In this article I’m going to outline what butter alternatives there are for dairy free and vegan baking.
These days, along with ‘Roo’ having to avoid dairy, I have to avoid it too.
A few months ago I had some intolerance tests carried out by York Test.
They informed me that I was intolerant to dairy along with egg white, and a few different nuts.
In the interests of my readers I cut these things out of my diet (even though I was skeptical).
Since completely avoiding dairy and egg whites, the eczema on my hands has finally cleared up for the first time in around 10 years.
Last week I had my first whole egg as part of the re-introduction experiments. So far so good as far as my skin is concerned. My tummy is another matter since it now seems to dislike most things but that’s another story.
Until I try to re-introduce dairy, and whilst cooking for ‘Roo’, I am always searching for good alternatives to butter in my baking.
I love butter. It certainly would be my first choice of fat in baked goods because it’s natural and tastes amazing. But when you can’t use it, what do you use?
Depending on what you’re baking the following butter alternatives work well:
Use 20% less coconut oil than butter and add a dash water. So if a recipe calls for 250g butter, use 200g coconut oil. Only use in recipes that require softened butter. It doesn’t work well in pastry because it becomes liquid when heated.
Substitute weight for weight with butter. Use in baked goods such as cakes and biscuits.
Pureed apple (apple sauce)
Substitute weight for weight for butter. Again great in cakes. I haven’t tried it in biscuits. It wouldn’t work in pastry.
Pureed pumpkin (or butternut squash)
Same as above
Same as above, but bear in mind that you are likely to taste it.
Use 3 units of oil instead of 4 units of butter.
So for example if a recipe calls for 200g butter use 150ml oil instead. This works best in cakes that combine a liquid sweetener (like honey or maple syrup), ground nuts and a binder such as egg or egg substitute.
This substitution wouldn’t work well in pastry.
Dairy-free soft margarine
Substitute weight for weight in all baked goods. Can be used in pastry but I prefer using a mixture of soft margarine and hard margarine
Dairy-free hard margarine
Most hard margarines you substitute weight for weight. However, Trex contains no water so you use 20% less and therefore get less fat in your baking. They even have a converter on their website to help you to work out how much you need.
Although I try to avoid margarine as far as possible, sometimes it isn’t possible.
Dairy Free Pastry
Gluten free and dairy free pastry recipes are an example of where margarine is required.
In my dairy free, gluten free shortcrust pastry I use a mixture of Trex and soft margarine. I haven’t yet found anything that will work as well.
The combination gives the pastry a wonderful short texture without a crumble in site.
In fact the pastry photographed below is even egg-free and I made it into a delicious mincemeat granola slice.
I’ve also perfected my gluten-free and dairy-free rough puff pastry. But once again it relies on margarine in the place of butter.
You’ll find that recipe along with other gluten free pastry recipes in my How To Make Gluten Free Pastry recipe ebook.
Along with making mince pies with my easy shortcrust pastry recipe, you could try out these other recipes that use it.
My chocolate tart always goes down a treat.
Who said you have to miss out if you eat gluten and dairy-free food!
Dairy Free buttercream
In addition to pastry, I use Trex in my dairyfree ‘butter’ icing.
It doesn’t separate like dairy free buttercream made purely from margarine. It also gives a light, fluffy frosting just like one made with butter.
I also have another dairy free frosting recipe that doesn’t use margarine. It’s my vegan chocolate frosting recipe and it’s made from cashew nuts
What baking substitutions do you use to cope with your free from diet?
Have you tried out any of these in place of butter?
Do you have any success stories you would like to share?
I’d love to hear from you…
Pin this post so you don’t lose it:
This post was sponsored by Trex however all opinions and writing is my own.