Friday, November 5, 2010

Do It Yourself

So here are a few tips to modifiy your own baking recipes to make them more nutritious.  First up: flour.  When a recipe calls for 2 cups of flour it is easy to add some whole wheat which is more nutritious.  Simply use 1 cup of all purpose flour and 1 cup of whole wheat pastry flour.  I have tried recipes with the entire flour whole wheat pastry flour and it was too dense. 
Next up: oil.  Another quick and easy change is to use applesause instead of oil.  It does not change the texture or the taste in my opinion.  Yogurt is another substitute.  I prefer applesauce though.  Try it out and see.  We even use this little trick when making pancakes. 
Finally, it's time to take on sugar.  I like to substitute honey in place of some sugar in muffins.  I don't substitute all of the sugar as I want to ensure my little people will eat it.  For example, if a recipe called for 1 cup sugar I often use 1/2 cup sugar and 1/2 cup honey.  When I make this substitution, I always use less oil or applesause so there is not too much liquid.  Usually I just subtract the 1/2 cup of honey from the amount of oil a recipe suggests.  I like to use honey as much as possible for its health benefits.  "The 3 key health benefits of honey are related to the fact that: 1. Honey is nature’s energy booster 2. Honey is a great immunity system builder 3. Honey is a natural remedy for many ailments." 
I would love your feedback if you try these suggestions out.  Also please let me know if you have any healthy tricks for baking!!! 


  1. We use whole wheat flour and unbleached regular flour. I sometimes use honey to sweeten things but had bad luck a while back trying to substitute for sugar. I've never tried the applesauce trick but that sounds intriguing. We eat whole wheat pasta and whole wheat bread (but watch the bread--just because it has "wheat" in its name doesn't mean it's whole wheat). Our latest thing is to sweeten oatmeal with pure maple syrup--yum!

    Annie Bremer

  2. Thanks Annie! I love pure maple syrup. Good idea to add to oatmeal. I'm having trouble getting my little people to adjust to the maple syrup. The only food they eat with high frutose corn syrup is syrup for pancakes. The adjustment has not gone well. Will try and see if they like it on oatmeal.

  3. Make sure your honey is local honey to get the most benefits. I don't bake much, but when I do I use raw or turbinado sugar. I also experiment with all kinds of flour, spelt, brown rice, coconut, almond, etc... As far as the pancake sryup, just run out and don't buy more. If they really want pancakes, they'll get used to something else, I promise! It may take a while, but they will. Mine are 7 and 10, and I haven't had anything in the house with high fructose corn syrup for years. They are used to it now. Maple sryup is kind of harsh. Get them to try a fruit spread or peanut butter on them. If all else fails, I'm sure that you can find a syrup at the health food store without HFCS or refined sugar. You're doing great!