Aquafaba is a trendy new food that you often heart about. It has so many interesting facts attached to it, which grab the attention of all. It is often featured on social platforms with its potential benefits in health and benefits.
Aquafaba is actually a liquid which is used to cook food ingredients such as legumes, chickpeas etc. It is one of the most desirable cooking ingredients for a vegan diet as it is a good substitute for egg. For the newly converted, it fulfills the egg taste and craving with almost same nutrients to offer.
What Is Aquafaba?
Aquafaba is an ingredient that is used to cook beans or legumes. It is a watery substance in which you can cook or store your legumes, beans etc. It is the same liquid which is present when you open a new can of chickpeas.
It has got its name from the Latin language. The Latin words for water and bean are aqua and faba. So Aquafaba combines mean something like the water of beans. You can use this ingredient for cooking common types of beans and lentils.
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It has a high amount of starch in it. It is the same compound that is found in plants to store energy. There are two types of polysaccharides that make up starch; they are called amylose and amylopectin.
When you cook beans of legumes in aquafaba, this starch absorbs all the water. It makes them swell and breaks down their content including amylose and amylopectin. All these ingredients leach into the water. This nutrient-rich water is called aquafaba.
Although it is not a new thing and the world has been using it for centuries, it didn’t receive much importance until 2014. In this year a French chef used it as a chief ingredient in recipes, before that, it was often discarded for being waste.
For the first time ever, he commented aquafaba to be a great alternative for egg whites which is also a foaming agent. This trick of him spread like anything. Food enthusiasts took it up and started using as an ingredient to cook food without eggs.
This new cooking tip was particularly helpful for vegan diet eaters because they do not eat eggs otherwise. Using aquafaba was a friendly alternative to eggs in different recipes.
Is aquafaba nutritious?
Since aquafaba is a relatively new ingredient in use, there is not much research or information on it. However, this limited information is sufficient to take an idea about it.
As per information available, one tablespoon of aquafaba, which makes roughly 15 ml, has 3-5 calories in it. It has minerals such as calcium and iron in it but they are not found in high amounts.
There is no other reliable information on it. The health benefits are calculated as per general assumptions. Any future research may make more information available on aquafaba’s nutritional count.
In what way you can use Aquafaba?
While there is not much information and data about aquafaba’s nutritional value and benefits, there are so many ways by which you can use aquafaba in different recipes. Check the following.
Aquafaba as egg white alternative
The best-known use of aquafaba is for being an absolutely amazing alternative of egg white. There is no logical reason to explain why it works like that. It may be the starch content of aquafaba, which gives it such amazing value.
Though most of the recipes use aquafaba in place of egg whites, it can also be used in place of whole eggs or just the egg yolks. Vegan and those people who are allergic to eggs ideally use it.
It is even used in baking for mimicking eggs. You can use it for the same reasons that you add eggs in a baking recipe. It provides structure to your mixture such as cakes, bread etc. not just desserts, aquafaba also tastes wonderful in savory vegan versions of traditionally egg-based recipes.
Taking food recipes aside, aquafaba is even used to make vegan cocktails and non-allergy causing cocktails in egg intolerant people. It takes 3 tablespoons or 45 ml of aquafaba to substitute one whole egg. Nearly 2 tablespoons count for one egg white only.
Aquafaba as a part of vegan dairy recipes
Vegans are among the beneficiaries of aquafaba. Aquafaba is an exceptional ingredient that you can use if you are out of eggs or don’t want to use them. Vegan people or lactose intolerant people often look for dairy free recipes for the possible avoidance of eggs.
In this case, aquafaba makes the finest option that gives the same flavor and texture as that of milk, butter or eggs. And you don’t really need to put these ingredients in the recipe when you are adding aquafaba.
Aquafaba is helpful for people with PKU
Aquafaba is not completely studied till the date but there is low protein content in it. it makes aquafaba one of the excellent options for The low protein content of aquafaba for people with phenylketonuria, commonly known as PKU.
PKU is a genetic disorder in which there is this very high blood level of an amino acid called phenylalanine. A genetic mutation is responsible for this condition. If the levels of phenylalanine become too high in blood, it can cause brain damage and may lead to severe intellectual disabilities.
Phenylalanine is abundant in protein-rich foods such as eggs. It is practically impossible for the patients of PKU to eat eggs or any proteins. In this way, aquafaba makes one right choice of an ingredient while preparing special food for PKU patients. However, this aspect is not medically studied.
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How to make aquafaba at home?
Making aquafaba at home is an easy thing. Still, if you don’t wanna make it, you can get it from the canned chickpeas. You can also use the leftover water that you used to cook chickpeas and make your own aquafaba.
What are the options to use Aquafaba
You can use aquafaba in multiple recipes. The best thing is that you can use it in both sweet or savory recipes, including the following.
- Foam it as an egg replacement.
- Whip it as an egg replacement
- Vegan mayo
- Vegan butter
Aquafaba is not an old ingredient; there are only experimental ways to use it. Many of these ideas may not taste food for many people. It is always good to be open to new and interesting ways to use food ingredients.
You should only store aquafaba in a quantity that you need. Storing a large amount and using it for days may not be a wise idea for the potential risk of contamination. It is better not to use it after 2-3 days. It remains fresh for up to 3 days in the fridge. Do not use it afterward.
Aquafaba is a new and interesting ingredient that is gaining popularity for its versatile roles in food recipes. It is just a beginning and there are many ways it can be used. Despite the unavailability of information on its actual health benefits and nutrition, it is used as a substitute for egg and egg whites in vegan recipes.
Aquafaba is user-friendly and easy to prepare. There are so many ways to use it in recipes and it is still under experimentation for its wide benefits. It is better to read about aquafaba before you plan to use it. The recommendation is to use only fresh aquafaba, which is not more than 3 days old. Following simple tricks can make life simple and improve the dietary habits, leading to a healthier life.