Janet Butter, Dietetic Intern, Montclair State University
Karen Ensle Ed.D., RD, FADA, CFCS, Family and Community Health Sciences Educator, Rutgers Cooperative Extension of Union County
By preparing a recipe in a different way or by substituting ingredients, a recipe can be made healthier. Recipes can be altered to reduce or eliminate fat, salt, and unwanted calories in the form of sugar; alternatively, ingredients can be added to increase fiber, thereby making recipes healthier. When modifying a recipe, it is best to make one modification at a time. Reduce or increase the amount of an ingredient to be modified by a small amount at first. You can make an additional adjustment the next time you use the recipe.
Most foods, especially baked goods, require careful adjustments. Every ingredient has an important role in the outcome of a satisfactory meal. Fat provides flavor and richness and improves texture in baked goods and makes foods smooth and creamy. Eggs provide structure, act as thickeners, and add volume to food. Sugar provides flavor, increases tenderness, and acts as a preservative in some products. Salt provides flavor, reduces the action of yeast, and also acts as a preservative in some foods.
Below are suggestions for reducing fat, sugar, and salt and increasing fiber in recipes without changing texture, flavor, purpose or structure:
To Reduce Fat:
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