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Butter vs. Margarine vs Shortening: Which is better in cookie baking?

Many bakers seem to put butter, margarine, and shortening in the same interchangeable category. They use whatever they have on hand and hope for the best. But, unfortunately, baked goods won’t turn out correctly if you start to substitute these three important fats. If a recipe calls for a certain one, use it. Baking is based on chemistry and you’ll throw the delicate balance out of whack if you start making up your own substitutions. The three fats mentioned here - butter, margarine, and shortening - vary in their moisture and fat contents. And since baking is such a regulated