Trying to cut calories without cutting flavor? These easy baking and cooking substitution help you create a healthier, and equally flavorful dish!
It may sound crazy, but this money-saving substitution is perfect for those trying to go gluten-free. Simply swap a can of
black beans (rinsed, drained, and puréed) for 1 cup of flour. This trick cuts up to up to 200 calories and adds protein to
a sweet treat. Since the color of the beans will alter the color of your dessert, try with a chocolate cake or brownie on
the first try.
Try with: Easy Chocolate Cupcakes
Photo Credit: Gourmetstore.com
It’s the oldest trick in the book, but that’s because it works! Even light mayonnaise still has over 3 times the calories
and 11 times the fat of Greek yogurt. (You probably don’t want to know the comparison for the full-fat stuff!). Next time
you whip up a pasta or potato salad, truly lighten it up by substituting an equal amount of Greek yogurt for mayonnaise.
Try with: Creamy Red Potato Salad
Photo Credit: WiseGeek.com / CookingLight.com
Breadcrumbs may not seem like a huge calorie culprit, but ½ cup of this typical breading has over 200 calories. Cut the calories
in half and add some extra fiber by using rolled oats instead. And since oats are bigger than breadcrumbs, you’re sure to
use less in a recipe.
Try with: Skillet Chicken Parmesan
Photo Credit: Foodsubs.com
Looking to cut cholesterol from your diet? Then you’ll want to remember this simple swap. Replacing one egg with 1/3 cup of
ripe mashed banana will cut the fat from 5g to less than 1g in a recipe. Not to mention it’s a great way to sneak some fruit
into your baked goods.
Try with: Oatmeal Jumbles
Photo Credit: Flickr (letsgosago) / WiseGeeks.com
When it comes to baking, using applesauce over oil provides a perfect consistency and a hint of sweetness without all the
added fat. Not to mention you can save over 100 calories! If you’re hesitant to try this trick, only swap out half the fat
your first time (so if a recipes calls for 1 cup of oil, use 1/2 cup oil and 1/2 cup applesauce). Once you get used to it,
you can go for the full substitution.
Try with: Golden Cupcakes
Photo Credit: WiseGeeks.com
This swap proves that prunes aren’t just for the elderly! When you replace butter with an equal amount of prune purée, you
cut the calories in half, eliminate almost all of the fat and add a little fiber. You can by purée or make your own by blending
1 cup of pitted prunes with 6 tablespoons hot water until smooth.
Try with: Raspberry Swirl Brownies
Photo Credit: Wisegeeks.com
If you love vanilla and less calories, you’ll love this substitution. Since baking is such a science, you can’t completely
cut out the sugar. But you can cut it in half and add a teaspoon of vanilla extract for the same results. Assuming a recipe
calls for 1 cup of sugar, this swap takes the sugar calorie count from 775 calories to about 400. Not a bad number in our
Try with: Cappuccino Bundt Cake
Photo Credit: Flickr (MominMadison / AbsoluteC)
Unless you’re a professional baker, you probably don’t fill the fridge with buttermilk. And at 150 calories and 8g of fat
a serving, who would want to! So if a recipe calls for it, try this trick instead: combine 1 cup of milk and 1 tablespoon
of lemon juice in a small bowl and let the mixture stand for 5 minutes. You save both money and calories by doing so.
Try with: Buttermilk Chicken Tenders
Photo Credit: MotherEarthNews.com
We couldn’t believe it either, but puréed sweet potatoes can create a creamy soup just as well as, well, cream! Your lactose
intolerant friends will love this dairy substitution and your weight conscious friends will also appreciate the effort (130
calories for ½ cup compared to 400). Replace the cream with an equal amount of sweet or regular potato purée for a flavorful
and creamy bowl of soup.
Try with: Corn Chowder with Shrimp
Photo Credit: WiseGeeks.com