3 Day Military Diet Substitutes List

Though the three day military diet is one of the popular quick weight loss plans, there are a few people who are hesitant to follow the diet due to several reasons such as food restrictions, food choices that don’t appeal to them or due to any dietary limitations and so on…

And, we keep getting a lot of comments on our blog that say:

I don’t like the foods on the army diet. Are there any other military diet substitutions that don’t spoil the diet?

Well, in this article, we’ll be answering all your doubts regarding the food limitations on the diet.

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 foods that contains similar nutrients and calories.

For example, a can of Tuna has 200 calories that can be swapped with 20 almonds. But, that doesn’t mean you can consume 1 cup of Almonds as it will make you gain weight very easily.

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

Military Diet Substitutions List:

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

  1. Tuna – Lean meat, Cottage Cheese, Tofu, Almonds, Peanuts
  2. Meat – Any type of meat, Lentils, Beans, Tofu, Portobello mushrooms
  3. Eggs – Milk, Chicken Wings, Bacon, Nuts
  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. Banana – Papaya, Kiwi, Apricots
  7. Apple – Plums, Grapes, Pears, Peaches, Pears, Zucchini or Dried Apricots
  8. Broccoli – Spinach, Asparagus, Brussel Sprouts, Cauliflower
  9. Carrots – Beets, Celery, Squash, Parsnip, Bell Pepper.
  10. Green Beans – Tomatoes, Lettuce, Spinach
  11. Peanut Butter – Almond Butter, Soy Butter, Hummus etc…
  12. Whole Wheat Bread – Whole Grain Cereal, Flax Seeds, Rice Cakes
  13. Coffee – Sugar Free Redbull, Green Tea
  14. Cottage Cheese – Cheddar/Soy Cheese, Soy Milk, Tofu, Ham
  15. Saltine Crackers – Rice Cakes, Gluten-free Crackers
  16. Vanilla Ice Cream – Apple Juice, Fruit Flavored Yogurt

And, only use the military diet substitutes if really necessary and remember not to replace the entire menu with the food substitutions as it will not help you in any ways.

Just try to pick the alternative to the foods you really hate or allergic to.

P.S: Although, you’re allowed to replace the foods on the diet, it is highly advised to eat/get the same amount of calories from the foods you’re substituting so that you don’t get mixed/negative weight loss results at the end.
Download the List of Military Diet Substitutions PDF

Best Military Diet Food Substitutes

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/vegan military diet menu.

1.What is a good military diet substitute for Tuna?

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 cottage cheese substitute for military diet?

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.


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.

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