Unsalted Butter... Necessary???

Baking By cb3 Updated 17 Nov 2011 , 5:28pm by AnnieCahill

cb3 Posted 16 Nov 2011 , 12:56am
post #1 of 12

I was about to make a cake that I have made many times before. It calls for unsalted butter. Just realized I only have salted butter. Will this change the taste alot? Or, should i go out and buy some unsalted? Not a great baker, so any advice is welcome! icon_wink.gif

11 replies
cakesdivine Posted 16 Nov 2011 , 1:38am
post #2 of 12

I only use salted butter. To me it does not have that butter bite if it isn't salted.

lilmissbakesalot Posted 16 Nov 2011 , 1:58am
post #3 of 12

Just leave some of the salt in the recipe out. I use unsalted butter because I like to control the salt myself, but it won't ruin your recipe. When making buttercream I will only use unsalted. I use SMBC and I can't stand it made with salted butter as it is not overly sweet and it ends up tasting like sweetened butter rather than vanilla goodness. When you make the more traditional powdered sugar style BC I would use 1/2 salted and 1/2 unsalted because you need that salt to balance the sweetness.

On toast... on rice... on pasta... I will only use salted because I like that kick. In baking I only use unsalted, but if all I have is salted... I'll use it in a cake no problem. There is about 1/4 tsp of salt per stick of butter.. so adjust from there.


kjskid Posted 16 Nov 2011 , 2:30am
post #4 of 12

Recipes usually use unsalted butter because different brands have different amounts of salt. You can figure out how much salt to leave out by looking at how much sodium is in the butter and how much sodium will be in your salt.

pattycakesnj Posted 16 Nov 2011 , 2:35am
post #5 of 12

There is a big difference between the two, salted butter has much more water in it, a ton more salt, (not just a tsp or so) and unsalted butter is sweeter so it will make a difference in your recipe

scp1127 Posted 16 Nov 2011 , 5:11am
post #6 of 12

I agree with pattycakes. It makes a huge difference... like a different ingredient. This is for scratch recipes. I don't know about the difference in others.

cb3 Posted 16 Nov 2011 , 2:28pm
post #7 of 12

Thanks! I decided to go and get the unsalted. Love this scratch recipe and didn't want to mess it up! I do like to use salted in my BC, though. Seems to help with the sweetness factor.

AnnieCahill Posted 16 Nov 2011 , 11:30pm
post #8 of 12

I only use unsalted butter. I had a re-re moment over the summer and bought salted without realizing it, and holy smokes was that the nastiest buttercream ever!

lilmissbakesalot Posted 17 Nov 2011 , 1:38am
post #9 of 12

I know huh?? I assume you make a european style BC too?? It is god awful with salted butter... something you could maybe toss some cinnamon in and spread on scones... maybe (thinking honey butter here)? But on a cake... no way.

AnnieCahill Posted 17 Nov 2011 , 2:24am
post #10 of 12

Actually the salted butter incident was with an American buttercream!!! Even all that powdered sugar couldn't save it. I was so pissed. It's because Land O Lakes came out with butter which was packaged differently (eight little sticks instead of four to a box) but the label was blue so I assumed it was unsalted.

I do love European buttercreams though. I usually use IMBC unless someone requests something else, like my friend who almost received the salty buttercream. icon_smile.gif

lilmissbakesalot Posted 17 Nov 2011 , 2:19pm
post #11 of 12

Oh I hate that... when they don't think about the customers who are so used to one color meaning unsalted. One brand's red will be salted and another will be red for unsalted. I sent hubby to get butter once and he fell prey to that. Sorry sweetie... you have to go BACK to the store... LOL.

I very rarely make powdered sugar buttercream and when I do I use 1/2 salted and 1/2 unsalted and a smidge of shortening and that works well, but give me a MBC anyday... LOL.

AnnieCahill Posted 17 Nov 2011 , 5:28pm
post #12 of 12

That's the same way I make mine! I usually use all unsalted and then dump a good tablespoon or so of popcorn salt in the butter while it's creaming.

I heart MBCs. It tastes awesome, and you get no powdered sugar mushroom cloud!!

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