Frugal cooking substitutes

If you’re baking or cooking and suddenly realize that you’re out of an ingredient, and its not practical to go to the shop or miss it out all together, try substituting food you already have. It may be that you like the recipe, but not a particular ingredient because of taste, allergies or ethics. Also its more frugal to try to use what you have, than to go out and buy extra ingredients if you can manage, it saves on time, petrol and potential unneccessary purchases!

Try some of these:

CELERY: Celeriac, cabbage, celery salt, water chestnuts, peas, carrots, asparagus, fennel bulb, green pepper, apples or lettuce hearts.
MUSHROOMS: Courgette or aubergine.
PUMPKIN: Carrots can be substituted.
TOMATOES: Roasted or fresh bell peppers.
CORN SYRUP: Agave syrup, ice cream syrup topping, maple syrup, golden syrup.
EGGS: Substitute half a mashed ripe banana and 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
SOUR CREAM: 190g plain yogurt plus 1 teaspoon of bicarbonate of soda
BUTTERMILK: Add a bit of vinegar or lemon juice to soya milk.
CHOCOLATE: For 1 square dark chocolate, try 3 tablespoons cocoa and 1 tablespoon margarine.
COCOA POWDER: carobs a healthier substitution, but an aquired taste and unless you use it, you probably won't have any of this in to replace cocoa with anyway!
CANNED BEANS: Any other canned beans, if using baked beans thought, rince the sauce off and use for something else.
PINE NUTS: Sunflower seeds make a good substitutution, especially in pesto and also make it cheaper!
CHILI SAUCE: Combine 1 cup (240ml) tomato sauce, 1/4 cup brown sugar, 2 tablespoons vinegar, 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon, dash allspice
SUGAR: Use light brown sugar or icing sugar.
BAKING POWDER: 1 teaspoon baking soda plus 1/2 teaspoon cream of tartar replaces 1 teaspoon baking powder.
CORNSTARCH: 2 tablespoons flour or 4 teaspoons quick-cooking tapioca can replace 1 tablespoon of cornstarch.
BROWN SUGAR: Any other sugar.
BREADCRUMBS: Cracker crumbs, oatmeal, rice, cereal.
KETCHUP: Try using a mixture of tomato sauce, sugar and vinegar.
FRESH GARLIC: Use 1/8 teaspoon garlic powder to replace 1 clove fresh garlic.
BARBECUE SAUCE: Combine ketchup, brown sugar, lemon juice, onion, vinegar and mustard to taste.
PECANS: Substitute roasted peanuts or walnuts.
GROUND NUTS - substitute any other ground nuts
DRIED FRUIT - currants, sultanas and raisins are interchangeable, if you don't have any of these try any other dried fruit such as apricots, dates, prunes, figs etc
ALLSPICE: Combine nutmeg, cloves and cinnamon in equal parts.

Egg Substitutes (taken from the vegan society website)
Eggs are used to bind a dish and, when whipped, may also incorporate air making a cake or pudding very light. Vegan egg replacement powders are available from health food shops. This can be useful, especially for tricky foods like meringues. However, many recipes can be adapted using one of the suggestions below. Just remember to bear in mind the final dish... you can't use banana as a substitute when making a quiche!

instead of 1 egg, you can use...
1 tbsp gram (chick pea) or soya flour and 1 tbsp water
1 tbsp arrowroot, 1 tbsp soya flour and 2 tbsp water
2 tbsp flour, 1/2 tbsp shortening, 1/2 tsp baking powder and 2 tsp water
50g tofu blended with the liquid portion of the recipe
1/2 large banana, mashed
50 ml white sauce

tips on raising agents...
use self raising flour
add extra oil and raising agent (e.g. baking powder)
use about 2 heaped tsp baking powder per cake
instead of baking powder, use 3/4 tsp bicarbonate of soda and 1 dssp cider vinegar (good for chocolate cakes)
try sieving the flour and dry ingredients, then gently folding in the liquid to trap air

alternative binding agents...
soya milk
soya dessert - vanilla, chocolate, strawberry...
custard - see below
mashed banana
plain silken tofu
soya cream
sweet white sauce (soya milk, vegan margarine, sugar and cornflour)
agar agar

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