Regular royal icing is a big no-no for a ketogenic vegan lifestyle. First of all, it contains egg. Secondly, most of it is sugar — that is pretty toxic as we have learned (and if you don’t know that yet, I strongly encourage you to find that out now!)
However, this royal icing is as good as the regular sugar-laden royal icing — except it’s miles healthier. With natural sweeteners and vegan-friendly ingredients it’s a must when you want to decorate your vegan cookies, for example.
About the Sugar-Free Vegan Royal Icing recipe
The western vegan lifestyle is often full of sugar. If you eat grains or fruits, you are very likely to get far too much sugar to your body — not mentioning the added sugar that food industry tries to sneak into your diet. Nowadays, we know the disadvantages and the harm that sugar causes: it’s quite like a drug and a poison! Therefore, healthy sugar-free options are more than welcome, also when you want to celebrate.
That’s what this recipe is: a sugar-free option sweetened with natural sweeteners to help you tackle the holidays in a tad healthier way! Be sure to check my Grain-Free Sugar-Free Vegan Gingerbread Cookies recipe that is a perfect match with this Sugar-Free Vegan Royal Icing.
But not only for vegans, this recipe is also perfect for all with egg-intolerance or who wouldn’t like to use eggs. Since regular royal icing contains raw egg white, this recipe is perfect for those, too, who want to avoid eating raw eggs (for example if you are pregnant or if your immunity is severely compromised).
Finding the right sweetener for sugar-free royal icing was a cinch: I’ve used erythritol for years and have made sugar-free royal icing, glaze and other frostings with powdered erythritol. (Here, I have one glaze recipe that comes close to royal icing but it uses egg white, though in form of egg white protein).
So, even the choice of sweetener was easy, it took me some time to figure out what would be the perfect way to replace egg whites in vegan royal icing. Naturally, I needed some liquid, preferably something with a neutral taste. I didn’t want to use water because it might have made the icing too dull and watery. It had to be some plant-based milk with only a little carbs. However, for example my one keto-vegan favorite, coconut milk, wasn’t really an option here because it was quite thick and has a characteristic coconut taste.
Unsweetened almond milk is my second keto-vegan favorite from plant-based milks. Luckily, in the nearest grocery store, they have one which doesn’t contain carrageenan. I try to avoid carrageenan at all costs as it causes troubles for so many people (it’s bad for the gut). Anyway, why add something to food if it really doesn’t need it? Almond milk can be made perfectly without carrageenan or other food additives.
I was afraid almond milk might make the consistency too watery anyway, and the icing might not harden. Therefore, I wanted to add some Sukrin Clear Fiber Syrup to improve the consistency. This syrup is a great sugar-free alternative to corn syrup, glucose syrup, or any clear sugary syrup out there.
To my surprise, the consistency of the icing turned out really well, although I had to use quite much more almond milk than in my original plans.
The icing also hardened nicely, just like the real thing. Moreover, the taste was great — though the erythritol gave the slight characteristic cooling aftertaste — but it didn’t disturb me in any way.
Tips for making the Sugar-Free Vegan Royal Icing
Making this icing is a cinch, although you might have to adjust the amount of almond milk quite much. If the consistency is too thick, remember to add almond milk by the teaspoon. If you add even one teaspoon too much, the icing becomes easily too runny! You can always add more fluid but not remove it.
Nowadays, there are several brands of powdered erythritol available. One of the best is Confectioner’s Style Swerve. However, as I live in Finland (and we really don’t have powdered erythritol here, just erythritol crystals), I often order it from Germany. Sometimes I grind erythritol crystals in a powerful blender (I have Blendtec) and receive powdered erythritol in seconds.
For the almond milk, naturally homemade unsweetened almond milk is best option, but since it requires much time and effort, the commercial option is the easiest — considering you’ll find a brand without nasty food additives.
Let’s take a look on how to prepare this easy icing:
You need only three ingredients: powdered erythritol (like Confectioner’s Style Swerve), Sukrin Clear Fiber Syrup, and unsweetened almond milk.
Pour the powdered erythritol into a small or medium bowl.
Add the Sukrin Clear Fiber Syrup…
…and tablespoon unsweetened almond milk.
Stir with a spoon until smooth.
As you see, my icing here is too thick…
…so I add another tablespoon almond milk.
It’s still a tad too thick…
…so I add still one teaspoon almond milk.
Now it’s perfect!
Then, just transfer the icing to a piping bag with a tiny round tip…
…and pipe the icing onto your favorite baked keto-vegan goods!