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The 5 Best Substitutes for Eggs in Meatballs

You’ve likely eaten meatballs and not even realized it. Whether they’re in spaghetti, on a sub sandwich, or as the main dish.

meatballs play a significant role in our diets. However, one ingredient is missing from many meatball recipes: eggs.

Here are two reasons why cooking with eggs will enhance your meatballs:

First, eggs will help these meatballs hold together.

Eggs are a binding agent, which means that they’ll reduce the number of bread crumbs required to make a meatball mixture cohesive and easy to eat.

Second, they’ll provide flavor. Just as baking powder acts as a leavening agent in baked goods, eggs are an emulsifier for your meatballs.

This means that they will help the ground beef develop a smoother, creamier texture as it cooks.

However, you can’t just add eggs to your meatball recipe – you’ll need to substitute them.

In this article, we’ll discuss some possible replacements.

Why Use Eggs in Meatballs?

why use eggs in meatballs

Eggs are a common ingredient in meatballs.

A large number of people, however, are unaware that the egg they are eating is the reason why their meatball is so moist.

That’s because eggs consist mostly of water and protein – two ingredients that help hold the water within the mixture together.

Once cooked, these proteins coagulate and form a tight bond within the meatball, creating a moist texture.

This ultimately means that eggs help keep your meatballs tender and juicy instead of dry and crumbly.

Adding eggs not only makes sure that your meatballs remain as such after cooking but also ensures they don’t fall apart; this is because of the egg’s binding effect, which holds the outer layer of the meatball together.

When preparing meatballs, the addition of eggs not only ensures that your dish is delicious and moist but that it is also nutritious.

Egg protein contributes to making a healthy dish even healthier.

The 5 Best Substitutes for Eggs in Meatballs

So, how do you prepare meatballs without using eggs? We’re here to help.

The substitutes we’ve recommended below ensure that your meatballs remain not only moist and tender but also taste delicious.

1 – Mashed Potatoes

mashed potatoes

The addition of mashed potatoes is a great way to add an extra layer of texture to your meatballs.

This alternative proves to be simple and effective; all you need to do is mix the potatoes with your favorite herbs and spices, such as garlic powder and onion powder.

Even better: You can even prepare mashed sweet potatoes for a sweeter dish.

If you’re looking for a little extra flavor, try adding fresh parsley or grated parmesan cheese.

This substitute is simple to put together and extremely tasty.

2 – Butter Milk and Bread Crumbs

butter milk and bread crumbs

Buttermilk is a great way to make meatballs.

It has a rather pungent taste, making it the perfect addition to your dish.

You can prepare your buttermilk by adding vinegar and lemon juice (not too much).

Stir well and allow the curds to form.

Once that happens, drain the excess liquid, wrap the curds in cheesecloth, and place it in a colander to drain off any additional liquid.

This substitute is particularly important for vegetarians or those picky about fat content.

You can use buttermilk to replace eggs where the taste will remain just the same.

Bread crumbs are also an excellent addition to providing your meatballs with a crispy exterior.

3 – Chickpea Flour

chickpea flour

Chickpeas are an excellent source of protein, fiber, and minerals.

Chickpea flour is another fantastic alternative that you can use to replace eggs in your meatballs.

It’s important to note that this flour does not contain gluten at all.

It also makes a great substitute for those allergic to gluten or sensitive to dairy products.

One thing is certain: Chickpea flour is a delicious substitute that will add an extra dash of flavor to your meatballs.

Chickpeas come in many different varieties, including garbanzo beans and besan, which you can find in most grocery stores.

4 – Plain Yogurt

plain yogurt

Yogurt is a great alternative for those looking to find substitutes for eggs.

It’s loaded with protein, has some carbohydrates, and is full of calcium.

What’s more: The flavor of your meatballs will never change whether you use yogurt or eggs as a substitute.

This makes it ideal for picky eaters who are unlikely to notice a difference.

Plain yogurt is simple to prepare and can be used as an egg substitute in many recipes.

You’ll enjoy cooking if you decide to use it.

5 – Tofu


Tofu is a popular vegan alternative that makes a perfect substitute for eggs.

While it’s helpful to follow a recipe when using tofu as an egg replacement, you can still do many things with this ingredient.

It has a unique texture that works incredibly well in meatballs – and the flavor will remain the same.

Tofu is an ideal vegan substitute for those who like to cook and eat healthily.

You can find tofu in most grocery stores, as well as health-food stores.


At the end of the day, whichever substitute you choose, your meatballs will turn out succulent and delicious every time.

Follow these steps, and you won’t be disappointed.

If you decide to use eggs in your meatballs, make sure they are at room temperature and gently mixed into the mixture.

Also, add a little bit of cold water or milk; this will help your meatballs stay moist and tender on the inside.

If using bread crumbs, add them right before cooking. This will give your meatballs a crispy exterior.

Whisking them into the mixture beforehand may result in an undesirable texture that you won’t enjoy.

Yield: 4 Servings

The 5 Best Substitutes for Eggs in Meatballs

The 5 Best Substitutes for Eggs in Meatballs
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes


  • Mashed Potatoes
  • Butter Milk and Bread Crumbs
  • Chickpea Flour
  • Plain Yogurt
  • Tofu


  1. Pick your favorite substitute from the list above.
  2. Follow cooking directions for your selected substitute with the proper ratio of ingredients.
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