Substituting ingredients in cooking or baking is a great way to make recipes healthier. Butter is a commonly substituted ingredient because of its high-fat properties, although it can be difficult to replicate the taste and texture of butter. When substituting sour cream for butter, it can help to combine it with other common butter substitutes such as apple sauce, vegetable oil or margarine.
Things You'll Need
Determine the amount of butter you wish to replace in the recipe. If the recipe calls for a relatively small amount of butter (less than 1/4 cup) you can safely replace it entirely with sour cream. If the recipe calls for more butter, you will need to take into account replicating the oiliness of butter that sour cream lacks.
Measure out the appropriate amount of sour cream. For a small replacement, use a 1-to-1 ratio where you substitute the exact amount of butter you would be using with sour cream.
Mix in other butter substitutes if you need to increase the oily texture of butter for the recipe. Vegetable oil and margarine both contain significant amounts of oil and can be added to sour cream to increase its similarity to butter. Apple sauce is another common butter substitute that can be added.
Reduce the amount of other wet ingredients. Sour cream adds significant moistness to baked goods compared to butter, and you can cut back slightly on other wet ingredients.
Keep notes on the ratios of the substitutions used for a particular recipe. Use your notes to replicate successes, and figure out what went wrong with failures.
Consider making a smaller amount of what you’re cooking the first time you try substituting, as a test batch.
If at first the substitution doesn’t work, alter the ratios and try again.
References and ResourcesThe Prepared Pantry, "Make Your Own Recipes"
The Washington Post, "Tastes Good, Less Filling"
Recipe Tips, "Butter Substitute"