Vegan Baking Substitutes: Butter

By: Whitney Barnes | June 18 2019
Here at the Bob’s Red Mill Headquarters we develop and test recipes all day long. In our years of baking, we’ve settled on some pretty tried and true vegan egg, vegan milk, and vegan butter substitutes. These are plant based alternatives to eggs, butter or milk that can be used in most recipes. Vegan baking substitutes are pretty simple, but first we need to understand what roles eggs, butter and milk play in our muffins, cakes, and cookies! Today we’re taking a look at vegan butter substitutes!

What is butter made of?

Butter from dairy is made from about 80% butterfat, 15% water, and 5% milk solids.

What are good vegan butter substitutes?

In baking, you can use vegan butter, applesauce, dairy-free yogurt, coconut oil, coconut butter, olive oil, nut butter, mashed banana and mashed avocado. In cooking, you can use olive oil, coconut oil, vegetable stock, or avocado oil to replace butter. Keep in mind that the percentages of fat and water will vary with substitutes and this may affect your baked goods in texture and flavor. vegan butter substitutes

What does butter do in baking?

Butter provides moisture and flavor in baking. Moisture in the butter helps hydrate flour and starches, binds together ingredients, and adds tenderness and flavor.

What is a good substitute for butter in cookies?

If you're using a vegan substitute for butter, replace the butter with something of similar substance; solid for solid and liquid for liquid. If your cookies call for cold butter, use a solid vegan butter stick, solid coconut oil or coconut butter. If your cookie recipe calls for melted butter, use melted coconut oil, olive oil or applesauce.

What is a good substitute for butter in pie crust?

The best vegan butter substitute to use in pie crust is a vegan baking stick (like Earth Balance or Miyoko's) or solid coconut oil. When making vegan pie crust, keep the fat/butter super duper cold until it hits the oven. To do this, you might need to work with cold flour, a cold surface, or stick your dough in the freezer or refrigerator. When the extreme heat of the oven meets cold fat/butter/vegan butter it instantly melts and creates steam which in turn, create those flaky pockets in pie crust!

What is vegan butter made from?

Vegan butter is usually made from a mixture of oils, lecithin, and protein. Some are cultured to mimic the milky-tangy flavor of dairy butter. The oils are then emulsified to create a solid using xanthan gum, psyllium husk powder, sunflower lecithin, etc.

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  1. Coni
    I have been replacing you 1to1 flour in my vegan recipes and the middle of my baked goods come out doughy and don't rise as much as I would like. Any suggestions.
    1. Whitney Barnes
      Whitney Barnes
      Hi Coni! Please contact our Customer Service team - they're happy to help troubleshoot your recipes. [email protected] or 1-800-349-2173
  2. Debbie Thompson
    Very helpful! Thanks for sharing your ideas
  3. Pam Bradley
    New family member has allergies to wheat , dairy and eggs. I need holiday dessert ideas.
    1. Whitney Barnes
      Hi Pam! You can narrow down our recipe site to show only gluten free and vegan recipes - there are a lot to choose from and we hope you find a good fit!

      Bob's Red Mill Recipes: Gluten Free & Vegan
  4. Kathleen Kimble
    Has anyone ever tried to substitute for the dairy butter using cocoa butter or unsweetened white chocolate (even lightly sweetened thus cutting back the other sweeteners)...

    Cocoa/chocolates (not the powder) have a pretty high fat content...

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