If you are striving to get leaner, cutting calories out of your diet can certainly help. But sometimes it can seem like cutting out those extra few calories can become really tough without making you very hungry.
Cutting calories can be made easier, especially if you use some of the food substitution suggestions we compiled from our contributing experts.
Simple food substitutions can cut your calorie intake substantially depending on the foods you are currently eating.
Check out the list below for 25 ideas to consider:
- Greek yogurt vs. Sour cream
- Mustard vs. Mayo
- Lettuce leaf vs. Bread
- Mashed root veggies vs. Mashed potatoes
- Nut butters vs. Cream cheese
- Pureed fruit vs. Maple syrup
- Whole orange vs. Orange juice
- Frozen banana vs. Ice cream
- Coconut oil vs. Butter
- Chia seeds vs. Eggs (1tbsp chia with 1 cup of water = 1 egg)
- White meat chicken vs. Dark meat chicken
- Bison vs. Beef
- Ground turkey vs. ground beef
- Soda water vs. Tonic water
- Steamed broccoli vs. Pan-fried broccoli
- Wheat wrap vs. Bread
- Cocao Nibs vs. Chocolate chips
- Almond flour vs. White, or wheat flour
- Strawberries vs. Cake
- Nutritional yeast vs. Cheese
- 70%+ Dark chocolate vs. Milk chocolate
- Cauliflower rice vs. White rice
- Veggie sushi vs. Fried Fish
- Iced green tea vs. Fruit juice
- Apple sauce vs. Butter in baking recipes
Hope you enjoy trying some of the options on this list – let us know how it goes if you make any of these substitutions…or if you find your own.
Lots of great ideas until I got to the egg vs. chia seeds. I don’t think you will cut many calories there (10-15), they both have about 4g of fat, and eggs have double the protein. They are both great to include in a healthy diet, I wouldn’t make a substitution for either one.
Just a few suggestions from my own battle so far:
corn tortillas vs. flour tortillas
oat flour (blended oatmeal for me) vs. white flour
egg whites vs. whole eggs
yellow squash shredded and sauted vs. pasta
tvp vs. ground beef
popcorn vs. chips
zesty italian dressing vs. high calorie marinade
zesty italian dressing vs. ranch, blue cheese, etc.
iced coffee vs. soda
Although I do question the nut butter vs cream cheese. Nut butter is so calorie dense it sometimes makes my diet really sad and sometimes is great just to get me up to my calorie goal.
Thanks for sharing, Anthony.
WARNING TO ANYONE TRYING TO LOSE ACTUAL WEIGHT: While about half of these including using greek yogurt in place of sour cream are very valid suggestions, most of these suggestions are lazy and/or incorrect claims. This article appears to be tidbits heard in gym locker room and not based in fact or reality.
1. Mustard is not a substitution for mayo, there’s no similarity other than they both go on sandwiches.
2. While it’s true that Skinless Dark Chicken has a bit more calories and fat than white meat, but it also has way more vitamins, fills you up more and it has ….. more flavor.
3. Nut butters are straight up dense calories, not sure how they are a substitute for anything if you are cutting calories. Most people use nut butters to bulk.
4. Almond flour has more calories per gram than white or wheat flour and works very differently in recipes.
5. Veggie Sushi is a pile of white rice and carbs, wouldn’t sashimi or baked fish be a far better substitute for fried fish? Did anyone check this?
6. Wheat wrap vs. Bread: wheat wraps found in my grocery store usually have more calories, more carbs, less fibre and less nutrients than the whole wheat breads on a per gram basis, is there something wrong with getting a nice whole wheat and seed bread? Did anyone look at more than one loaf of bread before making this claim?
Strawberries vs. Cake
“I’m craving cake. But strawberries are just as good!”
-no one, ever