This must be the egg industrys favorite time of the year. Theres Easter eggs, egg-rich Easter cakes and cookies, Easter brunch omelets, casseroles and eggs Benedict (eggs atop English muffins and in the Hollandaise sauce). Eggs also play a big part at Passover. Theyre on the Seder plate and in matzo balls, kugels and Passover desserts. Eggs, though, arent all theyre cracked up to be for cholesterol avoiders, allergic folk (eggs are among the top eight food allergens) and vegans. Plant-powered egg alternatives mean we still get a place at the holiday table.
• Flax seed. One tablespoon not only ups your omega-3 and fiber, but when whisked together with 3 tablespoons of water, creates vegans favorite plant-based egg substitute in baking.
• Tofu. Smash firm tofu and scramble the same way you scramble eggs. Add spices, veggies, anything you like.
Four plant-based brands offer traditional mayonnaises rich flavor and texture without the cholesterol. Theyre chicken-pleasingly eggless and proudly non-GMO verified, too.
• Creamy soy-based Nasoyas Vegan Nayonaise (15 ounces, $4.39), has 30 calories per tablespoon, 3.5 fat grams and 115 milligrams sodium. The tangiest vegan mayo, its the lowest in calories and fat and, alas, the highest in sodium.
• Earth Balance Mindful Mayo (16 ounces, $4.29) and Follow Your Heart Vegenaise (16 ounces, $4.99) both follow the Hellmans mayonnaise model. Theyre more thick than creamy, and like Hellmans contain 90 calories and 9 fat grams per tablespoon. The edge goes to canola-based Earth Balance. It has richer flavor, is lower in price and sodium (70 milligrams as compared to soy-based Vegenaises 85 milligrams) and contains no soy (another major allergen).
• The new plant-based mayo on the market is Just Mayo (16 ounces, $5.79). Thats just as in righteous. Its the priciest, with the most fat (11 grams per 90-calorie serving) and the least sodium (65 milligrams per serving). Its also the most mayolike in flavor. Its canola-based and soy-free with a luscious whipped texture.
Find Just Mayonnaise and its vegan mayonnaise peers in the refrigerated section at Whole Foods, natural food stores and some supermarkets. Like traditional mayonnaise, they get their bright flavor from lemon, vinegar and mustard. What they dont have preservatives or traditional mayos 5 milligrams of cholesterol per tablespoon. Everyone wins. Even the chickens.
Ellen Kanner is the author of Feeding the Hungry Ghost: Life, Faith and What to Eat for Dinner.