Welcome to the delightful world of dairy alternatives! Use these substitutes for Greek yogurt if you’re lactose intolerant, vegan, or just out of stock.
From cakes to marinades, these simple substitutions work well in a pinch.
Greek yogurt is healthy, protein-rich, and makes some pretty tasty Greek yogurt dips. But it’s not always available or suitable for everyone’s dietary needs.
That’s where these substitutes for Greek yogurt come in handy.
So whether you’re baking muffins or tenderizing meat, I’ve got you covered.
What Is Greek Yogurt?
Greek yogurt is a thick, creamy type of yogurt with a higher protein content than regular yogurt.
Made by straining yogurt to remove the whey and excess water, it has a thick texture and a tangy flavor.
It’s an excellent source of protein, calcium, and probiotics, which can promote digestive health and boost the immune system.
It’s also low in fat and calories, making it an ideal choice if you’re looking to maintain a healthy diet.
Originating in Greece, this yogurt has been a staple in Mediterranean cuisine for centuries. It’s now widely available in supermarkets worldwide.
Best Substitutes for Greek Yogurt
1. Plain Yogurt
Plain yogurt is an excellent substitute for Greek yogurt, especially if you want a lower-fat or lower-calorie option.
Although it’s not as thick and creamy, plain yogurt has similar probiotic content and tangy flavor as Greek yogurt.
You still get the same flavor profile and nutritional benefits, minus the calories.
This alternative works well in cake recipes or anything that requires a yogurt base, such as dips, sauces, and marinades.
For instance, it’s perfect for making tzatziki, since its tangy flavor complements the fresh herbs and vegetables.
You can also use plain yogurt to top savory entrees like chili-broiled salmon.
It provides a creamy texture that balances out the spiciness of the fish.
2. Sour Cream
With a texture just as thick as Greek yogurt, sour cream is perfect for recipes that call for both tang and thickness.
It’s great in baked goods like pound cakes. It infuses moisture into the batter, providing a rich texture and delicious flavor.
Sour cream is also less likely to separate under high heat than yogurt, making it a great choice for soups, sauces, and dips.
Note: when using sour cream as a substitute for Greek yogurt, you may need to adjust the amount of salt and lemon juice in the recipe (if present) to account for its tanginess.
3. Cottage Cheese
Cottage cheese is known for being a protein powerhouse, making it a popular choice for fitness enthusiasts.
Sour cream has 6 grams more protein than Greek yogurt per serving!
It’s also a good source of calcium, vitamin A, and other nutrients that support bone health and overall wellness.
That said, cottage cheese is an optimal breakfast choice that’ll keep you full until lunchtime.
For a delicious breakfast bowl, swap Greek yogurt with a scoop of cottage cheese and top with sweet berries and crunchy granola.
If you find the curdled texture of cottage cheese off-putting, stick to smoothie recipes.
You won’t notice it anymore once you blend it with fruit and milk!
4. Cream Cheese
This delicious and versatile dairy product is another great substitute for Greek yogurt.
It has a more compact texture than Greek yogurt.
But cream cheese has a rich, creamy, and nuanced taste that works well in a variety of dishes.
This makes it an ideal substitute for baked goods, dips, and sauces.
Just remember to take it out of the fridge ahead of time to soften it and make it easier to handle!
For instance, you can swap a cup of Greek yogurt for whipped, room-temperature cream cheese in your favorite buffalo chicken dip recipe.
The result is a rich and flavorful dip, with a consistency that’s just as smooth as if you’d used Greek yogurt.
While buttermilk may not be an ideal replacement for Greek yogurt in every recipe, it can be an excellent substitute for some.
For example, buttermilk can be used as a 1:1 substitute for Greek yogurt in pancake, waffle, and muffin recipes, as it adds moisture and tang.
The acidity in buttermilk also helps to activate baking soda, making baked goods extra fluffy.
Buttermilk is also a suitable replacement in recipes where Greek yogurt is used as a marinade.
The acid in buttermilk tenderizes meat and adds a tangy flavor, just like Greek yogurt.
Lastly, buttermilk can be used as a Greek yogurt substitute in dressings and dips.
It works well in those that require a thinner consistency, such as ranch or blue cheese.
6. Mashed Bananas
Mashed bananas are a suitable substitute for Greek yogurt in baking recipes where you need to add moisture and texture.
They’re great in recipes for cakes, muffins, pancakes, and quick bread, where the moistness of Greek yogurt is required.
Because they’re dairy-free, mashed bananas are also an excellent option for those who are lactose intolerant or vegan.
They’re even a healthier option since they contain fewer calories and less fat than Greek yogurt.
The only possible drawback is their strong banana flavor, which isn’t desirable in some recipes.
That said, it’s important to consider the recipe’s overall flavor and texture first.
7. Mashed Avocado
Mashed avocado is an excellent substitute for Greek yogurt in recipes that require creaminess and moisture.
You can use this alternative in a wide range of recipes, from quick breads to smoothies.
Plus, avocados are a great source of healthy fats and are dairy-free, making it ideal for vegans.
When using it as a replacement for Greek yogurt, use a 1-to-1 ratio and puree the avocado before measuring.
This will ensure that the substitution results in a similar texture and consistency to Greek yogurt.
Then, add a splash of lemon or lime juice to give it a tangy flavor.
Mayonnaise may seem like a weird substitute for Greek yogurt, but it works well in baking.
The oil in mayonnaise helps lock in moisture into baked dishes, resulting in a tender and moist crumb.
While it’s richer than Greek yogurt, you can use a 1-to-1 ratio when substituting it for Greek yogurt in baked goods.
And no, your cakes and muffins won’t taste like mayo!
9. Coconut Cream
Coconut cream is a great option for those who are looking for a dairy-free alternative to Greek yogurt.
It’s rich, creamy, and delivers a similar consistency.
Its nutty, flavor can also add a unique and delicious twist to your dishes.
You can use coconut cream in a wide variety of recipes, including dips, smoothies, and desserts.
For this Greek yogurt substitute, simply do a direct swap.
For instance, use a cup of coconut cream where you would have used a cup of Greek yogurt.
Just note that canned coconut cream is much thicker and creamier than coconut milk found in cartons, which is thinner and more watery.
10. Silken Tofu
Silken tofu is a versatile and healthy alternative to Greek yogurt that’s perfect for vegans or those who can’t have dairy.
One of its main advantages is its neutral taste and smooth texture, making it an ideal replacement for Greek yogurt in many recipes.
You can use it in both sweet and savory dishes, and its creamy texture works well in desserts like cheesecake, pudding, or ice cream.
Silken tofu is also high in protein and low in fat, which makes it a healthy choice.
Plus, silken tofu is incredibly easy to find in most grocery stores and is more affordable than Greek yogurt.
Overall, if you’re looking for a healthy, tasty, and versatile alternative to Greek yogurt, silken tofu is an excellent choice.
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