sweet cream butter recipe slice of bread and butter

Easy Sweet Cream Butter Recipe – One Ingredient

Making butter used to be a project that took our foremothers all day. How wonderful it is that we can now whip up a batch of homemade butter, aka sweet cream butter, without much fuss. We can even do other kitchen tasks while the homemade butter practically makes itself!

homemade sweet cream butter

What is Sweet Cream Butter?

Sweet cream butter is just another name for regular butter made. The two are interchangeable. Despite the name, sweet cream butter does not contain added sugar or sweetener. It is made from fresh cream as opposed to cultured cream. Fresh cream is simply churned until the buttermilk separates from the butter. Nothing else is added.

Sweet cream butter can be used anywhere you use butter or in any recipe that calls for butter.

The color and creaminess can vary depending on the cream you use. Different breeds of cows have a different percentage of butterfat in their milk. A higher percentage also means the heavy cream will produce more butter than milk with a lesser percentage.

How to Make Sweet Cream Butter: Instructions

To lessen the total time of butter-making, taking a little prep time is worth it. So, in preparation for making butter, let your cream come to room temperature before starting the process.

Using a tool most of us have in our kitchen, a stand mixer, blender or food processor, you can pour in your slightly warmed cream, and flip it on medium speed. Then, just walk away. (However, this is the easiest way to skim cream I’ve found so far).

You can use a hand mixer or even put the heavy whipping cream in a mason jar, seal the lid and shake it. However, these two methods are not the hands off approach that will let you do something else while the butter churns. Kids like to take turns shaking. Just make sure the jar has a tight-fitting lid.

However, if you happen to hang around and watch this amazing process in action, you’ll notice the cream go through several changes:

  • It will quickly whip into a soft cream, followed by a stiffly whipped cream.
  • Then, it breaks and falls before it looks curdled.
  • You’ll begin to notice milky liquid puddling along the sides. This is when I like to switch to the paddle attachment. I like to start with the whisk attachment and then switch to the paddle in the end.

I’ve done lots of experimenting with both attachments and with various speeds. So, I found out that when you start with the whisk it makes smaller butter pieces, extracting the most buttermilk which makes for less rinsing later. Then, the paddle attachment brings all those bitty buttery pieces together in a beautiful golden lump.

  • When it’s all clumped together in a ball of butter and the buttermilk is beginning to splash up the sides of the bowl, you’re just about done!
  • Quickly shut off the mixer before you make a mess. Just be careful that when you turn off the mixer you don’t accidentally turn it UP to high speed! It will splash everywhere!

Homemade Butter: Further Tips

Strain the buttermilk off into a bowl BUT DON’T THROW IT AWAY! You can use it anywhere you use buttermilk. Also, you can put in a tablespoon of cultured buttermilk and leave it out in a warm place to culture until thick. Then, you’ll have a beautifully thick, cultured buttermilk. It’s so simple!

Once the buttermilk is drained, put the solids (your butter) back into the mixer bowl and run some really cold water over the butter or soak in ice water. Next, massage out any residual buttermilk. Drain the milky water and refill it with more cold water. Finally, just repeat the massaging and rinsing, and draining until the water is clear.

Once the water is clear, you can use plastic wrap or an airtight container and store your butter in the fridge. You can also use a silicone butter mold that will create sticks and put them in the fridge or freezer.

Also, store the buttermilk in the fridge so it’s ready for use when you want it.

So, you’re all done! Unless you’d like salted butter. Like I do!

homemade butter - sweet cream butter

How to Make Salted Homemade Butter

In order to obtain salted butter, I’ll massage in ¼ teaspoon of salt for every 2-3 cups of cream I used to make the product. However, the amount of salt depends on your taste preferences.

Also, I don’t worry about having salted vs. unsalted butter on hand for baking. Either final product comes very handy when cooking. So, I really like to have enough of both.

At this point, you have to decide whether or not to take your butter to the next level and make an herbal compound butter or bacon butter. Which I can’t begin to recommend enough. You can experiment with your own inclusions like honey, garlic, or various herbs to enhance the already delicious flavor. You’ll never go back!

Sweet Cream Butter Recipe

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sweet cream butter recipe slice of bread and butter

Sweet Cream Butter Recipe

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5 from 4 reviews


    • 1 quart of cream
    • ½ teaspoon salt, or to taste


    1. Sit the cream out on the counter to warm up for an hour or two. Slightly warmed cream (50-60 degrees) whips up into butter more quickly.
    2. Pour the cream into a stand mixer fitted with a whisk attachment and turn it onto medium (I set it to 4.)
    3. When the cream begins to separate into small chunks of butter and you can see the buttermilk beginning to gather at the sides, switch to the paddle attachment.
    4. After the paddle attachment (also set at 4) brings all the butter together, drain the buttermilk into a jar using butter muslin and a canning funnel
    5. Place the butter back into the mixing bowl and cover the butter with cold water.
    6. Massage the butter, releasing any remaining buttermilk.
    7. Drain the cloudy water, refill, massaging again until all the buttermilk is released and the rinse water stays clear.
    8. Drain the water.
    9. Massage in ½ tsp., more or less, to taste.
    10. Keep soft and fresh in a Butter Bell (Like this one.)
    11. or spread into a silicone pan (I use this one.)to make a stick.
    • Author: ReformationAcres

    Suggested Read: Natural Homemade Udder Butter

    Final Thoughts

    All in all, you could probably notice how easy-to-make and still delicious this homemade butter recipe is. A perfect choice for those times when you crave some butter, however, you want to churn your own butter. That’s a suitable moment for the Sweet cream Butter. Believe me, all your loved ones will adore it and your effort will be minimum!

    Once your start using your homemade butter for biscuits, pancakes, basically anything your would have used store-bought butter in, you will be wanting quite a supply of cream. If you don’t already have one, it may even make you want your own dairy cow. It would give your an almost never ending supply of milk, butter, and cheese.

    Finally, it’s your time to share your experience with this recipe and all your thoughts on it. So, tell me everything in the comments section: What do you think about this butter recipe? Did your family enjoy it? Additionally, please, do not hesitate to ask any further questions on this topic in the comments too. I will make sure to answer you as soon as possible!

    You might also wanna check out some related articles like Rhubarb Butter Recipe, How to Make Mesophilic Starter Culture for Cheesemaking, and My Side of the Milk Bucket.

    How to Make Sweet Cream Butter

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    1. Quinn, unfortunately I don’t have my own Bessie (my husband said we have too many animals already), so I’ll have to buy my cream. Most of the heavy cream or whipping cream in the grocery store is ultra-pasterized and while I’ve used it to make butter it just doesn’t have any flavor, certainly nothing like my Grandmother would have. Would it be best for me to try to find fresh cream or at least not ultra-pasterized? I’ve never rinsed it either, but I would think the buttermilk would give it a stronger flavor rather than dilute it. Thanks for your help!

      1. Yes, you’ll be better served with cream other than ultra-pasterized. No, the buttermilk you rinse off will not improve the flavor of left unrinsed.

      1. You sure can. I just tried it with my new stand mixer. It worked beautifully. I used two cups of heavy whipping cream and it made 176 grams (6 1/4 ounces) of butter. So easy!

    2. I lived on the farm when I was 16 years old. I learned how to milk the cow, separate the milk and make our own buttermilk. (Grandma had a (“Wealth of Knowledge”). Then we made our cream and of course we churned our butter. She was in her late 80’s so we used an electric jar. It was quite big because she sold her butter, buttermilk and eggs at least twice a week. I tried to find a picture of the butter churn, I well keep looking for it. If I find it I will forward it to you. Your Blog is GREAT! I am new to it, but you will be hearing from me again.

      1. What an amazing memory to have! I’m so thankful you had that special time with your grandmother! Hope you figure out what churn it was and can find one just like it to remember her by! ❤️

    3. So sorry it took a while to get back to you! I knead the butter like bread I suppose is the best way I could describe it. You could also put it back in the mixer with the paddle attachment on the lowest setting, but you'd have to clean the bowl out first since it will be wet with buttermilk. Frankly, I'm too lazy for that 😉

      1. i just recently started making my own butter, and while researching, i found butter paddles. i ordered them the other day, and should be receiving them soon. they are sort of like a little wooden cutting board, only they have little ‘grooves’ in them. you ‘massage’ the butter with them, and the buttermilk comes out through the grooves. i think they should work really well!! i can’t believe how easy it is to make yummy butter!!! i’m hooked!!!

        1. Yes! I got butter paddles last fall and they’re pretty slick little tools! Plus I feel super cool going back to my pioneer roots using them-lol! Have fun with yours!

    4. Hey there Quinn! Thanks for this great info. I'm confused about one part…when you say "massage" the butter, are you talking about using the stand mixer again, or with your hands, or a spoon, or what exactly? I'm new to this. Any tips appreciated! Thanks!

    5. You have a beautiful blog- thank you for sharing all that you do! I have a quick question if you don’t mind: how much butter do you yield typically from the quart of cream? Thanks 🙂

      1. Hi Tara,
        Not a whole lot. I figured it out a few weeks ago and a gallon of milk is getting us roughly a pint of cream and yielding 1/4 pound of butter. Like many things such as tomato sauce & paste, butter is one of those things I can’t figure out how they produce it so cheaply. :/