Ingredient swaps for picky, allergic, or otherwise intolerant eaters
Discovered through trial and error with C
No-go: Ricotta cheese in cooked dishes such as lasagna or baked ziti. Substitute 1 cup of ricotta cheese with 3/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons silken tofu pureed with two tablespoons of your choice of the following
- Mozzarella cheese
- Parmesan cheese
- Vegan cheese substitute
- Sour cream
No-go: Cilantro. Substitute 2 tablespoons of cilantro with 1 1/2 tablespoon parsley, 1/2 tablespoon medium-strong mint, a small amount of fresh lemon zest and, chemistry permitting, a little squeeze of lemon juice.
No-go: most nuts. This is not a great substitute for recipes where the nuts are a star player, but if you are looking for a slightly nutty taste and that distinct texture, substitute for an equal amount of roasted soy nuts, salted or unsalted according to your recipe’s needs. In nut-free granola, consider adding pumpkin seeds and puffed rice as well.
No-go: Glutinous pasta. Using a mandoline or Y-shaped vegetable peeler, turn a mild-flavored squash (zucchini, summer, or similar) into thin sheets. Leave whole for lasagna-style dishes; cut into ribbons for linguine-style. If serving with sauce, steam lightly until just tender. Alternatively, halve and roast spaghetti squash for, you guessed it, spaghetti-style “pasta.”