Ingredient Substitution Guide 2017-01-28T09:36:25+00:00

Ingredient Substitution Guide for Healthy Recipes

By making some changes to your favorite recipes, you can still enjoy the foods you love while taking steps to improve your health. Try these tips to modify your favorite recipes to be more healthy


If your recipe calls for this ingredient:

Try substituting this ingredient:

BaconCanadian bacon, turkey bacon, smoked turkey or lean prosciutto (Italian ham)
Bread, whiteWhole-grain bread
Bread crumbs, dry Rolled oats or crusted bran cereal
Butter, margarine, shortening or oil in baked goodsApplesauce or prune puree for half of the called-for butter, shortnening or oil; butter spreads or shortenings specially formulated for baking that don’t have trans fats Note: To avoid dense, soggy or flat baked goods, don’t substitute oil for butter or shortening. Also don’t substitute diet, whipped or tub-style margarine for regular margarine.
Butter, margarine, shortening or oil to prevent stickingCooking spray or nonstick pans
CreamFat-free half-and-half, evaporated skim milk
Cream cheese, full fat Eggs Fat-free or low-fat cream cheese, Neufchatel or low-fat cottage cheese pureed until smooth

Two egg whites or ¼ cup egg substitute for each whole egg

Flour, all-purpose (plain)Whole-wheat flour for half of the called for all-purpose flour in baked goods Note: Whole-wheat pastry flour is less dense and works well in softer products like cakes and muffins
Fruit canned in heavy syrup Fruit canned in its own juices or in water, or fresh fruit
Ground beefExtra-lean or lean ground beef, chicken or turkey breast (make sure no poultry skin has been added to the product)
Lettuce, iceberg Arugula, chicory, collard greens, dandelion greens, kale, mustard greens, spinach or watercress
MayonnaiseReduced-calorie mayonnaise-type salad dressing or reduced-calorie, reduced-fat mayonnaise
Meat as the main ingredientThree times as many vegetables as the meat on pizzas or in casseroles, soups and stews
Milk, evaporatedEvaporated skim milk
Milk, wholeReduced-fat or fat-free milk
Oil-based marinadesWine, balsamic vinegar, fruit juice or fat-free broth
Pasta, enriched (white)Whole-wheat pasta
Rice, whiteBrown rice, wild rice, bulgur or pearl barley
Salad dressingFat-free or reduced-calorie dressing or flavored vinegars
Seasoning salt, such as garlic salt, celery salt, or onion saltHerb-only seasonings, such as garlic powder, celery seed or onion flakes, or use finely chopped herbs or garlic, celery or onions
Soups, creamed Fat-free milk-based soups, mashed potato flakes, or pureed carrots, potatoes, or tofu for thickening agents
Sour cream, full fatFat-free or low-fat sour cream, plain fat-free or low-fat yogurt
Soy sauceSweet-and-sour sauce, hot mustard sauce, or low-sodium soy sauce
SugarIn most baked goods you can reduce the amount of sugar by one-half; intensify sweetness by adding vanilla, nutmeg or cinnnamon
SyrupPureed fruit, such as applesauce, or low-calorie, sugar-free syrup
Table saltHerbs, spices, citrus juices (lemon, lime, orange), rice vinegar, salt-free seasoning mixes, or herb blends
Yogurt, fruit-flavoredPlain yogurt with fresh fruit slices