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Can I Use Crisco Instead of Vegetable Oil? (Quick Answers)

Whether you are preparing an appetizing dinner or baking a yummy cake, you will need oil. Oils play a vital role almost in every type of cooking by adding taste and flavor. It also helps with the texture of the food.

Most of the time vegetable oil is used for cooking or baking. But what if you’re running short of vegetable oil? Or you don’t have it at all that moment?

You may wonder if there is an alternative to vegetable oil. We’d like to share that many people consider using Crisco in such cases. But can Crisco be used instead of vegetable oil? Read further to know!

Can I use Crisco instead of vegetable oil?

You can use Crisco instead of vegetable oil because it possesses the same quality as the oil. Crisco can be used to prepare any food, cooking or baking, that requires oil. The only difference is Crisco gets solid at normal temperature, unlike vegetable oil.

Shortenings are good alternatives to oils. To be more specific we’d say vegetable oil shortening is lifesaving. They can replace vegetable oil in any dish since they contain the same quality a vegetable oil offers.

Crisco is a popular name that pops up when we talk about shortening. It’s a pure vegetable oil that’s come in a solid shape. Depending on the recipe, Crisco can be used in the exchange of vegetable oils.


You can use Crisco for baking. It can be used to make cakes. Crisco is nothing else than vegetable oil so it won’t affect the cake if mixed in the cake mix.

The taste will match your desire but a little change in the texture can be seen sometimes.


Along with cakes, brownies too can be prepared with Crisco. Shortenings don’t contain any extra color or taste so the quality of the brownie remains the same. Tender and tasty!

For frying:

Don’t cry if you can’t have some pancakes because you are short on oil at home. Crisco can do that for you. Also, the amount you have to put in remains the same as oil.

Just like vegetable oil does, Crisco can fry foods without ruining their flavor.

Deep fry:

As you’ve learned Crisco can be used for frying, you’ve already guessed you can use Crisco shortening to deep fry any food.

So even if you don’t have much oil, with Crisco you can get the taste of crispy chickens or fries. Just remember it can get hot in less time than usual oil since its smoke point is low.


Cookies are usually made with either vegetable oil or butter. But when you don’t have both, shortenings like Crisco can be used in exchange.

Crisco acts the same as oil or butter while baking cookies. Unless you can’t skip some rich flavored butter in the recipe, Crisco is good to do the job of baking cookies.


Bread can be made using Crisco. While making the dough you can put it but it’s better to know since Crisco is a shortening, slight difference in the appearance or texture might be felt.

What’s the difference between Crisco and vegetable oil?

Crisco can be used instead of vegetable oil in many recipes. But they do have some dissimilarities.

Though Crisco and vegetable oil does the same job they do have some differences that we’ve mentioned below:

Making Process:

Crisco is made through a process called hydrogenation. In this procedure single bonds are created in an unsaturated fat by breaking the multiple bonds, thus many hydrogen atoms create a bond in the carbon chain.

Vegetable oils are made of different plants and seeds such as sunflower, olive, sesame, etc. by extraction process which can be mechanical or chemical.


Though oil and shortening both are fat but the type of their fat is different. Crisco is made of saturated fat which doesn’t have any double bonds and vegetable oil is mostly saturated fat which owns multiple double bonds.


Crisco is made of saturated fat. It stays solid at room temperature. But vegetable oil is liquid at every temperature since it has less saturated fat.

Flavor and scent:

Crisco does not contain any flavor or taste or any scent. But many vegetable oils such as olive or coconut oil contain a slight smell and are flavored.

3 reasons why Crisco is a bad substitute for vegetable oil

Crisco, a well-known shortening is used largely in cooking and baking in the place of vegetable oil. It may not create any big difference to be noticed but sadly, Crisco hardly does any good to your health. The reasons are here:

It contains no health benefits:

Shortenings such as Crisco don’t have nutrition value, unlike other vegetable oils. Vegetable oils contain various health elements Vitamin A, B2, B3, Omega 3,6 acids, and many more.

But Crisco because it’s a shortening, is just hydrogenated solid fat that barely has any nutrients rather than fat. They are partially hydrogenated fat which is a group of trans-fat, unhealthy for the body.

It can cause health issues:

Crisco is a type of trans-fat and trans-fat can be harmful if consumed for a longer period. It creates various health problems such as interrupted cell membrane function, anxiety or nervous issues, etc. 

Creates room for heart disease:

Crisco since contains trans-fat can increase bad cholesterol, therefore, veins or arteries can be blocked. Thus heart issues can be seen. Frequent intake of Crisco multiples the chance of heartattack or stroke.

How much Crisco do I substitute for vegetable oil?

Vegetable oils can be replaced with shortenings, like Crisco. It can be used just the way you use vegetable oils in any recipe. But since it comes in another form, you may wonder how much to use.

However, there aren’t many calculations while substituting Crisco for vegetable oil because the formula is simple. You need to use the same amount of Crisco as vegetable oil. That means quantity for quantity is the trick here.

For example, if your recipe says you have to use 1/3 cup of vegetable oil then the amount of Crisco will be the same, 1/3 cup. There is no need to put any less or extra. It requires in the same quantity as to any oil.

But since it gets solid at room temperature, It’s suggested that you melt the shortening before to avoid any error in the measurement. 

How to use Crisco all-vegetable shortening?

Crisco all-vegetable shortening is largely used in baking and cooking. It can be used in various recipes while not making great changes in them. 

Crisco all-vegetable shortenings can be used in a liquid form. It’s mostly used after melting it in the heat that’s around 47 or 48 degrees Celsius. For baking, you have to put the liquid Crisco and mix it well when it’s warm.

You can use Crisco in its normal state as well. Because of its solidity, it can be cut off using pastry blenders or knives.

What can I use instead of vegetable oil?

Vegetable oils are considered daily essentials because you will need them more or less to prepare any kind of food. But what to do if you are in a shortage of vegetable oil? Well, we’ll let you know what can you use in exchange for vegetable oil:

Peanut Oil:

Peanut oil is great to use instead of vegetable oil. It’s neutral in taste and has a high smoking point. Since it’s almost similar to vegetable oil, you can use it blindly especially for frying.

Olive oil:

Both extra-virgin and regular olive oil make a great substitute for vegetable oil.

The regular one is best for cooking or frying because of the high smoking point whereas extra-virgin can be used to make salad dressings. Though olive oil carries a bit of flavor, it won’t affect the recipe a lot.


Butter is luxurious in its scent but works just like any vegetable oil. It’s more smooth than regular oils and enhances the taste in a way you can’t complain about. Butter is best for baking.

However, refrain from using butter for frying since it has a very low smoking point and can burn quickly.

Coconut Oil:

Coconut oil is being used in cooking for decades. It’s rich in flavor so not an exact substitute for vegetable oil. But can be used in baking, cooking, or garnishing anyway. It too has a low smoke point so better avoid using it for frying.

Final Thoughts:

Crisco can be used in the exchange for vegetable oil. It is hydrogenated oil made of saturated fat and works similarly to vegetable oil. It’s great for baking or cooking since it hardly makes any significant change in the taste or texture. However, frequent use of shortenings is discouraged.