Is it better to use butter or vegetable oil for cakes and cupcakes? I think I read somewhere that they are interchangeable in baking, but what I don't know what the pros and cons are.
what an awesome and friendly community of people that all jumped in to help out a newbie
Sorry Linkman, we're mostly busy this time of the week, unless we are newbies ourselves. And this time of the week is when newbies seem to ask the most questions, so pages and pages get filled up before we can see every question. When I am busy, if it isn't in the first 15 questions and doesn't catch my eye, I never see it. I suspect that is true for most of us.
They are not interchangeable unless you use a mix, and even then, it will change the texture of your mix, heavier and dry and crumblier to use butter, if it calls for oil.
In scratch baking, if you use a recipe calling for oil or butter, you better use what it calls for, though you can sub vegetable SHORTENING for butter or vice versa. Your scratch recipes will not work if you use oil instead of butter.
AAnd Thursday, Friday and Saturday are all the caker's Monday!
Butter is 80% fat and 20% liquid, where as oil is 100% fat. They aren't interchangeable, you would have to adjust liquids and fats in the recipe accordingly.
For me, it depends on the recipe I am using. For chocolate cake, I prefer to use oil I think it produces a lighter, moister cake with a better texture.
For my lemon cake, I prefer to use butter.
Play with recipes, research recipes and find the ones that work the best for you.
Thank you lol I dont know where I read that but that is why asked. Also I saw a recipe for vanilla cake that called for "3/4 cups vegetable oil or 1 1/2 sticks of butter" which if my math is correct, 1 1/2 sticks of butter is 3/4 cup of butter. So is this recipe bull or something? lol I'm confused, I used oil though since it was listed first and the cake came out great.
They are not interchangeable, unless the recipe says so (like the one you are talking about for the vanilla cake). For example, many cake recipes start with the method of creaming the butter and sugar. What this does is incorporate air into the cake batter as the sugar crystals cut through the butter, leaving little pockets of air behind. If you were to use oil instead of butter, the sugar would just kind of swoosh through the oil and you wouldn't get all that air in there. If you used oil instead of butter, you would generally end up with a more liquidy cake batter. Then there are other factors such as taste, colour, etc. Really you should follow a recipe to a T and not change things around.
Well thank you for all the info, I'm relatively new to baking, I started making cakes and such on a regular basis about 4 months ago. I apologize for being impatient and insulting the community lol
Haha! I made the same mistake once, assuming everyone was just sitting at their computer waiting for me to ask a question so they could drop everything and answer me! Welcome to CC. They really are a bunch of thoughtful, helpful people.