Have you ever picked up a recipe, only to find it calls for something you don’t have in your pantry?
Don’t worry – you can still make the dish.
This article will help you understand what applesauce does in baking and provide five of the best substitutes.
You’ll never have to worry about running out of ingredients again.
What Does Applesauce Do in Baking?
Applesauce can be used both as a sweetener and a fat substitute in baking recipes.
It creates moist, flavorful baked goods without high amounts of fat.
Applesauce also adds natural sweetness and plenty of health benefits too.
It provides an ample source of dietary fiber and is low in calories, making it the ideal ingredient for any dieter looking for something that tastes good but is also good for them.
When using applesauce in baking recipes, it’s important to note that recipes calling for butter should be halved when substituting applesauce for butter.
For example, if the recipe calls for 1 cup of butter, substitute 1/2 cup of unsweetened applesauce instead.
You can also mix half butter with half applesauce to still achieve the desired texture or taste you’re looking for.
Applesauce should be added after all wet ingredients have been mixed together so that it is evenly distributed throughout the batter or dough.
The best way to measure out applesauce is by weighing it on a kitchen scale but if you don’t have one, Scoop out one cup (200 grams) per 1/2 cup (1 stick) of butter called for in a recipe; this will typically work just fine.
You can use regular store-bought applesauce in most recipes unless they specifically call for homemade; store bought is typically better since there are less chunks and sourness than homemade versions have.
If you do want to use homemade applesauce, make sure you strain it first or cook/puree it into a smoother consistency as this will help your baking results turn out better.
5 Best Applesauce Substitutes in Baking
Applesauce has a unique flavor profile, and is often used in baking to add moistness and sweetness to recipes.
However, applesauce can be hard to find, or you may simply not have it on hand when baking.
In these cases, here are five good substitutes for applesauce in baking.
1 – Apple Puree
Apple puree is one of the best options for those looking for a true applesauce substitute in baking.
Apple puree is simply mashed-up, cooked apples (which can be with or without skin depending on your preference).
You could either make it yourself, or buy pre-made pureed apples in the store.
Of course, if you use store-bought apple puree, you would need to further adjust the liquid measurements in your recipe to compensate for this.
You can make a homemade version of apple puree if you have the time and ingredients needed.
To do so, simpy peel and core two medium-sized apples which should give you about 1 ½ cups of fruit and then cook them together over the stovetop with some added cinnamon for flavor.
Once softened, mash the ingredients up until smooth using a blender or even just with a fork.
Continuing cooking until all of the excess moisture has cooked off before adding it in place of applesauce to your recipe.
2 – Mashed Bananas
Mashed bananas can provide a great texture and flavor, plus bring in added nutrition like potassium and vitamin B6.
Bananas also have natural sweetness, so you can cut back on sugar when using them as an applesauce substitute.
When replacing applesauce with mashed bananas, use a 1:1 ratio, however it is suggested to reduce the amount of other liquid called for in the recipe slightly.
The addition of mashed banana could mean that your end result may be a bit moister than if you were using applesauce; to make up for this extra moisture, you may want to reduce the amount of other liquids in your recipe by a small amount (i.e., 1 tablespoon).
3 – Mashed Sweet Potatoes
Mashed sweet potatoes are a great vegan option in baking, especially when combined with applesauce.
They have a similar texture and sweetness as applesauce, but with less fat, more nutrition and a pleasant flavor.
When substituting sweet potatoes for applesauce in baking, use the same measurements.
For every one cup of applesauce, substitute one cup of mashed sweet potatoes, or for each tablespoon of applesauce, substitute one tablespoon of mashed sweet potatoes.
Keep in mind that the sweetness might be different from recipe to recipe so you may need to adjust accordingly.
4 – Pumpkin Puree
Many people turn to pumpkin puree as a great substitute for applesauce in baking.
It has just the right balance of sweetness and moisture that can be easily manipulated depending on the recipe.
Pumpkin puree is usually lower in calories than applesauce and will increase the nutritional content of your dish.
When substituting pumpkin puree for applesauce, use half the quantity of pumpkin as you would with applesauce.
The same rule applies when substituting any other ingredient for applesauce – use half the recommended amount when making a substitution.
As with other substitutes, try to factor in changes to cooking time, as pumpkin may require an extra few minutes of baking or roasting time compared to an applesauce recipe.
5 – Mashed Avocado
Mashed avocado is the perfect substitute for applesauce in vegan and dairy-free baking.
Avocadoes are full of healthy fats and have similar properties to applesauce when it comes to providing moisture in cakes, muffins and other baked goods.
Make sure your avocadoes are ripe and soft, so they will mash easily.
You can use the same amount of mashed avocado as the recipe calls for in apple sauce.
It’s a great option for those avoiding sugars or artificial sweeteners, as avocadoes have a naturally mild flavor that won’t compete with other ingredients in your baking.
In conclusion, applesauce is a popular baking ingredient that can be used as a substitute for oil and butter in many recipes.
It is low in fat, vegan-friendly, and adds moisture to baked goods.
However, it is important to choose the right type of applesauce for the task and be aware that it will slightly alter the flavor and texture of your dish.
Other alternatives to applesauce include using banana puree or mashed avocado for moisture, Greek yogurt for fat, or even prune puree.
Ultimately your best bet is to choose a substitute depending on what ingredients you currently have available and what type of baked good you are trying to make.
Carrie is a food writer and editor with more than 15 years of experience. She has worked for some of the biggest names in the food industry, including Bon Appétit, Food & Wine, and Martha Stewart Living.
As the Editor in Chief of IntroChicago.com, Carrie oversees all of the content on the site. She also manages the team of contributing writers and editors, who help to create delicious recipes, helpful tips, and informative articles that you’ll find on the site.
A native of the Chicago area, Carrie is passionate about all things food. She loves trying new restaurants and experimenting with new recipes in her kitchen. She’s also a graduate of the Culinary Institute of America, so she knows a thing or two about food!