If you avoid eggs, gluten, and/or prefer to eat a low-carbohydrate diet but still want to include foods similar to bread, flatbread, wraps, muffins, or burger buns, then psyllium husk might be a useful addition to your pantry.
Psyllium’s ability to absorb liquid is also responsible for its transformational action in the kitchen. When psyllium husk is mixed with water and is allowed to sit for a few minutes, it develops a thick, mucilage-like consistency and this “gel” acts like a binder in baked goods. This is exactly why psyllium has risen in popularity as a key ingredient in healthy baking.
As a baking ingredient, you’ll find psyllium husk in two main forms—whole psyllium husk and psyllium husk powder—which are most often packaged in bags or containers and found in health food stores, pharmacies, organic sections of supermarkets, and online.
Not all psyllium is created equal, however. Recipes that feature psyllium will call for psyllium husk powder or whole psyllium husk (which resembles small flakes). Psyllium husk powder is simply ground whole psyllium husks, but they’re not directly interchangeable. You’ll find a range of conversions, but in my experience 4 teaspoons of whole psyllium husk is equal to 3 teaspoons of psyllium powder. You can grind whole psyllium husks into psyllium powder by using a coffee grinder if the conversion math gives you a headache.
Using psyllium as a binder makes it a great substitute for eggs in vegan recipes. To replace eggs, use this formula: ¼ cup water + ½ teaspoon psyllium husk powder = 1 egg. It also helps with texture, pliability, and binding in gluten-free baking; and because psyllium is low in absorbable carbohydrates, it has become valuable in keto recipes as well. As you can tell by now, psyllium is somewhat of a dietary chameleon.