How to Make Homemade Butter


Learn how to make butter, using just cold, heavy cream. It's done with no heavy equipment at all, just good old-fashioned arm power. It's the original elbow grease!

Prep Time:
15 mins
Total Time:
15 mins
1/4 cup


  • cup cold heavy whipping cream

  • 1 1-cup canning jar with lid and ring


  1. Pour cream into the jar and screw on the lid. Shake the jar until butter forms a soft lump, 15 to 20 minutes. Continue to shake until buttermilk separates out of the lump and the jar contains a solid lump of butter and liquid buttermilk.

  2. Pour the contents of the jar into a fine-mesh strainer and strain out the buttermilk, leaving the solid butter. Remove the lump of butter and wrap in plastic wrap. Refrigerate until needed.

    a dish of butter in the foreground, with toasted English muffins topped with butter in the background
    Chef John's Homemade Butter. Linda T

Chef's Note:

You can do this in a food processor much faster, but I wanted to go old-school.

Nutrition Facts (per serving)

137 Calories
15g Fat
1g Carbs
1g Protein
Nutrition Facts
Servings Per Recipe 4
Calories 137
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 15g 19%
Saturated Fat 9g 46%
Cholesterol 54mg 18%
Sodium 15mg 1%
Total Carbohydrate 1g 0%
Protein 1g
Vitamin C 0mg 1%
Calcium 26mg 2%
Potassium 30mg 1%

* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.

** Nutrient information is not available for all ingredients. Amount is based on available nutrient data.

(-) Information is not currently available for this nutrient. If you are following a medically restrictive diet, please consult your doctor or registered dietitian before preparing this recipe for personal consumption.

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