Common Substitutions For American Ingredients

Stumped by an American ingredient in a recipe? Here are common equivalent ingredients.

pantry staples ingredients
Photo: Meredith

We want cooks around the world to be able to use recipes from But not all ingredients or measurements are the same from country to country.

So what's cilantro, confectioners' sugar, cornstarch, or half and half? Use our handy Cheat Sheet when you're stumped. This chart can help you find the closest equivalent ingredients.


all-purpose flour = plain flour
andouille sausage = smoked sausage
baking sodium = bicarbonate of soda
cilantro = fresh coriander
confectioners' sugar = icing sugar
frozen whipped topping = long-life whipped UHT cream
corn syrup = golden syrup
cornstarch = cornflour
egg substitute = egg white
eggplant = aubergine
fava beans = broad beans
frosting = icing
garbanzo beans = chickpeas
graham cracker = digestive biscuit
granulated sugar = caster sugar
great Northern beans = cannellini beans
green onions = spring onions
ground beef (ground lamb, turkey, pork) = minced beef (minced lamb, turkey, pork)
half and half = single cream
ham steaks = gammon steaks
heavy cream = whipping cream
instant pudding mix = whipped dessert mix
Jell-O® gelatin = jelly
jelly = jam
lasagna noodles = lasagne sheets
molasses = treacle
bouillon granules = stock cube
non-fat milk = skimmed milk
oatmeal = porridge
pie crust = pastry crust
pizza crust = pizza base
pork tenderloin = pork fillet
potato chips = potato crisps
reduced fat milk = semi-skimmed milk
semisweet chocolate = dark chocolate
shortening (e.g., Crisco®) = butter or margarine, or vegetable fat spread (e.g., Stork®)
snow peas = mangetout
tomato paste = tomato puree
whole wheat flour = wholemeal flour
zucchini = courgette

Cookery Terms

appetizer = starter
entrée = main course
biscuit = scone
broiler = grill
canned = tinned
cookie = biscuit
cookie sheet/baking pan = baking tray
hard-cooked eggs = hard-boiled eggs
mold = mould
noodles = pasta
pie pan = pie tin
plastic wrap = cling film
rack = shelf
shortdough pastry = shortcrust pastry
stovetop = cooker/hob
wax paper = greaseproof paper
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