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Do you have a list of ingredient substitutions for cooking and baking?

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It is frustrating to be in the middle of a baking project and find you are missing a key ingredient. Before making a trek to the grocery store, remember that your cupboards may still hold options. A recipe substitution can sometimes alter the flavor, color, texture or volume of the food, but will still result in an acceptable finished product. The following is a list of ingredient substitutions.

Baking powder, 1 teaspoon. Substitute with 1/4 teaspoon baking soda plus 5/8 teaspoon cream of tartar; or 1/4 teaspoon soda plus 1/2 cup fully soured milk or buttermilk; or 1/4 teaspoon baking soda plus 1/2 tablespoon vinegar or lemon juice used with milk to make 1/2 cup; or 1/4 teaspoon baking soda plus 1/4 to 1/2 cup molasses. (Note about molasses in order for carbon dioxide to be released and cause the product to rise, an acid ingredient must be present to react with the soda. Molasses is acidic enough that it releases carbon dioxide.)

Yeast, active dry, 1 tablespoon. Substitute with 1 package active dry yeast; or 1 compressed yeast cake.

Whole egg, raw, 1 large. Substitute with 2 egg yolks; or 3 tablespoons plus 1 teaspoon thawed frozen egg; or 2 tablespoons and 2 teaspoons dry whole egg powder plus an equal amount of water. Equivalents1 large egg = 3 T.; 5 large = 1 cup.; 6 medium = 1 cup.

Cream, half & half (12-16% fat), 1 cup. For use in cooking and baking, substitute with 7/8 cup milk and 3 tablespoons butter or margarine; or 1 cup evaporated milk, undiluted.

Cream, heavy (36-40% fat), 1 cup (2-2 1/2 cups whipped). For use in cooking and baking, substitute with 3/4 cup milk and 1/3 cup butter or margarine.

Milk, 1 cup. Substitute with 1/3 cup instant nonfat dry milk plus 1 cup minus 1 tablespoon water; or 3 tablespoons sifted regular nonfat dry milk plus 1 cup minus 1 tablespoon water.

Milk, sweetened, condensed, 1 can = 1 1/3 cup. Substitute with 1 cup plus 2 tablespoons dry milk plus 1/2 cup warm water; mix well, add 3/4 cup sugar and 3 tablespoons melted butter or margarine. Stir until smooth. Or 1/3 cup plus 2 tablespoons evaporated milk, 1 cup sugar and 3 tablespoons melted butter or margarine. Heat and stir until sugar and butter dissolve.

Buttermilk or sour milk, 1 cup. Substitute with 1 tablespoon vinegar or lemon juice plus enough milk to make 1 cup. Let stand 5 minutes. Or 1 3/4 teaspoons cream of tartar plus 1 cup milk; or 1 cup plain yogurt.

Sour cream, 1 cup. Substitute with 1 cup plain yogurt; or 7/8 cup sour milk plus 1/3 cup butter.

Granulated sugar, 1 cup. Substitute with 1 cup corn syrup, 1 cup molasses or 3/4 cup honey (decrease liquid called for in recipe by 1/4 cup); or 1 cup brown sugar, firmly packed. For each cup of honey in baked goods, add 1/2 teaspoon soda. Equivalent1 pound granulated sugar = 2 1/4 cups.

Brown sugar, 1 cup (firmly packed). Substitute with 1 cup granulated sugar. Equivalent1 pound brown sugar = 2 1/4 cups firmly packed.

Corn syrup, 1 cup. Substitute with 1 cup sugar plus 1/4 cup water.

Honey, 1 cup. Substitute 1 1/4 cups sugar plus 1/4 cup water.

Flour used as thickener, 1 tablespoon. Substitute with 1/2 tablespoon cornstarch, potato starch, rice starch or arrowroot starch; or 1 tablespoon quick-cooking tapioca.

All-purpose flour, 1 cup sifted. Substitute with 1 cup unsifted all-purpose flour minus 2 tablespoons; or 1 cup plus 2 tablespoons cake flour. Equivalent1 pound = 4 cups sifted or 3 1/3 cups unsifted.

Shortening, solid, 1 cup. For use in baking, substitute with 7/8 cup lard; or 1 1/8 cups butter or margarine (decrease salt in recipe by 1/2).

Shortening, melted, 1 cup. Substitute with 1 cup cooking oil.

Cooking oil, 1 cup. Substitute with 1 cup melted shortening.

Butter, 1 cup. Substitute with 1 cup margarine; or 7/8 to 1 cup hydrogenated fat plus ½ teaspoon salt; or 7/8 cup lard plus ½ teaspoon salt; or 4/5 cup bacon fat, clarified; or 3/4 cup chicken fat, clarified; or 7/8 cup oil.

Allspice, 1 teaspoon. Substitute with 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon and 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves.

Pumpkin pie spice, 1 teaspoon. Substitute with 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon, 1/4 teaspoon ginger, 1/8 teaspoon allspice and 1/8 teaspoon nutmeg.

Chocolate, 1 ounce. Substitute with 3 tablespoons cocoa plus 1 tablespoon fat.

Semisweet chocolate, 1 ounce. Substitute with 1/2 ounce baking chocolate plus 1 tablespoon sugar.

Cocoa, 1/4 cup or 4 tablespoons. Substitute with 1 ounce (square) unsweetened chocolate (decrease fat called for in recipe by 1/2 tablespoon).

Cornstarch (for thickening), 1 tablespoon. Substitute with 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour; or 2 tablespoons granular tapioca.

Lemon juice, 1 teaspoon. Substitute with 1/2 teaspoon vinegar.

Posted on 14 Aug 2003

Georgia Lauritzen
Food and Nutrition Specialist

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