup and toasted nuts.

Anna Jones’ vegan recipes for aquafaba meringues and pancakes (1)

Prep 15 min
Cook 45 min
Makes 12

For the squash topping
900g squash (1 butternut or 2 acorn), deseeded and cut into wedges
Drizzle of olive oil
Black pepper
1 red onion, peeled and thinly sliced
Juice of 1 lemon
1 red chilli, chopped
2 sprigs thyme, leaves only
50ml extra-virgin olive oil

For the batter
1 x 400g tin chickpeas
230g plain flour
1 tsp baking powder
300ml almond milk or oat milk
Coconut oil, for frying

Heat the oven to 200C (180C fan)/390F/gas 6. Toss the squash with a little oil, a pinch of salt and some ground pepper. Roast for 30 minutes, until deep golden and tender.

Meanwhile, toss the onion in a bowl with the lemon juice and a good pinch of salt. Leave to pickle while the squash cooks.

Mix the chilli with the thyme leaves, extra-virgin olive oil and a pinch of salt, and put to one side.

Drain the chickpeas and measure out 135ml of aquafaba. Whisk the aquafaba in a stand mixer, or with a hand whisk, to stiff peaks.

Sift together the flour, a good pinch of salt and the baking powder, then beat in the almond or oat milk until smooth. Gently fold the batter into the whipped aquafaba.

Heat a frying pan over a medium flame. Once hot, add a little coconut oil and swirl around the pan. Spoon ladlefuls into the pan, leaving a little space in between. You will have to do this in batches, so keep the pancakes warm under foil or in a low oven until ready to serve. Fry for three to four minutes on each side, until puffed and golden.

Serve two or three pancakes per person on warmed plates, and top with the roasted squash, onions and chilli oil.

Anna Jones’ vegan recipes for aquafaba meringues and pancakes (2024)


Top Articles
Latest Posts
Article information

Author: The Hon. Margery Christiansen

Last Updated:

Views: 6133

Rating: 5 / 5 (70 voted)

Reviews: 85% of readers found this page helpful

Author information

Name: The Hon. Margery Christiansen

Birthday: 2000-07-07

Address: 5050 Breitenberg Knoll, New Robert, MI 45409

Phone: +2556892639372

Job: Investor Mining Engineer

Hobby: Sketching, Cosplaying, Glassblowing, Genealogy, Crocheting, Archery, Skateboarding

Introduction: My name is The Hon. Margery Christiansen, I am a bright, adorable, precious, inexpensive, gorgeous, comfortable, happy person who loves writing and wants to share my knowledge and understanding with you.