Healthy Baking: Substitutes for Fat and Sugars

Healthy Recipes

Eating for Your Health

Holiday Baking Cookies

If you are watching your weight and trying to eat healthy, you may have a love-hate relationship with dessert.


But you can bake sweet treats with with less fat and sugar without sacrificing taste by substituting reduced-fat or fat-free ingredients.


By making these substitutions you can decrease the amount of saturated fat, trans fat, and cholesterol.



When recipe calls for...  Use this instead...
Whole Milk (1 cup) Fat-free milk or reduced fat milk plus one Tablespoon of liquid vegetable oil
Evaporated Milk Evaporated skim milk
Heavy Cream (1 cup) 1 cup evaporated skim milk, or 1/2 cup low-fat yogurt and 1/2 cup plain low-fat unsalted cottage cheese
Sour Cream Fat-free plain yogurt or fat-free sour cream
Cream Cheese Fat-free or low-fat cream cheese

Applesauce, pumpkin puree, or prune puree for half of the butter, shortening or oil indicated in the recipe.

Egg (1) 2 egg whites or commercially made, cholesterol-free egg substitute (1/4 cup=1 egg)
Unsweetened Baking Chocolate (1 ounce) 3 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder plus 1 tablespoon vegetable oil or soft margarine
Whipped Cream or Ice Cream (to top cakes, pies, etc.) Frozen yogurt or low-fat yogurt
Sugar In most baked goods you can reduce the amount of sugar by one-half. Intensify sweetness by adding vanilla, nutmeg or cinnamon. Sugar-sweetener blends can also be used (i.e. Splenda)
Flour, all-purpose (plain) Whole-wheat flour for half of the all-purpose flour indicated in the recipe. Whole-wheat pastry flour is less dense and works well in softer products like cakes and muffins



Information compiled from the American Heart Association and Mayo Clinic