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11 Nifty Ingredient Substitudes!

Ever get everything ready to make a baking masterpiece, but realize you are missing one critical ingredient? Don't despair because here are 11 ingredients that can be easily substituted with items you have in your home!

Baking Powder

What's really the difference between baking powder and soda? Well, they are both leavening agents that you need to make baked good rise. They are different, however, in their chemical make-up; baking soda is pure sodium bicarbonate while baking powder contains sodium bicarbonate, but an acidifying agent as well.

If you have baking soda at home, but are missing baking powder, you can make your own by combining baking powder in a few ways:

1.  Mix two parts cream of tartar with one part baking soda.

2. Mix 3/4 teaspoon of baking soda with 1 tablespoon of vinegar.

3. Add 3/4 teaspoon of baking soda to 3/4 cup of completely sour milk.

Brown Sugar

Brown sugar is basically just white sugar and a bit of added molasses, so why should you have to make a trip to the store for this basic baking ingredient?

brown sugar
Image: africa/freedigitalphotos.net

1. Use 1 cup granulated white sugar and 2 tablespoons molasses or dark corn syrup.

2. Another great substitute is agave syrup that is great as a sugar substitute for those worried about their blood sugar because it is plant-based.


Buttermilk is the liquid left behind after the churning of butter out of cream. It is used to make cakes and, of course biscuits, but is not available in every grocery store. Here is a sure fire and tasty recipe for a buttermilk substitute.

1. For 1 cup of buttermilk, use one tablespoon of lemon juice or vinegar and 1 cup of milk mixed together. Let the mixture stand for 5 minutes before use.

2. A great and healthy substitute for buttermilk is yogurt. It can give baked goods a creamy texture and great flavor!


There is even a great substitute for baking chocolate that can also be hard to find.

1. For one ounce unsweetened chocolate use 3 tablespoons of cocoa powder and 1 tablespoon of melted butter. Melt the mixture slowly in a small pot until smooth. This mixture can make a great frosting for cakes too!


Image: -Marcus-/freedigitalphotos.net

2. For one ounce semisweet baking chocolate, use the above mixture and mix it together with sugar. If it is hard baking chocolate you seek, you can freeze the mixture for a few hours or overnight until it hardens.

Heavy Cream

Even though you probably shouldn't, there is a simple way to make this at home with ingredients in your refrigerator.

1. For one cup of cream, take 2/3 cup of milk and 1/3 cup of butter. First, heat the milk on a slow heat in a small pot. Then slowly add the butter, mixing it together with a whisk until it has a slight foam on top.

2. If you’re a fan of coconut, a healthier and tasty option to heavy cream is coconut milk. It can be used almost entirely interchangeably and completely avoids the butter.


Yes, that's right, you can even replace eggs in the recipe! Even though eggs are what bind and enrich baked goods, here are some ingenious and healthy substitutes.

1. For baking, you can try 2 tablespoons of water, 1 tablespoon of oil and 2 teaspoons for baking powder for the equivalent of one egg.

2. If you want to cut out all of the fat and cholesterol, you can use 1/4 of applesauce for every egg in the recipe.


3. Another excellent and healthy substitute is 1/2 of a medium banana, mashed for one egg.

4. Mix one tablespoon of ground flax seeds with 3 tablespoons of warm water and let stand for a minute. Flax is rich in proteins and is virtualy tasteless!


What happens when you are ready to bake a cake, but suddenly realize you are out of flour? Well not to worry because if you have the following ingredients in your house, you'll be all set! (It is best to start off using recipes that call for 2 cups of flour when trying out the substitutes).

1. Instead of flower, a great option for the gluten sensitive is almond meal. You can find almond meal in most health foods stores, and if you happen to have it, it can be a healthy option instead of flour.

2. Try it without flour! There are a number of recipes that do not necessarily need flour to taste great. You can bake brownies and many other treats without even pouring the powder!


Even though honey should be a staple in every home, if you are located in a place that doesn't have it, not to fear because there are ways to get around it.

1. For one cup of honey, use 3/4 cup of sugar and 1/4 of water. It won't have the same taste as honey, but it will give you dessert a liquidy sweetness.

2. Another option is agave syrup or molasses. These can be used completely interchangeably with honey, even in your tea! 3. You can also use maple syrup, although it tends to have a stronger and more distinct taste than honey, and contains a lot more sugar.


This substitute for milk is so easy, that you won't believe you'd never thought of it!

1. A substitute for milk that works every time is water! Water can be used whenever milk is called for.

2. Any of the diary substitutes like soy or almond milk can be used instead of milk.

Sour Cream

Sour cream tastes great, but sure has a lot of calories. Here are some healthier substitutes.

1. Yogurt is a great subsitute for sour cream. If you buy plain yogurt, you may not be able to tell the difference. In baking, it's best to add a bit more yogurt because it tends to be more watery than sour cream.

2. The buttermilk recipe above can be used, but to make it creamier add 3 tablespoons of butter.

3. Cottage cheese can also be used in baking instead of sour cream. It still gives baked goods that tart taste.


And now, to the most important, sugar! Whether you are trying to watch your blood sugar levels or are just out of sugar and don't have a neighbor to ask, here are some alternative options.

1. For one cup granulated sugar take 3/4 cup maple syrup and 1/4 teaspoon soda and reduce the liquid. This can be added to recipes for the same sweet taste as granulated sugar.

2. Honey or agave can also be used interchangeably with sugar. They are also from more natural sources and therefore are healthier choices.

3. Another option is orange or apple juice when sugar is called for. Make sure to take into account that the mixture will be more watery, so add extra flour or dry ingredients as needed.

Submitted by user: Karen K.

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