Is butter temperature important when baking?

Yes!!! It is very important!

Today, my husband started to make the oh-so-popular breakfast cookies, but he realized part-way into the process that we were out of milk, oat flour, and chocolate chips. So, obviously, he quit making them and waited for me to get home from errand running.

I took over the cookie making later in the day. And, I was perplexed as to why his batter was so different from my usual batter. While scooping out the cookies, I got to thinking that his cookies ALWAYS turned out differently than mine: his are more misshapen and flatter than mine (they still taste great, though).

So, I hopped on the Internet to inquire if it could be our butter temperatures making the batter different. And, it is!! He almost melts his butter, and I use softened butter.

Mel's Kitchen Cafe did a hugely scientific study (meaning she baked a lot of cookies and had to taste them!) comparing softened, too soft, and melted butter in cookie baking.

If you don't want to read her post (which I think you should because she has pictures of her results!), let me summarize:

Perfectly softened butter produces superior texture and shape over too-soft and melted butter.

She has pictures and everything so go check it out!


Sophie said...

But how do you soften your butter? I usually forget to take it out of the fridge early enough to just let it soften on the counter...or I take it out too long in advance it gets too soft on a hot day. It never seems "perfect"...

Renee said...

I like to use the "Defrost" feature on my microwave. I find the defrost setting doesn't melt it as fast. I usually leave it in for a few seconds and then flip it over before running it a few more seconds.