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Common Cooking Substitutions Chart + Free Printable

4:25 PM
Learn how to make common cooking substitutions so you can make your favorite dish even if you are out of one ingredient.

I live in a rural area.  There are several dollar stores near me, but they don't have the best food selection.  I have one local chain grocery store close to me, but it's crazy expensive.  Their prices are about three to four times what Aldi and Walmart charge!

If I am cooking and run out of an ingredient, I can't just run to Aldi or a decently priced grocery store because it will be an hour trip by the time I drive there and back.



I've learned several common cooking substitutions that I can use so I cook what I had planned without going to the store.

These cooking substitutions also help when I'm cooking for friends with food allergies.  I have friends who can't have milk or eggs, and I want to be able to make homemade foods that they can enjoy.

Common Cooking Substitutions


Please note that these should only be used when you are out of an ingredient.  They can alter the taste or texture of your recipe.

I use applesauce for oil all the time.  It makes baked goods softer without changing the taste.

However, if you substitute margarine or shortening for butter, it can change the texture and moisture of the final product.

I did not include flour in this list because I've found that using a different type of flour significantly alters the final taste of the product.  To use all-purpose flour for bread flour, you will have to add gluten.  Most people don't have gluten in their pantry.

If you do want to stretch flour use, you can substitute up to 1/4 to 1/2 whole wheat flour for all-purpose flour.  I get best results when I stay around 1/4.

I have a free printable at the bottom of the post.  You can print the color or black and white version to hand inside a cupboard door, on your fridge, or in your pantry for quick reference.

Apple Cider Vinegar


Use the same amount of white vinegar.

Beer or Wine


Use the same amount of beef or chicken broth or apple cider vinegar.

Baking Powder 


To substitute 1 teaspoon baking powder, use 1/4 teaspoon baking soda and 1/2 teaspoon cream of tartar.

Barbecue Sauce


For 1 cup barbecue sauce, use 1 cup ketchup and a few drops of liquid smoke.

Bread Crumbs


Substitute equal amounts cracker crumbs or ground oats.  You can also toast bread and process it in a food processor.

Broth, Chicken or Beef


Use 1 chicken or beef bouillon cube and 1 cup of boiling water for 1 cup of broth.  I prefer Better than Bouillon to the cubes.

Brown Sugar


To make 1 cup brown sugar, use 1 cut white sugar and 2 tablespoon molasses.

Butter


For 1 cup of butter, use 1 cup of margarine or 1 cup of shortening plus 1/2 teaspoon salt.

Note that this will change the texture of your final product since butter has more water than margarine and shortening.

Buttermilk


Use powdered buttermilk or for 1 cup, add 1 tablespoon white vinegar and add milk to make 1 cup.

Cornstarch


For 1 tablespoon cornstarch to thicken, add 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour or arrowroot powder.

Corn Syrup


Substitute the same amount for honey or sugar.  If you add sugar, add 1/4 cup of the liquid in the recipe for each cup of sugar.

Cream of Tartar


Use the same amount of lemon juice or white vinegar.


Eggs


Use 3 tablespoons mayonnaise or 1 tablespoon ground flax seed soaked in 3 tablespoons water until it looks like a gel.

Evaporated Milk


Use the same amount of light cream.

Flour, Self Rising


For each cup, use 7/8 cups all-purpose flour plus 1/2 teaspoon salt and 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder.

Garlic


Use 1/8 teaspoon garlic powder per clove of fresh garlic.

Heavy Whipping Cream or Half and Half


For 1 cup of cream, add 7/8 cup milk and 2 tablespoons of melted butter.


Herbs, Fresh


You can use 1/2 teaspoon dried herbs in place of 1 tablespoon fresh herbs.

Lemon Juice


For 1 teaspoon lemon juice, use 1/2 teaspoon vinegar or 1 teaspoon lime juice.


Mayonnaise


Use the same amount of sour cream or yogurt.

Milk


For one cup of milk, use 1 cup or soy or rice milk.  You can also use water or juice in some recipes.  If you have powdered milk, use 1/4 cup powdered and 1 cup water.

Onion, Fresh


Add water to 1 tablespoon dried minced onion to reconstitute them.  This equals one small onion.

Onion, Powder


Use 1 medium onion in place of 1 tablespoon powdered onion.

Shortening


Use the same amount of cooking oil for recipes that call for melted shortening.  For solid shortening, use 1 1/8 cups butter for 1 cup of shortening and decrease salt by 1/2 teaspoon.

Sour Cream


For 1 cup, use 1 tablespoon of vinegar or lemon juice and add milk to make 1 cup.  Or use 1 cup of plain Greek yogurt.

Sugar, Granulated


Substitute 1 cup sugar for 1 1/2 cups corn syrup and reduce liquid by 1/4 cup.  Or use 1 cup powdered sugar or brown sugar.

Tomato Sauce


Use equal parts tomato paste and water.  Add canned tomatoes for more flavor.  You will want to add spices, salt, pepper, and sugar to taste.

Vegetable Oil


Use the same amount of applesauce, margarine, or shortening.

Yogurt


For 1 cup yogurt, use 1 cup buttermilk, sour cream, or blended cottage cheese.

I made a printable PDF so you can hang it on your fridge or inside a cupboard door.  Click on the links below to print.  The photo is a low res version, so it won't print well.

Is your pantry running low?  Try these food substitutions for common ingredients including for milk, for eggs, and for oil. These work for your baking so you can make your favorite foods without going to the store. The post has a list (chart) and there's also a free printable cheat sheets to hang on your fridge, cupboard door, or pantry.  These are easy cooking substitutions with common ingredients and real ingredients. #cooking #baking


Click here to open the black and white version.

Click here to open the color version.

Like this post?  Pin it!

Is your pantry running low?  Try these food substitutions for common ingredients including for milk, for eggs, and for oil. These work for your baking so you can make your favorite foods without going to the store. The post has a list (chart) and there's also a free printable cheat sheets to hang on your fridge, cupboard door, or pantry.  These are easy cooking substitutions with common ingredients and real ingredients. #cooking #baking



Cari Dunn
Cari Dunn

Cari lives on a small farm in Ohio with her husband, three kids, two dogs, two cats, five goats, and several chickens. She loves Gilmore Girls, glitter, coffee, and her kids. But not in that order.