Last Updated on July 29, 2020
Today we are going to find out if there is any difference in using salted or unsalted butter for cookies, as it is a very common question amongst bakers. Sometimes a recipe has an ingredient list that we just can’t match exactly. Maybe the item is hard to find or we just do not have it readily available in our pantry and we would prefer to avoid a trip to the grocery store. In the case of butter, maybe the recipe calls for unsalted butter but all we have is salted butter. Is it ok to use it then? And what about the other way around?
Should I Use Salted or Unsalted Butter for Cookies?
Sometimes the recipe does not specify. What do we do then? Well, chefs tend to refer to unsalted butter as just butter. Maybe that is why it is not specified.
Truthfully, unsalted butter is the most common choice between the two. This is because it does not add any extra flavor. It is simply the standard. So, now you know, if the recipe does not say, then go for unsalted butter.
But What If You Only Have Salted Butter and the Recipe Calls for Unsalted Butter?
Well, it depends on the salt content in the butter. It is hard to create a general rule to replace regular salt with the salt present in salted butter because different manufacturers use different ratios.
Our general advice, in this case, is that you reduce 1/4 a teaspoon of salt per 1/2 cup -1 stick- of salted butter you use.
What Is Salted Butter Good for?
For one thing, it is great to eat on toast. But the truth is that it should be treated as a condiment. It is there to add flavor and enhance the food you are preparing.
In the case of baking, salt does bring out the sweet so it would seem like a no-brainer. Actually, we recommend you use regular butter and add a pinch of salt if you think it will help cut through and balance an overly sweet recipe. This is because, as we said before, the amount of salt in salted butter depends on the brand.
So Which One Should I Buy?
I would advise you to only use unsalted butter. It is healthier, as fat as butter goes because it has no salt. It has the added bonus that you can use it for any kind of baking you want. And if that is something you do often, then you will thank me for it.
Remember as well that you can always add salt, but you cannot easily take it away from salted butter. This fact makes unsalted butter more versatile. In my respect, I never buy salted butter. I do not use a lot of butter, to begin with so having two different kinds just does not make any sense! And I bake so much that I prefer to just store the unsalted kind.
What do you have in your fridge? Do you but salted butter regularly? Tell us in the comments below!
Karen is a passionate pastry chef who loves to create delicious baked goods. She has been in the culinary arts for over 10 years, honing her skills and perfecting her craft. Karen is known for her creativity and attention to detail, creating unique desserts that bring a smile to everyone’s face. She is always looking for ways to challenge herself and come up with new recipes that are both tasty and visually appealing. Karen loves to experiment with different flavors and textures, and she is committed to providing the highest quality of products to her customers.