Egg-Free Swiss Meringue Buttercream

Sawsen Ali of Fancy Favors and Edible art shares a deliciously-creamy recipe for egg-free Swiss meringue buttercream.

“Making traditional Swiss buttercream has long been a time-consuming process, from dissolving sugar into the eggs, whipping then slowly and adding the butter piece by piece. However, recently a number of ‘easy’ Swiss style buttercream recipes have become popular, where the ingredients are combined almost at once then whipped to aerate the mixture.

This recipe is based upon the latter method, with substitutions for the egg whites which are made possible by the fact that there is no need for a meringue to be made first. Instead, a substitution for the water and protein content of egg whites has been made using readily available, vegetarian ingredients. I have tried a number of variations of this recipe, but found the one below to be the closest to real Swiss buttercream in taste, texture and stability; being virtually indistinguishable from the egg-based, traditional version in my experience.

It is also more convenient I find, as the substituted ingredients are shelf-stable until opened, go a long way, and unlike some existing versions using Aquafaba (garbanzo bean water) there is no need for pre-preparation such as boiling or reduction, no waste such as leftover beans, and none of the associated indigestion issues (similar to those caused by the beans themselves, if you know what I mean) which could be quite embarrassing at a wedding!

I hope this recipe will be of use to anyone who needs a fast, easy, egg-free recipe due to allergies, convenience, or cost considerations given the increasing price of eggs in the States.”

Ingredients:

300ml Soy milk
45g Unflavoured protein powder ( such as available in health food shops, I used Pulsin Natural & Unflavoured Soya Protein)
750g Unsalted butter, room temperature
660g Powdered sugar
15ml Vanilla extract

Method:

  1. Ensure that all ingredients are at room temperature before starting. Pour the soy milk, protein powder and powdered sugar into the bowl of a stand mixer. Using the whip attachment, start on low then build up to medium-high speed until all of the ingredients are well combined.
  2. Add the butter all at once (you can pause the mixer to do so if required), then build up the speed to the highest setting. The mixture will go through the familiar Swiss buttercream stages, first appearing curdled, then beginning to smooth and aerate but still tasting like sweetened butter, finally reaching a light, fluffy and voluminous mixture which tastes like whipped cream. This should take around 7-10 minutes.
  3. Switch to the paddle attachment, add the vanilla extract and mix on low for 2-3 minutes to combine and reduce air bubbles. Use as you would traditional Swiss buttercream.