Whenever I don't have an ingredient I thought I had, or it is not sold around me, I often find myself running to my old cookbooks which have substitutes in the back of the book(s).

I don't always find a substitute for the ingredient in question and not every online source is reliable and could make or break a dish.

Is there a reliable source for substitute ingredients?

  • according to @rumtscho this question is off topic because it asks for a source of information/learning rather than a specific question about cooking. Jul 19, 2015 at 0:07

1 Answer 1


Yes. The Cooks Thesaurus.

Some entries are more extensive than others -- for instance, the eggs entry gives different substitutions depending on what you're using the eggs for.

They're great for the 'I'm out of (x)' or 'I can't find (x) in my area'.

Where they're more likely to fail is the case of restrictive diets -- like if you're specifically looking for a gluten free or vegan alternative to something. But in those cases, it's often better to do a recipe search for "gluten free" + (name of dish) as the substitution may involve a change in technique or other dramatic modification of the recipe.

  • 4
    The easiest way to fill in more text is to explain what the site offers... link only answers are discouraged.
    – Catija
    Jul 19, 2015 at 0:07

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