List of Substitutions for Common Kitchen Pantry Items

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'organized pantry' photo (c) 2008, EvelynGiggles - license:
You may be surprised how easy most of these items are to make yourself

Because we often choose to make do with what we have at home, I’m constantly searching for common cooking substitutions. We save a lot of time and money by not rushing out to pick up odds and ends at the store every couple of nights at dinner time. A few weeks ago I happened upon this list of kitchen substitutions over at Joy of Baking while I wasn’t searching for substitutions. This is one of the most inclusive and varied substitution lists I’ve seen!

Did you know that you can add 1 tsp lemon juice or vinegar to a cup of milk, let it sit for 5-10 mins and use that in a recipe instead of a cup of sour cream?  I tried it and the recipe tasted the same. Since this substitution costs about 25% of the store bought sale price, I’ll be buying less sour cream regularly.  I’ve been experimenting with my own recipe for sour cream that can be used as a topping.  I’ll post my results next Tuesday.

I have a friend who makes her own brown sugar, another who makes her own taco seasoning, and another who makes her own cream of chicken/mushroom/celery etc. soup.  They’re embracing the “one less thing to shop for and spend money on” theory. We’ve started making our own bisquick at home, our own ready to bake cookie dough, and our own baked beans.  These are all such simple & easy recipes and substitutions.  We could really save a lot of money- not to mention simplifying our lives greatly- by doing more similar substitutions and recipes at home!

What items do you see on this substitution list that you might use as a regular substitution?


  1. I had seriously never thought of substitutions (other than the allergen ones I regularly use when baking/cooking for my son)…but I was making cheerio’s muffins Sunday afternoon and I had NO cinnamon! My husband’s answer was of course to run to the store…but THANKS to some advice at the frugal living class at GABC, I googled and found out I could use 1/4 tsp nutmeg instead! The muffins are awesome even without the cinnamon.

    :) and I had no idea about the sour cream thing! I knew you could fudge for buttermilk by doing that, though!

  2. I swear, I am always having to substitute for one reason or another.

    Stopping by from the Tuesday Hops to say hello.
    Have a great day!

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