Baking Secrets…SHHH!

by Kelsey Norwood

in Food


I have a few little baking tricks I use that greatly improve the overall taste and “nutrition” of baked goods.

First of all, I typically use less sugar than the recipe calls for. I will usually use 2/3 – ¾ of the total amount, mostly when making cookies but also with sweet breads like banana or zucchini. If you like your cookies and breads really sweet, you might not like it my way, but I don’t like a cookie that has so much sugar that I can actually taste each granule.

So if you like things a little less sweet try using less sugar – don’t be afraid to experiment with your recipes.

I also only ever use half the butter a recipe calls for and never shortening. Shortening is an abomination, DON’T EVER EVER USE It!… Unless you’re making a pie crust. Then you have to use shortening. But otherwise, just use butter!

If a recipe calls for butter and shortening (usually the same amount is required, like ½ c. of each), I would use the full amount of butter and none of the shortening. If a recipe only calls for butter, I cut that measurement in half.

I have never been disappointed with the result. The taste is the same, just less greasy. I don’t like to have to wash my hands with soap and water just because I touched a cookie, so this second little trick suits me just fine. And it’s better for you!

So pretty much I eat cookies for breakfast, lunch, and dinner because they’re so darn healthy!

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1 vanillajoy April 21, 2008 at 7:44 pm

Hi everyone! this is Boyd, Kelsey’s husband. Whenever we make a lot of cookies, we really do eat them for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Well…at least it seems like it to me.

2 Joi April 23, 2008 at 5:39 am

Great advice – I always have butter on hand because, frankly, I think it makes everything better. I also always have cookies on hand, too – love them!

3 Tip Junkie May 13, 2008 at 7:33 pm

I posted your tip today! It’s amazing. Thanks for taking the time to submit it.

4 Kristine May 29, 2008 at 7:03 am

Hi! I love the tips posted about using less sugar and fat. I thought you might enjoy another tip for using less sugar in foods like fruit pies and fruit salads (high acid dishes). Cut the sugar to half or less than the recipe calls for and then add a 1/4 to a 1/2 of teaspoon of baking soda. I think this is because the baking soda neutralizes the acid allowing the sugar taste to come through.
Love your blog,

5 Marjorie Jumisco January 23, 2009 at 12:36 pm

Agreed. to me, it also seems that if I add less sugar there is nothing lost on the taste. And a paper napkin can OD on the butter if you set your cookie on one!
Now I can come to any one of your houses for tea and cookies! Yaaaay.

6 Kellie August 21, 2010 at 5:36 am

Always, always I use butter and am just tickled to find out that I can cut that in half with good results.


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