Shortening -Baking with Less Calories
Shortening may be butter, margarine or lard, but its generic meaning is any semisolid fat used in cooking especially used in baked goods. It can come from an animal or a vegetable. The reason it is is called shortening is because it promotes a short or crumbling texture. Shortening has a higher smoke point and it is 100% fat, compared to butter or margarine which has an 80% content.
The calorie and saturated fat count:
- Shortening: 1 cup = 1812 calories, saturated fat is 53.5 g.
- Butter: 1 cup = 1628 calories, saturated fat is 116.6 g.
- Lard: 1 cup = 1849 calories, saturated fat is 80.4 g
- Crisco butter flavor 1 cup = 1760 calories, saturated fat 192
Looking at these high amounts make me think of stroke and heart attack, as this amount of saturated fat will certainly increase your cholesterol and triglycerides.
So, what is the answer when we want our cake, cookies or just something to spread on our toast? There are different substitutes on the market and some tricks for the kitchen. Olvio is a new product that is made from olive oil and although you refrigerate it, it is still soft for spreading at all times. It has the appearance of and texture of margarine. It has whey and buttermilk in the recipe so it is okay for vegetarians but not for vegans.
Yogurt as Shortening Substitute
Yogurt is another product that can be used as a substitute in baking. Following are some easy guidelines for using yogurt:
- When a recipe calls for butter, replace half the butter with half as much yogurt. For instance, instead of 1 cup butter, use 1/2 cup butter and 1/4 cup yogurt.
- When a recipe calls for shortening or oil, replace half the oil with 3/4 the amount of yogurt. For example, instead of 1 cup of oil, use 1/2 cup oil and 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons yogurt.
- Substitute yogurt cup for cup for sour cream in recipes.
- Yogurt can even replace some of the water or milk in a recipe. Begin by substituting 1/4 of the liquid with yogurt. The result will be creamier and more flavorful.
There are other items you can use to cut back on butter and shortening. Applesauce or prune puree for half of the called-for butter, shortening or oil. To avoid dense, soggy or flat baked goods, don't substitute oil for butter or shortening. Substitute mayonnaise for part of the shortening in your baking recipes. It adds moistness and makes for a tender texture. Be careful though. Try using half mayo and half shortening at first.
Chocolate Chip Cookies
Using Canola Oil
My mother makes wonderful chocolate chip cookies. She substitutes canola oil but uses a little less than the cup the recipe calls for. Her cookies rise, are moist and delicious. So you don’t mix oil with applesauce, but you can use it by itself and expect a good result. Another thing you can do to cut fat is use parchment paper on your baking sheets, then you do not have to grease your pans
Coconut Oil for Baking
Coconut oil can be used in baked goods, such as cookies, cakes, muffins, pastries, pie crusts, waffles, and pancakes, candy bars, chocolate coatings, candy coatings, protein bars, meal replacement products, and many other products. Coconut oil has a unique taste, texture, and an incredibly long shelf life.
Not only is coconut oil lower in calories than most other fats and oils, less coconut oil is required when baking or cooking! You can replace butter, shortening or lard with three-quarters the amount of coconut oil to obtain the same results. The melting point of our Organic Palm Shortening is 97 degrees F., making it very shelf stable. It is not hydrogenized, and contains NO trans fats!
So, there are ways to bake with a few less calories and saturated fat. In World War II they often couldn’t get all the ingredients they wanted, so they learned to improvise and my mother has a cookbook from that error that has a chocolate cake using mayonnaise as a substitute. Now, many people are becoming more health conscious, so they are trying to find healthy alternative but still be able to eat sweets occasionally.
The copyright to this article is owned by Pamela Oglesby. Permission to republish this article in print or online must be granted by the author in writing.
© 2010 Pamela Oglesby