Want to make holiday baking a lot more fun and a lot less stressful? Whether you’re baking gluten-free treats or or are trying to find better options for your health-conscious friends, we’re here to help! Put down the candy canes and pop over to your pantry. These easy holiday baking ingredient alternatives will make your holiday creations anything but ho-hum.
Easy Butter Substitutes
Butter is a popular ingredient in many holiday treats. But if you’re trying to avoid dairy, or just want to cut down on saturated fat, there are plenty of alternatives that will work just as well. Here are a few options.
- 1 cup butter = ½ cup nut butter + ½ cup melted coconut oil
- 1 cup butter = ¾ cup olive oil
- 1 cup butter = 1 cup avocado
- 1 cup butter = ⅞ cup avocado oil
- 1 cup butter = 1 cup applesauce
- 1 cup butter = 1 cup pumpkin puree
The Best Buttermilk Swap
Making a chess pie or a rich holiday cake? Here’s a lighter swap for buttermilk.
- 1 cup buttermilk = 1 cup plain Greek yogurt
How to Substitute Breadcrumbs
Breadcrumbs lend a nice crunchy texture to all sorts of holiday foods. If you don’t have any on hand, here are some alternatives that you can use instead.
- 1 cup breadcrumbs = 1 cup of cracker crumbs
- 1 cup breadcrumbs = 1 cup of cornflakes
- 1 cup breadcrumbs = 1 cup of rolled oats
An Easy Substitute for Cake Flour
Cake flour is a soft, fine-textured flour that makes cakes tender and light. It can be substituted for all-purpose flour, but the texture of your cake will change. So, try this instead!
- 1 cup cake flour = ¾ cup sifted all-purpose flour + 1 Tbsp cornstarch
An Ingredient Alternative for Chocolate
Chocolate is a key ingredient in many holiday recipes, but if you need an alternative, try this.
- 1 ounce unsweetened chocolate = 3 Tbsps natural unsweetened cocoa powder + 1 Tbsp unsalted butter, vegetable oil, or shortening
The Easiest Substitute for Heavy Cream
Heavy cream is a staple in many holiday baking recipes. If you’re short on heavy cream or want to cut some fat from your recipe, try this simple substitution.
- 1 cup heavy cream = 2/3 cups whole milk + ⅓ cup unsalted butter
How to Substitute Cornstarch
Often used as a thickening agent in recipes and is especially useful when making sauces, gravies and pie fillings, cornstarch is a pantry staple for the holidays. But if you need to make a swap, here’s what to do.
- 1 Tbsp cornstarch = 3 Tbsps all-purpose flour
4 Substitutes for Eggs
Eggs hold many holiday recipes together, but if you’re baking for guests with egg allergy or eat a vegan diet, you must get creative. Here are four egg substitutes to try.
- 1 egg = ¼ cup applesauce
- 1 egg = 1 Tbsp ground flaxseed + 3 Tbsps water
- 1 egg = ½ banana mashed + ½ tsp baking powder
- 1 egg = 1 Tbsp chia seeds + 1 cup water (let sit for 10 minutes)
A Simple Sour Cream Substitute
Looking for an easy way to lighten up a recipe that calls for sour cream? Try this.
- 1 cup sour cream = 1 cup plain yogurt or Greek yogurt
2 Ways to Substitute Vegetable Oil
Vegetable oil is a common ingredient in both sweet and savory baked goods. It’s used to give baked goods a moist texture, as well as to make them rich and flavorful. Need a substitute? Here are two ideas.
- 1 cup vegetable oil = 1 cup applesauce
- 1 cup vegetable oil = 1 cup fruit puree
Wheat Flour Ingredient Swaps
Need to make a recipe gluten-free? Here are a few ideas for substituting wheat flour.
- 1 cup wheat flour = 1 cup cassava flour
- 1 cup wheat flour = 1 cup amaranth flour
- 1 cup wheat flour = 1 cup quinoa flour
- 1 cup wheat flour = 1 cup rice flour
- 1 cup wheat flour = 1 cup sorghum flour
White Flour Ingredient Swaps
Running low on white flour? Try one of these seven ingredient swaps.
- 1 cup white flour = ¾ cup wheat flour
- 1 cup white flour = 1 cup bean puree
- 1 cup white flour = 1 cup cassava flour
- 1 cup white flour = 1 cup amaranth flour
- 1 cup white flour = 1 cup quinoa flour
- 1 cup white flour = 1 cup rice flour
- 1 cup white flour = 1 cup sorghum flour
When it comes to swapping ingredients, choose whatever makes the most sense for your recipe. These ideas will help you use ingredients you already have on hand to make sweet treats that suit your guests’ preferences. So, ready, set, bake!