You’re in the kitchen, looking for a recipe for shortening, but you don’t have any on hand. What do you do?
Don’t worry; we’ve got you covered. There are plenty of substitutes for shortening that you can use in your favorite recipes here.
Below, we’ll give you a few of our favorites.
What is Shortening?
If you’re like most people, you’re probably already familiar with what shortening is. It’s a type of fat used in baking to help make doughs and batters more moist and fluffy.
But what happens when you’re out of shortening and need to bake something? Don’t worry; there are plenty of substitutes that you can use.
In fact, most of them are probably already in your kitchen.
Best Substitutes for Shortening
1. Coconut Oil
Coconut oil is first on our list of best Substitutes for shortening. It has a high smoke point, meaning it doesn’t break down easily and produces a lot of smoke when heated, so it’s great for cooking.
It’s also antibacterial and antiviral, making it a good choice for cooking with food that will be eaten cold.
Coconut oil is often used as a skin moisturizer, and because it’s a natural product, it’s chemical-free. It also has a mild scent and is an excellent lubricant.
Ghee is a great option if you’re looking for the best Substitutes for shortening.
It has a high smoke point, meaning it doesn’t burn as easily as some other oils, and it has a buttery flavor that makes it perfect for baking.
Ghee is made by simmering butter until all the water evaporates, leaving behind the milk solids and fat. It’s then strained and bottled. You can find ghee at most health food stores or online.
3. Peanut Oil
Looking for the best Substitutes for shortening that are actually good for you? Peanut oil might be just the thing.
It has a relatively high smoke point and is flavorless, so it’s great for baking and has a neutral taste.
Plus, it’s naturally cholesterol-free and rich in Vitamin E, making it one of the healthier options. But remember that peanut oil can be expensive and unsuitable for those with allergies.
If you’re looking for an affordable alternative that works well when baking cakes, cookies, and other goodies, I’d highly recommend coconut oil as an excellent substitute.
4. Bacon Fat
Bacon fat often gets overlooked when it comes to cooking and baking, but the truth is that it makes a great substitute for shortening. Bacon fat has a high smoking point, making it less likely to burn when heated.
And it also gives food a great smoky flavor, so you may even prefer using it over shortening in some recipes.
When using bacon fat, remember you don’t need to use a lot. A little goes a long way, so start with just a teaspoon or two and add more if necessary.
You can find bacon fat in most grocery stores or make your own at home by saving the bacon grease after cooking and storing it in an airtight container in the fridge for up to two weeks.
Curious about if margarine can be used as a substitute for shortening? The answer is yes, but with a few caveats.
Margarine is made of vegetable oils, which means it’s lower in saturated fat than shortening.
So while it may be slightly healthier than shortening, you’ll still need to use it sparingly. Another issue is that margarine has a higher melting point than shortening.
So if you’re baking something with a high oven temperature, the margarine will not melt and be incorporated into the dough or batter enough to be effective as a substitute.
The best way to use margarine instead of shortening is in recipes like pie crusts or muffins where the oven temperatures aren’t too high and when you’re looking for more flavor than what shortening can provide.
The next ingredient that could be used as a substitute for shortening is lard. This animal fat has been used in baking for centuries and is great for creating light and flaky pie crusts.
It’s also a good choice if you’re looking for a bit of extra flavor since it does have a distinct taste. However, there are a few drawbacks to using lard in your cooking.
One is that it can solidify at room temperature, so if you’re not careful, you won’t be able to get it out of the bowl without making a mess.
Plus, since it is animal fat, it’s not vegan-friendly. But if these issues don’t bother you and you like the flavor, lard can be an excellent substitute for shortening when making baked goods such as pies or cookies.
7. Vegetable Oil
Vegetable oil is next on our list of best Substitutes for shortening because it contains little to no saturated fat.
Some varieties may contain more saturated fat than others, so check the label when buying.
Vegetable oil also has a mild flavor that won’t affect the taste of your baked goods, making it a great option for desserts and sweet treats.
The best part about using vegetable oil? You’re getting all the benefits of added flavor and moisture without worrying about hydrogenated trans-fats.
However, vegetable oil is more liquid than solid fats, like shortening, so you may need to adjust your recipe accordingly.
Also, ensure you use an unflavored oil such as canola or sunflower to prevent unpleasant aftertastes in your baked goods.
8. Vegan Butter
Vegan butter is last on our list of best Substitutes for shortening that you can use.
Not only is vegan butter dairy-free and cholesterol free, but it is also free of animal products, making it an excellent choice for those who are vegan or follow a plant-based diet.
The texture and taste of vegan butter are very similar to regular butter, so it can be used as a replacement in many recipes.
Unlike regular butter, vegan butter doesn’t contain lactose or casein, two common allergens in dairy products.
It also contains beneficial fatty acids like Omega-3s that can help promote healthy cholesterol levels.
One downside to using vegan butter as a substitute for shortening is that it doesn’t have the same flakiness and tenderness as shortening.
However, if you’re looking for something that has a similar taste and texture to traditional butter.
But with the added benefits of being lactose-free and plant-based then, vegan butter could be a perfect choice!
So, if you’re looking for the best Substitutes for Shortening, any of these products will work great.
Read the labels carefully and follow the recipe to get the best results. Happy baking!