Butter and margarine review

We check out over 90 spreads and dairy blends, and pick the healthier options.
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  • Updated:1 Jan 2005

05.Dairy blends

If you really like the flavour of butter, dairy blends might seem a good compromise. They’re made from butter blended with vegetable oils, or from butterfat processed to remove some of the saturated fat. They have less saturated fat than traditional butter, with the added bonus that they come out of the fridge easier to spread.

Unfortunately even those with the least saturated fat (WESTERN STAR Spreadable Light, DEVONDALE Light and DEVONDALE Light with Calcium) still have more of it than over three quarters of the spreads based on vegetable oil (Table).

But our spreadability test confirmed they’re definitely easier to spread than butter at fridge temperature (around 4°C), though there were some big differences between brands:

  • WESTERN STAR Supersoft and WESTERN STAR Premium Cultured Butter rated highest for spreadability and were both very easy to spread on fresh white bread.
  • Whether they still have enough of the mouthfeel of butter is something you’ll have to check for yourself.
  • While blends with the lowest spreadability score are still hard to spread on bread without ripping it apart, they’re easier than butter and dead-easy to spread on hot toast.

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