How to Make Homemade Butter in 10 minutes

You probably know that I have a love for mason jars and all that they stand for.  They stand for a time when bottles were made out of glass, when folks made their own preserves, when people would use them to display their gallstones.  You know.  A good time.  A better time.

So whenever I have the chance I use the beauty of the mason jar to brighten up my day.  If that involves throwing one at the fella’s head for not making the bed … so be it.  That’s the beauty of the mason jar.  It’s so very multipurpose.

Today I’m going to show you one of my all time favourite uses for the time honoured jar.

Watch this video to find out all about it …


tips on making butter

1.  Get your whipping cream to room temperature by leaving it on the counter for a couple of hours.  This helps move the process along so you won’t have to shake it for as long a time period.

2.  Pour enough whipping cream into a mason jar to fill it about halfway.

3.  Shake the jar vigorously until the cream turns into whey and a lump of butter. (7 – 15 minutes)

4.  Drain the whey from the jar.

5.  Once you’ve created your butter, plunk it into a bowl and mash away at it with a spoon to remove any remaining whey and drain it off.

6.  Continue to mash the butter and rinse it with cool water until all the whey is gone.  It’s fully rinsed when the water runs clear.

7.  Add a pinch of salt and stir it in with a spoon.  Not too much.  Just a pinch, and then taste it.


8.  Ta da!  Creamy, fresh butter.

Way nicer to eat than a chewy set of gallstones.


  1. Tara says:

    I found this site looking to make yogurt. years ago,hippy days, I made my yogurt and sat the jAR ON TOP OF THE HOTWATER HEATER NEAR THE HOT PIPE, over night. worked great! the years made me forget how to make it. I am 70 now and going back to doing things REAL!.
    then came the butter ! love it. did not know it was so easy. butter is very spendy, so from now on I make it! you are great lady! thanks big time!

  2. Shantell says:

    Mine didn’t work. What did I do wrong?

    • Karen says:

      Shantell – Hmm. Well, I don’t know, LOL. It’s pretty difficult to mess up. My guess would be you didn’t shake it long enough or hard enough. ~ karen!

  3. Shari says:

    I MADE BUTTER!!! Can your sense my excitement?! I had the whole wham-bam-family over for dinner Sunday night. I followed your how to…and as I walked around shaking the mason jar in front of my family, they all laughed and made fun of me. “Yeah okay Shari…that’ll only take a few hours”…laugh, laugh, laugh. After about 14 minutes, the laughter came to a quick halt as I opened the lid, tipped the jar over a bowl and out plopped a blob of BUTTER! Tee-hee! It was sooo good…and everyone thought I was awesome! Thanks Karen! You’re awesome…I’m new to your site…and I absolutely love it!

    • Karen says:

      LOL. I did the very same thing one year. So funny to see their faces. Who KNEW making butter could make a guy/gal so happy?! It’s funny how the little things really are the best things. Welcome to the site. As you may have ascertained, sometimes I swear. I trust you’re O.K. with that. :) ~ karen

  4. Teresa says:

    My coworker Christina loves you/your site and has finally gotten me interested in reading it myself with the “Tips on Making Butter” blog. I haven’t actually seen the video yet, but judging from the comments, it sounds pretty entertaining. I gotta say, there is nothing more engaging than a sense of humor and you sure have it. I think I’ll try making the butter too.

    • Karen says:

      Teresa – LOL, don’t you hate it when someone tries to push something on you? (in this case me and my site!) It’s like whenever says “Oh! You should meet Jennifer, she’s great! You’d just love Jennifer!!” And then suddenly the last person on the face of the earth you want to meet is Jennifer. :) Thanks for showing up and good luck with the butter! ~ karen

  5. When I first saw this, I thought that you must be a witch. Then I tried it, and it worked! Now I have a way to work off all weight I’m gonna gain from eating butter with a spoon.

  6. Cookie says:

    Karen, I LOVED this video so much, that you inspired me to take my own try at it and make a video too!

    Thanks for the inspiration!

    • Karen says:

      Cookie – LOL. Everyone who thinks shaking a mason jar with your arm is too much work, should watch this video. :) ~ karen

  7. Shannon @ bakeandbloom says:

    OMG Karen was that one of those stupid polystyrene reflector boards that fell on you? I would die, just drop dead! I have a phobia of polystyrene.

    When I was on the show I had to do all these photoshoots and I was always having panic attacks standing in those little polystyrene lightbox studio things. True story, I screamed when I saw it fall on you and pushed my iPad off the bed.

    Anyway. Making butter is fun, but only if there is no polystyrene around.

    • Karen says:

      Shannon – LOL. That made me actually laugh out LOUD. Sorry. Not laughing at your phobia. Phobias are no laughing matter. Pushing your iPad off the bed, however is pretty funny. ~ karen! p.s. Could you please email you? I have a question for you.

  8. Gayla T says:

    My recipe- put the jar on the window sill with flowers in it, put the cream in the KitchenAid and turn it on. Sit down and put your feet up. I have made my own butter all my life-when I didn’t get up and check on the whipped cream I was making and it turned to butter. As for the kids rolling the jar around on the floor with marbles in it……you have got to be kidding! If you are looking to hire a hit woman to kill them, bring that jar along when you come to my house for dinner. No charge!

  9. designergrl says:

    Just read your bio,,,and watched the butter episode…man you’re mean…and a tad Like that in a woman ! Whoot !


    D(aka: B)

  10. martha says:

    The old timers – i.e. my grandmother, at least – churned big batches of butter because her family (9 children) wouldn’t have had enough butter for one meal if they’d used a mason jar.

    When her butter was ready, my grandmother pressed it into a bowl and smoothed off the top. When it was firm, she turned it upside down on the butter dish which had a round dome top. Now when I see that same butter dish in my dining room, I think of my grandmother on the back porch with her butter churn.

  11. hipmama says:

    i use my food processor instead. it’s so much easier.

  12. Christina says:

    Just saw this tip on making herb-lemon zest butter on Bon Apetite:

    Making it for dinner this weekend, now I can go homemade all the whey! (Lame, coulsn’t help it, sorry). Thanks Karen!

  13. Shauna says:

    Ok… the real issue was the board falling …. scared the sh!t right out of me… omg… I couldn’t concentrate after that!! Thanks for keeping it real Karen!! Reminds me of making “real”, yes sorry this isn’t real, butter with my Grandma. ;) this blog fails to smell like manure or barn cats!! It’s only real if you actually milk the cow yourself! lol that’s to follow the chickens right?? btw… Happy thanksgiving CND Girl!!

  14. What fun! I’ve always wanted to try making butter… how long will it keep in the fridge?

  15. Brenda j says:

    well, I never.

  16. Damn, girl. You made that look sooooooo easy. I know you must have some achin’ muscles, right????

    Seriously, who knew that would be so frickin’ easy! Thanks!

  17. Denise Leavens says:

    I can’t believe that no one has yet mentioned KAREN’S GORGEOUS HAIR! Well, I am going to address this issue right now:

    In the style of Billy Crystal’s Fernando (parady of the late great Fernando Lamas), “Darling, you look mahvelous!”

    Perfect hair style for shaking things up!

    • Karen says:

      Aw, gosh. Thanks Denise! I actually just had it cut and bleached to within an inch of it’s life (seriously) today by my friend Renee Beach at Body & Soul Spa in Streetsville Ontario!

  18. Alissa says:

    I had my Sunday school kids with little baby food jars. Then they got to put the butter on crackers and eat it.

    Only problem was that after ~20 seconds of shaking they started whining, “I’m tired. Can you shake it for me?” Nope kids. If you want the snack, you gotta make it yourself.

  19. Sydney says:

    dannnggg definitely doing that! My roomates will be so happy! they were just complaining about their butter or lack there of the other day, this is AWESOME

  20. LARPkitten says:

    Tips from a girl who does this on a semi-regular basis:

    1. You don’t HAVE to wait for it to get to room temperature. It just takes less time to work if you do. If you want an arm workout, go straight from chilled.

    2. Do not, and I cannot express this enough, DO NOT EVER use “ultra-pasteurized” whipping cream. It just won’t solidify. Get the most raw, organic heavy whipping cream you can. Works much better.

    3. Adding a marble to the mason jar helps whip things up a bit, if you’re having issues shaking it hard enough. Just make sure to find the pesky thing after you strain off the whey.

    4. Mix a handful of blackberries, a few spoonfuls of honey, and a little lemon juice in a saucepan. Cook until thickened. Cool, then mix in with the butter. Apply generously to Dave’s Good Seed Bread. Heaven on earth, baby.

  21. Amanda says:

    My mother used to make us do this when we were little. For the exact reason you describe. Watching this video made me twitch slightly and crave turkey with dressing.

  22. Amy in StL says:

    I chuckled at the face/sound you made when the board came toppling over. Mainly because I thought I was the only one who did that in the face of impending doom. (Like dropping a sealed jar of jelly on the linoleum)

  23. Nancy says:

    My son taught me this when he was in grade school…haven’t done it in a long time..thinking it would be fun to do for the holidays..would be yummy on the biscuits that we always make!!

  24. Bee-Naz says:

    They say you should learn one new thing a day and today, this is mine! :)

    Although, I can’t help but wonder if it would work as well with my mixer? I guess that’s just the rubber arms from the gym last night talkin…

    Thanks Karen!

  25. Nan Tovar says:

    I think I’ve figured out what the board was for….to highlight your loveliness, Karen! And those wicked arms :)

  26. Meredith says:

    I love it! And the scarf. To add to my oddness, I’m not usually a fan of butter but hate cheese way more. Maybe I will like this. Question: is there any kitchen appliance you can use? Say a stand mixer? Also, you mentioned rinsing but i didnt see you rinse in the video. Do you just hold it in your hands or put it in a colander? I love making fresh bread so this would be an amazing accompaniment. Thanks! You always have wonderful ideas.

    • Karen says:

      Meredith – You can use a Kitchenaid. However washing the machine is probably as much work as shaking the jar, lol. And guess what? We had our homemade butter with fresh baked bread last night! Dang good!

  27. Sandy says:

    I love this!! Fresh butter and arm exercises all in one!!

  28. Paulina J! says:

    I love this! I don;t have children around and I’m lazy so I stick the whipping cream in my handy dandy Kitchen Aid mixer. I love seeing it go trhough the differeny stages. I also like to make different kinds of butters since you can add whatever you heart desires at the end, cinnamon and sugar, garlic, cilantro, parsley…the combinations are endless.

    Oh and I keep the liquid at the end (buttermilk) for pancakes or baking.

  29. Britt says:

    This is amazing! I had no idea it was that easy! Off to shake it… ;)

  30. sherri says:

    when I was a kid and we would go out for dinner with the fam- my sister and I would try and make butter with the creamers that would come with coffee. We would shake the creamers for the entire dinner- never did get lucky with butter, though.
    This looks much easier.

  31. Jenna Avery says:

    I’ve been wanting to try making cultured butter by first making crème fraiche (in a mason jar of course) and then churning or whipping (or shaking!) that into butter. Thanks for the reminder and inspiration. Looks yummy!

  32. CBuffy says:

    We put the cream into babyfood jars for the kids to shake. The smaller jar is easier for them to hold, and then they each get their “own” butter! (And there’s plenty left to share with others…)

    Loved the video!

  33. Matthew says:

    Hi Karen,
    I never knew that butter could be made this easily (excluding the hard work.) Questions:

    1) How long will the butter last in the fridge?

    2) Why did the old timers churn butter on the porch all day if they could have made it in 15 minutes (or did they not have whipping cream)? Thanks.

    • Karen says:

      Matthew – The butter will last as long as regular butter in the fridge, *providing* you get all the whey out of it. The whey is what makes it go bad. I assume in the olden days they churned it in a butter churner ’cause they were trying to make more than a half a cup of butter. ~ karen

  34. Cynthia says:

    Ah….childhood memories. We had the good fortune to get our milk from the neighborhood farmer and could simply skim the cream from the milk jug. YUM!

  35. BTLover2 says:

    Reminds me of grade school. I want to say we made this for our little Thanksgiving feast. We also made homemade candles. Everyday we dipped our wick (that sounds a whole lotta wrong) in the wax and hung them up. Seemed like it took weeks to get one skimpy candle. I think you NEED to make them for your dinner as well.

  36. Karen S. says:

    Can you add the salt to the whipping cream BEFORE you shake it up? Seems to me that would be a better way for it to incorporate.

    • Karen says:

      Karen S. – I have done that before, but the preferred method is to add it afterwards. The reasoning could be something along the lines of not adding sugar when you’re making whipping cream until the cream has started to get soft peaks, otherwise it may not thicken. Dunno. Anyhow … I added a tiny pinch of salt and gave it a stir and it was perfect. Well incorporated and definitely couldn’t feel any granules or anything. Also, by adding it afterwards you can better adjust/judge the taste, because you’re tasting the final product not to a bottle of cream. Phew! That was long winded wasn’t it? ~ karen

    • LARPkitten says:

      Not to mention, if you salt it before you shake it up, you’ll wind up with salted buttermilk afterwards, which won’t work so well for cooking.

  37. Lisa J says:

    While on a roadtrip when I was 5, my parents convinced me that if I shook one of those little plastic containers of creamer, it would turn into butter. I shook that damn thing from Illinois to Florida. ILLINOIS TO FLORIDA. Nothin’.

    I have since made butter successfully but that memory still sticks in my craw.

  38. Babie Knoop says:

    you are SO my kind of gal! LOVE this! and YOU!

  39. Blue says:


    Must resist the urge to live on entirely “hand-made” butter.

    Surely, SURELY I can get away with eating more butter if I pretend all that shaking is burning a few calories? That I will immediately replace with butter fat?

    * Some credit should go to the cow. Or the heavy whipping cream packaging people. … I guess.

  40. I have been wanting to try this again lately! Thanks for the reminder. The video was great – especially that part where the board fell on you. Hilarious! I mean…I’m glad you’re O.K.

    The last time I “helped” with this as a kid (in first grade), it got to be my turn and somehow the lid had loosened (you can see where this is going) and got ALL over me. I mean, it was so bad my mom had to come get me and take me home to wash my (very long) hair. And that’s where my love of butter began.

  41. Nicole says:

    Or you could bring your jar to the paint store and ask them to shake it baby while you leisurely look at wallpaper books. You think they’d mind?

  42. Brigid says:

    mmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm, butter.

  43. Barbara says:

    I love your blog……I always get a little laugh in the morning from reading it/watching it LOL!

    Great idea to keep the kids busy with making butter!

  44. Linda says:

    For years and years when I was little my mom would do this at big family gatherings except she would put a couple glass marbles in the jar and let me and my cousins roll it back and forth on the floor. Mom would do the same think with home-made icecream and it’d keep us kids busy for hours!

  45. pve says:

    Great idea for guests that love to shake things up.

  46. bex says:

    hmm, looks good! now I cant wait for a recipe on fresh mayonnaise..

  47. Wanda says:

    Begs the question….why do I want to make my own butter?!

  48. Oh wow. I love butter. Would never touch any kind of substitute, it makes me feel ill just to even consider what margarine is made of. Only butter is all natural, so it’s the only spread I’ll eat.

    But could you please have allowed my fantasy to continue that it was made mainly of milk? Now I have seen for myself it’s pure cream and I can’t un-know that!

    That said, I often have half a tub of cream left over from recipes, this is a great way to use it up.

    One day, if you ever get around to it, I’d love to know how to make clotted cream. The stuff us Brits use on scones. I’m not sure if you’ll know what I mean. But it’s delish! Thanks Karen, useful as always. (Love the scarf as well)

    • annemarie says:

      I have read that you can make it by letting whipping cream seep through a coffee filter – the uber-cream that is left is double cream/cheater’s clotted cream. Haven’t tried it though.

  49. Ashlyn says:

    Can I wrap you up in a package and send you to my house? Your special kind of humor would be awesome to be around in person!! :) And I’m definitely gonna put my little guys to work on some mason jar shaking!

  50. Marti says:

    If you turn the picture of the fresh-made butter on its side and look at it through half-closed eyes, it looks like Steve Jobs. ;)

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