Baking question: do you think it’s more eco-friendly to use Crisco or organic butter? Egg Replacer or organic eggs?



  1. 0 Votes

    I would say the organic ingredients, depending on your definition of organic. If the animals that the dairy products come from are allowed free range, relatively healthy lives, and especially if they come from a local source like a farmer’s market, they are definitely the greener choice. It becomes more complicated if they come from a large company, because keeping massive amounts of chickens or cows in one place is certainly bad for the environment and the animals. And these products have probably been transported by truck across long distances, increasing their carbon footprint. But I’d still guess all the energy that goes into over-processed ingredients leaves a bigger footprint.

  2. 0 Votes

    I would also say organic is always the best choice.  While organic means no pesticides are used in the process, it also means humane treatment was used in the process.  Also, you have to wonder how beneficial it is for the environment to manufacture something like Crisco that is so far from natural.  The less of a process to make it, the better it probably is for our planet. 

    • 0 Votes

      Organic doesn’t technically mean humane. From the USDA website: “Natural and organic are not interchangeable. Other truthful claims, such as free-range, hormone-free, and natural, can still appear on food labels. However, don’t confuse these terms with ‘organic.'”

  3. 0 Votes

    For the first part, probably organic butter.  Crisco has a lot of artificial ingredients.  For the second, egg replacer.  Boxed egg replacer is typically potato starch, which involves a lot less invasive methods to create (although if the eggs are organic, it wouldn’t be as invasive as factory farmed eggs–but still, nothing beats a vegetable most of the time).

  4. 0 Votes

    As Michael Pollan, the author of In Defense of Food says, “Eat food. Not too much. Mostly plants.” I think that’s a great mantra to live by, even though it’s more difficult to do than it sounds. There are so many processed foods in the world, that our definition of what is food has changed SO much in the last 50-60 years. And I give credit to the food companies that market this stuff to us- They’ve succeeded in making us believe that things like Crisco or fake eggs are just as good as the real thing. We’re so enamored with the thought of “cheaper, more convenient,” that we let Monsanto tell us what is safe to eat, instead of Mother. I think convenience has come at a detrimental price, both to human health, as well as the environment. Where once there was a farm, now there’s a “flavor” factory. What used to be a nutritious bowl of soup, made from scratch (and made with love) is now “condensed,” or “sealed for freshness,” or even worse “low fat, low carb…” low nutritional value anyone… Bueller, Bueller?

    Nature has spent millions of years preparing our food for us. When did we get the idea in our heads that we could do it better? Furthermore, people have evolved closely with their food sources and environment. To deny our bodies the food our ancestors ate for thousands of years, is bound to have some serious consequences- Perhaps obesity, diseases, and cancers, among the countless consequences on our environment. I think not only does the food need to get better, I think our food culture is due for a revolution…

  5. 0 Votes

    I believe it is more eco-friendly to use what you already have before using more gasoline to get another product. However, if you have neither then organic butter will be more eco-friendly and healthier than processed Crisco in my opinion.

  6. 0 Votes

    Assuming that the eggs and butter are coming from sustainable farms (which I would assume, if they are organic), I believe they would be more eco-friendly than something that has to be created in a kitchen (or lab) and processed. This is especially if you are buying local eggs and butter.

  7. 0 Votes

    Better than either crisco or butter are products like Smart Balance and Earth Balance, which contain healthy, vegan ingredients without hydrogenated oils. Earth Balance also has an organic variety. And I definitely think egg replacers are better than organic eggs, which are high in cholesterol and saturated fat and often cause harm to chickens, even if they’re organic. Egg replacers don’t have to be store-bought; applesauce, bananas, and cornstarch with oil often work well in place of eggs in several recipes!

  8. 0 Votes

    It’s probably better to use Spectrum brand shortening instead of Crisco.  It’s pure, expeller-pressed palm oil & doesn’t have any weird chemicals in it that no one can pronounce, unlike Crisco. 

    You can also use coconut oil.  Refined coconut oil will not impart a coconut flavor in your foods.  Unrefined coconut oil can be used, as well, but it will make your dishes taste of coconuts, which isn’t always a bad thing.  🙂

    As for the eggs, egg replacer wins.  Raising chickens is expensive and bad for the environment, even when they’re free-range and organic.  Plus, male chicks are killed on nearly all egg farms simply for being male. 

    There are lots of things to use in place of eggs–applesauce, yogurt, canola oil, ground flax seeds mixed with water, Enrgy Egg Replacer, prune puree, etc., so any of those would be more eco-friendly, especially when one normally has at least some of those items in the kitchen all the time.

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