Common Ingredient Substitutions


More milk please!

Minnie Cooper


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The following is a list of substitutions for common cooking ingredients.

Allspice 1 teaspoon ½ teaspoon cinnamon plus
⅛ teaspoon ground cloves
Arrowroot, as thickener 1–½ teaspoons 1 tablespoon flour
Baking powder 1 teaspoon ¼ teaspoon baking soda plus
⅝ teaspoon cream of tartar
Bread crumbs, dry ¼ cup 1 slice bread
Bread crumbs, soft ½ cup 1 slice bread
Buttermilk 1 cup 1 cup plain yogurt
Chocolate, unsweetened 1 ounce 3 tablespoons cocoa
plus 1 tablespoon butter or fat
Cracker crumbs ¾ cup 1 cup dry bread crumbs
Cream, heavy 1 cup ¾ cup milk plus
⅓ cup melted butter
(this will not whip)
Cream, light 1 cup ⅞ cup milk plus
3 tablespoons melted butter
Cream, sour 1 cup ⅞ cup buttermilk or plain yogurt
plus 3 tablespoons melted butter
Cream, whipping 1 cup ⅔ cup well-chilled evaporated milk, whipped; or 1 cup nonfat dry milk powder whipped with 1 cup ice water
Flour, all-purpose 1 cup 1–⅛ cups cake flour; or ⅝ cup potato flour; or 1–¼ cups rye flour or coarsely ground whole-grain flour;
or 1 cup cornmeal
Flour, cake 1 cup 1 cup minus 2 tablespoons sifted all-purpose flour
Flour, self-rising 1 cup 1 cup all-purpose flour plus 1–¼ teaspoons baking powder plus ¼ teaspoon salt
Garlic 1 small clove ⅛ teaspoon garlic powder or instant minced garlic
Herbs, dried ½ to 1 teaspoon 1 tablespoon fresh herbs, minced and packed
Honey 1 cup 1–¼ cups sugar plus ½ cup liquid
Lemon juice 1 teaspoon ½ teaspoon vinegar
Lemon, juice and rind 1 3 tablespoons bottled lemon juice and 1 teaspoon dried grated rind
Lemon rind, grated 1 teaspoon ½ teaspoon lemon extract
Milk, skim 1 cup ⅓ cup instant nonfat dry milk
plus ¾ cup water
Milk, sour 1 cup 1 cup minus 1 tablespoon milk plus 1 tablespoon vinegar or lemon juice. Stir and let stand 5 minutes.
Milk, whole 1 cup ½ cup evaporated milk plus ½ cup water; or 1 cup skim milk plus 2 teaspoons melted butter
Mustard, prepared 1 tablespoon 1 teaspoon dry or powdered mustard
Onion, chopped 1 small 1 tablespoon instant minced onion;
or 1 teaspoon onion powder;
or ¼ cup frozen chopped onion
Sugar, granulated 1 cup 1 cup firmly packed brown sugar;
or 1–¾ cups confectioners’ sugar (do not substitute in baking); or ½ cup honey; or 1 cup superfine sugar; or 1–½ cups corn syrup; or ⅔ cup maple syrup (for last two, reduce liquid in recipe by 25 percent)
Tomatoes, canned 1 cup ½ cup tomato sauce plus ½ cup water; or 1–⅓ cups chopped fresh tomatoes, simmered
Tomato juice 1 cup ½ cup tomato sauce plus ½ cup water plus dash each salt and sugar; or ¼ cup tomato paste plus ¾ cup water plus salt and sugar, to taste
Tomato ketchup ½ cup ½ cup tomato sauce plus 2 tablespoons sugar, 1 tablespoon vinegar, and ⅛ teaspoon ground cloves
Tomato puree 1 cup ½ cup tomato paste plus ½ cup water
Tomato soup 1 can (10–¾ oz.) 1 cup tomato sauce plus ¼ cup water
Vanilla 1-inch bean 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Yeast 1 cake (⅗ oz.) 1 package active dry yeast
Yogurt, plain 1 cup 1 cup buttermilk



Nutri-Facts Fresh Labeling Program, 1995, and USDA Nutrient Database for Standard Reference, Release 11-1, 1997

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