Homemade Farm-Fresh Butter: 2 Ways

butter on toastMaking fresh, creamy, preservative-free homemade butter is simpler than you think! All you need are a couple easy-to-find ingredients, the right tools and a little bit of time. Enjoy these basic recipes for small batch and big batch homemade butter, in honor of National Dairy Month!

blue ball jars

Any canning jar with a tight-fitting lid will work well for making butter. Ball Elite Blue Canning Jars, in two sizes at Lehmans.com.

Small Batch: Canning Jar Method
Yield: About 8 oz fresh butter

  • 1 pt (16 oz) heavy cream or whipping cream
  • cold water
  1. Allow the cream to reach room temperature (about 72°F) and let sit for a few hours to ripen slightly.
  2. Pour cream into a clean canning jar and screw the lid on tightly.
  3. Shake the jar vigorously for several minutes (depending on how hard and fast you shake, making butter could take anywhere from 10-30 minutes).
  4. You’ll see the cream go through several stages, from frothy to firm to coarse. Then, rather suddenly, the cream will “seize” and turn to fine grains of butter in buttermilk.
  5. Keep shaking, and soon a ball of butter will separate from the buttermilk.
  6. Drain the buttermilk and save in refrigerator for baking.
  7. Rinse the butter well with cold water until the water runs clear. Note: Rinse well! If you don’t do this, your butter will sour and be inedible.
  8. Transfer to a bowl and remove as much water as possible (a potato masher works well for this) and store your butter in a covered crock or air-tight container, or roll it in waxed paper.
Long revered as the best churn design available, Lehman's has brought the Dazey churn back after a long hiatus. Dazey churns are the original, since 1906. Now improved so only easily cleaned glass and sanitary stainless steel touch your cream. Original Dazey churns are available only from Lehman's.

Long revered as the best churn design available, Lehman’s has brought the Dazey churn back after a long hiatus. Dazey churns are the original, since 1906. Now improved so only easily cleaned glass and sanitary stainless steel touch your cream. Original Dazey churns are available only from Lehman’s.

Big Batch: Lehman’s Best Butter Churn Method
Yield: Approx. 24 oz fresh butter

  • 2-2½ quarts (48 oz) cream
  • cold water
  1. Allow the cream to reach room temperature (about 72°F) and let sit for a few hours to ripen slightly.
  2. Pour cream into Lehman’s Best Butter Churn and screw the lid on tightly.
  3. Just turn the handle! With fast, vigorous turning, you’ll have butter in as little as 30 minutes.
  4. You’ll see the cream go through several stages, from frothy to firm to coarse. Then, rather suddenly, the cream will “seize” and turn to fine grains of butter in buttermilk.
  5. Keep turning, and soon a ball of butter will separate from the buttermilk.
  6. Drain the buttermilk and save in refrigerator for baking.
  7. Rinse the butter well with cold water until the water runs clear. Note: Rinse well! If you don’t do this, your butter will sour and be inedible.
  8. Transfer to a bowl and remove as much water as possible (a potato masher works well for this) and store your butter in a covered crock or air-tight container, or roll it in waxed paper.

Here’s our best butter churn in action!

Here are some additional tips local organic gardener Karen Geiser, who often makes her family’s butter with Lehman’s Best Butter Churn:

  • When using raw cream, butter consistency and color vary greatly during different seasons of the year. June butter is prime and January butter is often grainy and pale.
  • If using store bought cream, be sure not to use ultra-high pasteurized (UHT) cream.
  • Temperature makes a big difference in turning time. Thirty minutes would be for a smaller batch of butter; a full batch takes even longer (up to 45 minutes or more).
  • Fill level is important – filling the jar nearly full could result in a mess once the cream expands while churning.
  • Sharing the churning among several eager children makes it go faster!

More ways to make and enjoy fresh butter:

Get the little ones involved with this mini shaker! Just fill with up to 1 cup heavy whipping cream, shake a few minutes and rinse. BPA-free plastic. At Lehmans.com.

Get the little ones involved with this mini shaker! Just fill with up to 1 cup heavy whipping cream, shake a few minutes and rinse. BPA-free plastic. At Lehmans.com.

Use rock-hard-butter right out of the fridge? Oh yes, you can! This is one of our most popular butter items - the butter mill! At Lehmans.com.

Use rock-hard-butter right out of the fridge? Oh yes, you can! This is one of our most popular butter items – the butter mill! At Lehmans.com.

Solve the problem of butter that’s too hard in winter and a melted mess in summer. No refrigeration needed! At Lehmans.com.

Solve the problem of butter that’s too hard in winter and a melted mess in summer. No refrigeration needed! At Lehmans.com.

What's corn on the cob without butter?

What’s corn on the cob without butter? Store it in this charming dish. At Lehmans.com.

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