7 Best Substitutes for Butter in Mac and Cheese

Nothing quite parallels the frustration of being disappointed by your most trusted partner—both literally and figuratively. A few weeks ago, as I’d returned from a vacation. I had a sudden desire for some mac and cheese. Luckily I knew I had some leftover butter in the fridge. So, smiling, I went over to it. But I was horrified to see that it had gone moldy. Disgusted, I threw it in the trash and asked myself how could I possibly make mac and cheese without butter?

Perhaps the best thing about this fatty treat is how easy it is to replace. I might seem spiteful, but believe me, I do not lie here. Butter is a part of our daily lives. We put it on bread for breakfast, use it for frying, making sauces, grilling, making desserts, and so much more. So if you’ve met a calamity similar to mine, read on as I have just the solution for you.

Butter, its Composition and Creation

Butter is a by-product of cow milk. It is made by separating milk fat or the cream from other milk elements (buttermilk). Then it is churned until it is ready to be packaged. You can also make butter at home.

Butter has a rich flavor. However, it contains notable amounts of calories and fats. Almost 80% of butter is fat. Therefore people with gallbladder stones should cut it from their diet. Moreover, it has zero carbs.

Nutritional Value Per tablespoon (14 g)
Calories 102
Total fat 12 g
Cholesterol  31 g
Sodium  91 g

 

7 Best Substitutes for Butter in Macaroni and Cheese

Now let’s come back to our initial concern. What can I use as a butter replacement for mac and cheese? Adding no butter to mac and cheese will not ruin its flavor. So let’s discuss all the options available.

1. Plain Yogurt

We all have yogurt in our fridge. You can buy it from any store or make it at home. Since it has a slightly sour taste, Greek yogurt is an even better option. As a result, your mac and cheese will have a slight zestiness.

Plain, unflavored yogurt is an excellent substitute. Moreover, it is fat-free and very healthy. Greek yogurt thickens up very nicely. So your dish will have the desired texture too.

Nutritional Value Per tablespoon (14 g)
Calories 8.9
Total fat 0.2 g
Cholesterol  0.8 mg
Sodium  9.9 mg

 

2. Margarine

Although, it might not be an everyday product in most homes. Migraine makes an excellent butter substitute in mac and cheese. Moreover, it is plant-based. And has low saturated fat content and cholesterol. Therefore, it is even healthier. Most stores also stock low-sodium content and fat-free margarine. You may use any based on your preference.

Macro Nutrients Nutritional Value Per Tablespoon (14 g)
Calories 102
Total fat 11 g
Cholesterol  0 mg
Sodium  0.3 mg

 

3. Sour Cream

Are you looking for a substitute for butter in boxed mac and cheese? Sour cream is the best option. Since it is thick, creamy, and has a divine taste. You can substitute it for either milk or butter. However, always add a little less than what the original recipe called for when using it as a replacement. Since sour cream is way tangier than butter. So you wouldn’t want it to overpower the taste of your dish.

Macro Nutrients Nutritional Value Per Tablespoon (12 g)
Calories 24
Total fat 2.3 g
Cholesterol  7.1 mg
Sodium  3.7 mg

 

4. Mayonnaise

Another thing you can do is to substitute mayo for butter in mac and cheese. It might seem like a strange option. But mayonnaise is an all-rounder. It is great for hair masks, household tricks, sauces, and even cooking. Mayo also substitutes butter for grilling sandwiches. Hence, it shouldn’t surprise you that it is also a butter substitute for mac and cheese. Since the point of butter is to give a thick viscosity, you’ll find mayo works about as well. However, use it in a slightly less amount as it has a sharp taste.

Macro Nutrients Nutritional Value Per Tablespoon (14 g)
Calories 94 
Total fat 10 g
Cholesterol  5.8 g
Sodium  88 mg

 

5. Olive Oil

Do you know you can also substitute olive oil for butter in mac and cheese? Olive oil might not be known for its savory qualities. But, if you have nothing else at hand, go for olive oil! It is a healthy choice. And almost one tablespoon or less works great as a substitute. Besides, you may also use extra virgin olive oil for dairy-free mac and cheese. However, do not add too much oil.

Macro Nutrients Nutritional Value Per tablespoon (14 g)
Calories 119
Total fat 14 g
Cholesterol  0 mg
Sodium  0.3 mg

 

6. Cream Cheese

Are you out of milk? Or do you want a mac and cheese without milk? Whatever it is, you cannot only use cream cheese as a butter substitute but also as a replacement for milk in mac and cheese. It is gooey, cheesy, and delicious. And you can’t have enough of it. However, it is also full of saturated fats. Therefore, you should avoid over-adding it. 

Macro Nutrients Nutritional Value Per tablespoon (13 g)
Calories 46
Total fat 4.5 g
Cholesterol  13 mg
Sodium  41 mg

 

7. Heavy Cream

If you wish to enjoy no butter in mac and cheese, heavy cream is your friend. It is very high in fat content. As a result, it does not curdle when exposed to the heat of the stove. Making mac and cheese with heavy cream will give you a never-felt joy.

Macro Nutrients Nutritional Value Per Tablespoon (15 g)
Calories 51
Total fat 5.4 g
Cholesterol  17 mg
Sodium  4.1 mg

 

Frequently Asked Questions

Can you substitute milk for butter in mac and cheese?
Most boxed mac and cheese have cheese, and most of their ingredients are already packaged. Therefore, if you want to miss out on butter, you can. It won’t affect the taste of your dish.
Can I use vegetable oil instead of butter?
Yes! Vegetable oils are an excellent substitute for butter in mac and cheese. You may also substitute coconut oil for butter in mac and cheese. It will effectively mimic the texture. Still, it isn’t the best substitute taste-wise.
What can I use as a replacement for milk in mac and cheese?
If you don’t want to use plain milk. You can always have the pleasing almond milk mac and cheese. Other milk substitutes for mac and cheese are whipping cream, cream cheese, soy milk, and other dairy-based milk.
Does almond milk make mac and cheese taste weird?
Almond milk has a neutral taste. Thus, it won’t change your mac and cheese taste. But since it is less creamy and has a low-fat content. You will need to add some thickening agents like flour.

Give a Comment