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The 5 Best Substitutes for Lard

If you’re like me, you love flavorful and rich food.

But sometimes, recipes call for ingredients high in saturated fat or unhealthy cholesterol.

If you’re looking to reduce your intake of unhealthy fats while still enjoying your favorite foods, consider using a substitute for lard.

Lard is a rendered pig fat often used in cooking because of its excellent flavor and stability.

However, it’s also high in saturated fat and cholesterol.

There are several healthy substitutes for lard that can give your food the same great taste without all the unhealthy baggage.

So next time you’re reaching for the lard, consider one of these healthier options instead.

What is Lard?

what is lard

When most people think of cooking fats, lard is one of the first to mind.

It is a type of fat that is rendered from pork or beef.

It has a high smoke point and a neutral flavor, which means it’s great for cooking.

Unlike other oils, lard doesn’t have a strong taste, so your food will taste the way it’s supposed to.

Lard is also shelf-stable and doesn’t need to be refrigerated, making it a good option for those who go camping or are involved in outdoor activities.

Lard is great as an all-purpose cooking fat, but what’s the background behind this favorite fat? Lard has been around since the beginning of humankind and was used by our ancestors to cook and protect themselves from harsh weather conditions.

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The benefits of lard have been touted for years, but recently with the rise of low-fat diets, it has lost a bit of its popularity.

However, there has been a renewed interest in cooking with lard in recent times because it is a healthier alternative to other types of cooking fats and oils.

So, if you’re looking for a new way to add flavor and depth to your favorite dishes, consider giving lard a try.

The 5 Best Substitutes for Lard

Since lard is such a versatile cooking fat, you’ll want to use it as often as possible.

There are times, though, when you can’t or don’t want to use it (such as if you’re trying to watch your cholesterol).

If this is the case, what should you do? Thankfully there are many substitutes for lard that you can use in your favorite recipes.

1 – Butter


Another common substitution for lard is butter.

The best way to do this with fatback is by using it in equal quantities.

You can also use half butter and half shortening or three-quarters of a cup of each to every one cup of lard that’s needed.

This type of cooking has become very popular recently, and it is especially common in French and Italian homes.

This new type of cooking has gained a lot of steam and even some renown, and some people use butter as lard while others make compound butter; this may be because they want to add more taste or flavor.

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2 – Coconut Oil

coconut oil

Coconut oil is a popular choice as a replacement for lard.

It is an easily attainable type of oil and can be found in most grocery or health food stores.

The best way to substitute coconut oil for lard is by using equal amounts, but it’s important to remember that the flavor will change slightly since this type of fat doesn’t have as neutral of a flavor as lard does.

Coconut oil is incredibly versatile and can be used in most recipes that call for lard.

It has become popular worldwide, but it has gained its popularity greatly in Western countries because of health concerns with animal products or hydrogenated oils (including margarine).

3 – Shortening


Shortening is another viable substitute for lard that you can use.

There are a few important things to keep in mind when using shortening, including how it behaves differently during the cooking process than lard does.

For example, it won’t provide the same flakiness or crispy texture since it’s made so that it doesn’t melt until very high temperatures.

Shortening is a product made from vegetable oils, and for this reason, it has gained popularity among vegetarians and vegans alike.

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Many who shun animal products have been using shortening as their lard substitute even though they know that it’s not the healthiest of fats.

The good news is that some types of shortening are made with healthy oils, such as olive oil or canola oil.

4 – Vegetable Fat

vegetable fat

Another good substitute for lard is vegetable fat, which has recently gained popularity since it provides a flavor and texture similar to lard without negative health effects.

It’s important to note, though, that the frying temperatures will be different when using vegetable fat as a substitute.

Unlike lard or shortening, which doesn’t liquefy until very high temperatures, vegetable fat starts to melt at a much lower temperature.

This means that you’ll want to use it in recipes where the temperature will stay relatively low during cooking.

Using vegetable fat as a substitute for lard helps you avoid unhealthy ingredients and provides a flavor and texture that is very similar to what you get with lard.

It’s perfect for those who have been cooking with lard their entire lives and want to cut back on animal products or saturated fats from animal sources without sacrificing taste or texture.

5 – Margarine


Some people use margarine as a substitute for lard because it’s another easily accessible option for those who don’t want to cook with animal products.

It has the same properties as shortening when used as a replacement.

Although margarine is not as popular as vegetable fat or coconut oil, it is still a good substitute for lard because of its low cost and many varieties that allow you to use different flavors if desired.

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Many people will consider margarine an alternative to lard since it has the same properties and texture when used in cooking and baking.

Margarine also comes with no cholesterol or saturated fats, which are two of the main ingredients found in animal lard.

If you’re looking for a substitute for lard that works just as well but doesn’t have the same health concerns, margarine is an excellent choice.


Lard is a cooking fat that has been used for many years and is especially popular in the United States.

Lard is very versatile, so it can be used in recipes to add moisture or flavor.

However, lard has some health concerns, such as high hydrogenated fats and cholesterol.

Depending on what you’re looking for in cooking fat, there are many different options that you can choose from.

These top five substitutes for lard include shortening, vegetable fat, margarine, coconut oil, and olive oil.

Each has unique properties that make it an excellent substitute for animal-based lard.

Yield: 4 Servings

The 5 Best Substitutes for Lard

The 5 Best Substitutes for Lard
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes


  • Butter
  • Coconut Oil
  • Shortening
  • Vegetable Fat
  • Margarine


  1. Pick your favorite substitute from the list above.
  2. Follow cooking directions for your selected substitute with the proper ratio of ingredients.
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