Baking is a particularly popular pastime. You can make countless sweet and savoury treats with simple recipes and your imagination. However, there may be instances in which you need to change the recipes. This may be due to allergies, other dietary restrictions, or perhaps because of a diet. The good news is there are lots of things you can do to make your favourite sweet treats even if you have to switch out a couple ingredients. Here are some popular alternatives to ingredients like sugar, flour, and butter:
Applesauce – Applesauce is perhaps the most popular substitute ingredient out there. You can use it in place of both sugar and butter. If you want to change out some of the sugar in your recipe, add in an equal amount of applesauce instead. Thus, if the recipe calls for 1 cup of sugar, use 1 cup of applesauce. This works well for a wide range of baked goods, particularly cookies. Just remember to reduce the liquid in your recipe by a quarter cup for every cup of applesauce you add.
Black Beans – You might think this surprising, but pureed black beans are a popular alternative for all-purpose flours, particularly in brownie recipes. Using black beans helps make the recipe gluten-free and adds some protein to it as well. When substituting, use the same amount of black beans as you would flour.
Avocados – Butter and avocados have roughly the same consistency at room temperature, and the fact they are both fats makes avocados a perfect substitute ingredient. Simply switch out every cup of butter for a cup of pureed avocados. Their creaminess and subtle flavour will make brownies and cookies quite delicious, in addition to cutting some of the calories butter added.
Chia Seeds – In recipes for cakes, bread, and muffins, chia seeds can actually work in place of butter. Simply soak two to three tablespoons of chia seeds in a cup of water for every cup of butter you want to take out of your recipe. They add protein and potassium, and are great for making a recipe vegan. You can also use one tablespoon of chia seeds in a cup of water for every egg. Just remember, we only recommend substituting half of those ingredients for chia seeds, at least in the beginning.
Evaporated Milk – Instead of using heavy cream in cakes, biscuits, and other baking recipes, use evaporated milk in equal amounts. They have the same consistency, but evaporated milk has merely a fraction of the fat. There is, however, a little more sugar in evaporated milk, but the fat reduction tends to make up for it.