How To Make Butter

To go hand-in-hand with my ‘Fresh Milk, Anyone?’ post, I am resurrecting this simple post on how to make your own butter…


When thinking about changing your lifestyle from full-throttle to simple, there are some things that just don’t seem to add up. Take butter, for example. It is just too easy to throw a pound or two in your shopping cart and call it good. It probably doesn’t even cross your mind to make your own.

Even if you don’t do it on a regular basis, you need to do it at least once. For starters, it’s fun to do. Another benefit is that it can be a family affair, especially if you choose the Mason Jar Method*. I do mine in the food processor.


Just so you know: This post contains affiliate links; if you click on a link and make a purchase I might make a small commission but it does not affect the price you pay!



1 pint well-chilled Heavy Whipping Cream (do NOT get homogenized)
1 Pint Mason Jar with lid –or- Food Processor with the blade attachment
Glass bowl
Wooden spoon
Ice Water
Canning or cheese salt – if desired

Pour cream into the bowl of a food processor. Turn on high. It takes approximately five minutes to go through the process. Within two minutes or so, the cream will become whipped. Another three minutes or so, and the whipped cream will begin to break down, leaving large yellow blobs floating in a milky liquid. That blob is your butter.




Transfer the butter to a glass bowl, and drain the liquid. Using the wooden spoon, knead the butter to remove any excess liquid. Pour ice water over the butter, and continue to knead, draining as needed. This step needs to be repeated until any liquid remaining comes out clear. Once the liquid is clear, drain. Continue the knead/drain process until you remove as much liquid as possible. Add salt, if you so choose – start with a pinch, taste, then add more as needed until you get the flavor you want.




Molding:  If you have a butter mold, just pack the butter into it.  Use the plunger to gently push it out onto waxed paper.  Wrap and store either in the refrigerator or freezer.  OR – you can mold it into a ball, such as the one in the photo.  Wrap and store. Want to get fancy? Roll out your butter between two sheets of waxed paper or plastic wrap and use small cookie cutters for individual servings, or use individual serving butter molds.  Check out these cute candy molds that would work perfectly! When finished molding your butter pats, store them in a plastic container, using waxed paper for each layer.

If you aren’t going to serve it right away, keep your fresh butter wrapped in plastic wrap and store in the refrigerator. You do want to use it within three days to a week, or freeze it for later.


*Mason Jar Method:  Place cream in a Mason Jar, filling half to three-quarters full.  Seal tightly.  Shake! This needs to be shaken continuously until the butter begins to separate from the cream.  It is time consuming, at best. If you have kids, they can all take turns shaking the jar so no one gets too tired in the process.  Once the butter has separated, continue with the previous instructions, beginning with “Transfer the butter to a glass bowl…”

Have fun!




Julie Murphree is a blogger, newspaper columnist, and speaker on all things ‘Living a Simple Life on the Farm’. She is the author of \\\'The Farm Wife – Living a Simple Life on the Farm. She and her husband have 60 acres in NW Louisiana where they actively work on living as sustainable as possible.

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