What Are The Differences Between Butter and Ghee?

When you are in the kitchen and whipping up a certain recipe, you'll find many things that call for butter. You probably use butter in desserts, to roast certain vegetables, or to slather on your toast. However, there is an alternative: organic ghee. If you have only ever used butter, the idea of using some other replacement may sound downright odd, but the fact of the matter is, ghee can be a viable and logical alternative for many people.

Ghee vs. Butter: The Differences

Generally speaking, ghee is a form of butter that is clarified. The primary difference between ghee and butter is ghee can withstand higher levels of heat without breaking down; it has a higher smoke point. Ghee has a smoke point of 485°F (252°C) and butter will smoke or burn at 350°F (177°C). Additionally, ghee is considered a shelf-stable product and does not have to be refrigerated. Ghee contains virtually no milk solids (less than 3 parts per million), which is what makes butter something that will ruin if left only in the pantry for long periods of time.

Is Ghee Healthier Than Butter?

Ghee may be better for cooking certain foods, but one thing most people question more than anything is if ghee is more nourishing than butter. There are key differences between ghee and butter where nutritional value are concerned, including:

  • Ghee does not produce high levels of acrylamide, which is a toxin that shows up when certain oils are heated, including butter
  • Ghee contains virtually no lactose, which makes it a better option for people with lactose sensitivities
  • Ghee does have a slightly higher concentration of butyric acid, which aids in colon health and conjugated linoleic acid, which helps to retain lean muscle mass.

One of the few disadvantages of ghee is that it can contain slightly higher calories and fat than butter. Ghee contains 13 grams of fat per tablespoon and 112 calories, whereas butter contains 11 grams of fat and 100 calories. However, you can get by with using less ghee than butter in recipes because it has a bolder flavor profile and breaks down slower.

Does Ghee Taste Like Butter?

Ghee has a slightly nutty flavor compared to butter, and it tends to offer a more profound buttery flavor than typical butter because the milk solids that would normally tone down the butteriness have been removed. One of the reasons ghee is popular for preparing Thai or Indian foods is it can hang in there with even strong spice flavors without being overpowered. Similar to other fats, ghee will pick up the flavors from whatever spices or aromatics you use in your recipes as well. The flavor profile of ghee is great for things like sauteing veggies, roasting meats, or even grilling foods because it won't break down so easily in high heats like butter.

What Are Some Ghee Products?

You can find ghee available in a lot of different formulations from different manufacturers. At Carrington Farms, we offer organic ghee products, such as Organic Coconut Oil and Ghee Spread, Organic Ghee with Pink Himalayan Sea Salt, Ghee Cooking Spray, and traditional Organic Ghee. Carrington Farms ghee is considered dairy-free, does not contain whey, and contains virtually no lactose. We harvest our ghee from only grass-fed cows.

How to Use Ghee in Place of Butter

Organic ghee is awesome to use in place of butter in the majority of your favorite foods. However, ghee is especially a good replacement if you are doing high-heat brazing, baking, roasting, or other types of cooking. You can also:

  • Melt ghee and drizzle it over fresh steamed or grilled veggies
  • Spread room-temperature ghee over your toasted bread or even on crackers
  • Add ghee to mashed or baked potatoes for a savory flavor
  • Use ghee when scrambling eggs, making french toast, or frying a grilled cheese
  • Try ghee in place of butter when roasting poultry, such as turkey or chicken, in the oven

Ghee has a really good flavor, and it tends to offer flavor that sticks around even after cooking your food. If you love the taste of butter but hate having to add loads of it to flavor your foods, a good organic ghee can be a better alternative.

Takeaways on Ghee vs Butter

While both butter and ghee can both have their advantages, it is well worth having both in your kitchen and ready to use. Some people do actually prefer ghee to butter because of its health advantages and because it is easier to digest if you have dairy sensitivities. Check out the organic ghee products we have available at Carrington Farms if you want to add quality ghee to your pantry.