Ask Judy – Canola Oil and Baking

Converting a recipe from butter to canola oil

Last month one of our readers asked: “How does one convert a recipe that uses butter, to one that uses canola oil?”

Thanks, Jeanine for the great question.  We are glad you asked and Judy is happy to answer.

The following post is brought to us by guest blogger Judy Fowler, Recipe Developer, Tester and Food Stylist. 

Q: How does one convert a recipe that uses butter, to one that uses canola oil?

A: We are very happy to report that – yes – this substitution is actually fairly straightforward. Generally, when substituting canola oil for butter in baked products, you can use ¾ cup of canola oil for every cup of butter.

If you do a straight conversion (cup for cup), you will need to slightly reduce one of the other liquid ingredients in the recipe. You want to retain the consistency of your dough or batter.

You should not notice any difference in consistency in quick bread batters or doughs or yeast bread doughs. You might find a slight difference in the consistency of some cookie doughs.

Once you start using canola oil in some of your breads and cookies, you should find that, overall, very little needs to be changed. I think you will be quite surprised at the results in some of your baked products when you make this substitution.

We have had great comments about the chocolate chip cookie recipe in our recipe bank. I would suggest that you try this recipe and “get the feel” of baking with canola oil!

How to convert your own recipe to use canola oil:

We have a great canola oil conversion chart which you might find to be very helpful to you.

Canola Oil Conversion Chart |
Be Well…Judy

Judy is a food stylist, recipe developer & tester, mom, lazy gardener and Zumba enthusiast.  She welcomes the opportunity to experiment with new food items and share her passion and creativity with her clients, family and friends.

She is the food stylist for, and as well as many other clients.  If you have a recipe or ingredient question for Judy be sure to send it into [email protected] or leave it in the comment section below.


40 thoughts on “Ask Judy – Canola Oil and Baking

  1. Wonderful! Thank you very much for taking the time to answer my question – perfectly timed for the “My Cookies are the Best” contest too. 😉
    I appreciate it!


  2. Thanks for answering Jeanines question as it helps me as well as I am lactose intolerant . .how do I get a “creamy” soup without the dairy, Judy?

    1. You could always try coconut milk or almond milk. Coconut milk instead of cream or milk makes for a good creamy tomato soup. Just make sure if you use either of those (unless it is intentional for a recipe) it is just plain, unsweetened, and no added flavors.

  3. My question is, can I reverse the above chart? As in, if the recipe calls for canola oil, how do I determine the best substitute? How much butter, or corn oil, or olive oil, to use instead? (Canola oil makes me ill – if someone is cooking with it and heats it, the smell makes me retch, and if I consume it in any form – in a recipe or an item cooked in it – I get stomach cramps and other ill feelings).

    1. Hi Anne,
      Thank you for your question. It is not our area of expertise to convert recipes from oil to a solid fat. Perhaps our friends at Dairy Farmers of Manitoba would have an answer for you. Their website is
      Be Well…

  4. Pingback: How to use canola oil for butter | Nuts & Oils
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    1. Thanks for you comment! It would depend on the type of recipe. If you are making a standard batch of muffins, cookies or a cake I would start with 1/2 cup and adjust from there. All the best with your baking!

    1. Hi Cody! Great question. It all depends on how the recipe was created. What are you looking to bake? Can I help find a recipe for you on our site?

  6. Hi!

    I have been toying with recipes for cupcakes and I’ve seen canola oil come up in some ingredient lists. What can canola oil do to make a cupcake better?

    1. Great question! Any brand of classic canola oil at your local grocery store can help you achieve the outcome you are looking to achieve. Happy baking!

    2. Well for one thing – if you refrigerate cake or muffins made with canola oil instead of butter, they don’t get hard (-:

  7. Pingback: 12 butter substitutes to make you a better baker - How to do everything!
  8. Hi Judy I’m trying to make sugar cookies but it asks is for one stick of butter and I don’t have that I want to substitute the oil for butter how much do I substitute oil for

  9. Hello, If I need 1/2 cup of butter but don’t have it do I use 1/3 cup of canola oil to replace the butter?

  10. I’ve been using canola oil instead of butter in recipes for years. It is especially good for cookies. I have been using an equal amount of oil for butter but will try reducing the oil as suggested here. Nobody has ever complained about the lack of butter in my baked goods. Cookies and cakes disappear like magic.

    1. Thanks so much for sharing. This is fantastic feedback. Continue to bake with love – it’s such a gift to share food with those you love.

  11. Is canola oil is used for baking cookies instead of butter
    What oils can be used for baking cookies instead of butter

    1. Canola oil can be used to bake cookies. Have you tried out Judy’s Chocolate Chip Cookie recipe? It’s one of our favourites.

  12. Hi Judy,

    This information will be very useful because I have a dairy allergy. When I bake cakes for myself I have to use Canola Margarine or any other vegetable oil.

    1. That’s so fantastic! Thank you so much for sharing. We love when canola oil helps bring people together around the table to enjoy food together. Eat Well!

  13. I am interested in converting 1/3 cup butter melted to avocado oil
    I want to use it for a cornbread recipe.
    I am interested in the substitute because I found the texture
    of the cornbread heavy and suspect it was the butter. Rest of ingredients
    were 2/3c milk and 1 egg)
    I see your conversion table above but unsure
    Given 1 cup of butter = 3/4 cup oil then would it be 1/4c oil for
    1/3c butter?
    Thank you for any help

  14. Most of my recipes specify butter by weight.
    Please advise how many ml of oil to use instead of 150gr butter.

    1. Hi Jane
      Great question. Most traditional baking recipes will call for ingredients by weight. To have the exact outcome the recipe developer intended you’d need to weigh your ingredients. If you are looking to bake a close version: 150g of butter would be 2/3 of a cup. I’d try converting the 2/3 of a cup of butter into 100 mL of canola oil. That would be 1/3 of a cup PLUS 1 Tbsp. Can I ask what you are making? Sometimes for best first time results I will only swap out half of the butter for canola oil just to make sure the recipe is a success. Happy baking!

  15. Hello Judy,

    All conversions I find have the cup of butter to cup of canola oil. No one seems to tell us in terms of ounces – 1/4 stick of butter equals 4 ouncs but how do I substitute 4 ozs of butter with canola oil.

    Please can you give me a table for the lbs and ounces.

    Many thanks in advance,

    [email protected]

  16. What are the differences between Butter, Canola Oil and Olive Oil in baking? I want to bake a quiche with either the butter or the canola oil or the olive oil but will there be any differences in the results i get? What will be the differences?

  17. Hi. Thanks so much for this. Will this work out well in quickbreads too? cannot have any butter or milk ( I also would like to see weight conversion since i will be using a kitchen scale to measure. Am hopeless with measuring cups!) ). Best.

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