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Swap avocado for butter in cookies????

ROCKLES Aug 1, 2011 01:54 PM

I have heard about this, but a little leery to try. Anyone out there tried this? Any positive or negative experience (other than a green sugar cookie)?

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  1. todao RE: ROCKLES Aug 1, 2011 02:01 PM

    A tablespoon of butter contains about 11 grams of fat. One medium avocado is about 30 grams of fat. So somewhere around 1/3+ of a medium avocado should work just fine.

    1. s
      soupkitten RE: ROCKLES Aug 1, 2011 02:10 PM

      yikes. wtf. this over-the-top veganizing has got to stop, it just doesn't make any sense any more.

      i could see building a cookie with a flavor profile constructed around baked avocado flavor (yuck, but ymmv)-- but i do not think that this would work for the flavor of most cookies or other baked goods-- especially because so many traditional cookie recipes were/are designed to feature the taste of. . . wait for it. . . BUTTER. now, i can get really good small-farm, grassfed, and creamery butter where i live, so bastardizing innocent cookie recipes does not readily occur to me. . . who is stating that this is such a fantastic idea to replace butter w avocado, and for goodness sake, WHY?!?!?!?

      6 Replies
      1. re: soupkitten
        ROCKLES RE: soupkitten Aug 1, 2011 02:25 PM


        one of many for fat loss... I guess, though I am with you on this. I am curious

        1. re: ROCKLES
          soupkitten RE: ROCKLES Aug 4, 2011 06:39 PM

          thanks for the link. i see that it isn't an attempt at veganizing, it's an ill-thought-out dieter's substitution for an essential ingredient-- but they still need to leave in 1/2 the butter in order to not have the recipe completely fail, and they are subbing one high fat food for another high fat food. . . people seem to be endlessly neurotic about some whole foods such as butter, so they do this subbing which many times makes no sense, even less sense than margarine/oil subs which at one time was thought to be "healthier." i note that nobody comments on taste, mouthfeel or appearance-- and little details like flakiness/browning which won't occur when you replace one of the main ingredients of a baked good with a non-melting vegetable substance.

          i will say on reflection that i could see subbing avocado for part of the butter/oil in something like a raised quickbread w a specific taste profile such as a zucchini bread-- it may work okay but would not be worth the trouble and compromised result imo. to me cooked avocado has little appeal and i can't think of any recipe in which avocado is improved by cooking it, so the idea of baking it is a disservice to the avocado fruit as well as an insult to good butter and the other flavorings of a cookie, where typically less is more. rather than subbing half of the butter in a cookie recipe in order to get an inferior weird-textured product, people should consider eating 1/2 the amount of cookies, and actually enjoying them, imo.

          it is not that i don't enjoy many baked goods where some of the fat has been replaced by fruit or veg purees, i do! some of these can be quite successful with the correct flavor profile-- it's just that i think avocado is a poor choice. nick malgieri's oatmeal cookies containing applesauce, for example, are probably my favorite example of this type of cookie, and i just love these. baked apples taste a hell of a lot better than baked avocados, imo, and the fruit flavor does not intrude on the basic flavor profile of the cookie.

          the idea of avocado in shortbread, danish butter cookies, pie crust. . . flavor compromises aside, the recipes would fail. in addition, you've wasted a beautiful avocado (by cooking it) that you could have enjoyed eating. i would ask: 1) what cookie recipe would be a good candidate for this butter replacement 2) if there is any such recipe, how would the flavor and characteristics of cooked avocado be more desirable than other fruits/veg that are already frequently subbed into baking recipes-- such as figs, pumpkin, apple, plum/prune, beets, carrots, dates, bananas etc?

          i love avocados in pretty much any uncooked application, i just don't enjoy them cooked. i love the brilliance of a simple 4-5 ingredient butter cookie made with creamery butter, but i think good butter is becoming a rarity in some regions-- again i'd rather skip eating the cookie it if it's made with inferior cheap butter/avocados/butter replacements/margarine/fillers. and i think that folks who have issues with fat grams would be better off having a handful of blueberries than eating a disappointing baked good where the natural impulse would be to immediately go out and (over)eat the real thing. . . i just am completely not getting it, i suppose. sorry! :)

        2. re: soupkitten
          sarahjay RE: soupkitten Aug 1, 2011 02:37 PM

          I don't think it's about veganizing. This is something I've thought about for flavor reasons. I like butter cookies, but sometimes I want something new. I wouldn't eliminate the butter, but maybe use both for a different flavor. I've made buttercream icing with avocado, and it was great, like an avocado smoothie but richer, and on cake.
          BTW, avocado is probably my favorite food.

          1. re: soupkitten
            guilty RE: soupkitten Aug 1, 2011 06:45 PM

            Maybe someone just has a bunch of avocadoes. Or they're allergic to dairy. Why so quick to judge--even if they are veganizing something?

            1. re: soupkitten
              Isolda RE: soupkitten Aug 4, 2011 07:20 AM

              "Veganize?" I've learned a new verb today, thanks!

              But did I miss something in the post about needing to make the recipe vegan? I agree with you that vegan desserts are usually gross, but maybe the OP just wants to experiment with a different type of fat.

              I think cooked avocados are really bitter, but maybe you could compensate for that with salt and sugar. Still, I'll be having mine on a BLT, in taco salad, or just mashed on toast. Oh, and they're also delicious if you puree them and put them in (uncooked) key lime pie instead of egg yolks. People freak out when you tell them, but no one here has complained.

              1. re: Isolda
                ROCKLES RE: Isolda Aug 4, 2011 12:42 PM

                I am definitely not going vegan or vegetarian, I was just curious how these would taste and if anyone had tried it.

            2. k
              katecm RE: ROCKLES Aug 2, 2011 09:53 AM

              I haven't done avocados, but I have replaced butter with an equal amount of banana and had good results. They come out more cakey than they do a nice chewy cookie, but it works. It's just different, that's all.

              2 Replies
              1. re: katecm
                ROCKLES RE: katecm Aug 2, 2011 11:13 AM

                Banana huh? hmm I am gonna have to check this out

                1. re: ROCKLES
                  todao RE: ROCKLES Aug 2, 2011 08:16 PM

                  Oh yeah, banans work fairly well as a substitute (or addition to) butter. They have about 16% of the fat that you might typically find in a medium avocado but they work great. For the record, I'm a carnivore, no veganism here. But I love to experiment with various substitutes in cooking.

              2. zuklaak RE: ROCKLES Aug 2, 2011 02:36 PM

                Found on the web:

                1. m
                  maxie RE: ROCKLES Aug 3, 2011 12:40 PM

                  This is not apples-to-apples, but I tried using avocado in Nikki's Healthy Cookies from 101cookbooks. This is already kind of a whack-a-doodle recipe, with no dairy, flour, or added sugar. None the less I have made them many times with numerous substitutions, all great successes. The recipe calls for coconut oil, but I usually use olive oil. Subbing in 100% avocado 1:1 did two undesirable things. First, the bottoms brown quickly while the tops remained pale. Second, the texture was very soft which is not my preference. A temperature adjustment could solve the first problem. The second problem leads me to suggest that cakes or muffins might be more successful than cookies. The flavor is fine, but I miss the specific flavor butter or coconut oil or olive oil brings to the table.

                  1. ttoommyy RE: ROCKLES Aug 3, 2011 12:51 PM

                    I shudder to think of the color an avocado would impart to a cookie.

                    1. ipsedixit RE: ROCKLES Aug 3, 2011 08:58 PM

                      Not a good idea. Consistency and viscosity of avocado or guacamole is not the same as melted butter.

                      1. Hank Hanover RE: ROCKLES Aug 3, 2011 11:38 PM

                        Avocados are about 15% fat. Butter is about 80% fat.

                        The amount of fat is very important in baking formulas so I wouldn't think it could be easily swapped.

                        BTW my math is based on 15 -16 grams of fat in a 3.5 ounce avocado. 3.5 ounces is 99.9 grams ergo 15 -16 % fat.

                        On his show on avocados, Alton Brown made frosting with avocados based on their high fat content. Not sure I would stand in line to taste it but... oh sure I would. I t would make a great story.

                        1 Reply
                        1. re: Hank Hanover
                          Isolda RE: Hank Hanover Aug 4, 2011 07:23 AM

                          I saw that recipe and was tempted to try it, but most frosting is bad enough--can't imagine adding a stringy texture to the mix.

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