11 QUICK and EASY Substitutions for Milk and Egg Allergies
I’m writing this post on National Pancake Day, March 7th (although this advice, like pancakes, are timeless).
Did you know there was such a thing as National Pancake Day? If not, I feel bad for you and your communist ways. Because pancakes pretty much make the world a better (and recently, a tolerable) place.
But, sadly, this world of harmony mixed with butter and maple syrup can’t be fully enjoyed by some kids (and adults) who have egg or milk allergy.
Today, it’s time to make amends.
If your child has a milk or egg allergy, I have included some substitutions (and a new possibility at the end) for them to enjoy pancakes!
Who should read this article?
- If your son or daughter (or you!) have either a milk OR an egg allergy, then there are a lot of foods that you have to avoid.
- This post will give you some great substitution ideas to use.
- It will also help you learn about the “middle step” between full allergy and full tolerance.
- Or if you prepare foods for anyone with milk or egg allergies, then this is a nice way to give them different types of treats without causing an allergic reaction.
If you don’t fall into these categories, then this post probably isn’t going to be interesting to you. Instead, wish someone a Happy Pancake Day and remember this article if anyone needs food substitutions in the future.
- What is a milk or egg allergy?
- Milk allergy substitutions
- Milk allergy cooking substitutes
- Milk allergy WARNING
- Egg allergy substitutions
- What about a third possibility (the “middle option”)
- Could your child be baked-egg or baked-milk tolerant?
- Baked egg/milk pancake recipe
- Next steps
What is a milk or egg allergy?
In a true milk or egg allergy (vs intolerance), your child should have hives in 90% of cases.
This is usually enough to suspect food allergy, but more severe anaphylaxis is often associated with any of these symptoms: shortness of breath, wheezing, nausea, diarrhea or abdominal pain, lightheadedness, dizziness or passing out.
I’ve written about milk allergy in the past in these 2 posts:
- Milk allergy cross reactivity (with a DOWNLOADABLE wallet card)
- 5 surprising facts about milk allergy
And I’ve written about egg allergy as well:
- 33 foods to avoid with egg allergy (with DOWNLOADABLE wallet card)
- Can you develop an egg allergy later in life?
If you are unsure whether or not your child has a milk or egg allergy, I recommend reading these posts first.
But if you are fairly sure that they have are allergic, you can jump down to some milk and egg allergy substitutions below.
Milk Allergy Substitutions
Milk Allergy Cooking Substitutes:
- Use soy or rice milk in place of cow’s milk in baking or cooking (usually substituted 1 for 1)
- Coconut, almond, cashew, hazelnut or macadamia milk are good if there’s no tree nut allergy (usually substituted 1 for 1)
- Oat milk is another option and apparently is a good substitute for low-fat milk
- Use oil or milk-free margarine in place of butter in baking and cooking.
- If you want to read a great substitution article, kidswithfoodallergies has a good article on milk substitutions.
Milk Allergy Warning:
Avoid goat’s milk as it is very similar in terms of allergen potential to cow’s milk.
Egg Allergy Substitutions
Egg allergy substitutes are a little more difficult to cover than milk allergy substitutes (just because there are so many rice milk, soy milk, or tree-nut milk variations). Still, if you need them there are some good workable substitutes.
These Egg substitutes usually work to replace up to 3 eggs in a recipe:
- 1 tsp baking powder, 1 tbsp liquid and 1 tbsp vinegar = 1 egg
- ½ tbsp water, 1 ½ tbsp oil, and 1 tsp baking powder = 1 egg
- ¼ cup applesauce = 1 egg
- 1 tbsp apricot puree = 1 egg
- 1 tsp yeast dissolved in ¼ cup warm water = 1 egg
- EnerG Egg Replacer® (at most health stores, see package directions)
You’ll need to play around with these largely because each substitute contains different textures. For pancakes, I’d consider the second one as a good first step.
What about a third possibility?
Substitutions are usually the best option for most kids with food allergies. But the good news is that 80% of kids with either milk or egg allergies WILL eventually outgrow them!
What is interesting is that a lot of kids don’t go straight from milk/egg allergy straight to milk/egg tolerance. Most go through a “middle step” where they are able to tolerate BAKED products.
It’s possible that your son or daughter may be in this middle category. There isn’t a perfect way to tell if they’ve moved into this category, but as a general rule:
- If your son or daughter can tolerate baked breads, muffins, cakes then they are likely OK for eggs (and milk if it’s in these products)
- If they can tolerate waffles then they might be OK to eggs or milk, depending on what’s in the waffle.
- If they have had a long time without a reaction then we can start to guess they might be in this category.
With these histories, I usually recommend one of two next steps:
- You can check “component” blood tests for both milk and eggs to see if they might have moved into this middle category
- You can get skin testing done at an allergists office and if the values have decreased or drop below a specific level, then it also means they might be in this middle category.
Why do I keep using the word “might”?
I promise its not because I’m trying to be wishy-washy about your child’s health or that I’m worried about some legal nonsense. It’s because the only way to know for sure if your son or daughter has outgrown their milk or egg allergy is to give them the food and see what happens.
Now, I don’t recommend this at home unless your allergist says it’s OK. Usually, these food challenges are done in an allergists office under the monitoring of the allergy clinic staff (and where I have all emergency equipment available).
If you think your child might be in this middle category, I highly recommend finding an allergist in your area and getting it checked out (if you want, I can find a good allergist near you to help).
What if they ARE able to tolerate baked eggs or milk?
If your son or daughter is able to tolerate baked eggs or milk, then here is a BAKED pancake recipe that you can use to help celebrate National Pancake Day (FYI – any day can be national pancake day if you try hard enough).
Baked Pancake Recipe
- 2 cups of Bisquick pancake mix
- 1 Cup of milk
- 2 eggs
- Preheat oven to 500
- Lightly beat eggs before adding the milk and bisquick.
- Lightly grease baking sheets
- Use ¼ cup of batter per pancake
- Bake on middle rack at 500 degrees for 5 minutes
Having a child with food allergies is never easy, especially when their allergy is to common foods like eggs and milk. And while the good news is there is an 80% chance they’ll out grow it, that doesn’t really help you today.
So above are a list of good substitutes for both egg and milk allergic people. I’ve included a lot of good options for you to try until your child outgrows their milk or egg allergy.
AND, as a third option, I want you to read about the “middle” step where your child could tolerate baked eggs or baked milk. It’s not full tolerance, but often allows for breads, muffins, cakes and waffles to be brought back into the diet (and aren’t those all great additions to anyone diet?!)
If you have any questions, or want to find out more about the “middle step” just contact me and I’ll be happy to answer any questions you may have.
For today, I ask that if you know of any good egg or milk substitutes to please add them to the comments section below. I’ll update this list with every one I get and together we can make this a great resource for anyone struggling with egg or milk allergy.
And if you have particularly good culinary skillz, consider leaving some recipes that you’ve made below as well. I think the entire community will be very grateful for your contributions.