If you want to make chocolate chip cookies without using butter, there are some good alternatives. The role of butter in your chocolate chip cookies cannot be underestimated in terms of taste, texture, richness, and appearance.
If you’re looking for a replacement for butter in your chocolate chip cookies that won’t be noticeable in taste, most of the time any of these substitutes will work just fine.
The amount of time it takes to cook varies depending on the recipe and cooking temperature.
Butter affects the taste texture and structure of chocolate chip cookies.
Butter In Cookies
The results of using butter in a recipe will depend on whether you use a salted or unsalted variety. Most recipes usually call for unsalted butter so that you can add salt separately. This allows you to be more specific with the amount that is added. If a recipe calls for salted butter, and you use a substitutes I’ve suggested below, remember to add a little extra salt.
The proteins in butter tend to brown as your cookies bake.
Butter prevents the formation of gluten, which makes cookies tender. Gluten forms when flour is mixed with water, and gives cookies their chewy texture. If you want a softer cookie, you’ll need to prevent gluten from forming.
Room-temperature butter is softer, so it can hold more air. When making cakes, use this tip to make your sponges much fluffier.
The type of butter you use will also affect the final outcome of your chocolate chip cookies.
The method used to add the butter affects the outcome too. If a recipe asks you to cream the butter, quite a bit of air will be mixed in. This will make for a lighter dough or batter.
The cookie recipes that call for melted butter result in thinner and crispier cookies compared to recipes that don’t call for melted butter.
This means that if you want your cookies to have tall, defined edges, you should use less butter. The amount of butter in your chocolate chip cookie recipe will affect how much the cookies spread as they bake. If you want your cookies to have tall, defined edges, you should use less butter.
Best Substitutes for Butter in Chocolate Chip Cookies
There are many substitutes you can use for butter in your chocolate chip cookie recipes. Each of these substitutes will result in a slightly different cookie, in terms of flavor or texture. So, your results may not be exactly what you are used to.
You might have to experiment to find a substitute that gives you the same taste as classic chocolate chip cookies without the butter.
1. Vegetable Oil or Olive Oil
This first ingredient is something you are very likely to have in your pantry already.
Both vegetable oil and olive oil contain a lot of fat, which provides moisture for your cookies, though vegetable oil will have a more neutral flavor.
Use three-quarters of a cup of olive oil in place of one cup of butter called for in a recipe.
Olive oil has a strong flavor, which is why it works well in savory baked goods like herb breads or biscuits. However, it would likely hurt the flavor of sweeter items, such as cakes, cookies, or pie crusts.
I find that this is a good substitute for butter in crusts for meat pies or pot pies. My husband, who is picky about food, has not noticed a difference.
Three quarters of a cup of vegetable oil can be used in place of one cup of butter in baking recipes. This has worked well for me so far, although vegetable oil does not have as many health benefits as other possible substitutes.
If you choose to use olive oil, try to use a light version rather than extra virgin olive oil. Extra virgin olive oil has a much stronger flavor.
If you want your food to have a richer flavor, add some extra salt to whichever oil you use.
If you want to prevent your cookies from spreading too much, you might want to try lowering the oven temperature. This will stop them from becoming too crispy around the edges.
Although vegetable oils are commonly thought to be inflammatory, they are not the safest cooking oils. For that reason, olive oil would be a better choice.
2. Coconut Oil
Coconut oil is an excellent butter alternative for chocolate chip cookies. I use it for vegan and dairy-free cookies to get a chewy cookie with crispy edges.
In my experience, coconut oil can be used as a successful substitute for butter in recipes, since it has similar properties (it’s solid when cool and liquid when warm).
If you use a lot of butter in a recipe, it might make the final dish taste different, so it might not be the best idea to use it in savory breads. It should be fine to use in cakes, cookies, and muffins, though.
Coconut oil is solid at room temperature, but it melts easily in warm conditions. To use it, melt it in the microwave or on the stovetop before adding it to the other wet ingredients.
Don’t make the temperature too high or it can change the consistency of the other ingredients.
Coconut oil will help to keep your cookies crunchy.
If you want the benefits of coconut oil but don’t want the flavor, use refined coconut oil.
To replace one cup of butter, use one cup of coconut oil.
For a great source of extra virgin coconut oil try: Purium’s Tropic Oil
3. Margarine or Vegan Butter
Margarine is often used as a replacement for butter because it is just as effective in helping cookies retain their shape while being lower in fat. Many types of margarine are vegan, but make sure to check the packaging to be sure.
This means you can spoon it straight into your mixer and it will mix in evenly, without having to wait for it to soften first If you use margarine or vegan butter in your chocolate chip cookie recipe instead of regular butter, it will be evenly mixed without having to wait for it to soften first.
This means that you don’t need to take it out of the fridge in advance, or take steps to cream it.
The only downside to margarine is that it may contain trans fats, which should be avoided as much as possible, as they increase the risk of heart disease and cholesterol levels in the blood.
Solid margarine or vegan butter that comes in stick form is generally higher in trans fat than soft margarine that comes in tubs.
For every 1 cup of butter, substitute 1 cup of soft margarine or 1 cup of vegan butter.
This makes the cookies less fluffy, and more dense and chewy- which some people might prefer.
If you use shortening instead of butter in your cookies, dust your cookie scoop with flour before scooping out the dough. This will help the dough from sticking.
For every 1 cup of butter that you use, replace it with 1 cup of shortening.
If you want a healthier alternative to butter, you can replace it with an equal amount of avocado puree. This swap will give you a higher fiber content, as well as more vitamins K, C, B-5, B-6, and E.
I’ve tried this recipe with a lot of different baking recipes and it’s always worked well. I’ve even spread it on toast instead of butter and it was delicious.
8. Pumpkin Puree
If your recipe calls for one cup of butter, you could use three-quarters of a cup of pumpkin puree.
If you don’t want to use oil in a baking recipe, you can substitute pumpkin puree instead.
9. Prune Puree
If you want to use prune puree as a substitute for pumpkin puree, use three-quarters of a cup for every cup of butter called for in the recipe.
This technique is most effective for cakes and brownies, but it should be noted that it will darken the final color of the dessert, giving it a reddish-purple tint!
10. Applesauce and Buttermilk
If you are worried that the taste of the dish will change if you use a different butter substitute, 1/4 cup unsweetened applesauce and 1/4 cup buttermilk for every one cup of butter called for in a recipe should work well.
This is successful for a pie crust.
11. Greek Yogurt
To make a higher protein substitution, use half the amount of Greek yogurt as you would butter. This substitution works especially well in cakes, as it creates a velvety texture.
I find that Greek yogurt works just as well as butter when making mashed potatoes – my husband has never been any the wiser once I made the switch!
Some people use regular plain yogurt in place of butter, but it has a high moisture content that can give poor results. Greek yogurt is thicker and can work better. Just remember that it may lend a tangy flavor to your cookies!
Most brands of Greek yogurt are made from dairy products, but you can find plant-based options if you are avoiding dairy.
Greek yogurt can be used as a one-to-one replacement for butter in most recipes.
There are many possible substitutes for butter that can be used in chocolate chip cookies. Each ingredient will change the recipe and give you a different outcome.
Experimenting with different substitutes for butter is part of the fun of cooking. You may just find that one of these substitutes becomes a permanent replacement for butter in the future.
READ MORE: Coconut Oil Health Benefits