Adapting Recipes

By Virginia Wright

Carrot Cake

Carrot Cake

Whatever your health goals are, adapting recipes, is a good place to start when wanting healthier versions. I’ll help you learn how to adapt recipes! For ten years I was recipe developer on a low fat recipe and health information website that I founded. I gained the name of “The Recipe Lady” while working there and I call myself– “Queen of Recipe Adaptation.” What I try to do in all my recipes is change them up wherever I can to make them a healthier version. Many of the recipes that I created while recipe developer, I will be bringing to The Recipe Weekly. They will be versions of recipes that I’ve adapted in some manner; cutting the sugar a little here, the bad fats a little there, cutting calories too!

How do you begin adapting recipes? You start by taking your favorite recipes and experiment slowly, adapting them in small ways, such as in a cream cheese frosting recipe by substituting regular cream cheese for Neufchatel.

Example:  Carrot Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting

If you want to make your favorite carrot cake and frost it with cream cheese frosting, here is an alternative recipe for the frosting. The original calls for confectioners’ sugar, regular  butter, whole milk, vanilla and regular cream cheese:

Cream Cheese Frosting

1 box Confectioners’ Sugar

8 oz Neufchatel Cheese

4 Tbsp light margarine or Vegetable oil spread

2 tsp Pure Vanilla

4 Tbsp Fat-free milk, more or less

Cream non-hydrogenated margarine or Vegetable oil spread in large mixer bowl with Neufchatel cheese, add confectioners’ sugar alternately with milk, beat to spreading consistency ( an additional tbsp of milk may be needed, more or less, add a tbsp at a time until you reach the right consistency), blend in vanilla, mix well until frosting is a smooth consistency.

Savings in fat in the cheese alone…

1 serving Neufchatel Cheese    6 grams of fat

1 serving Cream Cheese   10 grams of fat

Tabulating results…

You save 4 grams of fat per 2 Tbsp serving

Then you will save more on saturated fat and cholesterol by using the Fat-free milk, you will save again using the light margarine or vegetable spread in place of butter.

Just Experiment with your recipes by adapting them.  Not all will turn out with the same texture or taste, but most of the time, the recipes won’t taste all that different than the original.  No palate death here!

Watch for the Carrot Cake recipe in upcoming postings at The Recipe Weekly…

Good Luck with your recipe! Visit often, to see what we are cooking up next!
-Virginia Wright

Author, Food Writer, Recipe Developer, Foodie & Queen of Recipe Adaptation

Twitter: @therecipeweekly


Submit a recipe for possible publication on my blog.
recipesubmission [at] virginiawright[dot] com  /in the Subject area write: Recipe Submission

© 2012 The Recipe Weekly – Virginia Wright. All Rights Reserved Worldwide.

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