The Substitution Tip To Remember When Swapping Yogurt And Cream Cheese

knife spreading cream cheese
knife spreading cream cheese - Sinan Kocaslan/Getty Images

We know that yogurt can sub in as a light and creamy mayo replacement, but that's not the only swap this breakfast food is good for. It may seem unlikely at first, but it's actually possible to use yogurt in place of cream cheese too. You may not want to spread it on your bagel, but it is an effective swap in baked goods like piña colada cupcakes, spreads like buffalo chicken dip, and savory recipes like creamy Cajun shrimp pasta.

Before you use any old yogurt in place of cream cheese, however, here's an important tip to remember: You'll want to choose a product made with whole milk. You're probably aware that this type includes all the fat it came with, but what you may not know is that whole milk is usually around 3.5% fat. This doesn't come close to the amount in cream cheese, which is at least 33% fat, but whole milk will give you a thicker dairy product than what you'd get with 2%, 1%, or non-fat yogurt cups.

Read more: 14 Of The Best Buttermilk Substitutes To Use In A Pinch

How To Replace Cream Cheese With Yogurt

open Greek yogurt container
open Greek yogurt container - Haha21/Getty Images

Even with whole milk options, not all yogurts are created equal. Unless you're drastically trying to alter the taste of your recipe, avoid flavored cups or ones that have some sort of preserves at the bottom. Go for a plain, whole-milk product, and for an even thicker variety, try one that has been strained, like Greek yogurt or Icelandic skyr. These types have had the whey and additional liquids removed, so you end up with a creamier, more concentrated yogurt. Technically, Icelandic skyr is a cheese anyway, and you can find whole milk versions of it at grocery stores like Whole Foods.

Once you've tracked down your ideal full-fat yogurt, you can typically sub it out for cream cheese in a 1:1 ratio, even when baking. However, keep in mind that yogurt is a little tangier than cream cheese (especially Greek yogurt or Icelandic skyr), so the replacement might affect the overall flavor of your dish. This isn't necessarily a bad thing — some richer recipes (like that buffalo chicken dip) or heavier desserts may benefit from a little bite. If you have some cream cheese on hand, you can also try using half of the required amount and replacing the other half with yogurt for a softer switch. But as long as you choose a whole milk yogurt, you're on your way to creating a delicious and effective cream cheese replacement.

Read the original article on Tasting Table.