Low-fat Recipe Substitutions


By making a few adjustments to your favorite recipes,
you can minimize the fat content in your daily diet. Use the
suggested low-fat substitutions for the ingredients shown.


Bacon

Low-fat Substitutions

  • Turkey Bacon

  • Tofu Bacon

Comments

Turkey bacon is made entirely from turkey meat and contains very little fat. Although it does taste somewhat different than regular pork-based bacon, it will still make most recipes taste great. (The same is true of tofu bacon.)



Beef

(Ground Beef)

Low-fat Substitutions

  • Ground turkey

  • Extra lean ground beef

  • Vegetable based "meat" (ex. tofu burgers)

Comments

Rinse ground meat after browning to remove grease.



Butter

(Butter for Baking and Cooking)

Low-fat Substitutions

  • Low-fat margarine

  • Nonfat margarine

  • Applesauce

  • Pureed fruits

  • Pureed vegetables

Comments

  • Experimentation is crucial when baking with a low-fat or nonfat margarine product: Many such products on the market are not well suited for baking.

  • Use applesauce, pureed fruits, or pureed vegetables in place of the fat in the recipe, but adjust the measurement to two-thirds of the fat called for in the recipe. (Ex. If the recipe calls for one cup of butter, use two-thirds cup applesauce.) You will need to experiment with each recipe to determine the exact amount to use.


Butter

(Butter for Browning)



Low-fat Substitutions

  • Nonstick spray

  • Chicken broth

  • Beef broth

  • Wine

  • Water-oil spray

  • Applesauce

  • Pureed fruits

  • Pureed vegetables

Comments

  • If you use butter in frying pans to prevent sticking, lower the fat content by substituting a nonstick cooking spray, or use chicken broth or beef broth.

  • Make your own nonstick spray by filling a spray bottle two-thirds full of water and the remaining third with your favorite cooking oil. This can be sprayed in pans or directly on food for a light coating of oil.

  • Use applesauce, pureed fruits, or pureed vegetables in place of the fat in the recipe, but adjust the measurement to two-thirds of the fat called for in the recipe. (Ex. If the recipe calls for one cup of butter, use two-thirds cup applesauce.) You will need to experiment with each recipe to determine the exact amount to use.


Cheese

Low-fat Substitutions

  • Low-fat cheese

  • Soy cheese

  • Rice cheese

Comments

Choose low-fat cheese rather than nonfat cheese: Most types of nonfat cheese do not melt well and become watery if used in a cooked recipe; however, there are some brands that have been developed that do melt without becoming watery. Using nonfat cheese will further reduce the amount of fat in the recipe.



Chicken

Low-fat Substitutions

  • White chicken, skinned

  • Turkey breast, skinned

Comments

The white meat of chicken contains less fat than the dark meat. Chicken breasts contain little fat, as do turkey breasts.



Cottage Cheese

Low-fat Substitutions

  • Low-fat cottage cheese

  • Nonfat cottage cheese


Cream

(Heavy Cream)

Low-fat Substitutions

  • Two tablespoons flour whisked into two cups nonfat milk

Comments

Note: The substitution pertains to heavy cream used in recipes, rather than for whipping.



Cream

(Sour Cream)

Low-fat Substitutions

  • Low-fat sour cream

  • Nonfat sour cream

  • Low-fat yogurt

  • Nonfat yogurt

  • One cup of low-fat cottage cheese; add skim milk and lemon juice to taste


Cream

(Whipping Cream)

Low-fat Substitutions

  • Evaporated skim milk, chilled


Cream Cheese

Low-fat Substitutions

  • Low-fat cream cheese

  • Nonfat cream cheese

  • Low-fat or nonfat yogurt cheese


Creamed Soup

Low-fat Substitutions

  • Low-fat creamed soup


Crème Fraiche

Low-fat Substitutions

  • Low-fat or nonfat yogurt cheese


Eggs

Low-fat Substitutions

  • 1½ large egg whites

  • Egg substitute


Mayonnaise

Low-fat Substitutions

  • Low-fat mayonnaise

  • Nonfat mayonnaise


Milk

Low-fat Substitutions

  • 2% milk

  • Skim milk

  • Low-fat or nonfat buttermilk

Comments

Choose 2% or skim milk rather than whole milk, which will lower the fat content without sacrificing taste.



Peanut Butter

Low-fat Substitutions

  • Natural peanut butter


Pork

Low-fat Substitutions

  • Turkey ham

Comments

Turkey ham is made from turkey, but it tastes like ham. Turkey ham is very low in fat compared to regular pork ham. If you use pork, remove as much fat as possible before you cook the meat.



Tuna

(Packed in Oil)

Low-fat Substitutions

  • Tuna packed in water

Comments

Choose tuna that is packed in water rather than oil. Tuna packed in water contains virtually no fat while tuna packed in oil contains a substantial amount of added fat.



Vegetable Oil

Low-fat Substitutions

  • Olive oil

  • Safflower oil

  • Sesame oil

  • Flaxseed oil

  • Wine

  • Applesauce

  • Pureed fruits

  • Pureed vegetables

  • Eliminate oil and add more seasonings

Comments

  • Use applesauce, pureed fruits, or pureed vegetables in place of the vegetable oil in the recipe, but adjust the measurement to two-thirds of the oil called for in the recipe. (Ex. If the recipe calls for one cup of oil, use two-thirds cup applesauce.) You will need to experiment with each recipe to determine the exact amount to use.

  • If you must use oil, use a healthful type, such as olive oil, that is high in heart-healthy monounsaturated fat.

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