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Margarine War: Earth Balance vs. Smart Balance

As if the war between butter and margarine weren't enough to think about, now I have to choose between kinds of margarine. Have you ever wondered what the difference is between these two? They're both organic, dairy free, and made without hydrogenated oils, but what else sets them apart besides their names?

Serving Size 1 tbsp 1 tbsp 1 tbsp
Calories 100 80 102
Total Fat 11g 9g 11.5g
Saturated Fat 3.5g 2.5g 7.3g
Cholesterol 0mg 0mg 31mg
Sodium 120mg 100mg 82mg
Carbs 0g 0g 0g
Fiber 0g 0g 0g
Sugar 0g 0g 0g
Protein 0g 0g .1g

Both Earth Balance and Smart Balance are made with an expeller pressed natural oil blend, but here's the difference: In the Earth Balance, the blend is soybean, palm fruit, canola, and olive, and in the Smart Balance, the blend is palm fruit, soybean, canola, and olive. Not a huge difference, but still worth noting.

As far as taste goes, they both have a mild buttery flavor, which I prefer over other margarines that are made with hydrogenated oil. Not only is it healthier, but it also tastes lighter and doesn't make your mouth feel waxy or greasy. Both Earth and Smart Balance spreads have a smooth, spreadable consistency, and they melt well on warm bread. Since I can't tell the difference in taste or texture, I'd definitely choose Smart Balance over Earth Balance, since it has less fat and less sodium. I'd also choose it over butter since it has less saturated fat. If you've never tried Smart Balance, I'd give it a try. It tastes great on food, but you can also cook and bake with it.

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