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We tried Vioblock, the vegan coconut oil butter that tastes like real butter (and is good for cooking)

We tried Vioblock, the vegan coconut oil butter that tastes like real butter (and is good for cooking)

Alternative vegan products to dairy are increasingly present in any supermarket, a symptom of how plant food continues to be a growing trend. Violife, with a wide catalog of “fake cheeses”, has gone one step further with its vegan version of butter, which does not pretend to be another margarine or a lighter version of it. Vioblock, that’s what the invention is called, it’s pure fat like butter, and imitates it directly without shame in its texture, aroma, flavor and culinary possibilities.

Although we receive with reservations This wave of plant-or laboratory-based foods that on many occasions take advantage of the rise of veganism to strain out more than debatable products, curiosity overwhelms us. Although vegan bacon stayed at that, pure anecdotal curiosity, I admit that I have been looking for a butter substitute that is worthy of that name.

Not because it denies dairy, on the contrary. Good butter – just like cheeses – is a product for which we feel weak at home, but we are aware that not everyone can consume it, either by conviction, health or intolerances. Alternative substitutes have always seemed poor, poorly achieved and inefficient when baking with them; putting this novelty to the test was almost an obligation.

Butter, margarine and “vegan butter”

Does vegan butter really exist? Is it a margarine? With the specific terminology of the new alternative products, we enter into a swampy and somewhat confusing terrain, as the industry moves faster than the legislation. It cannot legally be called butter, because it simply is not, and the concept of “vegan butter” is not protected by law, just as you cannot advertise a product such as plant-based milk or vegan cheese.

According to the consolidated Royal Decree 1011/1981, a product such as Vioblock would enter the cataloging of fatty preparations, other than margarine in nature:

They are greasy-looking products made with edible fats and / or oils, with or without water and other food or food ingredients, as long as the main ingredient is fat.

Margarine can carry dairy fats or vegetable fats, also combined with each other. Originally, vegetable fats, being mostly liquid, were industrially modified to obtain a solid or creamy texture that imitates butter, that is, they hydrogenated The fats. Over time this practice was eliminated, since partially hydrogenated fats are harmful to health by producing Trans fat; In compensation, other ingredients such as palm oil or gelling agents are often added.

What is Vioblock: ingredients and characteristics

Vioblock is one of the latest launches from the Greek company Violife, specialized in 100% vegan products that they claim to offer all-plant alternatives to processed dairy traditional, mainly cheeses, imitating classic references such as cheddar, cream cheese spread or grated mozzarella. Vioblock is their alternative to butter, a reference that they cannot use on the labeling of the package, but they do use on the web or in promotions.

Vegan Vioblock Butter

Featured in 250 g chilled tablets, wrapped in the typical butter paper, no box. There are two references, with sea salt and without salt, also common in the dairy product catalog; in our case we have tried the variety with added salt, the best option if you want to taste it by itself and not just use it for cooking.

Officially it is a “79% vegetable fat spread”. This is the list of ingredients that appears on the label:

Coconut fat, vegetable oils (sunflower, rape), water, sea salt (1.7%), bean preparation, emulsifier (sunflower lecithin), flavorings, Vitamins (D2, B1, B2, B6, B12, Folic Acid ), coloring (beta-carotene).


Vegetable Vioblock 250 g Without Salt Tablet

Vegetable Vioblock 250 g Without Salt Tablet

It is a product in which fat predominates (logical), which in this case comes mainly from coconut. Not specified, but we assume they use coconut oil virgin, since on their website they dedicate a specific section to talk about the virtues of this fat and its benefits in cardiovascular health, which we already know are protected by science, although it is not a magical product.

The great advantage of coconut oil is in its texture, because, unlike other vegetable fats such as olive oil, is solid at room temperature. That is why it is the most suitable fat to replace butter or animal butter in vegan cuisine, without going into nutritional issues.

Nutritional comparison

As much as the brand has a section on its website entitled “diet without guilt” in which they delve into the possible nutritional advantages of virgin coconut oil, be realistic: it is almost pure fat. It is true that fats are necessary for the proper functioning of the organism in all human beings, and that saturated fats are not as demonic as previously thought, but it is not a product that should be abused.

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Vioblock4

In the background they don’t fool anyoneIt is advertised as the ideal vegan substitute for butter, and butter is high in fat. As a guide we can compare your nutritional information with that of other similar products, both a traditional supermarket butter and with its light version and some of the most popular margarines.

Energetic value

Total fat

Saturated fats

Carbohydrates

Protein

Salt

Vioblock with salt

711 kcal

79 g

48 g

0.5 g

0.05 g

1.7 g

Central Dairy Asturian Butter

742 kcal

82 g

55 g

0.4 g

0.6 g

0.03 g

Central Dairy Butter Asturiana Light

374 kcal

40.4 g

26.6 g

0.1 g

2.2 g

1.5 g

Tulip Margarine

673 kcal

75 g

32 g

0.5 g

0.5 g

0.4 g

Flora Margarine

630 kcal

70 g

15 g

0.5 g

0.5 g

0.2 g

Light Margarine

341 kcal

38 g

9 g

0.5 g

0.5 g

0.7 g

Tasting time: is it good?

Moving on to the really important thing: is it up to standard butter? We had the very high expectationsWell, at home we have already said that we are great lovers of traditional butter and we know how to value the most quality artisan elaborations. The Swiss side of the family may have something to do with this, which is why we have never been convinced by substitutes.

Vioblock6

When we open the package just taken out of the fridge, we already get a very pleasant scent butter with surprising dairy nuances that are not perceived as artificial. Its visual appearance is also very successful, with a soft yellowish tone without being excessive. The texture is equally pleasant, smooth, creamy and homogeneous.

We cut a portion with a butter knife and the blade lowers with relative ease, taking into account that we have barely allowed it to temper. A pure butter with the cold of refrigeration is a brick; Vioblock, on the other hand, already quickly spread and it would be difficult for us to get those little horns typical of the old hospitality industry that are still used so much in promotional photographs.

Bread with vegetable butter

It spreads easily on a slice of soft crumb bread, although we almost liked it better with freshly toasted bread, still warm, melting little by little and leaving an appetizing aroma of ordinary butter. When tasting it, both cold and semi-molten, it seemed a taste very well achieved, without strange aftertastes, comparable to that of a standard supermarket range butter. On a negative note, melts too fast when put in the mouth, probably as a result of the use of coconut oil, which tends to liquefy quickly with heat.

We missed it put it to the test in the kitchen, as its virtues are also advertised as a vegan substitute for any recipe in any format. It’s a major flaw in the plant-based versions of these fats, especially those that claim to offer lighter alternatives.

Vioblock7

With the advantage that you don’t have to let it get too warm, we elaborate a recipe of butter cookies kind shortbread very basic, and no one would have noticed the difference. Vioblock responds well to beating with sugar, creaming and fluffing like normal butter, and the cookies came out delicious, with that buttery flavor that should characterize them.

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In conclusion

Vioblock vegetable fat delivers what it promises: an alternative to traditional butter that mimics it in texture, aroma, flavor and uses. It seems to us a very well achieved product, especially since it does not contain an endless string of ingredients or additives, with a very pleasant, fresh and curiously dairy flavor, at the level of a normal butter of any trade.

Vioblock2

Although it has responded well to culinary tests, it may not offer as good results with more complex elaborations or that require working with very cold and solid fat, such as a puff pastry, as it is quite sensitive to heat. Seen in another way, it makes it ideal for those who always forget to temper butter and hate destroying bread by spreading it too cold.

We think it is a good product for vegans who may miss the taste of traditional butter, for people who want to reduce their consumption of animal products or for those allergic to lactose or milk proteins. And, of course, it makes things very easy for those who want to have the option of veganize recipes like some cookies or the béchamel of some croquettes.

Some of the links posted here are from affiliates. Despite this, none of the articles mentioned have been proposed either by the brands or by the stores, their introduction being a unique decision of the team of editors.

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