Baking 101: Substitutions & Conversions

Let’s face it at some point you are going to be baking and realize, “OH NO I DON’T HAVE ANY XYZ!”  And of course it will be for something important like baking Christmas cookies.  Here is a quick list of the usual suspects and some conversions to make this a less painful process!  Happy Baking!

Psst!!!  Make sure you have a good set of measuring tools! Measuring Spoons Measuring Cups Digital Scale etc.  

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Ever go to bake something only to realize too late that you are missing something!?  Yeah it happens.  Don’t worry.

Baking Powder – 1 teaspoon baking powder = 1/4 teaspoon baking soda

Baking Soda – 1/4 teaspoon baking soda = 1 teaspoon baking powder

Cream of Tartar – 1 teaspoon of cream of tartar use 1.5 teaspoons of baking powder

Egg – 1 egg = ¼ cup applesauce, OR 1 Flaxseed egg(1 tablespoons ground flaxseed + 3 tablespoons water) OR 1/4 cup silken tofu pureed OR 3 tablespoons mayonnaise

Sour Cream/Yogurt – These can be subbed equally for each other

Sugar Out of sugar? Low on sugar and want to save what you have for morning coffee?  Or maybe you just don’t want to use sugar?  Here are a few common substitutes:

  • Honey – for every 1 cup of sugar use 3/4 cup honey
  • Maple Syrup – for every 1 cup of sugar use 3/4 cup honey

*Speacial Note: when using liquid sweetener to replace white granulated sugar remember to reduce the liquid somewhere else in the recipe.  Also they tend to cause browning to occur faster, so either tent with tin foil to prevent burning or reduce oven temperature by 25℉.  Finally take into consideration the flavor of what you are baking, if it as a mild flavor maybe maple syrup isn’t the best choice unless you want it to taste like maple.

Vanilla Bean – 1 vanilla bean = 2½ teaspoons vanilla extract

person flattening dough with rolling pin


1 ounce = 28.3495 grams

1 teaspoon = 1/3 tablespoon = 1/6 ounce
2 tablespoons = 1/8 cup = 1 ounce
4 tablespoons = 1/4 cup = 2 ounces
8 tablespoons = 1/2 cup = 4 ounces
16 tablespoons = 1 cup = 8 ounces
2 cups = 1 pint = 1/2 quart = 16 ounces
4 cups = 2 pints = 1 quart = 32 ounces
16 cups = 8 pints = 4 quarts = 1 gallon

CLICK HERE for a FREE handy downloadable pdf version!!

Resources:  Thank you to…

Bon  Appetit



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4 thoughts on “Baking 101: Substitutions & Conversions

    1. Technically yes, If you buy a set of measuring cups or spoons and say measure 1 cup of flour and 1 cup of water you use the same tool. This is because when you are using the cup/spoon system you are measuring by volume not by weight. There is a proper method for measuring dry and wet ingredients using the cup/spoon, honestly speaking I would like to move over to measuring by weight as it is more exact but so many recipes use the volume method and it is hard to convert to the weight method.
      Say you are baking bread and it calls for 3 cups of flour, 1 cup of flour specifically(as a cup of sugar would way more) is equal to about 163 grams. Do you think that you can measure exactly 163 grams every time with a 1 cup measure? Probably no. So you may end up with much more or much less causing your bread dough to either be too dry or too wet making the process take longer.
      In short, if the recipe says 1 cup of flour and 1 cup of water you would use the same 1 cup measuring tool. Did I answer your question or go off on a tangent? Just for you I will write a longer explanation as a post about how to use measure properly with a cup as it doesn’t seem to be going away anytime soon! Thank you so much for your question! Keep it coming.


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