Easy Baking Substitutions That Will Save the Day

Baking recipes usually call for precision, but that doesn't mean you can't make smart substitutions in a pinch. Only have all-purpose flour but need self-rising? All out of buttermilk? Here's a handy guide to common baking ingredients and their best swaps, so you can always get delicious results—no dash to the store required.

Cake Flour

For 1 cup of cake flour, measure 1 cup of all purpose flour. Remove 2 tablespoons and replace with 2 tablespoons of cornstarch. Sift together.

Self-Rising Flour

For every 1 cup of self rising flour, substitute a combination of 1 cup of all purpose flour, 1 1/2 tsp of baking powder and 1/4 tsp of salt.

All Purpose Flour

For every 1 cup of all purpose flour, substitute an equal amount of bread flour or a blend of ½ cup whole wheat flour and ½ cup spelt flour.

Baking Powder

For 1 teaspoon of baking powder, combine ¼ teaspoon baking soda with ½ teaspoon cream of tartar and ¼ teaspoon cornstarch.

Butter

Substitute an equal amount of shortening.

Vegetable Oil

Substitute an equal amount of melted butter or olive oil.

Heavy Cream

For 1 cup of heavy cream, substitute ¼ cup cooled melted butter and ¾ cup whole milk.

Buttermilk

For every 1 cup of buttermilk, stir 1 tablespoon white vinegar or lemon juice into 1 cup milk.

Sour Cream

Substitute an equal amount of yogurt.

Brown Sugar

For every 1 cup of brown sugar, add 2 tablespoons of molasses or maple syrup to 1 cup of granulated sugar.

Confectioners' Sugar

For every 1 cup of confectioners' sugar, measure 1 cup of granulated sugar. Remove 1 teaspoon of sugar and replace with 1 teaspoon cornstarch. Pulse mixture in blender or food processor until finely ground.

Honey

Substitute an equal amount of maple syrup or agave nectar.

Baking Tip

Line your brownie pan with foil before baking, then simply lift up the edges of the foil to easily remove brownies after they cool.

Baking Tip

To freeze quick bread, cool completely and wrap tightly in plastic wrap or foil. Wrap slices individually for quicker thawing. Use within 1 month.