whisperingmadcow Posted 29 May 2009 , 7:41pm
post #1 of

I heard that high ratio shortening tastes better then the regular crisco stuff. If I want to use it in a recipe, do I use the same amount of high as I do regular?

Thank you!

30 replies
JanH Posted 29 May 2009 , 8:12pm
post #2 of

The difference between Crisco and hi-ratio is in the amount of emulsifiers, and stabilizers, etc. Hi-ratio has MORE emulsifiers, etc. than Crisco so it can ABSORB more liquid without breaking down:

http://www.thebakerskitchen.net/index.asp?PageAction=VIEWPROD&ProdID=266

The difference in the two types of shortening isn't flavor/taste improvement (I don't find that Crisco or Sweetex have a discernible taste) but in improved performance and the absence of the "greasy" mouth feel that is an often heard complaint directed at regular shortening based American buttercreams.*

When I initially switched from Crisco to Sweetex, I tried subbing at 1:1 ratio. While the resulting recipe was not "greasy" at all, the general consensus was that the frosting was too rich (had too much fat) and was like trying to chug heavy cream (when you were expecting whole milk).

I then switched to recipes that specifically called for hi-ratio and have been quite pleased with the results. I find that hi-ratio recipes use less shortening (and make a better frosting) so that the higher cost of the hi-ratio is offset somewhat, making it more budget friendly.

CakemanOh recommends using 1 cup hi-ratio to 7 cups of powdered sugar, or substituting 2/3 cup hi-ratio for 1 cup of Crisco.

When trying any new recipe, I usually make only 1/2 or 1/3 as a test batch. Might want to try doing this when substituting hi-ratio for Crisco and see what replacement ratio you prefer.

For hi-ratio recipes, please visit this thread:

http://cakecentral.com/cake-decorating-ftopict-608700-.html

http://cakecentral.com/cake_recipe-7300-High-Ratio-Sweetex-Frosting.html

http://tinyurl.com/3e53ak

*Of course, not all Crisco based frostings are created equal.

Examples of some highly rated (non-greasy) Crisco American b/c recipes:

http://cakecentral.com/cake_recipe-6992-Indydebis-Crisco-Based-Buttercream-Icing.html

http://cakecentral.com/cake_recipe-7378-Cakepros-Buttercream-with-Trans-Fat-Free-Crisco.html

HTH

whisperingmadcow Posted 29 May 2009 , 8:54pm
post #3 of

Man, how do you know so much?! I see your posts from time to time and you always have a TON of knowledge. Thank you much!

JanH Posted 29 May 2009 , 9:11pm
post #4 of

You're very welcome. icon_biggrin.gif

(I have binders full of CC info.... And I'm on the computer way too much.) icon_redface.gificon_lol.gif

Barb00 Posted 20 Jun 2009 , 1:33am
post #5 of

Well, I am new to this whole thing, but I bought HR on line because I did not care for all the greasy aftertaste with Crisco. I read nothing but high praise for using HR. My first batch was last week for my 3rd course final cake. What a difference! The product looks and feels different from Crisco. I don't think I will ever go back! Smooth and tasty! icon_biggrin.gif

steplite Posted 21 Jun 2009 , 5:41am
post #6 of

I really like walmart's shortening. It just like the old crisco. Plus it has trans fat in it.

Barb00 Posted 21 Jun 2009 , 11:57am
post #7 of

I will have to try the WalMart brand. Aldi brand was not up to par for my taste.

grama_j Posted 21 Jun 2009 , 12:10pm
post #8 of

I've been using Walmart brand since Crisco screwed us up, but last week a bought some at Aldi's....... DARN ! I wish I had know it wasn't as good before I bought it !
NOTHING can beat that High Ratio shortening.... I only used it once and it was WONDERFUL...... the price is to high forme for regular use.

whisperingmadcow Posted 22 Jun 2009 , 12:15pm
post #9 of

I tried the high ratio shortening for the first time this weekend! Loved it! I did a batch of indydebi's recipe with the new shortneing. I was the best thing ever! Super smooth, super tasty, not greasy in the mouth. It seemed to crust a little slower then the regular stuff, but when it did, it went fast! One mintue it was still tacky to the touch. The next, I was getting wrinkles when I was using a viva paper towel.

All in all I would say get it if you can!

bobwonderbuns Posted 23 Jul 2009 , 12:46am

Wow! What a great thread!! Thanks for all the great info! icon_biggrin.gif

JanH Posted 23 Jul 2009 , 5:05am

You're most welcome. icon_biggrin.gif

Peridot Posted 23 Jul 2009 , 12:55pm

Fantastic THread - just what I was looking for. JanH you are awesome thanks for the info.

JohnnyCakes1966 Posted 16 Apr 2010 , 10:02am

I'm glad to see this thread, too. I find that with Crisco, if I color the buttercream (using gel colors), it isn't uniform....there are white spots. And it doesn't matter how much I mix the color in, the white spots don't go away. The same thing happens if I use a combo of Crisco and butter, but not if I use all butter...so I assume the problem is with the Crisco. And my buttercream is NEVER really smooth if I use Crisco. (It is almost smooth if I use all butter.)

So.....Apparently, hi-ratio is the best for really smooth buttercream, but Walmart shortening is almost as good? Or is there still a really noticeable difference (taste and texture) between hi-ratio and Walmart shortening? Both are better than Crisco, right?

Hi-ratio is so expensive at my baking supply store. Almost $14 for 3 pounds!

michellem79 Posted 8 Aug 2010 , 3:10am

I am also new to this and have heard many good things about the high ratio shortening. My question may seem silly, but I was wondering what is best to use if you don't use high ratio? I have also seen the Walmart brand but wasn't sure which one to buy. Do I get the one that just says shortening or the one that says vegetable shortening?

latin5 Posted 15 Sep 2010 , 12:21pm

I've heard people say good things about the wal-mart brand shortening.Is it the Great Value?? Has anyone tried it already?? icon_eek.gif

LindaF144a Posted 15 Sep 2010 , 3:11pm
Quote:
Originally Posted by JohnnyCakes1966

I'm glad to see this thread, too. I find that with Crisco, if I color the buttercream (using gel colors), it isn't uniform....there are white spots. And it doesn't matter how much I mix the color in, the white spots don't go away. The same thing happens if I use a combo of Crisco and butter, but not if I use all butter...so I assume the problem is with the Crisco. And my buttercream is NEVER really smooth if I use Crisco. (It is almost smooth if I use all butter.)

So.....Apparently, hi-ratio is the best for really smooth buttercream, but Walmart shortening is almost as good? Or is there still a really noticeable difference (taste and texture) between hi-ratio and Walmart shortening? Both are better than Crisco, right?

Hi-ratio is so expensive at my baking supply store. Almost $14 for 3 pounds!




In the book Whimsical Bakehouse they have a recipe for their house buttercream. They state the reason why you want to use hi-ratio is so that you don't get those nasty white spots. They say to get a good color with Crisco or any other non-hi-ratio shortening is to use the food coloring for candy which is oil based and will mix better. Wilton sells candy food coloring. It's just the color pallet is limited, but it is a good alternative to using hi-ratio shortening. I plan on trying it sometime this week.

latin5 Posted 15 Sep 2010 , 3:53pm

I'll be using the walmart brand sat.. I'll keep everyone updated.

careylynn Posted 15 Sep 2010 , 4:26pm
Quote:
Originally Posted by LindaF144



In the book Whimsical Bakehouse they have a recipe for their house buttercream. They state the reason why you want to use hi-ratio is so that you don't get those nasty white spots. They say to get a good color with Crisco or any other non-hi-ratio shortening is to use the food coloring for candy which is oil based and will mix better. Wilton sells candy food coloring. It's just the color pallet is limited, but it is a good alternative to using hi-ratio shortening. I plan on trying it sometime this week.




My understanding is you use hi-ratio because it leaves a better feel in your mouth (more smooth) due to the amount of fat content and it absorbing more liquid. Crisco can separate and leave a grainy texture and is greasy to taste.


This might be a silly question but, is it better to use hi-ratio in cakes? Or doesn't it matter in the baking process?

LindaF144a Posted 15 Sep 2010 , 4:35pm
Quote:
Originally Posted by careylynn

Quote:
Originally Posted by LindaF144



In the book Whimsical Bakehouse they have a recipe for their house buttercream. They state the reason why you want to use hi-ratio is so that you don't get those nasty white spots. They say to get a good color with Crisco or any other non-hi-ratio shortening is to use the food coloring for candy which is oil based and will mix better. Wilton sells candy food coloring. It's just the color pallet is limited, but it is a good alternative to using hi-ratio shortening. I plan on trying it sometime this week.



My understanding is you use hi-ratio because it leaves a better feel in your mouth (more smooth) due to the amount of fat content and it absorbing more liquid. Crisco can separate and leave a grainy texture and is greasy to taste.


This might be a silly question but, is it better to use hi-ratio in cakes? Or doesn't it matter in the baking process?





Yep, my understanding also. I'm just relaying what I read from a book written by bakery owners.

I personally like a buttery taste to my cakes, so I do not use shortening. But from what I have read using hi-ratio shortening or oil allows you to add more sugar and liquid allowing for a sweeter moister cake. I have not tried this as I get a sweet moist cake already with butter, so I haven't bothered to try any other method.

yummy_in_my_tummy Posted 21 Sep 2010 , 2:48am

I use the WalMart brand shortning. But I don't think it crusts well. At least I'm not SURE if it crusts well... I'm self taught and learned most of my cake decorating knowledge from the internet, so... I've got nothing to compare my crusting to (if that makes sense).

Anyone else use the WalMart brand? How does it crust for you? I'm wondering if I should spend the big bucks for the hi-ratio and check it out?

latin5 Posted 21 Sep 2010 , 12:41pm

I just used the Wal-Mart brand this past wknd and it made a big difference.
I will definitely keep using it. Unless , i'm making a vegan cake.

It does take a lil more time to crust . but it does crust ok.

I would buy the high ratio, but i'm not THAT experienced . I just make cakes for b-days and showers for friends. thumbs_up.gif

yummy_in_my_tummy Posted 21 Sep 2010 , 4:45pm

latin5, do you mind if I ask where you are located? I mean, is it dry or humid there? And how long did it take for your buttercream to crust with the WalMart brand shortening? I live near the ocean and my buttercream never seems to get CRUSTY, unless I put it in the fridge. Maybe I'm supposed to put it in the fridge to get it to crust, but I thought some people just leave their cakes out and they crust nicely.

Any comments or suggestions are appreciated! icon_smile.gif

divinecc Posted 24 Feb 2011 , 3:28pm

I use Western Family brand, it still has trans fats in it. The Wal Mart shortening in my area doesn't have trans fat in it anymore so I had to find an alternative. Hopefully they do not change or I would be lost, it's not worth the $9.50 for 3lbs to get high ratio for me!

jenscreativity Posted 24 Feb 2011 , 3:43pm

Iused High-ratio shortening for first time this past month and I love it!! What I do is use it for iced only cakes and then if I"m fondanting a cake, I will either use the walmart/crisco brand for icing to save some high ratio for the iced only cakes. That way, I'm not going through my high-ration so fast because the reg. shortening buttercream is good if you use more butter then shortening, for icing UNDERNEATH the fondant OR I will use the ganache.Hi -Ratio is not cheap unless someone knows a cheap online deal..I get mine at a local bakery shop but it's expensive still..so I be real careful utilizing it..Definetly a difference though!

h_rob Posted 28 Feb 2011 , 1:34am

Can anyone tell me some name brands of high ratio shortening? I used Crisco but beleive it isn't a HR shortening. Am in Canada so I am not sure of the brands here.

thanks!

belizeandevil Posted 28 Feb 2011 , 1:53am

CK products, Sweetex and Alpine are Hi-Ratio shortening.

h_rob Posted 28 Feb 2011 , 1:55am

Do you know where this may be purchased?

mommynana Posted 28 Feb 2011 , 2:06am

Indydebi's buttercream calls for 1 and 1/3 cup shorting would that be the same using H/R

platinumlady Posted 28 Feb 2011 , 3:38am
Quote:
Originally Posted by mommynana

Indydebi's buttercream calls for 1 and 1/3 cup shorting would that be the same using H/R




This would be my question as well. I was just wondering about this. I just learned about the HR today & I kept hearing about Indydebi's BC so I looked it up so I can start using it.

I was getting frustrated with my BC recipe you can't get it smoothe like fondant (with out some blemishes) & crusting is like a crazy game put in the frig smoothe back in the frig smooth more... thumbsdown.gif headache . Since I am doing more cakes now I want to step up my BC recipes & I'm thinking these are the tricks to do this.

Avascake Posted 30 Mar 2014 , 2:41pm

AGreat information. I also had issues with gel colors not looking mixed. It was a costly mistake I don't want to repeat. Any favorites on shortening brands? High ratio, of course.

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