Military Diet Substitutions – List of Alternative Food Substitutes Allowed

There are some people who stay away from the 3 day military diet due to several reasons like food restrictions, food choices that don’t appeal to them or because of dietary limitations and so on…

Unlike what most people fear, the 3 day diet is not that strict and can easily be turned into a vegan, vegetarian, gluten-free and lactose-free versions by making use of the following Military Diet substitutions.

Yes, Military Diet Food Substitutes are allowed in a few cases such as:

  • if you’ve any dietary limitations
  • have allergies
  • Can’t choke down the suggested military foods
  • etc…

You can simply swap the military diet foods that you can’t eat or don’t like with a different food item that contains the similar nutrients and calories.

For example, a can of Tuna has 200 calories that can be swapped with 20 almonds. But, you should not consume 1 cup of Almonds as it will make you gain weight so easily.

So, the thumb rule here is the calorie count should be same while substituting or replacing the military diet meals with other food choices.

Best 3 Day Military Diet Substitutions List

  1. Tuna – Cottage Cheese, Tofu, Almonds, Peanuts
  2. Cottage Cheese – Cheddar/Soy Cheese, Soy Milk, Tofu, Ham
  3. Coffee – Sugar Free Redbull, Green Tea
  4. Hot Dogs – Turkey Dogs, Deli Meat, Soy Dogs, Tofu Dogs etc..
  5. Grapefruit – 1/2 tsp Baking Soda in a Glass of water
  6. Bananas – Papaya, Kiwi, Apricots
  7. Broccoli – Spinach, Asparagus, Brusser Sprouts etc..
  8. Saltine Cracker – Rice Cakes, Gluten-free Crackers
  9. Vanilla Icecream – Apple Juice, Fruit Flavored Yogurt
  10. Carrots – Beets, Celery, Squash etc…
  11. Peanut Butter – Almond Butter, Soy Butter, Hummus etc…
  12. Eggs – Milk, Chicken Wings, Bacon, Nuts
  13. Meat – Lentils, Beans, Tofu etc…
  14. Whole Wheat Bread – Whole Grain Cereal, Flax Seeds, Rice Cakes
  15. Apple – Plums, Grapes, Pears etc…
  16. Green Beans – Tomatoes, Lettuce, Spinach

Listed below are the possible and recommended Military Diet alternatives that you can mix and match to design a lactose free, gluten free and vegetarian military diet menu.

1.What is a good substitute for Tuna on the Military Diet?

Well, some people don’t like the plain tuna out of the can. So, if you’re one of such kind, then you can substitute canned tuna with a piece of grilled sushi grade tuna, which is the same size as ½ or 1 cup serving of canned tuna.

Alternatively, you can include any lean meat, but fish is preferable.

In case if you’re looking for vegetarian substitute for tuna, then you can include:

– Cottage Cheese
– Tofu
– Almonds
– Peanuts.

2.What is a good substitute for Cottage Cheese when dieting?

As said earlier, the best alternative to cottage cheese is cheddar cheese or non-dairy alternatives such as:

– Soy Cheese
– Soy Milk
– Tofu
– Ham

3.Military Diet Substitute for Coffee

A single cup of coffee contains nearly 100 mgs of caffeine. The best coffee alternatives include:

– Sugar free Redbull (~76 mgs of caffeine)
– Green tea with sugar-free hot chocolate (optional)

4.Military Diet Substitutions for Hot Dogs

You can replace hot dogs with:

– Turkey dogs
– Deli meat
– Bratwurst
– Luncheon meat.

If you’re a vegetarian military diet follower, then you can replace it with

– Soy dogs
– Tofu dogs
– Portobello mushrooms
– Beans
– lentils.

5.What Can You Substitute for Grapefruit?

Even I personally don’t like grapefruit! Just add ½ tsp of baking soda in a glass of water and drink it. It is the best fat-burning substitution for grapefruit.

But, don’t include oranges as they give the opposite results.

6.Is there any better alternatives for Banana in the Military Diet?

Banana has been recommended on almost all three days of the military diet. But, if you don’t like it, then you can substitute 1 whole banana with either a cup of Papaya or 2 kiwis or 2 apricots. So, that makes ½ banana replaceable with ½ cup of papaya, 1 kiwi or 1 apricot.

7.Broccoli Alternatives on the 3 day diet

The best substitute for broccoli are green vegetables such as:

– Spinach
– Asparagus
– Brussel sprouts
– Cauliflower

8.Substitute for Saltine Crackers in 3 Day Military Diet

Each saltine cracker gives you around 13 calories. You can substitute them with rice cakes or any gluten-free crackers with same calories.

9.Healthy Substitute for Vanilla Ice Cream in Military Diet

It is weird, but some people don’t like the ice cream. Some others want to avoid it due to cold or flu issues. Whatever may be the reason, you can substitute ice cream with either 1 glass of apple juice or 1 cup of fruit flavored Yogurt.

10.Best Carrot Substitutes

You can substitute carrots with the following foods:

– Beets
– Celery
– Squash
– Parsnip
– Bell pepper

11.Peanut Butter Alternatives

There are some people who’re allergic to peanuts and few others don’t like the taste. The best substitutes for peanut butter include:

– Almond butter
– Soy butter
– Hummus
– Pumpkin butter
– Sunflower seed butter

12.What can I substitute for a hard boiled Eggs in the 3 Day Diet?

Eggs are rich in protein. A single contains around 6 gm of protein. If you don’t like eggs, then you can swap it with:

– 1 cup of milk
– 1 chicken wing
– ¼ cup of nuts
– 2 slices of bacon

13.Meat Substitutes for 3 Day Military Diet

You can have any type of meat as long as the calories are the same. If you’re looking for a vegetarian substitute for meat, then try including:

– Lentils
– Beans
– Tofu
– Portobello mushrooms

14.Whole Wheat Bread Substitutions

The toast is one of the most recommended foods in the military diet. So, substitute it only if necessary. The alternatives for wholegrain bread include:

– ½ cup whole grain cereal
– ¼ cup yogurt with ½ tsp flax seeds
– rice cakes

15.Any Apple Alternatives on the Military Diet?

Yes, you can replace them with plums, grapes, peaches, pears, zucchini or dried apricots.

16.Green Beans Substitute

Replace Green beans with either tomatoes or lettuce or spinach.

Things to Know before Picking up a Military Diet Substitute

The size of the food doesn’t matter here. All you need to consider is the amount of calories you’re getting from the foods. Just ensure you replace the food with another item with similar calorie count.

For example, 4 oz of cottage cheese has the same amount of calories (100) as the 1 oz of cheddar cheese. Although the portion size got reduced, the calories remain the same.

Similarly, a can of Tuna has around 200 calories, which is equal to 20 almonds. But, if you replace the can of Tuna with a cup of Almonds, then you’re hampering with your weight loss results. So, please be careful with the calories while replacing the foods.

Also find the frequently asked question about the Military Diet before proceeding to read the food substitutions on the three day diet.Lastly, please go for the military diet substitutions only if necessary as the original version will help you lose more weight compared to the modified or customized versions.

3 Day Military Diet Substitutions List PDF
Download the Military Diet Substitutes List PDF


    1. Choose any 1 of the below foods in place of brown bread

      2 rice cakes or 1/2 cup whole grain cereal or 1/2 cup unsweetened Yogurt with 1/2 tsp Flax seeds or 5 to 6 saltine crackers

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