clarified butter

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  • 227 grams (8 ounces / 2 sticks) unsalted butter


  1. Melt the butter in a small saucepan over medium heat. Once the butter has melted, reduce the heat to medium-low and continue to simmer. Keep an eye on the temperature and adjust it as necessary, so that the butter solids don’t brown, and so that it doesn’t boil out of control. Within the first couple minutes, the white solids will separate from the yellow liquid (they will float to the top, and then some of them will sink to the bottom).
  2. Remove from heat as soon as the simmering has quieted down a bit, but before it goes silent—this should take about 7 minutes. Use a spoon to carefully skim off any curdled solids from the surface, and then slowly pour the liquid into a measuring cup, leaving behind any of the solids left at the bottom of the pot.


If you start with European butter, you will end up with between 175 and 180 grams of clarified butter. If you use American butter, you will end up with a bit less. If you have trouble clarifying it by skimming and pouring it off, you can use a fine mesh strainer to filter out the milk solids instead (but it needs to be extremely fine, or they’ll go right through). Very well-clarified butter should keep for 2 to 3 months at cool room temperature, or up to a year in the refrigerator. If you want to make sure you remove every last little bit of milk solids, simply unmold the chilled butter, and scrape away the last couple solids that sunk to the bottom. Just like with sweet cream butter, if it ever starts to smell rancid, discard it (but it should last much longer than butter that hasn’t been clarified). Oh and don’t throw away the milk solids! They’re delicious on toast.