Healthy, Wholefood Baking Substitutes

January 9, 2019 Honest to Goodness

Whether you follow a plant-based diet, have allergies, or you simply want to incorporate more wholefoods into your diet - it doesn’t mean you have to say no to baked goods. There are plenty of natural substitutes you can use to replace common baking ingredients such as milk, eggs, sugar and more!

Check out our guide below...


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 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)
  • banana

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. Coconut sugar, rapadura, raw sugar and xylitol can all be easily substituted 1:1 into your baking & cooking.


The easiest solution for missing  bi-carb soda is baking powder. Simply use three times the amount of baking powder as you would baking soda. For example, if a recipe calls for 1/2 teaspoon of bi-carb soda (also known as baking Soda), you would replace it with 1 1/2 teaspoons of Baking Powder.


Slightly less straight forward than substituting bi-carb soda,  baking powder requires one extra ingredient.

Homemade baking powder can be made by mixing 2 parts cream of tartar with 1 part baking soda. For example, to create 3 teaspoons of Baking Powder, combine 2 teaspoons of cream of tartar with 1 teaspoon of baking soda.


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 naturally 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.

To achieve a natural 'cheesy' flavour, nutritional yeast flakes are an ideal replacement.


Substituting dairy milk is one of the easiest ingredients to replace in baking or cooking. You can choose from  soy milkoat milkalmond milk, coconut milk, or any just about any other plant-based milk you like. If you are catering for allergies, rice milk is 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 + 1/4 teaspoon salt


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.


Want to create tender, fluffy pancakes? Then buttermilk is the answer! However it seems more often than not, this ingredient is often left off the shopping list.

To create a buttermilk replica, you will need another dairy product with a little acidity added. Simply add 1 tablespoon of lemon juice or  vinegar to 1 cup of milk. Gently stir the mixture and let it sit for about 5 minutes. The milk with slightly curdle thicken, then it is ready to use!

Soy milk can be used in place of dairy milk.


Ground  rolled oats or nuts can be substituted 1:1 for breadcrumbs in your favourite meatball or burger recipe. Simply place either oats or nuts in the food processor and pulse until they resemble bread crumb texture.

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