WHAT YOU WILL LEARN IN THIS ARTICLE?
- Summary – Is Crisco Vegan?
- What is vegetable shortening?
- Advantages of Crisco as vegetable shortening.
- What is the difference between Crisco and Vegan Butter?
- Other uses of Crisco.
- The History of Crisco Shortening and Why You Should Avoid It?
SUMMARY – IS CRISCO VEGAN?
Crisco is 100% Vegan but the fact that it consists of palm oil as one of the ingredients makes many vegans unhappy.
Palm oil is ethically against veganism because commercial plantation of palm trees causes environment degradation and habitat loss of animals.
Moreover I will advice you to not consume it because of its negative health impacts.
The video at the end of this post will make it all clear for you as to why not to consume it?
CRISCO AND VEGANISM
Many years ago before researchers would point out the dangers of lard, a butter made of animal fat, that was popularly used in food products, Crisco was also loosely referred to as lard or considered as lard, despite its plant-based nature.
It would make sense that even in recent times one would question, “Is Crisco Vegan?”
The short answer to this question is, Yes, Crisco is vegan.
See Crisco is vegan because it is in fact a vegetable shortening.
Read also: IS COCOA BUTTER VEGAN? A COMPLETE GUIDE.
It is ideally used as a substitute for vegan butter in baking pies.
This vegetable shortening compensates for the shortcomings of coconut oil when it comes to baking.
Vegans may tend to be most worried about the mono and diglycerides in Crisco which function as emulsifiers.
The reason they can be a red flag is that they can be sourced from both animals and plants and it is very difficult to differentiate the sources.
Many vegans can ignore this as trivial for practicability but others may insist on knowing the sources.
Thankfully, the manufacturers of Crisco have clarified that these ingredients are purely from plant sources.
Despite all this, there is a huge debate in the vegan community on Crisco’s few problematic ingredients and the overall effects on health.
First of all, we need to establish what vegetable shortening is.
WHAT IS VEGETABLE SHORTENING?
Often used as a butter or lard substitute in baking, vegetable shortening is a solid fat that can also be used for greasing pans.
A vegetable shortening is made by adding hydrogen to vegetable oil, such as soybean or cottonseed oil, in a process that can be named “hydrogenation”.
Vegetable shortening is solid at room temperature, resembling the texture of butter but with virtually no flavor or odor.
It helps by preventing water from activating the formation of gluten when the fat in vegetable shortening coats the flour.
This is usually suitable for short dough, or dough with a high percentage of fat to flour. Pie crust is a good example of this.
Vegetable shortening is literally used to “shorten” gluten strands, which inhibits them from developing in the dough.
The shortening does not entirely fuse with the dry ingredients used in baking which gives the baker streaks of solid fat marbled throughout the dough for that light, flaky finished product.
This of course is yet another benefit of using any solid fat in baking.
WHAT ARE THE ADVANTAGES OF USING CRISCO AS A VEGETABLE SHORTENING?
As mentioned at the beginning of this write-up vegetable shortening was once synonymous with lard, the notoriously fudgy pig fat that solid at room temperature, ready to be melted by heat.
Margarine, a vegetable shortening evolved into Crisco, a plant-based lard substitute used in baked goods like scones and pie crust.
A lot of vegans tend to use coconut oil as an alternative to butter, however, it can be problematic when baking because of its sensitivity to temperature.
Melted coconut oil will quickly seize when mixed with cooler ingredients such as milk and maple syrup.
It can prove to be a frustrating ingredient to work with even for experienced bakers.
In fact, experienced bakers tend to favor Crisco because, unlike coconut oil, Crisco acts more forgivingly like non-vegan butter when cut into dry ingredients.
WHAT IS THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN CRISCO AND VEGAN BUTTER?
Vegan butter too may market itself as such and this may leave one confused on whether or not it is indeed a healthier option than Crisco.
Nonetheless, the two seem to be doppelgangers.
In comparison Crisco contains soybean oil, fully hydrogenated palm oil, palm oil, mono and diglycerides, TBHQ, and citric acid (preservatives).
On the other hand, a popular vegan butter brand such as Balance Vegan’s ingredient lists the following ingredients:
vegetable oil blend (palm fruit, canola, soybean, flax, and olive oils), water, salt.
The list then states that the product contains “less than 2 percent of” natural flavor, soy protein, soy lecithin, lactic acid, and annatto extract (for color).
IS CRISCO ONLY FOR BAKING? OTHER USES OF CRISCO.
As mentioned from the beginning of the article leading up to this portion, Crisco is mostly used for baking.
However, questions may arise such as, “Can Crisco only be used for baking?”
The answer is, “Nope!”. There are many alternatives for Crisco and we will do our level best to list some of the popular ones.
Like most vegan products Crisco finds itself being a multipurpose product.
Crisco is recommended for skincare as it has properties that can soothe dry chapped skin or lips.
It will inhibit dust particles from entering the broken pieces of skin and thus prevents potentially infection of the minor or more serious wound.
Crisco has long been known as one of the best home remedies for eradicating baby diaper rash.
Though it’s a rather old-fashioned remedy, it works.
It is recommended to rub it generously all over the affected area.
Most mothers testify that it certainly does the trick quickly and better than many pharmacy alternatives.
However, precautions must be taken.
Remember, Crisco liquefies as quickly as coconut oil when it is exposed to high temperatures.
Body heat is not an exception to the rule.
Apply a moderate portion when initially applying to diaper rash, and only add more if necessary to cover the entire reddened area.
BOOSTING CALORIE INTAKE
In case you need to boost the caloric intake of your survival meals during a long-term disaster, fuse it with tea, in pretty much the way people use bulletproof coffee.
A 12-gram serving contains 6 grams of polyunsaturated fat, 3 grams of saturated fat, and 2.5 grams of monounsaturated fat.
You probably had not seen this one coming.
Rust increases the risk of contracting tetanus.
As a safety measure applying a film of Crisco onto surfaces of metal tools and blades will go a long way in protecting them from rust.
The trick is lightly greasing them to form a protective barrier between them and moisture thereby mitigating rust formation.
Rust is a major cause of tetanus; a life-threatening disease caused by bacterial toxins that impact the nervous system, leading to excruciating muscle contractions, particularly of the jaw and neck muscles.
Tetanus can interfere with one’s ability to breathe and can threaten your life.
Tetanus is commonly known as “lockjaw.”
CRISCO AS A HEADLIGHT CLEANER
Yes you heard right, Crisco can clean a head light!
The shortening should be gently rubbed on the vehicle headlights to get rid of stuck-on bugs and debris or to help prevent rain, snow, or ice from building up and obscuring the maximum brightness of the lights.
TO GREASE AND CLEAN A LOCK
Gunk tends to build up in locks.
Crisco is a great multi-purpose agent when it comes to solving that crisis.
You may apply some Crisco onto a key before inserting it into its lock.
Wiggle the key around a little so that the grime inside the lock is disturbed and either comes back out with the key or can be cleaned out with a toothpick and allow the lock to open more smoothly.
You can also use it once in a while to prevent the gunk from building up to unmanageable levels in the first place.
THE HISTORY OF CRISCO SHORTENING AND WHY YOU SHOULD AVOID IT?
This might look boring to you but I swear it’s an eye opening!
Crisco does not contain any animal products and is 100% plant based.
Yes, Crisco Butter Flavor is vegan as it does not contain any animal derived products in it.
No, there is no dairy in Crisco Shortening.
Crisco is bad due to its content of saturated fats which are bad for the heart. Watch the above video for clarity of thought and why you should not consume Crisco?
Lard is made from Pork Fat while Crisco is made from hydrogenation of vegetable oils and is purely plant based.
Olive oil and coconut oil can be used as an healthy alternative to Crisco.
Yes it is all natural and 100% plant based.
Crisco is gluten free and lactose free.
Knowledge is indeed power, so continue to read through other articles to improve your vegan lifestyle on a foundation of knowledge.
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