How To Swap Salted and Unsalted Butter

How easy is it to swap salted and unsalted butter? And what’s the difference anyway?

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The Difference

Both salted and unsalted butter are pure, natural and made with fresh cream. The main difference lies in the added salt, which helps salted butter last longer than unsalted by two months. It’s also important to know that salted butter contains a bit more water than unsalted butter.

A Simple Swap

Swapping the two only takes a few easy steps. First, simply do a one-for-one replacement with the amount of butter needed.

Adjust Salt

Next, if you’re swapping unsalted for salted butter, reduce the amount of salt listed in the recipe to adjust for the salt in the butter. Take ¼ teaspoon of salt away for every stick of butter used*. Do the opposite if you’re swapping salted for unsalted butter.

*Certain brands of salted butter may have more or less added salt. Do a taste test before going any further to ensure you’re happy with the flavor.

Account for Extra Water

If you’re baking and swapping in salted butter, the excess water from salted butter may make more of an impact. This is because extra water can have an effect on how gluten reacts and forms within dough. Consider slightly lessening any additional water the recipe may call for.