You are here

Better Than Butter: Top Substitutions for Fatty Ingredients

Recipe: Chocolate Cake

1 of 10

All photos

Ingredient: Butter or oil

Substitute: Prunes or banana

Replace half the butter or oil with prune puree (make it by pulsing prunes in a food processor with a couple tablespoons of hot water) or mashed banana, but only pick bananas if you won’t mind the fruit’s distinct flavor in your cake.

Photo: Thinkstock

Recipe: Mac ‘n’ Cheese

2 of 10

All photos

Ingredient: Cheddar

Substitute: Pumpkin puree

For a rich flavor and orange color that’s just as appetizing as the real thing, trade half the cheese in your go-to macaroni and cheese recipe for canned pumpkin puree. [Tweet this creative tip!]

Photo: Thinkstock

Recipe: Creamy Soups

3 of 10

All photos

Ingredient: Heavy cream

Substitute: Thickened nonfat milk

For each cup of cream your recipe calls for, substitute 1 cup skim milk whisked well with 2 tablespoons cornstarch and 1 tablespoon flour.

Photo: Shutterstock

Recipe: Chocolate Chip Cookies

4 of 10

All photos

Ingredient: Chocolate chips

Substitute: Cacao nibs

While these unsweetened, unprocessed bits of roasted cocoa beans are still high in fat, they also add antioxidants, protein, and fiber to your dessert. They pack intense flavor, so stir half as many nibs as you would chips into your cookies.

Photo: Thinkstock

Recipe: Alfredo Sauce

5 of 10

All photos

Ingredient: Heavy cream

Substitute: Cashews

You can make your fettuccine Alfredo both vegan and virtually sat-fat free by substituting cashew cream. Soak raw cashews overnight in cold water, then drain and puree with an equal amount of fresh water. Swap it cup for cup in most savory recipes using heavy cream.

Photo: Thinkstock

Recipe: Boxed Brownie Mix

6 of 10

All photos

Ingredient: Eggs and oil

Substitute: Black beans

Omit 1/3 cup oil and 1 egg (the standard amount called for with most mixes), and add a 15-ounce can of black beans that’s been rinsed well, drained, and pureed.

Photo: Thinkstock

Recipe: Creamed Spinach

7 of 10

All photos

Ingredient: Heavy cream

Substitute: Rice-y milk

Pour an equal amount of low-fat milk into a blender and puree with 2 tablespoons cooked white rice. Or for an effortless replacement, use an equal amount of thick, nonfat condensed milk.

Photo: Thinkstock

Recipe: Creamy Dressing and Dip

8 of 10

All photos

Ingredient: Sour cream

Substitute: Tofu

The same amount of “lite” silken tofu can stand in for sour cream to make a perfectly thick dressing that’ll enhance plain salad greens or raw vegetable sticks. [Tweet this recipe trick!]

Photo: Thinkstock

Recipe: Pancakes

9 of 10

All photos

Ingredient: Eggs

Substitute: Flaxseeds

For each egg, mix 3 tablespoons water with 1 tablespoon flaxseed meal and let stand about 10 minutes until thickened.

Photo: Thinkstock

Recipe: Guacamole

10 of 10

All photos

Ingredient: Avocado

Substitute: Peas or zucchini

Switch out half the avocados for an equal amount of mashed cooked green peas or roasted zucchini. For example, if you usually make guac with two avocados, swap 1 cup peas or zucchini for one of the avocados.

Photo: Thinkstock