Palm free vegan butter?

emi

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Maybe this should be in the "product" forum, but I'm also willing and wanting to make my own vegan butter that I can bake with. I was hoping to get some advise from some vegan chefs/bakers out there!

I used Organic Earth Balance for a batch of vegan brioche-like rolls and this fake almost chemical taste of the earth balance really came through and put me off. I also used organic Earth balance in a batch of butter heavy spritz cookies and they were unedible. Almost like how industrial machine oil might taste like. I don't really want to sub with unrefined virgin coconut oil because its taste/smell will come through. Any opinions on refined coconut oil? Its supposed to not have any taste or smell but...? I'd appreciate any vegan butter recipes or product suggestions especially for baking.

I also wanted to ask, is "certified organic palm oil" sustainable and cruelty free? I can't seem to get a clear answer online. I try to avoid it all together to promote other oils and in an attempt to get us all off depending on Palm oil so much, but it is very hard to avoid in products and vegan products too. The organic Earth balance's first ingredient is organic palm oil.
 

Forest Nymph

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Yes, Earth Balance is committed to sustainable cruelty free palm oil. The World Wildlife Fund argues that supporting sustainable palm oil does wildlife more good than boycotting palm oil entirely. Why? Because conscious eaters pressure companies to conform to ethical practices. Without people like us, the unconscious, uneducated or simply unfortunate majority will happily eat cheap unsustainable palm oil because they either don't know or don't care. It's the same mentality of people like me who promote vegan products because when there's a market for vegan it spreads and permeates culture. That's just how capitalism works, no matter what the ideal would be, sustainable palm oil and vegan fast food are preferable to same old same old.

But there's recipes on Pinterest for palm free butter to make yourself. Other tips are using coconut oil or full fat coconut milk as ingredients because they also contain saturated fat. That requires more thought though because it's not a direct substitute.
 
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emi

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Yes, Earth Balance is committed to sustainable cruelty free palm oil. The World Wildlife Fund argues that supporting sustainable palm oil does wildlife more good than boycotting palm oil entirely. Why? Because conscious eaters pressure companies to conform to ethical practices. Without people like us, the unconscious, uneducated or simply unfortunate majority will happily eat cheap unsustainable palm oil because they either don't know or don't care. It's the same mentality of people like me who promote vegan products because when there's a market for vegan it spreads and permeates culture. That's just how capitalism works, no matter what the ideal would be, sustainable palm oil and vegan fast food are preferable to same old same old.

But there's recipes on Pinterest for palm free butter to make yourself. Other tips are using coconut oil or full fat coconut milk as ingredients because they also contain saturated fat. That requires more thought though because it's not a direct substitute.

That view that using sustainable palm oil is actually better than boycotting palm all together is an interesting one I've never considered. I make soap and palm oil is a popular ingredient that is hard to substitute without using animal fat. It's often used as a sub for animal fats for vegan soap bars. It's true that the awareness of palm oil is much lower than other environmental/ethical issues. I myself didn't know about it until I started making soap. There are soap makers who are trying to avoid palm oil thinking it is better to do so over using sustainable palm oil. I'll share this new info with my soap forum! Thank you!
 
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Emma JC

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Have you considered not using oil or butter subs when you bake or cook? I don't bake a lot and when I do I use no oil or I substitute apple sauce. We have been conditioned to think that we need to use oil to saute and bake etc and we really don't need to. There are many great vegan recipes out there for almost every food that if you type oil-free into google after the food name you will find some amazing options.

Emma JC
 
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Lou

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Another thing about palm oil is that in India, palm oil is in great demand, and the government encourages farmers to convert from rice paddies to palm oil plantations. So palm oil production increases but there is no loss of wildlife habitat. I haven't done any research on this but I guess that palm oil plantations are better than rice paddies for the environment.

India may not export much palm oil, tho. I gathered that they don't even meet the country's demand.
https://www.npr.org/sections/thesal...oil-boycott-india-wants-to-produce-more-of-it
 

betiPT

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Have you considered not using oil or butter subs when you bake or cook? I don't bake a lot and when I do I use no oil or I substitute apple sauce. We have been conditioned to think that we need to use oil to saute and bake etc and we really don't need to. There are many great vegan recipes out there for almost every food that if you type oil-free into google after the food name you will find some amazing options.

Emma JC

I agree with @Emma JC whole heartedly. Try to give the whole butter replacement a miss if you can, your capillaries and arteries will thank you for it :) Also, hydrogenating the vegetable fat (this process is performed to make the oil solid in room temp, ie making it butter like) is one of the worst things you can eat.

Alternatively look up Chef AJ or Whole Food Plant Based Cooking Show, they both bake up a storm :)

Dr Mcdougall also has loads of free baking recipes on his site, he is less strict but still super healthy :)

I hope this info helps :)
 

Emma JC

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Speaking of healthy vs unhealthy, I just watched a YouTube video called "But It's Vegan" (did someone post a link to it recently?). It had a bit of a religious bent towards the end however it is about a group of students who were vegan and who decided that half of them would eat healthy vegan whole foods for a month and the others would eat high fat vegan junk food for a month. Nothing startling in their bloodwork but their reactions to each of their ways of eating was different.

If you have 23 spare minutes it is interesting, at least.

Emma JC
 
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emi

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I never started vegetarianism/ veganism for health reasons back at age 16. It was always purely ethical/ industry/ environmental. But now that I'm hitting 40 I'm getting a lot more aware of my health and can feel immediate consequences of bad eating! I do need to start eating better. I am grateful I already have a pretty good headstart by just being vegetarian (almost vegan!). I still want a good butter sub tho..:p
 
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Forest Nymph

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Speaking of healthy vs unhealthy, I just watched a YouTube video called "But It's Vegan" (did someone post a link to it recently?). It had a bit of a religious bent towards the end however it is about a group of students who were vegan and who decided that half of them would eat healthy vegan whole foods for a month and the others would eat high fat vegan junk food for a month. Nothing startling in their bloodwork but their reactions to each of their ways of eating was different.

If you have 23 spare minutes it is interesting, at least.

Emma JC

There's a vegan YouTuber called Unnatural Vegan who gets on my nerves because of her pseudoscience BUT something worth mentioning is that she's around 30, intentionally eats a high fat high protein vegan diet and has had two healthy vegan pregnancies and is raising vegan toddlers. I also eat oil though not intentionally high fat or high protein and my blood work is perfect.
 
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Lou

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There's a vegan YouTuber called Unnatural Vegan who gets on my nerves

I used to watch her shows. I thought her "science" was a feature (not a bug). Eventually, I noticed that she spent a lot of time criticizing other Vegan Youtubers. I found that annoying. I don't know if she still does that.
 
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Forest Nymph

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I used to watch her shows. I thought her "science" was a feature (not a bug). Eventually, I noticed that she spent a lot of time criticizing other Vegan Youtubers. I found that annoying. I don't know if she still does that.


She promotes GMOs and synthetic fertilizers. As someone who almost has a bachelors of environmental science, what she's promoting is utter ******** in terms of sustainability. Her background is in philosophy and she's smart but she doesn't always fact check and seems to completely misunderstand certain aspects of basic ecology. This is a problem because she is smart and speaks well, and claims a big motive for staying vegan is environmental, so people believe her when she's saying false or scientifically inaccurate things it's bad. She should not be presenting herself as having ANY scientific authority but particularly environmental science.

Mic the Vegan did his undergrad in environmental studies or sustainability and he is much better informed on the topic.

UV talks bad about others to get views. She earns a living from her channel and shamelessly runs a half tabloid in that sense to attract viewers. She sometimes goes way overboard with playing devil's advocate with veganism just so meat eaters will keep watching. They love her.

But philosophically she understands a lot and I think she's honestly one of the sanest people on YouTube with vegan nutrition. A lot of young women especially run these orthorexic fruit binge channels and she instead promotes a wide variety of balanced vegan diets. She's been vegan for about ten years and fell for the HCLF raw til four stuff in her early twenties and has personally tried a bunch of different styles of eating vegan and I really applaud her for that because it makes veganism more accessible to everyone. She calls people out for blaming veganism when they just didn't eat enough or ate weird extreme diets and I think that's a good thing. Curious outsiders need to see veganism is not one diet or about food. She really hates oil free people, which is funny, and is part of her war with Mic the Vegan. I am okay with oil free but it's too restrictive for most people and especially shouldn't be pushed on young healthy people as though it's a panacea. It's great for older people who need it though and for younger people who want to lose weight.
 
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new vegan

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Well, here's something that's quite interesting.

We decided to try an experiment with Earth Balance. It had to be Soy Free because my husband is allergic to soy. Before we made this decision, i let him know that the producers of Earth Balance seem to have a sketchy marketing tactic. They are targeting "taste" "texture" and nothing more. Yes, they are toting the "natural ingredient" "no cholesterol" "No Trans fats" trope, but so are other "butter alternative" manufacturers.

We decided to take him off of butter last year due to the "dairy" aspect of his cardiovascular disease. Everything was just fine. His LDL was low.. extremely low when he ate butter.

It was at 43.

Interestingly enough, we jumped on the Earth Balance kick. He thought he discovered Utopia, and had the Earth Balance as a butter substitute for baking, as well as on toast, and on his crackers/toast as a snack.

Whelp! We noticed his LDL went up dramatically to 220 after about 6 months..

We looked at every thing he's been in eating in his diet, and realized this didn't occur until after the Earth Balance was introduced into it.

Yesterday? We received our last blood test, and it's (LDL) gone up another 7 points. 227..

After lots of research, as well as reading between the lines on forums. I noticed concerned members asking questions about using Earth Balance. Interestingly enough, i would see posts like:

"Great Stuff! I Love it"

"My kids love it!"

"Can't do without it!"

"Love the taste!" - All of these responder's "Join Dates" were suspect, and when asked to expand on their response, they went into lurk mode, or some would just repeat the same lines.. Probably the marketing reps.

There isn't very much research material that says that Butter Alternatives are "healthy for you", and when i DO run across any, the people in the comment section, are far more knowledgeable than the authors - who seemed to be paid for saying products like "Earth Balance" "Smart Balance" "Land O Lakes", etc., are healthy alternatives to butter.

We're taking him off this crap, and will take a blood test in 6 weeks.
 
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emi

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Well, here's something that's quite interesting.

We decided to try an experiment with Earth Balance. It had to be Soy Free because my husband is allergic to soy. Before we made this decision, i let him know that the producers of Earth Balance seem to have a sketchy marketing tactic. They are targeting "taste" "texture" and nothing more. Yes, they are toting the "natural ingredient" "no cholesterol" "No Trans fats" trope, but so are other "butter alternative" manufacturers.

We decided to take him off of butter last year due to the "dairy" aspect of his cardiovascular disease. Everything was just fine. His LDL was low.. extremely low when he ate butter.

It was at 43.

Interestingly enough, we jumped on the Earth Balance kick. He thought he discovered Utopia, and had the Earth Balance as a butter substitute for baking, as well as on toast, and on his crackers/toast as a snack.

Whelp! We noticed his LDL went up dramatically to 220 after about 6 months..

We looked at every thing he's been in eating in his diet, and realized this didn't occur until after the Earth Balance was introduced into it.

Yesterday? We received our last blood test, and it's (LDL) gone up another 7 points. 227..

After lots of research, as well as reading between the lines on forums. I noticed concerned members asking questions about using Earth Balance. Interestingly enough, i would see posts like:

"Great Stuff! I Love it"

"My kids love it!"

"Can't do without it!"

"Love the taste!" - All of these responder's "Join Dates" were suspect, and when asked to expand on their response, they went into lurk mode, or some would just repeat the same lines.. Probably the marketing reps.

There isn't very much research material that says that Butter Alternatives are "healthy for you", and when i DO run across any, the people in the comment section, are far more knowledgeable than the authors - who seemed to be paid for saying products like "Earth Balance" "Smart Balance" "Land O Lakes", etc., are healthy alternatives to butter.

We're taking him off this crap, and will take a blood test in 6 weeks.
Wow that's disappointingly interesting. It's so frustrating that we can't even trust posted reviews anymore. It's no secret anymore that companies have people in their marketing departments post fake reviews, create accounts just to leave positive comments all over the place. Ugh! And also when companies front to be concerned about the environment, animals, health, etc but it's all just a marketing campaign where they'll say whatever they need to in order to attract a particular demographic. I realize all companies ethical or not need to worry about their bottom line, but it's so demoralizing to realize I've been duped into thinking a company is creating and selling products for those moral reasons, when at times they couldn't care less. It's just a niche they've found of people who will dish out the cash that has a higher margin of profit. I'm not saying Earth Balance is definitely doing that, but you looking into the timing and accounts of those people leaving those comments surely gives me pause. And concerning health, a lot of these butter alternatives advertises as being "healthy" but what they really mean is that it is healthier than butter, which is not that great of a standard to be speaking from! Thanks for the input.