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Most baking recipes call for ingredients from four major food “groups”: dairy (butter and/or milk), flour, eggs, and sugar. For those of us with allergies or intolerances, and for thosePantry organisation titled who choose not to eat some or all of these ingredients, baking can seem like a complicated process. Here are a few alternative baking essentials for your pantry to save time and help bring out your inner star baker.


Okay, so this one isn’t technically kept in the pantry, but it’s an essential part of baking recipes so it ought to be included. The most common dairy free options for baking are replacing butter, so the best vegan friendly butter alternatives are:

  • vegan margarine
  • avocado
  • coconut oil
  • banana
  • nut butters

There are also many common milk alternatives on the market, so don’t forget that you can use these instead of cow’s or goat’s milk in your recipes:

Alternative milks (soy, almond, rice, oat, etc.)


If you need or want to replace the white flour found in your baking recipe with a gluten free or unprocessed alternative, try one of the following:

  • whole wheat flour
  • spelt flour
  • gluten free flour
  • almond meal
  • coconut flour
  • cashew meal
  • black beans


Replacing eggs in baking can be difficult, since they serve so many purposes (binding and rising to name a few). It’s important to distinguish what function they have in a particular recipe before choosing an alternative.

When a recipe calls for eggs as a binding agent, then the best replacements are:

If you want something more “eggy” and vegan or allergy free, consider something like:

  • flax egg (egg replacer)
  • fruit and veg purées


Sugar alternatives in baking are actually very easy to find these days. Many people are steering away from standard granulated sugar and choosing a healthier, more natural option like those on this list:

  • Stevia
  • honey
  • coconut palm sugar
  • maple syrup or molasses
  • dates
  • agave syrup

Other alternative ingredients

If you want to get really creative with your alternative baking recipes, try making your own thickening agents from ingredients such as:

  • agar
  • guar gum
  • xanthan gum
  • tapioca
  • kuzu
  • arrowroot

Last but not least, who can forget chocolate? If you need or want to replace your chocolate in a recipe, try:

  • cacao nibs
  • carob

When you’ve got all your ingredients together, make sure to set them up together in your pantry in an accessible box or Tupperware so you’re more likely to get them out and use them. Now the only thing left to do is to get baking!

(Check out this fantastic chart for alternative baking ingredients if you need more specific advice and for conversions.)

For more pantry and kitchen tips and tricks (for alternative bakers and for everyone else!), check out

For all your alternative baking products visit What Can I Eat

Kaitlin Krull

via Modernize