The typical butter used for cooking and baking as well as a leavening agent is diary-based. Some people are not a fan of cow’s milk butter, so there are a lot of other nutritious and delicious substitutes.
Butter is made from animals by separating milk from cream and churning the cream until it becomes solid. Generally, there are many types of butter, including plant-based butter, dairy butter, and nut butter.
The plant-based butter has a similar consistency though it’s produced using vegetable oils instead of cream.
Both dairy and plant-based butter are different from nut butter ( such as peanut butter or almond butter), which is made by grinding nuts into a spreadable paste.
Why might you need substitutes for butter?
As stated already, typical butter is made with cow’s milk. People who have food allergies to dairy products or are lactose intolerant may have to opt for other healthy substitutes for butter.
Most people may require a substitute due to the nutritional facts of butter since it’s a concentrated source of calories, saturated fat, and cholesterol.
Also, people who follow a vegan or strictly plant-based diet may also seek healthy substitutes for butter.
Popular Substitutes for Butter
There’s no best substitute for butter, the alternative to use depends on how you plan to use it.
If what you want is a butter substitute for baking, then the choice will be different for cooking and so on. Sometimes you may require several butter substitutes to meet all of your needs.
Substitutes for butter for as cooking
1. Olive Oil
Olive oil is commonly regarded as a healthy substitute for butter, so the two are interchangeable in some cooking situations.
Swapping the two may not be perfect since butter is solid and olive oil is liquid, so you may need to use a smaller amount of olive oil in place of butter when cooking or baking.
Nutritionally, olive oil tends to be a better and healthier option. It’s rich in polyphenols, vitamins, and monounsaturated fats.
It is also a staple in the Mediterranean diet because it is associated with high antioxidant content and anticancer properties.
2. Coconut Oil
You can use coconut oil in place of butter as it solidifies at colder temperatures. It’s a good substitute for butter in both baking and cooking. However, it’s best to go for refined coconut oil since it has a higher smoking point.
Unrefined coconut oil may be a good option for baking. However, if you’re trying to shed extra fat, you may choose to replace coconut oil with butter because of its effect on metabolism.
Coconut oil contains short-and medium-chain fatty acids, which may increase metabolism and energy levels.
Also, coconut may slightly change the flavor and taste of your meal as it contains a strong, coconut-flavored taste.
It is a syrupy(clarified) type of butter commonly used in Indian cooking. Ghee has also been used for thousands of years in ayurvedic medicine.
It is a type of butter, but it is more nutritious due to the way it is made. The clarifying process of making this butter removes milk solids, so it contains less lactose or casein than regular butter.
Thus, people with lactose intolerance or milk allergy may be able to safely consume Ghee without adverse reactions.
In addition, Ghee can also be used to replace butter at a 1:1 ratio. It’s best used as a substitute for butter, especially when making baked foods like bread.
Substitutes for butter as a spread
4. Nut butter
Nut butter is high in calories and fat, so it should be used in small quantities when replacing butter in baking recipes.
It’s also important to note that nuts contain healthy fats and proteins and a series of essential vitamins such as vitamin E.
Nut butter may also be a healthy substitute for people with dairy allergies or people following a high-fat diet.
Mashed avocados and avocado oil are excellent substitutes for butter, and they can both be used as butter substitutes in baking and cooking, respectively.
You can also spread mashed avocado over bread like you would do with butter.
Besides being a healthy substitute for butter and a source of fat, avocado also contains other nutrients such as vitamins and fibers.
6. Unsweetened applesauce
It is commonly used as a butter substitute in non-dairy recipes such as cakes, muffins, and other baked goods that call for unsweetened applesauce in place of butter.
Unsweetened applesauce is a dairy-free substitute and low in calories and fat. Also, applesauce adds natural sweetness to the recipe, so you need less sugar.
7. Greek yogurt
Greek yogurt is an excellent choice for people who can consume dairy products but want a source of healthy fat and protein.
It will as a great substitute for butter when baking. It adds a tangy flavor, but it helps keep baked goods moist.
8. Mashed bananas
They add a sweet flavor and wet component to baking, adding little calories and grams of fat.
Mashed bananas are a common substitute for butter in most vegan and low-fat recipes. Also, they aren’t just for banana bread.