Heart-Healthy Ingredient Substitutions

by Betsy Crisp, M.S., L.D.
Extension Family and Consumers Sciences Agent

Recipe calls for:


Whole or 2% milk Skim milk, 1%, or evaporated skimmed milk diluted equally with water
Whipping cream Chilled evaporated skimmed milk, whipped
Cheddar, American, Swiss, and Monterey Jack cheese Cheeses with 5 grams of fat or less per ounce
Mozzarella cheese Part-skim mozzarella cheese
Cream cheese Light cream cheese products or Neufch√Ętel cheese
Creamed cottage cheese Nonfat or 1% fat cottage cheese, or farmer's cheese
Ricotta cheese Nonfat, lite, or part-skim ricotta cheese
Sour cream Nonfat or low-fat sour cream, or nonfat or low-fat yogurt
Whole egg 2 egg whites or 1/4 cup egg substitute
Baking chocolate, 1-ounce square 3 tablespoons cocoa plus 1 tablespoon monounsaturated or polyunsaturated vegetable oil or margarine
Fudge sauce Chocolate syrup
White flour, 1 cup 1/2 cup whole wheat flour plus 1/2 cup white flour, or 2/3 cup white flour plus 1/3 cup oat bran
Sugar Reduce amount by 1/3 to 1/2; substitute brown sugar or honey when flavor will not be affected
Salt Reduce by 1/2 or eliminate
Margarine Reduce amount, using a margarine made from monounsaturated or polyunsaturated oil, or use reduced-calorie margarine
Vegetable oil Reduce amount, using a monounsaturated or polyunsaturated oil
Mayonnaise Fat-free, reduced-calorie, or low-cholesterol mayonnaise
Gravy Gravy made with bouillon granules or broth and thickened with flour or cornstarch
Condensed cream of mushroom soup 99% fat-free condensed cream of mushroom soup
Egg noodles Noodles made without egg yolks
White rice Brown or wild rice
Pecans, walnuts Reduce by 1/3 or 1/2
Beef, pork, veal, or lamb Lean cuts of red meat trimmed of all visible fat, or substitute with chicken or turkey
Ground beef Ground turkey or lean ground round
Bacon strips Turkey bacon or Canadian bacon
Poultry Skinned poultry
Self-basting turkey Baste turkey with fat-free chicken broth
Tuna packed in oil Tuna packed in spring water