Healthy Substitution Guide for 27 Common Ingredients

Substituting healthier ingredient choices in your favorite recipes can really make a huge difference.  The biggest challenge when making these substitutions is that the final result may taste dramatically different than your original recipe.  We set out to create a comprehensive healthy ingredient substitution guide that also addressed the major questions you might have before experimenting with a healthier ingredient option:

  • How is the taste compared to my original recipe?
  • Which type of recipes work best with the healthier alternative?
  • Nutritional benefits offered by the healthier substitution option.


Healthy Recipe Ingredient Substitution Infographic

Bacon: Replace with Prosciutto

bacon slices

Everyone loves bacon. Everyone also knows that bacon is not a very healthy food. Full of fat, salt and calories, it may be one of the worst foods out there, but that’s why it’s so good!!! While there really is no great healthy substitute for bacon as nothing can quite compare, prosciutto can be a little bit better when it comes to nutrition while giving that same bacon taste.


Prosciutto is still a cured pork product and is packed with salt and calories. However, it does have less fat than bacon making it a better choice. You can substitute prosciutto for bacon in recipes by using the same quantity as called for in your dish. The flavor is going to be pretty much the same (one cured meat for another!) so the switch should be nice and seamless!

Ingredient

Calories

Carbs

Fat

Protein

Sodium

Sugar

Bacon

90

0

7g

6g

370mg

0

Prosciutto

57

0

3g

6g

500mg

0


Bread Crumbs: Replace with Rolled Oats

You might not think that breadcrumbs in a recipe would be a bad thing, but guess what, 1/2 cup of bread crumbs averages about 200 calories! If you want to reduce that calorie count, skip the bread crumbs and use rolled oats instead (they will also add some fiber into your recipe and make it gluten free!). Rolled oats also have less sodium than many bread crumb mixes so there’s another vote for the oats!


Try rolled oats rather than bread crumbs in meatloaf, burgers or as a crumble topping for casseroles. While rolled oats don’t have much of a flavor, you may want to add some seasonings to mimic those usually found in breadcrumb mixes. Do that and you won’t even notice the difference in taste!


Ingredient

Serving Size

Calories

Carbs

Fat

Protein

Sodium

Sugar

Bread Crumbs

1 cup

427

77.7g

5.7g

14.4g

791mg

6.7g

Rolled Oats

1 cup

380

66g

6g

12g

0mg

0g

Butter: Replace with Coconut Oil, Applesauce or Avocado

Replacing butter in recipes is so easy to do you will wonder why you didn’t use some of these substitutes before. Butter, as you probably know, contains lots of saturated fats and can be bad for your cholesterol. So why not use a healthier substitute?!


Before you replace the butter in a recipe, it’s important to assess the type of recipe you are making. If you are simply melting butter in a pan to sauté food, try using olive oil or coconut oil instead. Olive oil is high in healthy monounsaturated fats and loaded with antioxidants. Using coconut oil can help raise your cholesterol’s HDL (the good kind of fats) and is considered to promote heart health. While olive oil will have very little flavor difference than using butter to sauté, coconut oil will add a slightly tropical taste but will still be fairly mild.


If you are replacing butter when baking, try substituting applesauce or even avocado. Applesauce works great in cake-like recipes (muffins, cakes, sweet breads) and you can simply remove the butter and replace it with the same quantity of applesauce. This substitution will make for a more dense finished product that will have a less greasy mouth feel and taste slightly fruity.


Use a mashed avocado in baked goods as well! First, try using half the quantity of butter and half avocado. While your finished product may be slightly brownish from the avocado, the taste is negligible so your baking will still be delicious! Both applesauce and avocado will lower the fat content of your baked goods as well as cut calories. So easy to do without sacrificing taste!

Ingredient

Serving Size

Calories

Carbs

Fat

Protein

Sodium

Sugar

Butter

1 tbl

102

<.1g

11.5g (7.3 sat)

.1g

82mg

<.1g

Olive Oil

1 tbl

119

0g

13.5g (1.9 sat)

0g

0mg

0g


Cheese: Replace with Nutritional Yeast

Looking to cut back on cheese? Maybe you want less calories or maybe you are switching to a dairy free diet, whatever the reason, cheese is a hard one to quit. Cheeses have such diverse flavors and textures that it may seem impossible to replace. One product that many people have taken to using instead of cheese is nutritional yeast. But what the heck is that?!?


Nutritional yeast is an organism that grows on molasses and is then harvested and “deactivated” so that it stops growing. It is full of B vitamins, folic acid, zinc and protein and is also low in fat and gluten free. Nutritional yeast has a nutty, cheesy flavor that makes it desirable to those who do not eat cheese.


Sold in powder or flake form, you can sprinkle it on popcorn, add it to pasta, make ‘cheese’ sauce with it or add it to soups for extra flavor. Basically, anytime you would usually reach for cheese, grab this instead!


Ingredient

Serving Size

Calories

Carbs

Fat

Protein

Sodium

Sugar

Cheddar Cheese

4 oz

455

1.4g

37.4g (23.8 sat)

28.1g

702mg

.6g

Nutritional Yeast

4 oz

45

5g

.5g (0 sat)

6g

0mg

0g

Chocolate Chips: Replace with Cacao Nibs

chocolate chip cookies

If you love chocolate, then you know that there is almost no suitable replacement for it. But why not replace chocolate with a different kind of healthier chocolate? Chocolate chips and cocoa nibs are so close to being the same thing that they can be used interchangeably in a recipe.


Chocolate chips actually began as cocoa nibs, but sugars are added in to make them sweeter (and therefore, not so healthy). Cocoa nibs are simply unsweetened chocolate chips!  Cocoa nibs also include 9 grams of healthy fiber.


Cocoa nibs do have a very different taste than regular chocolate and are bitter like a very, very dark chocolate. They are not sweet at all either, but they will still give that rich, luscious chocolate taste to any recipe. Try adding cocoa nibs to cookies or banana bread for a lower sugar version of classic recipes.

Ingredient

Serving Size

Calories

Carbs

Fat

Protein

Sodium

Sugar

Chocolate Chips

1 oz

132

18.9g

7.6g (4.7 sat)

1.9g

0mg

15.1g

Cocoa Nibs

1 oz

130

10g

12g (7 sat)

4g

0mg

0g


Cooking Spray: Replace with Real Oil

Cooking sprays are super useful and convenient when cooking and baking. A quick sprit and your food won’t stick to the pan! However, the contents and nutritional value of cooking sprays has been debated ever since they were packages and put on the store shelves. Some people seem to think that cooking sprays are free of calories and fat but they are not. Sorry!


They have just as much fat or calories as the oil would if it wasn’t in an aerosol can. The biggest concern with sprays tend to be the propellant used in the can. Chlorofluorocarbons and nitric oxide are sometimes used in the cans which can be bad for the environment and your health.


This switch is a super simple one. Just use regular butter or olive oil to grease your pans! If you really like having a spray version, you can buy empty oil spray bottles in any cooking store or on Amazon. Fill them up with the oil of your choice and spray away!


Corn Syrup: Replace with Honey

While both honey and corn syrup are sweeteners and have a very similar chemical makeup, many people are skeptical of corn syrup due to its highly-processed nature. Originating from primarily corn, high fructose corn syrup is processed into fructose, glucose and sucrose, all of which can also be found in regular table sugar.


So if you aren’t a fan of processed foods and are looking for something a little ‘cleaner’, honey is a perfect substitute. Honey is all natural and made from bees (you can’t get any more unprocessed than that!). It has almost the same consistency as corn syrup and will act the same in almost any recipe. Honey does have a richer taste which any recipe you use should benefit from.


Ingredient

Serving Size

Calories

Carbs

Fat

Protein

Sodium

Sugar

Corn Syrup

1 tbl

53

14.4g

0g

0g

0mg

5g

Honey

1 tbl

64

17.3g

0g

<.1g

1mg

17.2g

Cream Cheese: Replace with Cottage or Ricotta Cheese

Looking to improve your cardiovascular health? Then you need to skip the cream cheese. Finding a healthy replacement for cream cheese can be a little tricky as it really depends on the application. While straining ricotta or cottage cheese to replace cream cheese in baked goods will work great, it may not be quite the same when smeared on a bagel.


To start with the cooking applications, you can greatly cut calories and fat by replacing cream cheese in recipes with cottage cheese, ricotta or Greek yogurt, all which are much healthier than cream cheese. Each of these substitutes has little to no taste and won’t affect your recipe much in that respect. They are all, however, more watery than cream cheese so it is recommended that you strain them through cheese cloth before adding to your recipe.


So what to do about that bagel with cream cheese? It may not be the same but a nice hummus makes a great spread for a bagel and is high in protein and low in fat. The taste may be different but it’s better than a dry bagel!

Ingredient

Serving Size

Calories

Carbs

Fat

Protein

Sodium

Sugar

Cream Cheese

1 cup

810

6.2g

80.9g (51g sat)

17.5g

687mg

.5g

Cottage Cheese

1 cup

216

5.6g

9.5g (6g sat)

26.2g

851mg

.6g


Croutons: Replace with Crunchy Toasted Nuts

You may not look at a crouton and think that it is something you should consider skipping in your salad. However, croutons are often coated in oil and salt and can add unnecessary fat and sodium to your healthy salad. Many croutons are made with white bread which has little nutritional value and will just give you empty calories.


To give your salad a nice crunch while avoiding croutons, try adding toasted nuts instead. Nuts will add a little protein, some healthy fats and a bunch of good flavor to your salad. Pick lightly salted nuts if you want to keep that salty taste!


Ingredient

Serving Size

Calories

Carbs

Fat

Protein

Sodium

Sugar

Croutons

1 oz

115

20.8g

1.9g (.4g sat)

3.4g

198mg

0g

Toasted Cashews

1 oz

168

6g

14.8g (1.1g sat)

6g

1mg

1.4g

Eggs: Replace with Flax Seed Eggs

sunny side up egg

Eggs can be a tricky item to replace but if you are looking to cut back on cholesterol, finding an egg substitute is a good idea. Replacing eggs in baked goods is a great place to start. Ground flaxseeds mixed with water will act very similar to eggs in a recipe.


The mix will bind ingredients in the recipe together, just like an egg would. Flaxseeds also have less fat when compared to eggs and they are filled with fiber and Omega-3’s. One tablespoon of ground flaxseeds mixed with three tablespoons of water will replace one egg in a recipe.


Wondering about the taste? While you won’t necessarily taste the flaxseeds, you may notice that the baked goods don’t rise quite as much as when you use eggs. The final product may also dry out a little faster however, for a lower calorie, cholesterol friendly option, flaxseeds are a great substitute to eggs.

Ingredient

Serving Size

Calories

Carbs

Fat

Protein

Sodium

Cholesterol

Egg

1 oz

41

.2g

2.7g (.9g sat)

3.6g

40mg

105mg

Ground Flax Seeds

1 oz

151

7.6g

11.3g (.9g sat)

5.7g

0mg

0mg


Ground Beef: Replace with Lean Ground Turkey

I love some nice red meat just as much as the next person, but I also know it might not be the healthiest meat out there. Ground beef tends to have a high saturated fat content and is not such a great choice if you are concerned about your cholesterol. Luckily there are a few different heart healthy substitutes for ground beef.


First, choosing lean ground turkey is a great alternative. Turkey can be just as flavorful as ground beef, but with less fat and none of the harmful aspects associated with red meat. Ground chicken is another fine white meat option that will work in any recipe calling for ground beef. Ground turkey and ground chicken do tend to dry out a little more that ground beef when cooked (you know, because there’s less fat!) so add some extra broth, condiments or sauces when you are cooking.


If you still really want ground beef, just be sure to pick the leanest option you can find. The percent’s listed on ground beef packaging refer to their fat content so if you see 95/5 ground beef, that means it is 95% lean and only 5% fat, the healthiest version available. Stay away from the 70/30 ground beef as that is loaded with 30% saturated fat. Put that right back on the shelf!

Ingredient

Serving Size

Calories

Carbs

Fat

Protein

Sodium

Cholesterol

Ground Beef

4 oz

243

0g

17g (6.6g sat)

21g

75mg

77mg

Ground Turkey

4 oz

153

0g

10.7g (2.9g sat)

14.4g

46mg

66mg


Heavy Cream: Replace with Evaporated Skim Milk

Cooking with heavy cream can be dangerous. While heavy cream is certainly delicious, it adds a lot of fat and calories to recipes. If you are baking with heavy cream, you can easily replace it with evaporated skim milk. Using regular skim milk would cause a problem as a substitute in baked goods as it is very watery.


Evaporated skim milk is thicker, acts like heavy cream in a recipe, and you won’t be able to notice a difference in taste at all (evaporated skim milk will not whip up the same way as heavy cream, so if your recipe requires you to whip the cream, it’s better to stick with the real stuff instead of a substitute). Evaporated skim milk also has half the fat and one fifth the number of calories as heavy cream. So, reach for that can instead of a carton of cream next time you are baking!

Ingredient

Serving Size

Calories

Carbs

Fat

Protein

Sodium

Cholesterol

Sugar

Heavy Cream

1 oz

103

.8g

11g (6.9g sat)

.6g

11mg

41mg

< .1g

Evaporated Skim Milk

1 oz

25

3.9g

0g (0g sat)

2g

39mg

0mg

3.9g


Iceberg Lettuce: Replace with Dark Leafy Greens

You may think that you don’t need a replacement for iceberg lettuce. I mean it is a vegetable, right? Why would you need a substitute for something that is already supposed to be really good for you? Well, sorry to be the bearer of bad news, but iceberg lettuce is lower in nutrients than any other lettuce out there and is also higher in sugar.


Skip the old wedge of iceberg lettuce and opt for any dark leafy greens like kale, spinach, green leaf lettuce or swiss chard. All of these have a higher vitamin K content, vitamin A and potassium.


Basically, look for any dark colored lettuce. It will have more nutrients! The taste may also be a little stronger (goodbye to that sugar in iceberg lettuce) but with some nice dressing, you will quickly become a fan of other lettuce varieties.

Ingredient

Serving Size

Calories

Carbs

Fat

Protein

Sodium

Cholesterol

Sugar

Iceberg Lettuce

1 oz

4

.8g

.1g (.1g sat)

.3g

3mg

0mg

 .5g

Kale

1 oz

14

2.8g

.2g (.1g sat)

.9g

12mg

0mg

0g


Italian Dressing: Replace with Balsamic Vinegar

When you reach for that bottle of salad dressing, you should be aware that you are most likely reaching for a bottle of salt. Pre packaged dressings, especially Italian dressing, are laden with sodium which is also probably why they taste so good… Don’t’ worry! We can fix it!


Instead of grabbing that premade stuff, make your own dressing with a simple olive oil and balsamic vinegar mix. Not only does making your own dressing help you control the sodium (and the flavor), but balsamic vinegar is also full of natural antioxidants. It’s a win win!


Ingredient

Serving Size

Calories

Carbs

Fat

Protein

Sodium

Cholesterol

Sugar

Italian Dressing

1 oz

82

3g

8g (1.3g sat)

.1g

469mg

0mg

 2.4g

Balsamic Vinegar

1 oz

25

4.8g

0g

.1g

7mg

0mg

4.2g

Mashed Potatoes: Replace with Steamed Cauliflower

If you are looking to cut carbs and calories then the mashed potato is a great place to look to first. With about 113 calories per cup of mashed potatoes (plain mashed potatoes mind you, not the ones loaded with butter, sour cream and salt) and 26 grams of carbohydrates, potatoes aren’t really the worst food for you but hey, if there’s a better option, go for it!


Mashed cauliflower is a great replacement for mashed potatoes for several reasons. First, a cup of mashed cauliflower only has 40 calories. That’s less than 20% of the calories found in mashed potatoes! There are also only 8 grams of carbohydrates in mashed cauliflower.


The texture and even the color is very similar to mashed potatoes, but the taste can be quite different. While potatoes are fairly mild and even bland, mashed cauliflower will be more pungent and nutty. You can season mashed cauliflower the same as you would mashed potatoes though.

Ingredient

Serving Size

Calories

Carbs

Fat

Protein

Sodium

Cholesterol

Sugar

Mashed Potatoes

1 cup

237

35.5g

8.8g (2.1g sat)

4.2g

699mg

2mg

 3g

Steamed Cauliflower

1 cup

40

8g

0g

2g

130mg

0mg

4g


Mayonnaise: Replace with Greek Yogurt

Mayonnaise is basically fat in a jar which is probably why it tastes so good. If you are trying to cut calories and fat, then the mayo has got to go! Don’t worry, this one is an easy substitute too. Use equal amounts of Greek yogurt in the place of mayo.


Greek yogurt has a consistency that is very similar to mayonnaise and will act about the same when used in recipes for baking or cooking. Greek yogurt is a little tangier than mayonnaise so get ready for your recipes to have an extra bite. But with one third of the calories and 11 times less fat, Greek yogurt is the way to go. So, make the switch next time you are whipping up a tuna salad.

Ingredient

Serving Size

Calories

Carbs

Fat

Protein

Sodium

Cholesterol

Sugar

Mayonnaise

1 oz

170

0g

18.9g (2.8g sat)

0g

151mg

9mg

 0g

Greek Yogurt

1 oz

27

1.1g

1.4 (1g sat)

2.6g

10mg

4mg

1.1g

Salt: Replace with an Herb Blend

salt alternatives

Adding salt to food can bring out the foods flavor and make it more appetizing, we all love salt! Yet adding lots of salt to food is not good. Too much salt in your diet can cause high blood pressure which can lead to strain on your heart, kidneys and brain. So how can you make food taste good without adding salt? Try herbs and spices!


Using strong flavored herbs will liven up your foods without relying on our old friend the salt shaker. Garlic, onion powder, cumin, cayenne pepper, and black pepper are good spices to try first as they all pack a good punch that you will notice in your food. Cilantro, lemon peel, and fresh ginger are good strong herbs to use instead of salt.


Will your food taste the same without salt? No, it will be an adjustment, but over time, you will not miss it and the herb blends you can come up with for your food will excite you in whole new ways!

Sour Cream: Replace with Yogurt

Sour cream, while delicious, is full of fat so if you are looking to cut back on the cholesterol producing foods, you may want to look past the sour cream container and check out the yogurt section of the grocery store. Using low fat plain yogurt instead of sour cream in recipes that are not baked is as easy as just replacing it, same amounts and everything!


If you are switching to yogurt rather than sour cream in baked goods, opt for greek yogurt which is thicker and has a texture that is like sour cream. Also try to avoid ‘non-fat’ yogurt when baking. Some fat may be needed to make your recipe bake perfectly!


Yogurt is a little more tangy than sour cream, so you may want to adjust other seasonings in your recipes. Overall, yogurt is a simple way to cut back on the fat that goes hand in hand with sour cream.

Ingredient

Serving Size

Calories

Carbs

Fat

Protein

Sodium

Cholesterol

Sugar

Sour Cream

1 oz

61

1.2g

5.9g (3.7g sat)

0g

15mg

12mg

 .1g

Greek Yogurt

1 oz

16

2.2g

.1 (.1g sat)

1.6g

22mg

1mg

2.2g

Soy Sauce: Replace with Coconut Aminos

Have you ever noticed how much sodium is in soy sauce? No wonder it tastes so great…However, this condiment is super dangerous and can add so much unnecessary salt to your meal. But if you are like me, you need that flavor on your Chinese food and sushi! Thank goodness for coconut aminos!


Coconut aminos is basically fermented raw coconut sap (sounds gross, but bear with me..) Coconut aminos are full of amino acids (as the name implies), has about 1/3 of the sodium compared to soy sauce and is non GMO (something that soy products are constantly being attacked for).


It is also MSG free but still has that great ‘umami’ taste that you’d find in soy sauce. Coconut aminos taste a little sweeter than soy sauce but can be used in the exact same way. So pour a little jar of this healthier condiment and enjoy dunking your sushi, knowing you made a healthier choice!

Ingredient

Serving Size

Calories

Carbs

Fat

Protein

Sodium

Cholesterol

Sugar

Soy Sauce

1 oz

22

2g

.1g (.1g sat)

3.8g

2,007mg

0mg

 .6g

Coconut Aminos

1 oz

28

5.6g

.1g (.1g sat)

0g

633mg

0mg

.1g

Russet Potatoes: Replace with Sweet Potatoes

All potatoes are high in starch and carbohydrates, it is just the nature of the potato. Yet, is one potato better than another? Yes! Sweet potatoes are loaded with Vitamin A, about 7x the recommended daily value in one potato. Sweet potatoes also lead the potato pack in fiber content.


The taste of a sweet potato is much, well, sweeter than regular white potatoes like Yukon or Russet varieties, but that can be a good thing! Make the easy switch from a potato with little nutritional value to one that offers up some great vitamins!

Ingredient

Serving Size

Calories

Carbs

Fat

Protein

Sodium

Cholesterol

Sugar

Sweet Potatoe

1 oz

22

5g

.1g (.1g sat)

.4g

8mg

0mg

1.6g

Russet Potatoe

1 oz

27

6.1g

.1g (.1g sat)

.7g

2mg

0mg

.3g

Tortillas: Replace with Lettuce Wraps

tortilla wraps

Did you know that tortillas are usually made with oil or lard. That means they have a decent amount of fat and calories that you may not want to be consuming. So, what can you do when you really want a wrap? Give lettuce a try! That’s right, make a veggie wrap with a veggie!


Butterhead lettuce or any large leaf lettuce makes for great wraps. Lay the lettuce leaf flat, fill it up, and roll just as you would a tortilla. With no fat, carbs and super low calories, lettuce is way better than tortillas! Yes, it will taste like lettuce and be crunchy rather than soft but it will be delicious in its own way!

Ingredient

Serving Size

Calories

Carbs

Fat

Protein

Sodium

Cholesterol

Sugar

Tortillas

1 oz

138

18.5g

6.6g (.7g sat)

2.2g

119mg

0mg

.3g

Lettuce Wraps

1 oz

4

.6g

.1g (.1g sat)

.4g

1mg

0mg

.3g

White Flour: Replace with Whole Wheat

So many people are replacing white flour with whole wheat flour for good reason. White flour is extremely processed and loses a lot of its nutritional value before making it into the bag in the super market.


But what does wheat flour have that white flour doesn’t? Wheat flour has more fiber, riboflavin and several B vitamins, all which are lacking in white flour. So why even use white flour instead of whole wheat flour? Well, whole wheat flour does have a ‘heartier’ taste and can make baked goods a little bit denser.


Some people think baking with whole wheat flour makes food taste bitter while white flour has a smoother taste and texture. Yet, with all the benefits of whole wheat flour and basically zero nutritional benefits in white flour, the small taste difference is worth the switch.

Ingredient

Serving Size

Calories

Carbs

Fat

Protein

Sodium

Cholesterol

Sugar

White Flour

1 oz

103

21.6g

.3g (.1g sat)

2.9g

1mg

0mg

.1g

Whole Wheat

1 oz

95

19.8g

.4g (.1g sat)

3.4g

0mg

0mg

.4g

White Flour (2nd Choice): Replace with Almond Flour

We have already talked about the negatives of white flour and how it is so processed and refined that it has almost no nutritional value. We know that white flour has to go! So what’s the deal with almond flour and how can it be used instead of white flour?


Almond flour is literally just fine ground almonds. We know almonds are good for us! Full of protein and fiber, almond flour is low in carbohydrates and also gluten free. You can replace white flour with the same amount of almond flour in most recipes, just keep in mind the end product will be denser and have a much nuttier flavor.

Ingredient

Serving Size

Calories

Carbs

Fat

Protein

Sodium

Cholesterol

Sugar

White Flour

1 oz

103

21.6g

.3g (.1g sat)

2.9g

1mg

0mg

.1g

Almond Flour

1 oz

150

6g

11g (.1g sat)

7g

0mg

0mg

1g

White Flour Pasta: Replace with Whole Grain Pasta or Zucchini Noodles

If you want your pasta to have fiber, B vitamins, potassium, magnesium and phosphorous (aka any kind of nutrition), then you should make the switch from white pasta to whole grain pasta. White pasta is super refined and the flour used to make it has had the wheat germ removed, taking almost any nutritional value with it.


Whole grain pasta is made with flour which still has the germ attached, retaining its natural health benefits. Whole grain pasta has very little taste difference when compared to traditional white flour pasta, so making the switch should be no problem at all.


Another option to try in place of white flour pasta is zucchini noodles or any kind of vegetable noodle. If you haven’t heard of veggie noodles yet, you should definitely consider them! Zucchini is spiralized which removes the skin and peels the zucchini into very skinny threads, like a noodle!


The noodles are boiled (like regular pasta) and you can add any type of sauce you’d like. Of course, zucchini or any vegetable noodle does taste like vegetables and not like pasta but the idea of having a long skinny ‘noodle’ and sauce is still there!

Ingredient

Serving Size

Calories

Carbs

Fat

Protein

Sodium

Cholesterol

Sugar

White Flour Pasta

1 oz

45

8.7g

.3g (.1g sat)

1.6g

0mg

0mg

.2g

Whole Grain Pasta

1 oz

35

7.5g

.2g (.1g sat)

1.5g

1mg

0mg

.2g

White Rice: Replace with Brown Rice or Cauliflower Rice

white rice

White rice is just like white flour and white pasta which we already discussed. White rice is a super refined grain that has had the bran and germ removed and therefore lost most of its nutritional value.


Brown rice on the other hand still has the germ and bran and the fiber, vitamins and minerals that go along with it. So why not use brown rice every time? It is way more nutritious and the taste is pretty much the same! Such an easy switch!


Looking for another option for a rice substitute? Give cauliflower rice a try! Raw cauliflower florets are pulsed in a food processor until the mix looks like tiny pieces of couscous. You can then simply steam the cauliflower or sauté it with some olive oil, onions and garlic. A whole new kind of rice! Use cauliflower rice to replace white rice in any recipe and enjoy all the high levels of vitamins that it has to offer!

Ingredient

Serving Size

Calories

Carbs

Fat

Protein

Sodium

Cholesterol

Sugar

White Rice

1 oz

37

8.1g

.1g (.1g sat)

1.6g

0mg

0mg

0g

Brown Rice

1 oz

32

6.7g

.2g (.1g sat)

.7g

0mg

0mg

0g

White Sugar: Replace with Coconut Sugar

While white sugar is so common and easy to use, it is full of empty calories and has basically no nutritional value. Replacing white sugar with man-made sweeteners like Splenda can add a funny taste to your foods and, who knows what chemicals go into those little packets! Why not use a natural sweetener that is a little better for you? Meet my friend coconut sugar!


Coconut sugar is made from the sap of a coconut palm tree. The sap is collected and dried and, poof, coconut sugar is born! Since it is not refined any further, coconut sugar has traces of iron, zinc, calcium and some antioxidants. That’s way more than can be found in white sugar!


Coconut sugar is especially great for baking and can be simply substituted for the same quantity of white sugar in any recipe. Coconut sugar has a slightly more rich, caramel taste when compared to white sugar, but that sounds like a good thing to me!

Ingredient

Serving Size

Calories

Carbs

Fat

Protein

Sodium

Cholesterol

Sugar

White Sugar

1 oz

110

28.3g

.0g

0g

0mg

0mg


Coconut Sugar

1 oz

106

28.4g

0g

0g

0mg

0mg


Whole Milk: Replace with Low Fat or Dairy Free Milk

Here is a simple one. Skip the whole milk and go with the low fat. Why have those extra calories when you don’t need to?? If you are cooking and replacing the whole milk, just make sure your recipe still has enough fat to come out well. Low fat milk is more watery and may affect the texture of your recipe. The taste however will be almost exactly the same (replacing milk with milk, it should be!).


There are also great dairy free options to replace whole milk such as soymilk, almond milk, rice milk, and coconut milk to name a few. Each of these has their own health benefits (almond milk has a great deal of protein for example) and they all have a unique yet subtle taste.


As with low fat milk, some of these are a little more watery and the quantities may need to be adjusted, but overall, they are a perfect substitute! Try coconut milk in muffins to add a tropical flavor or almond milk in a smoothie!

Ingredient

Serving Size

Calories

Carbs

Fat

Protein

Sodium

Cholesterol

Sugar

Whole Milk

1 cup

146

12.8g

7.9g (4.6g sat)

7.9g

98mg

24mg

12.8g

Low Fat Milk

1 cup

105

12.2g

2.4g (1.5g sat)

8.5g

127mg

10mg

0g

Nutritional Data from Calorie King.

Popular Recipes:

Skinny Fried Egg and Avocado Toast
  Making Avocado Toast with Egg I have always loved avocado. It's tasty, versatile and healthy too, what's not to[...]
Simple Paleo Reese Cups
Paleo Reese Cups You are going to want to keep this recipe for Simple Peanut Butter Cups handy and make[...]
Crockpot Sweet and Sour Chicken
Sweet and Sour Chicken Recipe This Crockpot Sweet and Sour Chicken recipe is going to rock your world. Making Slow[...]
Scroll Up