What's The Difference Between Butterscotch Ice Cream And Butter Pecan? (2024)

C.A. Pinkham

·3 min read

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Butter is one of the most versatile cooking staples known to man. You can use it in savory dishes and in sweet ones, in everything from steaks to sauces to baked goods. There's very little butter can't do.

The only problem is, because it appears everywhere, there's a lot of different things with "butter" in the name. Gooey butter cake, buttermilk, butter chicken, buttercream -- these are all totally different items despite all having some aspect of butter to them. But hey, at least if you've got two different flavors of ice cream with "butter" in the name, like butterscotch and butter pecan, those have to be pretty similar right?

Actually, no, not at all. Butterscotch and butter pecan are wildly different, and it comes down to how they're made. In fact, butter is really the only ingredient they share (other than the basic ice cream components), and the only point of flavor overlap between the two. Beyond that, there's little they have in common.

Read more: The Ultimate Ice Cream Brands, Ranked

Butter Pecan Is Made From Buttered Nuts

Butter pecan is a classic staple of American Southern desserts, a decadent flavor whose primary drawback is that it might overwhelm you with its richness. It's made by taking pecans and toasting them in butter -- that's where the name comes from -- in order to bring out depth of flavor. You'll see things like butter pecan pie or butter pecan fudge, but the most common application is, of course, butter pecan ice cream, made by combining those butter-toasted pecans with vanilla.

It's now one of the classic American ice cream flavors. Not quite in the same ubiquitous category as vanilla, strawberry, and chocolate, but certainly in the next tier along with flavors like Rocky Road and pistachio. Interestingly, we don't actually know where it came from; there's a legend that it was the result of Black Americans not being permitted to eat vanilla ice cream during the Jim Crow era, but there's no actual evidence to back that up.

Butterscotch Involves Brown Sugar And Butter

What's The Difference Between Butterscotch Ice Cream And Butter Pecan? (2)

Butterscotch, meanwhile, is a lot closer to toffee and caramel than anything else. All of those are made by heating sugar until it caramelizes, but caramel is made with white sugar, while butterscotch and toffee are made using brown sugar and butter. This gives butterscotch a richness in common with butter pecan, but the flavor profile is totally different owing to a lack of nuts. Unlike butter pecan, we have a much clearer sense of where butterscotch came from: 19th century England, possibly as early as 1817. It was originally a type of hard candy, but as time has gone on, people have experimented with ways to incorporate the flavors into other desserts, including ice cream.

Though butterscotch and butter pecan have similar names, don't let that fool you. Both have the richness inherent to butter, but beyond that, they're not very much alike. They're both pretty tasty, though.

Read the original article on Daily Meal.

What's The Difference Between Butterscotch Ice Cream And Butter Pecan? (2024)

FAQs

What's The Difference Between Butterscotch Ice Cream And Butter Pecan? ›

Butterscotch and butter pecan are wildly different, and it comes down to how they're made. In fact, butter is really the only ingredient they share (other than the basic ice cream components), and the only point of flavor overlap between the two. Beyond that, there's little they have in common.

What flavor is butter pecan ice cream? ›

What does butter pecan taste like? Simply put, butter pecan is a flavor that merges the nutty notes of pecan with rich butter and a hint of sweet vanilla extract. The distinctive flavor of the pecan is hard to pinpoint – even for experts – but is perhaps best described as having sweet, fat, and roasted undertones.

What are the crunchy balls in butterscotch ice cream? ›

The crunchy thing is hardened corn syrup, sugar and other ingredient made under high temperature, rather than caramel-coated cashew or almonds.

What is the meaning of butterscotch ice cream? ›

a flavor produced in puddings, frostings, ice cream, etc., by combining brown sugar, vanilla extract, and butter with other ingredients.

What's the difference between butter pecan ice cream and praline pecan ice cream? ›

Compared to butter pecan ice cream, praline ice cream is smoother in texture, owing to the fact that the nuts have already been transformed into pralines. Butter pecan ice cream keeps the actual pecan nuts intact, resulting in a crunchier texture.

Is butter pecan like butterscotch? ›

Though butterscotch and butter pecan have similar names, don't let that fool you. Both have the richness inherent to butter, but beyond that, they're not very much alike. They're both pretty tasty, though.

What does butterscotch ice cream taste like? ›

Butterscotch ice cream typically has a rich, smooth flavor with notes of browned butter, dark brown sugar, vanilla and in many cases bourbon. It has a smooth, sweet and caramelized taste with a buttery, slightly salty undertone.

What is the hard thing in butterscotch ice cream? ›

The base is made with cream (and milk sometimes) and it has crunchy praline (made with sugar and nuts) swirled into it. The crunchy praline give the ice cream an amazing texture. What are the nuts in butterscotch ice cream? Cashews and almonds are commonly used to make the praline in butterscotch ice cream.

What the heck is butterscotch? ›

Butterscotch is a type of confectionery whose primary ingredients are brown sugar and butter. Some recipes include corn syrup, cream, vanilla, and salt. The earliest known recipes, in mid-19th century Yorkshire, used treacle (molasses) in place of, or in addition to, sugar.

What is butterscotch Flavour? ›

What Is Butterscotch? Butterscotch is butter and brown sugar that has been slowly heated together to create a soft-crack candy. Just like caramel, the brown sugar molecules break down and, thanks to the addition of molasses in the sugar, caramelize into a richer, deeper flavor than classic caramel.

Is butterscotch basically caramel? ›

Similar to caramel, butterscotch is made by heating sugar. The main difference between the two is that butterscotch uses brown sugar instead of white. The ingredients are also combined in a slightly different order for butterscotch: your start out by melting butter with brown sugar.

Why do they call it butterscotch? ›

butterscotch, usually hard candy made by boiling brown sugar and butter and sometimes corn syrup together in water. The derivation of the name is disputed as to whether it denotes the candy's origin in Scotland or an original ingredient of “scotched,” or scorched, butter.

What age group eats butter pecan ice cream? ›

Those aged 55 and up are significantly more likely to prefer butter pecan (17%) and vanilla (16%).

Why is butter pecan the best ice cream? ›

A Favorite Ice Cream Flavor

Butter pecan has been a long-running ice cream flavor favorite for many southerners and is considered a classic. It combines the nutty flavor of fresh pecans with roasted pecan undertones and the distinct flavor of sweet vanilla.

Is butter pecan just vanilla? ›

Butter pecan ice cream is smooth vanilla ice cream with a slight buttery flavor, with pecans added. It is manufactured by many major ice cream brands. A variant of the recipe is butter almond, which replaces the pecans with almonds.

Does butter pecan taste like peanut butter? ›

The pecan flavor is rich and sweet enough to enjoy, so buying it with added sugar would do you no good. Unlike peanut butter and other kinds of nut butter, it doesn't affect your breath or leave a lingering aftertaste. Moreover, it isn't particularly oily like almond butter either.

What does butter pecan swirl taste like? ›

Charming Dunkin' fans since 2013, the Butter Pecan Swirl features notes of butter roasted pecan and sweet cream.

What flavor compliments butter pecan? ›

Adding vanilla and maple is like the perfect duo for this Southern butter pecan cake.

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