Salted vs. Unsalted Butter

Frequently during my classes, students ask me "do you use salted or unsalted butter?"

The quick answer is "UNSALTED, you can always add more salt, but you can't take it away."

For today's tip I thought I would give you a little bit more information so that you can better chose what to use when you cook and bake.



1.) Unsalted is Fresher

Salt is a preservative! Therefore, unsalted butter will always be fresher! The shelf life for salted butter is 3 -4 months. I believe when cooking and baking, the finished product always tastes better with the freshest ingredients.


2.) Salted means a little to a lot

The amount of salt varies from brand to brand! For example:

(Amounts Per Stick of Butter)

Horizon - 920 mg Sodium

Land o' Lakes - 760 mg Sodium

Trader Joe's - 720 mg Sodium

If you are baking and you only have salted butter, decrease the amount of salt the recipe calls for to balance the flavors.


3.) Water content

Salted butter has more water in it. This probably will not have much affect on cooking a dish, but it will if you are baking something. The water will interact with the gluten and the dough will not be the same!



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