i want to bake a cake that calls for oil. can i use apples sauce instead? what is the conversion ratio?
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Applesauce can be substituted anywhere from 3/4 to 1 cup for 1 cup of oil. There really isn't a specific conversion b/c it can depend on what exactly you are making and sometimes trial & error is the best bet.
However, keeping the amount of sugar as low as possible in your cake recipe would be the healthiest choice, and therefore I would just use the oil (as long as you are using a quality, healthy oil like coconut oil) and resist the urge to add even more sugar (applesauce) to the recipe. Your waistline will thank you.
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When my daughter was in high school, for her science project, we baked 3 cakes according to a specific oil-based recipe. We substituted 1/2 applesauce for 1/2 of the oil in one, and all the applesauce in another. She held a taste test. The all oil cake was judged the best in flavor and texture; the all-applesauce cake was the worst. I say go for the best taste and texture and eat a little bit. Cake is a treat--make the best cake you can. (Just my humble opinion....)
I usually make carrot cake with applesauce, using the same amount of applesauce as oil is called for, and it comes out a bit more pudding-y than springy and fluffy. I actually prefer my carrot cake this way, so the success of the apple sauce probably depends somewhat on the type of cake you're making.