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Salted vs Unsalted Butter


Did you ever wonder about the difference between salted butter and unsalted butter??  I personally only buy and use unsalted butter for multiple reasons.  For starters, salt is a natural preservative so it extends the shelf life of the butter, which means it’s likely been on the supermarket shelf longer than the unsalted one; in some cases up to three or four months compared to its counterpart, the unsalted butter.  

The second reason I use unsalted butter is there is no industry standard that dictates the amount of salt a manufacturer can use in their product.  According to an online article from Bob’s Red Mill written on September 8, 2017,  Organic Valley brand has 600 mg of sodium per stick.  Trader Joe’s has 720 mg, Land O’Lakes contains 760 mg, and Horizon has 920 mg!  The salt content will affect the overall taste of your dish; particularly in a baked good.  Additionally,  if you’re watching your sodium intake level, beware!  You can always add salt to taste.

Another little ‘tid-bit’ is that salted butter has a higher water content than unsalted butter and in baking, the water can interfere with gluten development.  Salted butter will also scorch faster than unsalted butter.  So for all these reasons, I use only unsalted butter.       

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