When you’re on the healthy food aisle, you’ve probably come across flaxseed meals. It’s a favorite healthy food many people add to their dishes, and for a good reason!
Flaxseed meal is known for giving meals and drinks its nutty flavor and more consistency. Plus, with its many benefits, we consider it as a superfood that can make baked goods vegan-friendly.
But what if you ran out of flaxseed meals at home or couldn’t find any in the supermarket?
What can you use instead of flaxseed?
Don’t worry, as there are a variety of ingredients to replace flax with to use commonly!
What’s Flaxseed Meal Exactly?
Flax seeds, which we can also call linseed, are nutritious seeds that we use as binders, crusts, or thickeners in vegan recipes or vegetarian meals.
It’s a crop plant grown in Egypt and China, used in Ayurvedic medicine for thousands of years.
Based on the USDA, an ounce of flax seeds contain 152 calories, and in those calories are 8.2 grams of carbs and 5.2 grams of protein. Almost all its carbohydrates, 7.8 grams to be exact, come from dietary fiber. (*)
The exact amount of flax seeds also have 12 grams of fat. It might sound scary, but most of those fats are healthy!
Almost 72% of the fats in flax seeds are from polyunsaturated fats, about 18% come from monounsaturated fats, and the remaining 10% are saturated fats. (*)
The 8 Best Substitutes for Flaxseed Meal
If you have no flaxseeds at home, here are the ingredients you can replace flaxseed meal with:
1. Chia Seeds
Chia seeds have the most similar nutritional content as flax seeds, though they lack a few minerals and are higher in net carbohydrates.
You can also use this as a binder or one of the thickening agents, making it one of the ideal flaxseed meal replacements in many dishes and drinks.
Chia seed doesn’t have that strong flavor, which is why it works well with many recipes. However, it will become gelatinous quickly once exposed to more moisture, so it may not work best for certain recipes.
Besides that, chia seeds have two essential fat content that human bodies can’t produce: linoleic acid and alpha-linolenic acids. The ingredient also has more beneficial bioactive compounds than flaxseed meals!
We like to add chia seeds in our morning smoothie when we substitute flax.
2. Egg Substitute
Another interesting flax seed substitute is this great egg substitute recipe:
- Silken tofu and applesauce. Use ¼ cup of silken tofu and 1/3 cup applesauce for one egg.
- Alternatively, you can use ¼ cup of yogurt for one egg or mashed, ripe bananas!
- Use ¼ cup of the mashed fruit, usually half a banana, for one egg.
You might also find a premade egg substitute for sale in your local supermarket or organic grocery store.
3. Hemp Seeds
Hemp seeds are commonly used as a substitute for flaxseed meal , though it has the most calories among other alternatives listed. It also has the most hemp and protein, making it an exceptional substitute if you want more protein in your diet.
Furthermore, hemp seeds are lower in fiber and carbs than psyllium; it is richer in nutrients.
That said, while hemp seeds are nutritious, it’s pretty different from flax seed and lack fiber, so it may not be best for other culinary uses. Furthermore, it has a nutty flavor, which makes it great for healthy bread and cookie recipes.
We recommend hemp seeds as one of the top flaxseed meal substitutes with high protein and B vitamins. But it’s not the best for recipes that require high fiber content.
4. Wheat Germ
Wheat germ is an excellent source of fiber, along with vitamins B and E. This ingredient comes from wheat kernels, considered a kind of grain that adds more of a distinct texture and flavor to your baked bread.
We highly recommend using a wheat germ to replace flaxseed meal for sourdough bread or other bread recipes with a more rough and grainy texture.
It also has an aroma resembling oat and wheat flour, which, personally, smells great!
5. Psyllium Seeds
Flax seeds are rich in fiber and can benefit our gastrointestinal tracts. That’s why psyllium and husks, both richer in fiber, are excellent substitutes for flax seed meal .
You can ground psyllium seeds to use for cooking and gluten-free baking. While richer in fiber, it isn’t as nutrient-rich compared to flax seeds.
We also recommend this as one of the best flax meal substitutes since it has a lot of fiber. It’s the best for gluten-free baking, though not as nutrient-rich compared to flax seeds.
6. Almond Meal
If you are using a flax meal to substitute flour or eggs during the binding process of baking, then you can replace it with an almond meal.
Almond meal has more protein and is suitable for those who want more of it in their diet.
We use almond meal as a food binder and egg substitute and a thickening agent in soups and stews.
Plus, this ingredient is also a good substitute for cornstarch and other thickening agents, given the fact it’s more nutritious with good fatty acids.
You can also use almond flour, though you’ll have to change the amount up a bit because flour needs egg during the binding process. This is a gluten-free and low-carb flax seed substitute that has more nutrients than wheat germ, though it also contains more calories and fat.
This is another excellent flaxseed substitute that would help bind baked goods without compromising moisture. However, it may not be best for those who need to go dairy-free.
Yogurt helps improve our digestive systems to avoid bad bacteria infesting our intestines and to avoid constipation. When using it for baking, choose plain yogurt rather than flavored ones to not overpower your dish.
But if you’re baking something flavored like apple pies or peach-mango cakes, then utilize the same-flavored yogurts that enhance its taste more.
We used to think that tofu was best made for savory dishes, but you’ll be surprised with how well it works with dessert recipes, too!
It adds more protein and other essential nutrients to make your desserts healthier.
Because tofu has excellent binding capabilities, it’s a great substitute for flaxseed flour or meal, too. Like yogurt, make sure that you choose unflavored versions.
We suggest using silken tofu the most for its binding agent capabilities.
Frequently Asked Questions
What else is there to learn about flaxseed flour or meal? Check out the frequently asked questions we receive from our readers:
Our Favourite Recipes With Flaxseed Meal
Get recipe: merakilane.com
Wrapping It Up
We hope you found something that you can replace flax seed meal with based on our list above!
Check out these other ingredients for your recipe and tell us what worked best for your dishes in the comment section below.