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Food and Cakes

Crisco vs. Butter for buttercream frosting

Does anyone else care if the bakery uses Crisco or shortening in their cakes? I read that it makes the frosting have a greasy aftertaste. So far, most of the bakeries have said they have no alternative, despite what this particular book said. Any thoughts?
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Re: Crisco vs. Butter for buttercream frosting

  • edited December 2011
    Uhm, buttercream needs to be made with butter, IMO. Otherwise is shorteningcream. And that's just gross and gives buttcream a bad name.
  • mica178mica178 member
    5000 Comments Fourth Anniversary
    edited December 2011
    Some bakers use a mixture of butter and shortening to extend the frosting's ability to stay out of the refrigerator, but if they cut out the butter altogether, 1. it won't be buttercream (as kaesha said), and 2. it will taste significantly less good and more fake.

    There's always an alternative, but sometimes the alternative is more expensive and less convenient.  I've found plenty of bakers who only use natural ingredients (no shortenings or food stabilizers). 
  • sarabellamsarabellam member
    2500 Comments Fifth Anniversary 5 Love Its
    edited December 2011
    No way would I want a cake with Crisco in the frosting. The melting point is way above body temperature, and will leave a greasy film in your mouth. Nevermind the taste. Yuck! Sure, it's easier to work with and more temperature-stable. But the drawbacks FAR outweigh the benefits here. Find someplace else.
  • AbbeyS2011AbbeyS2011 member
    1000 Comments
    edited December 2011
    Crisco is NOT for frosting - Buttercream frosting NEEDS to be made with butter!  Ask specifically what ingredients your particular bakery uses for frostings - if they hesitate to tell you, then find another bakery!
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  • edited December 2011
    I would absolutely not use a bakery that used Crisco in the frosting. #1 butter tastes better, and #2 Crisco is horrible for you (it's hydrogenated oil, which means trans fats!)
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  • sarabellamsarabellam member
    2500 Comments Fifth Anniversary 5 Love Its
    edited December 2011
    Psst, Crisco has been trans fat free for almost 4 years.
  • edited December 2011
    In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/special-topic-wedding-boards_food-cakes_crisco-vs-butter-buttercream-frosting?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Special%20Topic%20Wedding%20BoardsForum:23Discussion:97527192-34eb-4bcc-af64-9d3df7cd3b5cPost:4a3f1ec0-9d4b-418d-9ebb-ed060b93c1fb">Re: Crisco vs. Butter for buttercream frosting</a>:
    [QUOTE]Psst, Crisco has been trans fat free for almost 4 years.
    Posted by sarabellam[/QUOTE]

    This is a prime example of why you can't always trust the label on food to be telling you the whole truth.

    Foods can <em>claim </em>to have "zero trans fat" if there's less than .5 g of trans fat per serving, so there's still trans fats there.

    So for example, say a food has 2g of trans fat per 1/4 cup serving. They can reduce their serving size on their nutrition facts to 1 tablespoon instead of 1/4 cup and the food "magically" is now trans-fat free!

    The process of hydrogenating oil creates trans fats.  So whenever you see "hydrogenated ____ ", that food has trans-fats lurking even if they aren't on the nutrition label.
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  • edited December 2011

    Every cake purchased from a grocery store was made with an icing that had shortening it-haven't died yet!
     
    On a more serious note: Butter melts very easy.  If you are having an outdoor reception you cannot use buttercream made with butter.  If the air condition is not working/not cool enough in reception room your butter made buttercream will melt.  This will not happen if the buttercream is made with shortening.  Cakes iced in butter based buttercream have to sit out of the fridge at least 4 hours before serving so the butter is soft enough to cut without tearing the cake apart.  Butter is yellow.  So, a truely white icing is not possible.  Therefore, a true any color is not possible because white must be the base color.
     
    Now, there are several different types of shortening out there (Crisco, Alpine, Sweetx...).  Each will affect the taste and texture of your icing (good and bad).
     
    I think most people would be surprised how many of their "favorite" bakeries make buttercream with all or partial shortening.

  • edited December 2011
    I've taken numerous Wilton Cake decorating classes and the classic Wilton buttercream is made with Crisco.  With that being said I hate buttercream made with all crisco, it's gross.  However, if it's made with all butter it melts very easily.  Many people will make it with half and half.  I generally do a pure buttercream as the frosting on the cake, and then do the half butter/half crisco as the decorating icing becasue it lasts longer and holds better. 
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  • edited December 2011
    If it were my cake, I'd find another baker if they put shortening in my frosting, but I'm also not a fan of buttercream in the first place.  How about a white chocolate ganache instead?
  • edited December 2011
    You can do a Swiss Meringue Buttercream, which has added stability from egg whites, is totally dyeable (butter, like eggs, looses a lot of its colour from whipping - and it's not like it was a bright yellow to begin with, you know?) and holds up to heat better and pipes really well.

    I had a shortening-free buttercream cake, and it held up outside for an hour just fine. I certainly wouldn't keep it out for much longer than that; my parents' buttercream cake melted and fell over because the a/c on the ship they got married on broke.
  • edited December 2011
    I always use all crisco. It holds up a ton better and doesn't need refrigeration, if you're having an outdoors wedding.
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  • sari5765sari5765 member
    10 Comments
    edited December 2011
    Thanks, folks. I have a lot to think about now, and I'll bring some of the info you shared to the bakers I'm considering. 
    check out our wedding blog at http://kellyandsari.com
  • sarabellamsarabellam member
    2500 Comments Fifth Anniversary 5 Love Its
    edited December 2011
    In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/special-topic-wedding-boards_food-cakes_crisco-vs-butter-buttercream-frosting?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Special Topic Wedding BoardsForum:23Discussion:97527192-34eb-4bcc-af64-9d3df7cd3b5cPost:72abb1f5-7456-42c5-8d4e-21f776b1416f">Re: Crisco vs. Butter for buttercream frosting</a>:
    [QUOTE]In Response to Re: Crisco vs. Butter for buttercream frosting : This is a prime example of why you can't always trust the label on food to be telling you the whole truth. Foods can claim to have "zero trans fat" if there's less than .5 g of trans fat per serving, so there's still trans fats there. So for example, say a food has 2g of trans fat per 1/4 cup serving. They can reduce their serving size on their nutrition facts to 1 tablespoon instead of 1/4 cup and the food "magically" is now trans-fat free! The process of hydrogenating oil creates trans fats.  So whenever you see "hydrogenated ____ ", that food has trans-fats lurking even if they aren't on the nutrition label.
    Posted by abbyful[/QUOTE]
    Butter isn't trans fat free either. <a href="http://www.nytimes.com/2007/03/07/dining/07tran.html">http://www.nytimes.com/2007/03/07/dining/07tran.html</a> 
  • edited December 2011
    I specifically asked our baker if her buttercream was with butter or Crisco and she said she refused to use cricso.  Same goes with the other bakery we considered.  If I heard Crisco we woudn't have used them!  I feel very strongly about all natural, minimally processed ingredients.  I think the end result tastes better.
  • AbbeyS2011AbbeyS2011 member
    1000 Comments
    edited December 2011

    I found a bakery that does cream cheese icing - I have made that many times and it holds up well even in heat.  That is what I will be having.

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  • edited December 2011
    The reason they use Crisco is because it's hard to get pure white buttercream when using yellow butter.  If you don't mind not having white icing, then go for butter. I think the buttercream icing is way to sweet  to eat anyway - regardless of if there's butter or crisco.

    I personally don't like buttercream and asked for a whipped icing similar to cool whip. I don't know what else it has in it - but it's a lot lighter and has a lot less sugar and butter than buttercream. 
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