Fresh out of ingredients in your pantry and have a sweet tooth you can’t quite control? Or maybe you’re thinking of ways to cut back on sweets and add more healthy alternatives in your life. When it comes to desserts, most of us lack willpower, but fortunately there are an abundance of clever baking substitutes to make your treats healthier without compromising the taste.
Let’s start with the basics. The goal of baking healthy is to limit the amount of sugars, carbs, and fats in a recipe. Now you may be thinking these ingredients act as the foundation for all of our cravings and it would just be wrong to leave them out. But after trying a few of these alternatives myself, I am here to tell you that is not the case.
Here is a list of some of the most clever baking substitutes that you wouldn’t think twice about after tasting.
1. Alternatives For White Flour
For starters, all-purpose white flour has been stripped of its nutrients, adding empty calories and refined carbohydrates to your baked goods. This is one of the simplest ingredients to substitute with endless options to choose from. Whole wheat flour, nut flour, and oat flour are just a few choices that add loads of protein and fiber to your goodies. You can even blend a cup of rolled oats sitting in your pantry to make your own! So, next time you pull out your cookbook and want to make something special, try swapping for one of these nourishing alternatives.
2. Clever Baking Substitutes For Sugar
Incorporating fruits and natural ingredients such as applesauce, mashed bananas, or honey as a substitute for sugar are just a few options for adding a healthy boost. Unsweetened applesauce, for example, contains natural sugars and Vitamin C to sweeten up your baked goods without making you feel guilty. Just replace the amount of sugar in your recipe with applesauce and reduce the amount of liquid by ¼ cup per cup of applesauce used to ensure even baking.
3. Alternatives For Butter/Oil
Avocados. It may sound weird, but avocados make an excellent substitute for butter and oil because they are so high in monounsaturated fats. Substitute half the butter used in your recipe for mashed avocado, instead of the whole thing. Otherwise, your treats may turn out on the flatter side. This substitute works best for thick, chocolatey recipes like brownies and bread because of their density. If you are looking to bake something on the lighter side, such as a fluffy white cake, bananas are a great substitute for oil as well. Plus, it adds potassium, folate, Vitamin C and Vitamin A.
4. Clever Baking Substitutes For Eggs
Say you’ve used your last eggs making breakfast this morning and the kids are begging for their favorite dessert. Don’t stress about when you’ll make it to the store next, just mix one tablespoon of ground flaxseeds or chia seeds with three tablespoons of water, and you have your egg!
5. Baking With Quinoa
Now you might be thinking that this is not one of the clever baking substitutes we intended to include in this article. But have you ever thought about incorporating quinoa into your cookie batter or cake?
For all of my gluten-free friends out there, have you ever thought of incorporating quinoa into your cake or cookie batter? This whole grain goes way past breakfast, lunch, and dinner. With its mild, nutty flavor, quinoa works in almost any recipe and packs tons of protein and fiber into your classic desserts. You can use it when boiled, giving you somewhere to toss those leftovers, or even purchase it as flour from the store.
I think most of us can agree that dessert brings us nothing but joy and comfort. And what better way to indulge than with a few of these clever recipes. After all, when there is cake, there is hope!