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May 4, 2007 04:29 AM

Getting buttery taste without butter?

Butter has to be one of the *best* flavors in the world. Its cost is hi fat and calories. Sometimes I'd like to be able to make food taste buttery without butter. I tried butter flavoring (no-name brand) and butter buds and wasn't impressed. Any suggestions? Thx!

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  1. Butter is god's gift to cooking, there is NO substitute,let us know if you find a perfect sub and I will eat a pound of butter buds straight ( a fate worse than death.)

    1 Reply
    1. re: missclaudy

      ITA, nothing replaces butter for taste and mouthfeel. Moreoever, as time goes by, we're finding out that many of the so-called butter subs are actually worse for you than butter. Transfat laden, hydrogenated margarines, etc. I say if you want get the best butter bang, use it where you will really taste it, such as in sauces, on good bread, etc.

    2. My only suggestion is to make something really bland. A small quantity of butter stands out when added to something like pureed cauliflower or grits.

      1. For dishes where oil is a reasonable substitute, and butter isn't a primary flavour, I've found that corn oil has a buttery like taste to it.

        Other then that, the only real solution the nutritional dilemma is to eat less of other stuff if you want the butter. Or eat less of the butter.

        2 Replies
        1. re: AnnaEA

          But oil has 20% more calories than butter on a unit volume basis.

          1. re: Karl S

            True enough -- but the oil switch saves the cholesterol concerns, and somehow oil seems to go farther then butter does -- probably because it's liquid to begin with. I usually will sub 1 tbs corn oil per 2 tbs of butter, and it works out okay.

        2. cutting way back on butter for awhile sort of recalibrates your fat tastebuds. a little goes a long way afterwards.

          1 Reply
          1. re: hotoynoodle

            Agreed, no substitute, but you can get some of that effect by cooking with a strong stock, like a lowfat chicken stock. Also, small amounts of well-flavored parmesan or romano cheese. Sometimes I simmer the ends of parmesan cheese in a stock before skimming. You still have fat, just not quite so much as long as you skim.

          2. Try cutting back drastically and/or substituting with broth, water, olive oil, etc. Then, top off with a very small amout of very good quality butter, that you see and taste. The Jane Brody Good Food Gourmet and Good Food cookbooks do this with butter and sugar.