Healthy Baking Is as Easy as Pie

a young mother and her two daughters roll out dough for baking

The holidays can be a tough time to stick to healthy eating goals. But if your traditions involve baking, a few simple ingredient changes can help you cut some of the sugar, fat, and calories – without sacrificing the taste. This year, make some new baking traditions by adapting your family recipes with these tips:

  • Substitute whole-wheat flour for up to half of the white flour called for in the recipe.
  • Make muffins using oatmeal, bran, or whole-wheat flour.
  • Reduce the fat by ¼ (if a recipe calls for 1 cup of oil, use ¾ cup). You can also reduce the sugar by ¼.
  • If making sweet breads, such as banana bread or zucchini bread, cut the oil in half and replace with an equal amount of applesauce, mashed banana, or even canned pumpkin.
  • If a recipe calls for nuts, use half the amount and toast the nuts (whole, not chopped). This intensifies the flavor and saves on calories.
  • Replace half the eggs with egg whites, using 2 egg whites per egg. (If a recipe calls for 2 eggs, use 1 whole egg and 2 egg whites.)
  • Grease the pan with non-stick spray instead of butter.
  • Substitute evaporated skim milk for whole milk or cream.

Learn more from the American Cancer Society about healthy eating, including tips and recipes.

The American Cancer Society medical and editorial content team
Our team is made up of doctors and master's-prepared nurses with deep knowledge of cancer care as well as journalists, editors, and translators with extensive experience in medical writing.


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