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Smart Balance Butter Blend For Baking (Omega 3)

by on October 28, 2008 · 40 comments

Has anyone tried this yet? I picked up a box last week at the grocery store, but am too chicken to use it. I bought it because it says it’s great for baking and that it has omega-3 fatty acids, but the omega-3 fatty acides are from fish oil and I’m scared the cookies will taste like fish. Then again, the box says “Great for baking!” not “Great for shrimp scampi!” so maybe the fish oil is so purified you can’t taste it. I’ll let you know.

By the way, about 6 months ago I had a terrible time with dry eye syndrome. I started taking fish oil supplements and after a few months, it went away.

Smart Balance Butter Blend

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Published on October 28, 2008

{ 40 comments… read them below or add one }

Heidi October 28, 2008 at 11:32 am

I’m scared. ;) Every time I take fish oil capsules I am burping fishy oil hours later. BLEAH.

Veronica October 28, 2008 at 11:43 am

Hi Anna. I use smart balance butter spread all the time. It tastes great and is supposed to be much healthier than regular margarine or butter. I was also nervous about the fish oil, but when I tried it I was pleasantly surprised.

Therese B. October 28, 2008 at 11:50 am

Hi Anna:

I have not tried this product. I am always a little leary when it comes to dairy…butter, butter substitutes in particular. I think of what little butter I do eat it should be the real deal. And I am from Wisconsin…ah..the dairy state.

My hubby is finally coming around with his dry eyes as well. His eye doctor recommended fish oil supplements as well. He just started to take them. I will tell him of your success!

Anna October 28, 2008 at 11:51 am

Veronica, that’s good to know. If the spread doesn’t taste like fish, then neither should the sticks.

Heidi, have you tried Nordic Naturals with a burst of lemon? The lemon eliminates the yucky fish taste/burp.

Therese, let me know what you think. This stuff is part real butter. It’s a blend. Sorry about your husband’s dry eye. The fish oil takes a while to kick in, but it really does help.

Digigirl October 28, 2008 at 12:12 pm

I’ve used it in baking and it worked just fine. When baking, depending on what it is, I may use half of the Smart Balance and half real butter or some other mix, rather than all Smart Balance, just to be safe. But everything I’ve used it in so far has been fine – no difference in taste or texture that I’ve noticed.

Sheri October 28, 2008 at 12:16 pm

I haven’t tried Smart Balance Butter yet- I will look for it at the store and report back

My kids and I take Coromega, which is fish oil but in a little liquid packet- tastes yummy and never , ever had a fish taste before or after.

I get in shipped from Amazon every three months

Sarena October 28, 2008 at 12:23 pm

I have tried this before in chocolate chip cookies. I can tell you that they did not taste any different, but for some reason they did not set up the way they normally do. I know cookies can be tricky some times, but I used it on a recipe that I have made many times before with no problem…I will wait to hear how it works for you!

Sheri October 28, 2008 at 12:28 pm

I just found this

We’re confident that once you try Smart Balance® products, you’ll be back. But if you’re not completely satisfied we’ll refund your purchase price (sales tax not included in guarantee). Maximum rebate check amount not to exceed $6.99 on Smart Balance® Buttery Spread, $5.29 on Smart Balance® Butter Blends, $6.99 on Smart Balance® Cooking Oil, $5.49 on Smart Balance® Peanut Butter or $4.29 on Smart Balance® Popcorn.

Cindy in Tempe October 28, 2008 at 12:37 pm

I’ve used the original Smart Balance butter blend and have been very happy with it. I’ve also used Smart Balance margarine in baking (regular not lite) before the blend came out.
If you go to their website, there’s a form to request a refund if you’re not satisfied, and coupons if you decide you like it.

Katrina October 28, 2008 at 12:58 pm

I use SB Buttery Spread but didn’t realize they have sticks. Will have to try it? Is the price comparable to butter? Can’t wait to see what you try with it.

Pamela M October 28, 2008 at 1:01 pm

Hi, Anna.

I used this recently to make cookies and such. I haven’t really noticed any difference in my baked goods; however, I did notice that it softens much faster than butter sticks do. I’m not sure if that’s true for other spread sticks (like Blue Bonnet and such) because I switched over to real butter a while ago.

Hope this helps,
** Pamela

Barbara Hahn October 28, 2008 at 1:50 pm

Hi Anna,
I haven’t tried that blend yet. But glad to hear about the fish oil. I have that problem in the winter when running the heat.


clumbsycookie October 28, 2008 at 2:12 pm

We don’t get Smart Balance here, but I’m curious to know how this one works. I bought soy butter a while ago just to try it baking but found out later when I got home in tiny letters that it should not be used in baking…

snookydoodle October 28, 2008 at 2:20 pm

don t think it smells like fish. I use some butter spread which has omega 3 oils and it tastes like normal butter.

Patti October 28, 2008 at 2:53 pm

My mom has dry eye syndrome. Maybe she should take fish oil too! Let us know how the baking goes with that.

Laura October 28, 2008 at 4:01 pm

I’m a little scared of it, too!

Heidi October 28, 2008 at 3:12 pm

I take flaxseed oil – no fish taste whatsoever!

Anna October 28, 2008 at 3:29 pm


Flax oil is a good for vegans, but I think fish oil has a different blend of omega fatty acids.

Liesl October 28, 2008 at 4:41 pm

I use it all the time and I love it!!! Can’t tell a difference at all in flavor. The only big difference to me is that it is a much harder butter…so make sure you let it soften before you need it!

HeartofGlass October 28, 2008 at 5:01 pm

Just a warning–I think Anna isn’t talking about regular Smart Balance, but Smart Balance with Omega-3s added. I note this because I have used regular Egg Beaters, which taste, well, like Egg Beaters, but I accidentally once picked up the Omega-3 added ones. Phew! It smelled like I had opened up a can of tuna! I’m a vegetarian so I don’t take fish anything, but I’m cheap so I did use it–not only did I have to throw away the cookies I baked, but I had to soak the pan extra long. Obviously, I’m not a ‘fish person’ but as good as Omega-3s may be for you, fish is fish, and it’s hard to disguise the flavor.

Debbie G October 28, 2008 at 5:57 pm

Another blogger that visits my site told me about this product. She uses it to bake and said it works fine. I’ve never used it. Plain old fear stops me!!!! I don’t like screwing up recipes. At times I do that well enough on my own without experimenting!!!

Therese B. October 28, 2008 at 6:03 pm

Hi Anna!

I hope I didn’t come across rude about the dairy products. I apologize to you if it came across. I will try this new product out. Perhaps it will change my opinion…I get set in my ways!!
And…oh geez. My mistake…it is flax seed oil…not fish oil tablets that my hubby takes for his eyes.
In my hometown of Manitowoc, WI they have a company…Natural Ovens. They make..all natural products bakery products…there is a flax seed mix-in for smoothies..that I swear by! They make a happiness bread too..with nuts..and raisins..yum!!!

Suze October 28, 2008 at 7:44 pm

I used the Omega 3 spread in the tub for baking and have now recently tried the Omega 3 50/50 sticks. No fish taste with either. (In baking or on bread & toast). And baked goods bake up fine too.

MK October 28, 2008 at 8:06 pm

I haven’t tried this butter, but the bread I eat has omega 3s/fish oil in it, and definitely doesn’t taste fishy. Looking forward to hearing how this works!

Healthy Oil Guy October 28, 2008 at 10:45 pm

You won’t be able to taste any fish in food products that have omega 3 fatty acids added to them. Food manufacturers have been able to isolate the essential fatty acids, EPA and DHA, and add them to food products without affecting the taste or texture of the product.

Using pharmaceutical-grade fish oils will prevent any fishy-burps or aftertaste. This only occurs when you’re using a low quality fish oil or a fish oil that has gone rancid.

Priscilla October 29, 2008 at 9:28 am

Hi Anna,

I have been using this product for a few months. So far, I have only used it in cookies. The sticks were a little softer than butter but the cookies baked up the same. The texture however seemed a tiny bit waxy compared to the same cookie with butter. Nothing really obvious, though, and maybe worth cutting back on butter a little.

Since I started buying my fish oil capsules at Costco (Kirkland Brand) I have not had anymore problems with burping or fish taste. Glad that fixed your dry eye problem.

Linda October 29, 2008 at 6:51 pm

Thanks to all about the fish oil-I’m going to go to Costco tomorrow and buy some. I’ve got terribly dry eyes-have to use artificial tears every hour or so. I’ve never heard about the fish oil. How long did you take it before you noticed a change?

Anna October 29, 2008 at 7:16 pm

Linda, I really think the fish oil will help. I saw two eye doctors and a nurce practicioner and all three of them recommended it. I was skeptical, but it helped. It took a while, though. Give it at 2 1/2 to 3 months.

Linda October 30, 2008 at 1:32 pm

Thank you Anna!
I can’t wait to give the fish oil a try-I’m so glad that you mentioned it! There may be an end to my suffering after all! Hmmmm, now I may not have an excuse any longer to drown my sorrows in COOKIES!!!! hahaha NOT!

Angel October 30, 2008 at 10:10 pm

I tried the original Smart Balance sticks of butter. I used it in 2 or 3 tried and true cookie recipes, and the texture of the cookies was noticeably different from what it should have been. The texture of the cookies was more uniform, and they did not really get that soft on the inside, crisp on the outside contrast. And even though I used different cookie recipes that normally have different textures, each recipe I tried with the butter had the same exact texture. The cookies were still good, and the taste was there, but I think you’ll notice a difference in texture. It pains me to say this because I so love Smart Balance for everything else and I would love to be able to bake with it, but I am going to stick with regular butter.

Stephanie November 3, 2008 at 7:17 pm

Hm, interesting! The vet told me to pierce a liquid fish oil caplet and put it in my dog’s kibble to stop her dry, itchy skin. Plus, its also good for your heart! I’d be very curious to try this in a baking adventure… you’ve inspired me! Maybe I’ll sneak some heart health into everyone’s cookies soon :)

Leah December 19, 2008 at 3:24 pm

I just tried a few different cookie recipes with the Smart Balance Omega-3… I’m not sure if I did something wrong, but in all three cookie batches the dough was a little dry. It didn’t hold together well at all and I was wondering if maybe there’s a water difference in regular butter and Smart Balance?

Anna December 19, 2008 at 3:30 pm

Hi Leah,

Based on what others have said, I would stick with regular butter for baking. This product seems like a good spread and I suppose it’s okay for some things, but I’ve used it in a few baked items since posting this and wasn’t thrilled with the results. I think there might be a difference in water (like you said) and definitely in flavor.

lib January 6, 2009 at 9:42 pm

I baked banana walnut muffins today using the sticks. they turned out wonderful.

Annie June 16, 2009 at 7:33 pm

I use the buttery spread in the tub, not even the sticks. My cookies always turn out fine, but I’m not that picky about texture or anything, as long as they taste great. I’m planning on experimenting with using it to bake other things too, simply because I don’t want to use oil or butter all the time.

DeeJay January 15, 2010 at 11:14 am

People have differences in taste sensitivity and/or sense of smelll. I think Smart Balance could save the company a lot of bad press if the word ‘Fish Oil’ appeared prominently on the front label of the products that contain it, vs. just ‘Omega 3′ stamp. When I buy a product that says ‘Butter Blend….made with extra virgin olive oil’ on the front of the box, and in the lefthand bottom corner: “use just like butter.”

I am NOT expecting cookies baked with a ‘butter blend’ to taste like fish. I will now avoid the green-toned Smart Balance box like the plague. Life is too short to eat off-flavored foods. Put a pic of Charlie the Tuna on the box or something, for God’s Sake!!

Perhaps the company thinks putting the words ‘Fish Oil’ on the front label would be the kiss of death to sales. Perhaps they are trying the time-honored technique of trying to ‘sneak’ something iinto us ‘for our own good’. Some of ya’ll appear to LIKE fishy cookies. For those of us who don’t, it’s a massive turn-off not easily forgotten. I don’t need their Mom-strategy; I AM the Mom.

I have one box of Butter Blend that isn’t the Olive Oil plus Fish–it’s the ‘Original’, in red-toned box, and I am hoping it’s better. I stupidly bought 5 packages of the ‘fishy’ stuff, and I would throw it away except for the fact that I have 3 cats and a dog who could use a dab mixed into their food.

There was a coupon for Smart Balance Peanut Butter in last week’s ads, and with a double coupon, I got it inexpensively. It has that ‘Omega 3′ stamp on the front, yet no fish oil listed as an ingredient. ARe there two versions of their peanut butter as well!? Fishy and non-fishy? If the Shoppers are confused, might not the workers at the manufacturing plants get confused now and then, too? Whole place probably reeks of fish oil…..the labels aren’t all that distinctively different.

One could say it’s my own fault for not spending more time intensively reading the labels in the store. I am a label reader, but apparently not able to keep up with all the ‘improvements’ that companies bestow. Have also entered the age of needing Reading Glasses, but not for that front label. Rather than risk making a mistake again, instinct tends to be to avoid the brand until their labelling practices improve.

Larry Gray February 3, 2010 at 8:54 pm

Hi, just today found this blog but I have to say that it looks great. I totally agree with your post. Have a nice day, keep up the nice work and I’ll definitely keep reading.

Eliza December 20, 2010 at 8:26 am

I bake Christmas cookies every year. This year I decided to use the Smart Balance Buttery sticks Omega 3 quarters exclusively. My favorite sugar ball recipes that I bake annually, were sticky to roll and spread more than normal. I used a new rolled out sugar cookie recipe that were too sticky to roll and I had to add tons (1 1/2 cups) more of flour. I am not sure if that recipe was the problem. All drop cookies turned out fine, but probably spread wider than normal. The dough in each case was moister than usual and I did feel I had to refrigerate the dough which took longer to make the final cookie product. I will use up all I have of the quarters and probably use butter to bake from now on, unless someone can tell me how much extra flour I would have to add to compensate for the water in the SB product. THERE IS NO FISHY taste. The taste of all cookies was buttery. Happy Holidays All!

Linda G. March 18, 2011 at 4:47 pm

I have used smart balance products for many years. Now there is a walmart brand, does anyone know the difference besides price? Thanks, Linda G..

Linda G. March 18, 2011 at 4:54 pm

Does smart balance products (all of them) have equals on the market?
Do you think homemade, (e.g. their mayonnaise) would be just as healthy?

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