The Great SUBSTITUTION Guide – A to Z
When a recipe calls for an ingredient you don’t have or your grocer doesn’t
carry, you don’t always know what you can use instead. Here’s a list of
substitutions from A to Z – it could just be the handiest kitchen info you’ll
ALLSPICE: Use equal amount ground cloves.
ABBORIO RICE: Used mainly in preparing risotto; replace with another short- or
ARUGULA: Use equal amount watercress.
BACON: Use equal amount ham.
BAKING POWDER: For 1 teaspoon baking powder, use 1/4 teaspoon baking soda plus
1/2 teaspoon cream of tartar.
BROWN SUGAR: For 1 cup brown sugar, use 1 cup granulated white sugar plus 2
CANDIED FRUIT: Use equal amount dried fruit. For 1 cup candied peel, use 1
teaspoon grated fresh citrus peel plus 1 cup golden raisins.
CHIVES: Use equal amount green onion tops.
CHORIZO SAUSAGE: Use equal amount spicy kielbasa.
CRÈME FRAICHE: Combine 1 cup heavy cream with 3 tablespoons buttermilk; cover
and let stand at room temperature 12 hours. (If using ultra-pasteurized cream,
let stand 24 hours.) Refrigerate up to 1 week.
CUMIN: There is no real equivalent; in Southwestern and Mexican dishes, use
equal amount chili powder.
CURRANTS: Use equal amount chopped raisins.
DAIKON RADISH: Use equal amount red radish.
DIJON MUSTARD: For 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard, use 1 tablespoon dry mustard
mixed with 1 teaspoon water, 1 teaspoon white wine vinegar, 1 tablespoon
mayonnaise and a pinch of sugar.
DRIED BEANS: For 3/4 cup dried beans use 1 (16 ounce) can of beans, drained and
ESCAROLE: Use equal amount chicory, kale or spinach.
EVAPORATED MILK: Use equal amount regular milk or cream.
FENNEL (ANISE): Use 2 cups chopped celery plus 1 teaspoon Sambuca or anisette
FLOUNDER: Use another flat fish such as sole, or a white fish such as cod or
FLOUR: For 1 cup cake flour, use 1 cup all-purpose minus 2 tablespoons. For
thickening: Replace 1 tablespoon flour with 1 1/2 teaspoons cornstarch or
2 teaspoons quick-cooking tapioca.
GALANGAL: A member of the ginger family used frequently in Thai cooking; use
equal amount fresh ginger.
GARLIC: For 1 medium garlic clove, use 1/2 teaspoon minced fresh garlic or 1/8
teaspoon garlic powder.
GINGER: There is no real equivalent; for 1 tablespoon fresh ginger, use 1
HEARTS OF PALM: Use cooked white or green asparagus.
HERBS: For 1 tablespoon fresh herbs, use 1/2 to 1 teaspoon of the dried herb
plus 1 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley.
ITALIAN SEASONING: Combine 1 teaspoon basil, 1 tablespoon fresh or dried
parsley and 1/2 teaspoon oregano.
JALAPENO CHILE: For 1 fresh chile, use another variety, such as serrano, or 1/8
teaspoon crushed red pepper.
JICAMA: Use equal amount peeled, seeded cucumber.
KALE: Use equal amount collard or mustard greens.
KASHA: Use equal amount bulgur or cracked wheat.
KOHLRABI: Use a small turnip.
LADYFINGERS: Use equal amount sponge cake or pound cake.
LEEKS: Use equal amount onions.
LEMONGRASS: Use equal amount fresh lemon peel.
LIGHT CREAM: Use equal amount half-and-half cream.
MACE: Use equal amount nutmeg.
MANGO: Use equal amount peach.
MARSALA WINE: Use equal amount Madeira wine.
MASCARPONE CHEESE: For 1 pound, use 12 ounces cream cheese mixed with 1/2 cup
MAYONNAISE: In salad dressing or dips, use equal amount sour cream or yogurt.
NAAN: A bread served with Indian food; use warmed pita bread brushed with melted
NEUFCHATEL CHEESE: Use equal amount cream cheese.
NOODLES: For Chinese egg noodles, use equal amount fresh or dried angel-hair
pasta or vermicelli.
OLIVE OIL: Use equal amount vegetable oil. (Calorie for calorie all oils are the
ONION: For 1 small onion, use 1/3 cup chopped fresh onion or 1 tablespoon minced
dried onion or 1 teaspoon onion powder.
ORZO: Use equal amount small-shape pasta such as ditalini or tubettini.
PANCETTA: Italian salt-cured bacon; use amount bacon.
PHYLLO PASTRY: Use strudel leaves.
PORCINI MUSHROOMS: For fresh porcini, use equal amount domestic fresh mushrooms
plus 1/2 ounce dried porcini.
POTATOES: For new potatoes, use large potatoes cut into 1-inch pieces.
PROSCIUTTO HAM: Use equal amount very thinly slice Black Forest or Westphalian
QUAIL: For 1 quail, use half a Cornish hen.
QUINCE: Use equal amount pears or apples, but cook only until fruit is tender.
QUINOA: Use equal amount couscous.
RABBIT: Use equal amount chicken.
RADICCHIO: Use equal amount red cabbage.
RICOTTA: Use equal amount cottage cheese pureed in blender
RUTABAGA: Use equal amount turnips or butternut squash.
SAFFRON: Use a pinch of turmeric.
SCALLOPS: Use monkfish or skate.
SHALLOTS: Use equal amount chopped sweet onions.
SORREL: For 1 pound or sorrel, use 1 pound spinach and 1 to 2 teaspoons lemon
SWEET POTATO: Use equal amount butternut squash.
TAHINI: Use equal amount peanut butter.
THAI FISH SAUCE: Use equal amount anchovy paste.
TOMATOES: For 1 pound fresh tomatoes, use 2 cups drained canned tomatoes.
UNSWEETENED CHOCOLATE: For 1 ounce unsweetened chocolate, use 3 tablespoons
unsweetened cocoa plus 1 tablespoon vegetable shortening.
VANILLA BEAN: For half a vanilla bean, use 1 tablespoon vanilla extract.
VEAL CUTLETS: Use turkey, chicken or pork cutlets.
VERMOUTH: Use equal amount dry white wine.
VINEGAR: Use equal amount lemon juice.
WALNUTS: Use equal amount pecans.
WASABE: Japanese horseradish: use equal amount horseradish.
WINE: Use equal amount broth or orange juice, depending on recipe.
WONTON: Use meat-filled ravioli or tortellini.
XERES VINEGAR: Another name for sherry vinegar; use equal amount red wine
YAM: Use equal amount butternut squash.
YOGURT: Use equal amount buttermilk or sour cream.
ZITI: Use another tubular pasta such as penne.
ZUCCHINI: Use equal amount eggplant.
ZWIEBACK: Crumbs often used as a crust for cheesecake; use equal amount plain