16 Food Substitutions for a Healthier You

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It’s Time to Revamp Your Health!

Have you been struggling to make healthier choices? It can be so frustrating trying to consistently eat healthy, and let’s be real- no one wants to eat salad all the time. I feel you! Trust me, you’re not alone. That’s why I’m here to give you the deets on all the healthy substitutions to your favorite foods!

I used to LOVE junk food. A full jar of peanut butter? Yup. Milk chocolate? More please! The thing is, I kinda felt gross all the time. I never felt full, and I had zero energy.

Once I started getting my diet together and substituting my usual junk food favs for more nutritious options, I felt completely different! Seriously, these are game-changers. I had way more energy, and my stomach didn’t feel like a bottomless pit.

Quick & Easy

If you want something quick and to the point, scroll to the bottom for an easy to ready full substitution list. Screenshot it on your phone and look at it while grocery shopping. You can even print it out and hang it on your fridge if you want! I will be linking my favorite recommendations in the details, and explaining why the substitutes are healthier options, so keep an eye out for those!

Details

I’m going to start with a break down of what we’re substituting. Later we’ll get into the nutritional aspects of why these substitutions are healthier and all that jazz. I love these substitutions because they taste just as good (if not better to be honest) than the typical junk we put in our bodies. Let’s get into it!


A Full List of Easy Food Swaps

Granola Instead of Cereal

Most breakfast cereals are PACKED with sugar and refined grains. Big yikes. Sugar is not our friend! Instead, try a wholesome granola made with whole grains, nuts, and superfoods. A super delicious and healthy granola is Purley Elizabeth.

Chickpea or Zucchini Pasta Instead of Regular Pasta

Regular pasta, AKA “refined pasta,” is full of refined carbs that have been linked to increased risk of heart disease, high blood sugar, and insulin resistance. (1) Switching to a chickpea pasta will give you more protein, and no nasty refined carbs! I also love zucchini pasta- more veggies, less calories!

Potato Instead of Bread

Potatoes – especially sweet potatoes – have so many vitamins. They also boost nutrient absorption and keep you more full, longer. Try using a thin slice of potato instead of bread next time you make some toast! Click here for my guide on making the perfect potato toast.

Cauliflower Rice/Quinoa Instead of Rice

Cauliflower rice is an easy hack to getting some more vegetables in your diet. A lighter alternative to rice such as cauliflower, or quinoa, is a great way to get more energy and fewer calories.

Beyond Meat or Impossible Meat Instead of Cow Burgers

Ok- even typing the phrase “cow burger” grossed me out. I won’t get all ‘vegan-preachy’ on you, but seriously, burgers made from cow meat are SO bad for your health (bad for heart health, blood pressure, weight gain).

Try swapping your cow burgers with an Impossible Burger, or Beyond Meat. They taste just as good, and they’re not going to clog your arteries.

Mixed Greens Instead of Iceberg Lettuce

If you want a meal that’s going to give you lots of vitamins, energy, and nutrition, skip the iceberg lettuce. It’s very low in nutritional value, so you’re far better off with a bag of mixed greens, kale, or arugula. These dark greens have tons of vitamins and will fuel you all day!

Hummus Instead of Creamy Dips

Creamy dips can be high in calories, contain sneaky additives, and won’t supplement your health. Try scooping up some hummus instead! High in protein and fiber, this is a great alternative to creamy dips.

Nice-Cream Instead of Ice Cream

Wtf is Nice-cream? Glad you asked. Nice-cream is the best healthy hack that will fulfill your ice-cream cravings, but isn’t full of sugar, fat, and awful additives. There are so many recipes on homemade nice-cream (I’ll be posting some soon!) for now, here are my hacks to getting thick and creamy “nice-cream” smoothies!

Kombucha Instead of Soda

Okay so OBVIOUSLY soda is awful for you, but there are so many great substitutions. Kombucha is high in probiotics, tastes amazing, and will supplement your health. This bubbly alternative is a great substitution for soda. If soda is where you get your caffeine, try these fizz sticks! They’re packed with amazing ingredients and contain naturally-derived caffeine.

Plant-Based Milk Instead of Cow’s Milk

Cow’s milk is a known cause of acne and more and more people are becoming lactose intolerant. Plus large dairy farms conducting animal cruelty is a major red flag! Instead, try a plant-based milk. Almond, coconut, oat, SO MANY OPTIONS!

Dark Chocolate Instead of Regular Chocolate

Dark chocolate is FULL of antioxidants, and tastes so good! This is the perfect substitution for regular chocolate, which is packed with sugar and fat.

Almond Butter Instead of Peanut Butter

Peanut butter is acidic and very high in calories. Try switching to almond butter! It’s a healthier spread, with less calories! HEALTH HACK: Add a scoop of fiber to your nut butter. This will fill you up faster without eating as many calories.

Liquid or Coco Aminos Instead of Soy Sauce

Soy sauce is tasty, but it has so much sodium! For a healthier substitute, try liquid or coco aminos. Liquid Aminos are made from non-GMO soybeans, and have a lot less sodium. Coco Aminos are made from coconut palm sap with salt and water.

Nutritional Yeast Instead of Cheese

Ditch your dairy-filled cheese, and opt for nutritional yeast– AKA nooch. Nooch has 9 grams of protein and 4 grams of fiber in only two tablespoons! It’s also a good source of B vitamins. Regular cheese could never!

Coconut Sugar/ Maple Syrup Instead of Sugar

So we all know sugar is one of the worst things for you, right? It may seem like an essential pantry item for baking, but there is a MUCH healthier substitute! Enter: coconut sugar. Coconut not only has a lower glycemic index, but it’s full of iron, zinc, calcium and potassium, polyphenols, and antioxidants. MAJOR UPGRADE!

You can also opt for maple syrup (make sure it’s the natural kind!!). Maple syrup has plenty of iron, potassium, zinc, and magnesium in it. Perfect for sweetening lattes and baked goods!

Coconut Oil Instead of Canola Oil

Canola oil is high in trans fat and contains GMOs, pesticides, and chemical solvents. (2) Ew. On the other hand, coconut oil is known for having so many health benefits! Coconut oil improves both brain function and metabolic health, and lowers risk of heart disease. (3)


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