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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.

Jimmy2980651 Jimmy2980651 5 years
\u00a0@dunnonuttin Yes Earth Balance is but I was referring to Smart Balance
kamwick kamwick 6 years
I have tried smart balance and find that it doesn't melt as well as Organic Earth Balance, nor does it taste nearly as good. In fact, it seems to have a watery quality that's yucky on toast to me. The regular version of Earth Balance does not taste as good as the Organic. Earth balance is also better to bake with. Real butter, of course, tastes great. However, when I think of the conditions that the dairy cows endure, and the heavier feel I get after eating it, then it doesn't taste quite that good after all.
gLam-shortie gLam-shortie 8 years
ok. So it seems like margarine is the way to go, from looking at nutritional content, but it's really not good for you!!! Transfat, which is commonly called as "saturated" fat, ususally comes from animal fat, which is SOLID at room temperature do to how the fatty acids are tightly packed. In contrast, unsaturated fat, or "polysaturated" fat, which comes from plants is liquid at room temperature. These include olive oil and canola oil. These have a double bond between the carbons in the fatty acid tail, which makes them pack not as tightly together, hense the liquid form at room temp. so like michlny suggested, it's infact BETTER to use Butter, even with more calories, than to use altered fat like margarine, which stays in your system longer, because although it does come from plants, (naturally unsaturated), they solidify it, which makes it saturated with alteration (worse than regular saturation!) i hope that helps!!! Don't get fooled by the low calories!!! ***I'm a Biology Major, so this is why i know so much about this subject! :)
ibiteback ibiteback 9 years
I love brummel and brown made with natural yogurt. It tastes great, no trans fats, and has 45 cals a Tbs
teacherturtle1 teacherturtle1 9 years
smart balance is the best! better than margarine.. even natural butter is better than margarine. i don't know what i can't believe it's not butter is made of, but i doubt it is made better for you than smart balance.
crazylovevbug crazylovevbug 9 years
i've used smart balance for years. it's the best.
emalove emalove 9 years
I use I Can't Believe It's Not Butter...have for years and it's my favorite!
LesleyP825 LesleyP825 9 years
They are both really good but I usually buy the Smart Balance because it's lower in fat and calories. I always use real butter in baking!
jasmint jasmint 9 years
I love Earth Balance!
designergirl designergirl 9 years
Only real butter for me! Natural is healthier and tastes so much better.
RebeccaAdele RebeccaAdele 9 years
Oh, I forgot to mention that I knew Earth Balance is vegan, but I was just cautioning people with milk allergies (like myself :))
RebeccaAdele RebeccaAdele 9 years
They might be dairy free, but are they vegan? Most "Lactose-Free" items actually still contain milk. My dad bought some lactose-free icecream for a party and the first ingredient was milk. Doesn't seem healthy to be adding and removing things like that.
j2e1n9 j2e1n9 9 years
I agree michlny, I am almost positive that smart balance contains the word hydrogenated somewhere in their ingredient list. I say this because my mom switched to this stuff after her doctor told her she had high cholesterol, but when I looked at the ingredients, I saw that it had something bad in it, and I told her to just stick to olive oil or regular butter if she had to. I think its better to have a smidgen of butter than something unnatural and chemical. :( Also, dont these things never go bad even if you leave them out in the sun for a week, they'll still look the same? See, thats not right!
michlny michlny 9 years
if they are taking liquid oils and making them solid - isn't that by definition - hydrogenated, and therefore, containing trans-fats?
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