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Earth Balance and Swiss Meringue Butter Cream

post #1 of 12
Thread Starter 

Hello All,


Has anyone used Earth Balance butter substitute when making Swiss Meringue Butter Cream?   SMB is my go to icing but I need to make a dairy free version.  I've been searching for a recipe but also the tips that can make or break it as I have no experience using butter substitutes. Any suggestions and advice would be gratefully welcomed. 



post #2 of 12
Thread Starter 

Please?  Anyone ? 

post #3 of 12

Butter is approx. 80% fat. As long as the butter substitute has the equivalent percentage of fat, it should work. Use Earth Balance baking sticks not the spread [from tubs].

post #4 of 12
Thread Starter 

Thanks so much for the reply.  I bought the sticks.  I'm concerned about the water content and meringue.  I thought I would experiment first before I have to actually do the cake.  I have seen recipes where some confectioners sugar is added to the stiff meringue (before adding a mix of butter and Crisco.) 

Thought I might try this route to see what happens.  What do you think?

post #5 of 12

you can always try!  I would think that the water content in the earth balance, as well as the added salt would not make for a good buttercream.  


If i had to make a dairy-free SMBC, I would sub the butter for  hi-ratio shortening, and if that wasn't available I would use crisco with a TON of butter-vanilla flavor to try to make up the taste.  I actually have subed half hi-ratio in my SMBC for heat stability and while it isn't the same, it is a tasty end result (very marshmallowish)

post #6 of 12

As long as the fat-content is comparable to butter, I can't see any reason to add powdered sugar to the meringue. It will throw off the balance between the the egg white and granulated sugar. Also, it will make it a lot sweeter.


If in doubt, do a trial run using your normal SMBC recipe using the substitute ..

post #7 of 12
Thread Starter 

Thanks.  I appreciate your help.  I was asked to make a cake for a birthday and 3 days later I get a email "Oh, I forgot to tell you it has to be Dairy Free and alcohol free".  That included extracts.  A bit irritating to be told after the fact.

post #8 of 12
Thread Starter 

Today is experiment day :)

post #9 of 12
Thread Starter 

I just wanted to get back to you with an update.  First, Thank you for all the help. 


LorieLeann, I ended up using almost half high ratio shortening so when it chilled it would be firm enough for ganache and fondant.  The buttery sticks just stayed too soft.   You were right about flavoring.  I had to add much more to get the right taste.  I think the fact this is a raspberry butter cream helped a lot. 



post #10 of 12

i'm glad it worked out!  thanks for the update :) 

post #11 of 12

Sorry to jump in on this late. So you did use the Earth Balance Sticks and half hi-ratio? I am thinking of trying as well.

post #12 of 12
Thread Starter 

Yes.  I was trying to do a dairy free SMBC.   I made two batches.  One with Earth Balance & high ratio shortening and the other with earth balance & palm shortening.  The palm shortening tasted better but was way too soft and never did firm up (a problem for the high heat & humidity and stacking).


I went with the high ratio shortening and also added 2 teaspoons of cornstarch to help firm it up. If I have to do it again I will try 2 tsp of powdered sugar.  Like I said, the raspberry flavoring helped a lot.


I know many people do dairy free but I am just not use to this taste and thought it was acceptable but It will not taste anything like regular SMBC.  The person I made it for love it, so..........I guess that's what matters.



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