Vegan Margarine Sans Palm Oil?
I've decided to avoid buying products with palm oil as much as possible since it's so crappy for the environment. I was doing fine until I wanted to make my favorite cinnamon roll recipe which absolutely requires butter substitute, and they all have palm oil! Doing some limited research I found one brand called Willow Run but they don't carry it anywhere I can get to (I'm in Portland). Anyone know another solution or am I stranded?
Darn, I was going to suggest Willow Run. It's good, but a lot of health food stores don't sell it because it's hydrogenated. You might check a cheap-o store brand margarine at your supermarket. Mine has one that's vegan. However, it's pretty terrible spread on toast, but it might be OK for baking... Blue Bonnet Light is the only other brand-name vegan margarine that I know of, but I can never find it.
PPK also has some advice for replacing butter in baking, including using a smaller amount of canola oil: http://www.theppk.com/2007/10/vegan-baking-the-post-punk-kitchen-shows-you-how/
I commend you on your efforts. I try to avoid products with palm oil but I admit that I have not eliminated it from my diet.
I had no idea that Blue Bonnet made a vegan margarine!
If anyone is interested, here is Earth Balance's stance on their palm oil: http://www.earthbalancenatural.com/addressing_palm_fruit_oil.pdf
I also don't buy products that contain palm oil. At this time, Earth Balance cannot convince me that they are doing the right thing for the environment.
I recently made cinnamon rolls using only canola oil for the fat - the filling was 1/2 cup brown sugar + 2 tablespoons flour + 1 tablespoon cinnamon, and I just drizzled a little canola oil into the filling mixture until it was sticky (maybe a couple of teaspoons?), then spread it out on my dough, using my hands to pat it down. The filling worked perfectly - I think the brown sugar helps the filling stick. At some point I think I'll post my recipe on here as I haven't come across one like it. I used canola oil in the dough as well.
Another option is this recipe: Vegan butter - I've tried the first recipe. I used canola oil. The result is a very soft but spreadable "butter" - it is really more like mayo in consistency, but it has a mild flavor and I think it would be appropriate for cinnamon rolls.
Oh, thanks for posting that, AC. I don't use EB these days but I'm sure that I will again at some point, and it sounds like they use sustainable and ethical palms and are actively trying to improve the palm situation. I didn't know that palm fruit oil has the highest yield per acre- pretty cool! Though of course importing it from so far doesn't help its sustainable factor. The stuff I use here is vegan but doesn't even specify what kind of plant oils it uses. Hm, maybe I should start seeking alternatives as well.