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Butter can be eliminated from some recipes. When browning onions, hamburger, etc., you can spray your skillet with non-stick spray or use chicken or beef broth instead of butter. When baking, you can use reduced-calorie margarine instead of butter, but the texture will not always come out right. You've got to experiment a little. Non-fat margarines currently on the market do not bake well at all. Just remember...with baked goods, it's not always the calorie content per cookie or piece of cake, it's how many you eat! Remembering that has helped me maintain my weight better than any reduced calorie diet.
If at all possible, try to avoid margarine in any form. It starts out black and smelly before being refined. Our bodies don't know what to do with it, so it just sticks around clogging arteries and such. A little butter goes a long way. I like the idea of using chicken or beef broth. I think I'll try that.
"Remembering that has helped me maintain my weight better than any reduced calorie diet." That sounds like a reduced calorie diet to me. Half the cookies equals half the calories.
I also use cooking spray and never really thought about using chicken or beef broth. I am going to have to give that a try. It will definitely enhance the flavor of the onions or whatever else I am cooking!
Why would you want to cut out butter? It tastes delicious, it is natural and the animal fat it contains is not now thought to be harmful, except that too much will help to make you fat. Life is meant for living, not agonizing over a little lovely butter.
Margarine is actually a lot worse for you than butter and butter tastes much better. Margarine doesn't break down in your system.
In baking, a very ripe banana, some applesauce, or some yogurt will usually serve well in place of butter or oil. In pan frying, a little OJ is usually good enough.