Common food allergies, intolerances and diet trends of today mean that consumers are often avoiding baked goods made using common ingredients such as flour, butter, sugar, milk and eggs.
However, there are plenty of natural and healthy substitutes for baking available using quality wholefoods, which enables people to continue enjoying delicious baked treats. Follow our quick guide below to discover the best healthy baking alternative ingredients.
Intolerance to lactose can often mean that delicious baked treats are off the table, particularly since butter is one of the most common and widely used of all the baking ingredients.
The high-fat content of butter retains moisture and helps bind everything together. The best substitutes for butter are other high-fat ingredients including, Coconut Oil, Coconut Butter, coconut yoghurt, avocado, Olive Oil, Nut Butter and Tahini.
There are four simple ways you can naturally replace an egg in your baking, which includes:
- chia egg
- flax egg
- aquafaba (chickpea brine)
These are all great vegan-friendly egg alternatives. For instructions on how to use check out our blog: How to Make a Vegan Egg Substitute >>
There is a wide variety of natural sweeteners (both dry and liquid) that can serve as great alternatives to processed cane sugar. These are easily substituted into your baking & cooking, simply head to our Guide to Natural Sweeteners >>
Cocoa Powder is the standard "go-to" ingredient for most people looking for a chocolatey flavour and colour. For a more nutritious, rich and pure chocolate hit try substituting cocoa for Cacao Powder, which has not been heated to high temperatures like cocoa. Carob Powder is also a fantastic alternative to cocoa, which offers a delightfully unique and natural sweet taste.
An easy and effective way to replace soft cheeses (such as cream cheese) or create cheese substitutes is to blend raw Cashews that have been soaked in water for at least 4 hours. If blended well, the soaked cashews reach a lovely smooth and creamy consistency. This is a great option when making raw vegan 'cheesecake' dessert alternatives.
Substituting dairy milk is one of the easiest ingredients to replace in baking or cooking. You can choose from Soy Milk, Oat Milk, Almond Milk, Coconut Milk, or any just about any other plant-based milk you like. If you are catering for allergies, Rice Milk is probably the best option, as it is both soy and nut-free.
Agar Agar Powder is a wholefood and vegetarian gelatine substitute, produced from kelp. Agar Agar Powder can be substituted 1:1 for powdered gelatine in a recipe.
If regular all-purpose wheat flour needs to be replaced, there are many different substitutes you can choose from. From brown rice flour to chickpea flour, coeliacs and gluten-intolerant people are still able to enjoy tasty baked goods! Simply check out our Guide to Flour Types and Uses >>
Hot Tip! You can make your own Self-Raising Wheat Flour: 1 cup = 1 cup all-purpose wheat flour + 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
Coconut Cream is a great dairy-free alternative in recipes that call for heavy cream. It can be baked, cooked and whipped, and also has a delightful coconut flavour.
Starch is used in baking to add structure and crispiness to goods such as pie crust. Tapioca Flour can be substituted 2:1 for corn or potato starch in a recipe.