The debate on Ghee vs. Butter is now a trending one among many health-conscious people. If you know how to make ghee, you’re aware that it’s nothing but clarified butter. Ghee butter has made a spectacular comeback as a healthy alternative and is today trending as the latest superfood. Let’s check out the truth behind these claims.
What is Ghee Made Of?
Ghee is an amazing Indian ingredient used in Indian cuisine, but today it’s being used everywhere. In short, it’s something that you could grow to love! Simply delicious, somewhat like French butter.
- What does butter contain? Butter contains fat along with milk solids and water. When you remove the milk solids and the water in butter, you are left with ghee.
- Simply put, ghee is clarified butter. What is clarified butter? Butter is heated on a low temperature till all the water in it is evaporated.
- What is Ghee butter? It is somewhat similar to French butter or brown butter. However, in France the clarified butter still contains some bits of uncooked parts of milk solids offering a sweet flavor. There is no straining or clarification in brown butter. On the other hand, ghee is simmered till the milk solids start browning a bit offering a caramelized taste. It is then strained and filtered.
- While considering ghee health benefits, it contains 10 grams of saturated fat, 3.5 grams of monounsaturated fat and 0.5 grams of polyunsaturated fat per tbsp.
- Butter contains 7 grams of saturated fat, 3 grams of monounsaturated fat and 0.4 grams of polyunsaturated fat per tbsp.
Which is Better Butter or Clarified Butter Ghee?
So, is Ghee better than butter? It all depends on your dietary requirements.
- As far as the fat content and the calorie content is concerned, both are nearly the same.
- If you’re concerned about your calorie intake or your fat intake, you can opt for either of the two.
- That said, if you suffer from milk allergies or are sensitive to milk and dairy products, ghee is the better alternative.
Difference Between Ghee and Butter
- One of the ghee benefits is that it smokes at a higher temperature when compared to butter, so ghee doesn’t burn as quickly as butter. Butter smokes and burns at 350 degrees F whereas Ghee burns at 485 degrees F.
- This makes ghee more suitable for frying food or sautéing it, forming part of the ghee health benefits.
- Milk solids are separated when preparing ghee from butter, so ghee is almost lactose free.
Ghee and Lactose Intolerance
Is Ghee healthy? Ghee contains minimal lactose, so those who are lactose intolerant can opt for this substitute. In addition, as there are no milk proteins in ghee, it is also suitable for those who have milk allergies.
- People with lactose intolerance typically experience bloating; gas and diarrhea after intake of milk or milk products.
- Their small intestines don’t produce enough lactase for digesting the lactose present in milk and milk products like butter.
- However, they can tolerate ghee better, as the amount of lactose in it is minimal or negligible.
Important: There might be traces of lactose as well as casein remaining behind in Ghee, but it causes problems only for those who are extremely sensitive to milk.
Benefits of Ghee: Is Ghee Good for Health?
- When checking out foods for health, Ghee smokes at a higher point than butter and other oils like olive oil or coconut oil. This makes it an ideal choice for frying and sautéing.
- Ghee contains considerable amounts of butyrate, which is responsible for immune responses that can reduce inflammation and improve digestion
- It undoubtedly tastes great, with a nutty flavor that is awesome when used as topping on popcorn, vegetables, bread and rice.
- It need not be refrigerated. You can store it in an airtight container at room temperature for a few months.
- Ghee has spiritual connections with cows, which is considered a holy animal in India, so it is said to provide a positive energy to the body.
- It’s low in casein and lactose, making it an ideal alternative for those with lactose intolerance.
- It does not contain any preservatives.
How to Make Ghee
From Milk Cream:
- Collect the cream from milk in a glass container for about 10 days
- Store it in the refrigerator
- Pour the collected cream into a food processor and run it for a few minutes
- It separates into butter and whey
- Remove the butter and place it in a pan and heat it on medium flame
- The butter starts melting and forms bubbles
- Heat till all the moisture is evaporated and the mix turns golden; you see clear ghee on the top, with the milk solids getting slightly caramelized
- Filter it and collect the ghee in a glass container
Tip: You can also make Ghee directly from butter.
Cooking with Ghee as Substitute for Butter
- Search for delicious ghee recipes that you can make substituting butter with Ghee.
- Substitute Ghee for butter in the same ratio. This means that you can use the same amounts of ghee as the butter specified in a recipe.
Tip: However, Ghee will not work well in cold recipes like cereal treat, as it is not a binding agent.
- Substituting Ghee for butter works well in warm dishes requiring a nutty flavor and a great aroma.
- Dishes substituted with ghee will be more moist.
Tip: Add a little more flour to counteract this effect.
Today, dairy products are being demonized so it’s nice to see that there is a dairy product, which is given a clean chit, well almost! Is Ghee Paleo? Ghee is endorsed by many Paleo enthusiasts due to the almost nil lactose content. It’s the new superfood kid in town with the good fats theory, similar to avocados and nuts.
Both butter and Ghee are dairy products, but Ghee is more suitable for lactose intolerant people. You can use ghee for cooking or spread it on bread. If you’re lactose intolerant try a small portion of ghee to begin with, to lead a healthy lifestyle.
Also, be fairly warned, as ghee is not a miracle food for weight loss. If you want to lose weight, you must be careful of calories from any fatty source, be it butter or ghee.