How to Substitute Sour Cream for Oil in Brownies

by Deborah Lundin

The oil a brownie recipe calls for helps contribute to the texture and tenderness of the final treat. But if you are looking for a lower-fat option or you're out of oil and just have to have those brownies, sour cream offers an oil alternative that works with almost any brownie recipe, including box mixes.

Preheat your oven. Combine the ingredients in a mixing bowl. Add everything as directed except for the oil.

Measure out the sour cream to 3/4 cup of sour cream for each 1 cup of oil. For example, if your recipe calls for 2 cups of oil, add 1 1/2 cups of sour cream instead. Mix all ingredients together.

Pour the brownie mix into the tin and put it in the oven.

Check your brownies 10 minutes before the end of the suggested cooking time. When you replace the oil in your recipe with sour cream, it usually shortens the cooking time. Insert a toothpick into the brownies to check for doneness. When the toothpick comes out clean, the brownies are cooked.

Items you will need

  • Brownie recipe ingredients or box mix
  • Mixing bowl
  • Sour cream
  • Measuring spoons or cups
  • Mixing spoon
  • Toothpick


  • Using fat-free or reduced-fat sour cream as an oil substitute further reduces the fat in your brownies.
  • Other possible oil substitutions for brownies include pureed fruit or vegetables and yogurt. For yogurt or vegetable purees, use 3/4 cups yogurt or vegetable puree in place of every 1 cup of oil. For fruit purees, substitute 1/2 cup of fruit puree for every 1 cup of oil your recipe calls for. Pureed prunes work well in brownies and the dark color contributes to a rich, dark brownie color.

About the Author

Deborah Lundin is a professional writer with more than 20 years of experience in the medical field and as a small business owner. She studied medical science and sociology at Northern Illinois University. Her passions and interests include fitness, health, healthy eating, children and pets.

Photo Credits

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