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Simple Baking Ingredient Swaps

Now, I want to start this post by saying there is NOTHING wrong with a bit of full fat, full sugar home baking - quite the opposite in fact! Sharing something you've created in the kitchen can be a great source of joy, connection and celebration....You are looking at a thick, sticky piece of caramel slice's number one fan!

But if I'm doing baking for snacking on during the week, I sometimes include small switches to make a recipe a little more nourishing and satiating. The swaps are generally unnoticeable, but can take a recipe from more of a treat, to something that adds a little value to your diet. They can also be helpful if you find yourself short of something, there might be an alternative you can use.

The list is not extensive, but just a few things I commonly substitute that have worked for me. Happy baking!


Oil/butter - Try using applesauce, mashed banana or greek yoghurt in a 1:1 ratio. You're either adding a fruit or upping the protein with this one - win win!

Sugar - I often reduce by 1/3 to a 1/2 of the quantity required. It makes no difference to the consistency of the recipe and is unnoticeable in the finished product.

Sugar - You can also try substituting for honey or maple syrup for a more natural option. Just be aware switching from a granulated sweetener (like sugar) to a liquid may alter the consistency, try it out and see how you go! Again I would use less.

Flour - I sometimes swap the full or half the amount the recipe requires for oat flour (blitz up some rolled oats in a food processor). If you swap the full quantitiy, this one does alter the texture and flavour of the finished product and can result in a not so 'fluffy' end result - something to consider.

Flour - Up to 1/3 of the quantity required can be subbed for protein powder as a way of sneaking a little more protein into your day. As these are often sweetly flavoured, I find you can often omit or significantly reduce the amount of sugar/alternative sweetener added.

Sour cream or milk - Can be swapped 1:1 for Greek yoghurt.

Eggs - Eggs are FAB, this one's just handy if you've run out! Each egg can be replaced with 1/4 cup of plain/Greek yoghurt OR 1 teaspoon of baking soda in 1 tablespoon of vinegar.

Additions - Dried fruit or nuts can be added to loaves, cakes and biscuits (think banana bread, choc chip bickies etc.) as a way of getting a few more goodies in! Walnuts thrown in a banana bread or chopped peanuts in chocolate chip cookies are faves around here.


Below is a recipe using some of the above substitutes, that I'll make a variation of every couple of weeks - just altering the mix in depending on what I have. It's great for using up those overripe bananas and contains ingredients you will most probably have on hand! Enjoy.

Oaty Banana Bread


2 cups rolled oats (or sub half a cup for vanilla protein powder)

1 teaspoon baking soda

1 teaspoon cinnamon

1/4 teaspoon salt

3 ripe bananas (around 1 cup mashed)

1/2 cup applesauce

2 eggs

1/2 - 3/4 cup mix ins (nuts, dates, chocolate chips, even berries! I used dates this time)


  • Preheat oven to 180 degrees and line a loaf tin with baking paper.

  • Add oats, baking soda, cinnamon and salt to a food processor and blend until oats resemble flour.

  • Add bananas to a mixing bowl and mash. Stir in the applesauce, then beat in the eggs.

  • Fold the dry ingredients into the wet, then fold in your mix ins.

  • Pour batter into the prepared loaf tin and bake for 40-45 minutes, until a skewer inserted into the middle comes out clean.

  • Leave to cool before slicing and enjoying!


  • This loaf freezes really well. I like to slice into portions so I can just grab one or two out as I feel like it.

  • Enjoy warmed with a big dollop of Greek yoghurt as a snack, or a couple of slices with some yoghurt and fruit make a good breakfast!


Do you have a useful substitute you think I need to know about? Please share!

Find me on Instagram - @kando_training, or Facebook - @KANdoTraining.

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