Make Your Own Butter

Have you ever made your own butter? It is a blast to do and keeps kids active and engaged. All you need is a jar with a lid and heavy cream from the store.

By Aleksey Pogrebnoj-Alexandroff (free open public sources) [CC BY-SA 3.0 (], via Wikimedia Commons

Pour the cream into the jar so it’s about 2/3 full; if the jar is too full, it will be difficult to shake. Then, start shaking! It can take anywhere from 15-40 minutes to shake the cream into butter. Make sure to take turns with everyone in the family so nobody gets too tired. You can play some music and dance around the room while making your butter.

While you are doing this active cooking project you can explain the science of what is happening. Liquid cream has protein and fat in it. These little parts of fat and protein begin sticking to each other when you shake the jar. The more pieces that get stuck together, the bigger your butterball becomes. This process is called, “congealing.”

Once you have shaken it for a while, you will notice a yellowish solid appear with some liquid on top. The liquid is buttermilk, which you can keep or dispose of. While shaking, you may drain off the liquid and keep at it. The solid will first appear to have a texture to it. When the solid is smooth, that’s when it is ready! Congratulations, you just made your very own butter! Try your butter on a slice of Whole Wheat Toast. Store the jar of butter in the refrigerator.