Save With Recipe Substitutions and Replacements For Missing Ingredients

Save with recipe substitutions and replacements when you are missing one ingredient.

If you cook, you will experience the awful feeling of following a recipe and suddenly realizing you do not have an essential component. These days it is not so easy to quickly run to the local store to pick up items. So, knowing how to work with the ingredients you have in the house will save time and money. But not only can you save with recipe substitutions, but these tips can also help you cook for people with special diets. We all know someone on a low-calorie diet, in addition to our Gluten-free friends, vegans, vegetarians, protein-focused paleo people, sugar-free sweeties, and others.

save with recipe substitutions

Title Tree found many helpful ways to save with recipe substitutions, too many to include here. So, here we will share our favorites ones with you.

Lower Calorie Recipe Replacements:

These smart lower calorie recipe substitutions will help you bake delicious cakes, brownies, and cookies without changing the taste or texture very much. 

  • For boxed cake mixes: 1 can of diet soda = 1/c cup of oil +3 eggs

Baking Ingredient Replacements:

Every baker knows the exact proportions of ingredients when making pastries, pies, and cakes. This is true, however, there are some recipe substitutes that will still work as well as the real thing in the recipe.  The following replacements should give you a great taste and texture.

  • 1 teaspoon lemon zest = 1/2 teaspoon lemon extract
  • 1 teaspoon lemon juice = 1/2 teaspoon vinegar
  • 1/4 cup cocoa = 1 oz square of unsweetened chocolate
  • 1 teaspoon cream of tartar = 2 teaspoons lemon juice

For 1/2 cup butter or 1 stick butter:

  • use 1/2 cup mashed avocado
  • substitute 1/2 cup nonfat Greek yogurt  
  • replace with 1/2 cup mashed bananas  
  • use 1/2 cup of unsweetened applesauce  

Sweet Substitutes:

  • Honey (1 cup) = 3/4 cup sugar + 1/4 cup liquid
  • Sugar (1 tablespoon) = 1/8 teaspoon Stevia
  • Sugar (1 cup) = 2/3 cup agave nectar = 1/2 cup applesauce  
  • Powdered Sugar (1 cup) = 1 cup sugar + 1/3 tsp cornstarch blended in a blender or food processor 

Egg Substitutes:

Whether you do not have eggs in the house, do not eat eggs, or do not like them, you can cook without them. Try these egg substitutes instead.

In Bread, Batter, and Brownies 1 Egg = 1/4 cup of …

  • mashed bananas
  • unsweetened applesauce
  • pureed tofu + 1 tbsp flour
  • yogurt

For Cookie and Cake Recipes 1 Egg =

  • 2 tbsp water + 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 3 tbsp pureed fruit
  • 1/4 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 tbsp cornstarch + 1 tbsp water
  • 11 tbsp ground chia seeds + 3 tbsp water  

Spicy Substitutions:

Some spices are similar enough to use without changing the flavor of a recipe too much. Replacement spices are one of the best ways to save with recipe substitutes. Especially when you need a portion of a teaspoon of a spice you do not have.

  • 1 tbsp fresh herbs = 1 tsp dried herbs
  • 1/4 tsp saffron = 1/4 tsp turmeric
  • 1/2 tsp cardamom = 1/2 tsp ginger
  • 1 tbsp cumin = 1 tbsp chili powder

Apple Pie Spice

  • 1 tablespoon = ½ teaspoon cinnamon, ¼ teaspoon nutmeg, and 1/8 teaspoon cardamom

Pumpkin Pie Spice

  • 1 teaspoon = ½ teaspoon cinnamon, ¼ ground teaspoon ginger, 1/8 teaspoon ground allspice, and 1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg

Good For You Replacements:

  • 1 cup bread crumbs = 1 cup ground oats
  • Mashed potatoes = Mashed cauliflower
  • Pasta = Zucchini Strips = Spaghetti Squash

Gluten-Free Substitutions:

A gluten-free diet means that no wheat products are allowed. But this doesn’t have to mean that you can’t enjoy the taste of your favorite foods. Try using these alternatives instead of your gluten ingredients. For Couscous use, Quinoa and for Butter use coconut oil.

More Ways To Save With Recipe Substitutions:

Barbeque Sauce

  • 1 cup = ¾ cup ketchup, 2 tablespoons mustard. and 2 tablespoons brown sugar

Chili Sauce

  • 1 cup = 1 cup tomato sauce, ¼ cup brown sugar, 2 tablespoons vinegar, ¼ teaspoon cinnamon, dash of ground cloves, and dash of allspice


  • 1 small clove = 1/8 teaspoon garlic powder


  • 1 cup miniature =10 large marshmallows

More Helpful Tips:

Get more ingredient substation ideas and more ways to save on cooking and shopping for food. Reach out to the friendly staff at Title Tree when you need more cash now.