Missing an Ingredient? Here’s an Easy Guide on How to Replace It

Don't let your recipes get thwarted by a missing ingredient – use one of these easy substitutions instead!

There’s nothing more frustrating than starting to bake or cook something delicious only to find that a key ingredient is missing. Ugh! But there’s no need to scrub a recipe and sulk in frustration. If you know what you’re doing, you can just substitute it with something else! Here are a couple of ingredients that are bound to be in everyone’s pantry or fridge and are a dish-saving substitutes.

Read on to see the complete list, or download your own printable PDF copy using the button below. (I recommend hanging it up somewhere in your kitchen for easy reference!)

Vegetable oil

Substitute with butter, margarine, coconut oil or apple sauce

Apple Cider Vinegar

Substitute with white vinegar

Balsamic Vinegar

Substitute with apple cider vinegar, red wine vinegar or sherry vinegar

Tomato Sauce

Substitute by mixing one part Tomato Paste and one part Water.
Or substitute with canned tomatoes and adding onions, garlic and some herbs.

Baking Powder (1tsp)

Substitute with 1/4 tsp baking soda + 1/2 tsp. cream of tartar

Bread Crumbs

Substitute with cracker crumbs, crushed cornflakes, ground oatmeal, or even cooked quinoa.

Brown Sugar (1 Cup)

Substitute with 1 cup white sugar and 2 Tbsp molasses.

Butter

Substitute with margarine, oil or shortening

Buttermilk (1 cup)

Substitute with 1 Tbsp lemon juice or white vinegar and enough milk to make 1 cup
Or substitute with 1 cup plain yogurt

Corn Syrup

Substitute with honey, maple syrup, or brown rice syrup

Ricotta Cheese

Substitute with cottage cheese or cream cheese.

Fresh herbs (1 Tbsp)

Substitute with 1 tsp dried herbs

Honey (1 Cup)

Substitute with maple syrup, corn syrup or 1 1/4 cup white sugar and 1/4 cup liquid (whatever is called for in the recipe)

Lemon Juice

Substitute with white vinegar or apple cider vinegar

Mayonnaise

Substitute with sour cream or plain yogurt

Wine

Substitute with beef broth, chicken broth, vegetable broth, apple cider (not vinegar), water, tomato sauce, white grape juice or non-alcoholic wine.

Yeast (1 tsp)

Substitute with 1/2 tsp Baking Soda and 1/2 tsp Lemon Juice

Rice

Substitute with Quinoa. (Quinoa also provides twice as much protein and fiber which promote a healthier digestive system.)

Eggs

Substitute with 1 Tbsp ground Flax Seeds or Chia Seeds and 3 Tbsp Water. Mix until gelatinous.
Or substitute with silken tofu.
Or substitute with apple sauce or mashed banana

Pastry Flour (1 cup)

Substitute with 2 tablespoons of cornstarch combined with enough all-purpose flour to make a cup.

Salt

Often times, substituting salt for herbs and other seasonings like onions, lemon or lime can make a dish taste really flavourful.

Sugar

Substitute with 1 and 3/4 cup of powdered sugar.

I hope you find this substitutions list useful! I’ll leave you with the button to download a free printable PDF copy of the list, in case you missed it earlier in the post! 🙂

Easy and Cheap Dinners from a Rotisserie Chicken

Time and time again, grocery store rotisserie chickens have saved my sanity when it comes to dinner time. They are easy, already seasoned, already cooked, and can be used in a lot of different recipes. Here are some easy and cheap recipes using rotisserie chicken!

I don’t know about you, but all this cooking at home has me constantly looking for shortcuts. While I don’t hate cooking, I don’t like spending hours upon hours in my kitchen. I want easy, fast, flavorful and cheap!

That brings me to rotisserie chickens. Time and time again, grocery store rotisserie chickens have saved my sanity when it comes to dinner time. They are easy, already seasoned, already cooked, and can be used in a lot of different recipes. There are so many ways to use a rotisserie chicken!

On that note, I have rounded up a list of easy and cheap rotisserie dinners! I hope you enjoy!

First of all, if you wish, you can make your own rotisserie style chicken in the slow cooker with this recipe I found.

What are your favourite ways to use rotisserie chicken?

Tips for Stockpiling

It seems each of us has prepared for the world’s pandemic in different ways. There are many items that average consumers are having difficulty buying, such as toilet paper and hand sanitizer. With the thought that the pandemic may cause a complete quarantine or lockdown of our world, it’s important to know what you should have stockpiled at home. In fact, taking action can actually soothe your fears. 

Schools have already shut down and many areas are on restrictions for social gatherings or even dining out. This is simply how our life is right now. It’s been said that if any area is about to go on complete lockdown you’ll have 1-2 day notice so that you can be fully ready. That’s why I wanted to share some tips, as it sounds like you’ll have 1-2 days to get that stockpile prepared.

Tips for Stockpiling

These are fantastic tips for creating a stockpile that won't leave you broke or with food you won't eat!

Take inventory

Take look in your cupboards, fridge and freezers to see what you already have on hand. You may actually be surprised at what you already have! It may not be exciting, delicious food, but it will keep you fed! To help you out, I have a Freezer Inventory printable here and a Pantry Inventory printable here.

Stock up your family’s Essentials

The first step is to make sure you have the essentials. By this, I mean to stock up on what your family regularly eats. Families have been advised to stockpile at least two weeks’ worth of food. I highly suggest you get food that can be frozen or has a long shelf life to keep the food healthy longer. Prioritize those items you really can’t live without like baby formula or foods for special diets. When this all blows over, you don’t want to find you have spent a fortune stocking up or be stuck with food you don’t like. Focus on buying a few extras of what you normally consume. Make a list to keep yourself on track at the grocery store or when you’re placing a grocery order.

Make a Meal Plan

Sit down in the near future and make a list of meals you can create with your essentials. Make sure you account for drinks, breakfasts, lunches, dinners and of course, snacks. With a meal plan in place, your food won’t go to waste and you’ll spend less money.

Planning a menu is simple. First, print off two copies of this weekly menu planner. This resource will allow you to plan breakfasts, lunches, dinners and snacks. Next, start writing in meals that you know you like, based on foods that you already have and what can last awhile. If you need some meal ideas, here are our family’s favourites.

Focus on pantry meals

By this, I mean meals you can create using canned goods like beans, tomatoes and even canned tuna or chicken. Rice and pasta are excellent for pantry meals. Items like cheese and milk can even be frozen. Basically, focus on items with a long shelf life. Some fresh produce like apples, carrots, oranges, and celery have a longer shelf life compared with other counterparts like fresh berries.

These are just a few tips for stockpiling that will ensure you’re prepared to keep your family happy, healthy and fed for an extended amount of time. I’ve seen a lot of people out there panic buying and will have too much stuff after the fact or perhaps are going too deep into the financial hole due to panic. The key is to make sure that you’re able to financially afford your stockpile and be smart about what you spend money on for your stockpile.

8 Weeks to a More Organized Christmas: Plan your Food

I think this will be a fun week in the 8 Weeks to a More Organized Christmas series!  It’s all about food! Specifically, we’re going to plan our holiday menus.  You’ll want to think about:

  • Christmas dinner
  • Christmas brunch
  • Christmas eve
  • Boxing day

And well, any meal surrounding Christmas day.  My planning is quite simple.  My parents cook our Christmas brunch and dinner so all I have to do is bring the cheesecake and some baking!

For inspiration, I highly recommend taking a look through Pinterest.

While you’re planning out your dishes, be sure to start adding items to a grocery list.  You don’t want to forget anything!

To help you out, you’ll want to check out the Christmas dinner planner and grocery list that are available in the Holiday Planner, here.

Also be sure to print off the 8 Weeks to a More Organized Christmas checklists to make sure you’re on track for the final week’s until Christmas day!

What will be on your holiday menu?  Leave it in the comments! Any food traditions you have to uphold?  How do you keep on budget?

Sign up for the 8 Weeks to a More Organized Christmas newsletter to receive a FREE Christmas Dinner Checklist!  This checklist is quite detailed and will help you remember all the details needed for a memory filled dinner with family and friends. You’ll also receive a weekly email with each week’s “task”.

Here are the posts in the 8 Weeks to a More Organized Christmas series so far:

7 Seasoning Spice Recipes You Can Make At Home

Nothing beats home-cooked meals and knowing exactly what you’re feeding your family. It’s even better when the spices you use are those you’ve made yourself. Rather than using store bought spices that have ingredients you can’t pronounce!

Let’s take a look at 7 seasoning spices you can make at home.

Nothing beats home-cooked meals and knowing exactly what you’re feeding your family. It’s even better when the spices you use are those you’ve made yourself! Here are 7 seasoning spices you can make at home!

Homemade Ranch Seasoning

Ranch seasoning is a popular choice in many households. Ranch seasoning can be used to make dips, dressing, added to sauces, and as an ingredient in recipes from meatloaf to pasta salad.

Here’s how to make your own:

  • ½ cup dry buttermilk
  • 2 tablespoons dried parsley
  • 1 tablespoon dried chives
  • 2 teaspoons garlic powder
  • 2 teaspoons onion powder
  • 1 teaspoon dried dill 
  • salt and pepper

Mix it all together and keep in an airtight container, such as a mason jar or plastic container.  This mix can be stored in the fridge for up to 3 months.

Curry Seasoning

Curry has its origins in Asia and gives a flavorful and spicy twist to your recipes. Instead of using store bought curry mixes, you can make your own.

Here’s how to make curry seasoning:

  • 2 tablespoons coriander
  • 1 ½ teaspoons cumin
  • 1 tablespoon turmeric
  • ¾ teaspoon ground mustard
  • ½ teaspoon cardamom
  • ½ teaspoon ground cloves
  • ½ teaspoon nutmeg
  • ⅛ teaspoon cayenne pepper

Mix well and store in an airtight container.  This is enough for seasoning one meal, or you can multiply it and keep the mix for up to a year to be used in future recipes.

Taco Seasoning

Who doesn’t love tacos? Everyone likes their taco seasoning a little different, but being able to make your own, to your own taste ensures you will have the perfect Taco Tuesday each week.

Here’s how to make taco seasoning:

  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • ½ teaspoon paprika
  • ½ teaspoon cumin
  • ½ teaspoon onion powder
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon ground pepper
  • ¼ teaspoon cayenne
  • ¼ teaspoon oregano

This recipe is enough for 1lb of ground beef.  Adjust the amount for more meat or multiply and keep in an airtight container for future use.

Jerk Seasoning

The Caribbean has given us dishes that have the mix of sweet and spicy flavors. This Jamaican jerk seasoning will add this great flavor to your next Carribean themed meal.

Here’s how to make your own: 

  • 2 teaspoons allspice
  • 2 teaspoons cumin
  • 2 teaspoons sugar
  • 1 tablespoon garlic powder
  • 2 teaspoons cayenne
  • 2 teaspoons onion powder
  • 2 teaspoons dried thyme
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • ½ teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • ¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 2 teaspoons dried parsley

This recipe will work for 2 lbs of meat. If you mix it ahead of time, be sure to put it in an airtight container and it will keep for at least 3 months. 

Chili Seasoning

What’s better on a cool fall night than a steaming hot bowl of chili? This recipe will work for 1lb of your choice of meat.  

As with the others, if you want to mix up a batch to keep for later use be sure to put it in an airtight container.  It will keep for up to a year.

  • 1 tablespoon chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 1 teaspoon oregano
  • ½ teaspoon paprika
  • ½ teaspoon onion powder
  • ¼ teaspoon thyme

Cajun Seasoning

Getting Cajun flavor just right can be very tricky, but once you get the right mix, you’ll be set. Cajun seasoning can be used in chicken and seafood dishes, here’s the mix you need: 

  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • ½ teaspoon oregano
  • ½ teaspoon onion powder
  • ½ teaspoon thyme
  • ¼ teaspoon black pepper
  • ¼ teaspoon cayenne

Mix well and make more if you want to store it,  The mix will last up to 1 year.

Italian Seasoning

Italian seasoning is another one that gets used in many dishes.

This Italian seasoning recipe is good to be used with your choice of meats, pastas, pizzas, and any other Italian dishes. 

  • 1 ½ teaspoons oregano
  • 1 teaspoon parsley
  • 1 teaspoon thyme
  • ½ teaspoon basil
  • ½ teaspoon sage
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon ground pepper

Spices don’t really “go bad”, they might lose their flavor or potency, but they won’t make you sick.  Most spices last from 1-3 years.  

If you make a spice mix that incorporates things other than just spices, that would be what determines the shelf life.  For example: the Ranch above has dry buttermilk, so that would be what determines how long you can store it and where it needs to be stored.

Hopefully these recipes will help add some “spice” to your life in the form of delicious meals!

Road Trip Snacks You’re Going to Love

Our family is about to head out on, what we hope will be an epic road trip, to Winnipeg. We are all so excited to see family, play with cousins, see new sights and make memories!

But, I’m not going to lie and say that I’m not anxious at all. Haha no. This will be our very first major trip since our youngest daughter was born. That was more than three years ago! She was a terrible sleeper for the first 3 years of her life so the thought of sleeping anywhere but home would practically make me sweat.

But here we are, just days away from our road trip and I have been in planner mode all week trying to calm my nerves. I have multiple lists going on for car activities, packing essentials and, my favourite, snacks. No road trip is complete without snacks!

Thanks to FreshCo, our snacking has been taken care of. I popped in the other day and grabbed our must-haves as well as some fun new things to try. Because the in-season produce selection at FreshCo is amazing, we will have a great selection of fresh fruit added to our dry goods. Not only is the quality of products noteworthy, the prices are the best in town – you can’t beat that!

And guess what? There are two new FreshCo stores in Winnipeg that opened this spring! I’ll be making a pit stop to restock on food for the car ride back.

Since I always like to see what other families bring along on road trips, I thought you would like that as well. So today I’m excited to share a list of our snacks! I also have a fun way that I have packed some snacks for the girls that I think you might enjoy or find helpful too.

First of all, here’s a list of the fresh produce we will bring along this time:

  • Watermelon (cut up into sticks)
  • Grapes
  • Blueberries
  • Sugar Snap Peas
  • Carrot sticks
  • Apples

This will all be kept in a cooler that we will bring out when we make stops to stretch and get gas.

Now for the fun surprise for the girls. I picked up a couple of divided organizers from the dollar store that I filled with a variety of healthy and not so healthy snacks (but always a crowd favourite!) from FreshCo. I think they are going to love the smorgasbord of choices. The organizers aren’t that big so when they finish the tray, I’ll refill them during one of our stops.

Here is a list of what’s in the divided organizers:

  • Sugar Snap Peas
  • Chocolate Coconut Chips
  • Dried pineapple
  • Beef jerky
  • Dried mango
  • a Sucker
  • Pretzels
  • Fruit snacks
  • Goldfish crackers

Here is a complete list of our road trip snacks (Find a printable version here):

  • Watermelon
  • Blueberries
  • Grapes
  • Sugar Snap Peas
  • Carrot sticks
  • Apples
  • Potato chips
  • Juice boxes
  • Water
  • Pretzels
  • Goldfish crackers
  • Chocolate Coconut Chips
  • Dried mango and pineapple
  • Suckers
  • Fruit snacks
  • Seaweed (My girls love seaweed!)
  • Raisins
  • Beef jerky
  • Oreos
  • Apple sauce squeeze pouches
  • Homemade Banana Spelt Muffins

Nuts would also be a great choice, but we’re trying to avoid them with my youngest. However, I think that list above will be plenty to get us there! We’ll stock up again on our way home.

Now I’m wondering. What sort of snacks do you like to bring along on road trips?

Next week, I’m going to have a list of all the car activities I have planned so be sure to watch for that post! #Sponsored