Can we replace butter with palm oil?


Palm oil is more and more commonly used in the food industry. It is found in Nutella, it composes about 30% of this spread, but also in some chocolate plates, some breads in supermarkets, in pizza dough, cakes, confectionery, instant soups, ice creams , margarine, lipsticks, detergents, shampoos, soaps, …

Effect on health

For several years now, palm oil has been replacing the hydrogenated grease used to preserve the material. Hydrogenated fat promoted the creation of too much bad cholesterol in the body. Unfortunately, palm oil is not as miraculous as hoped since it also creates bad cholesterol; the difference is that it also generates good cholesterol.

Its virtues : this is the first food rich in carotene, the second richest in vitamin E (after wheat germ oil). However, its refining strongly diminishes these two riches.

It is known that butter consumed in excessive amounts increases the risk of mortality. It can cause cholesterol and thus promote the onset of diabetes and cardiovascular disease.

Ethical problem

The biggest problem with palm oil is that it is the product of a global ecological disaster. It is difficult to know if it comes from cultures based on sustainable development, ie fields that are not the result of the destruction of the forest. In addition, we imagine that at a certain moment the lands that were formerly covered with primary forest will also obtain the sustainable eco label. After one or two decades, it becomes difficult to control the original nature of the land parcels.

Its cultivation therefore requires a lot of burns (often illegal). The largest producer of palm oil in the world is Indonesia (followed closely by Malaysia), and because of the oil palm it has also the seventh largest producer of CO2 emissions, surpassing Germany in 2015.

Butter crisis

The butter crisis is pushing supermarkets to promote alternative products.

Palm oil is sold in packaging similar to the butter one (golden yellow), with the terms “special cooking”, “without splashing”, “fat spread and cooking”, “70% fat “. With a pan, eggs and mushrooms on the face. The price is very attractive, if we go quickly we suppose that we are buying butter.

Taste side

While the butter appears creamy and light, fat access on palm oil remains on the stomach, it has a feeling of heaviness. The product does not seem natural.


It is better to cook and eat without palm oil. Avoid all products that contain or that are just indicating “vegetal oil” because it is often the term used to indicate the presence of palm oil without naming it, its designation sells less.

Brands like Harrys prefer rapeseed oil (few saturated fatty acids, rich in omega-3) to keep their bread, it’s a much better alternative. It would be the best oil for health, with walnut oil and olive oil.