Make Buttermilk & Butter

Making buttermilk and butter could not be easier. There are many ways to achieve it, but I’m sticking with a simple technique requiring only a mason jar and lid, two marbles, and heavy cream. Well, you’re also going to need about ten minutes and some elbow grease. Good old sweat equity!


Start with a clean mason jar and lid. Add two marbles to the jar, and then fill the jar about 1/3 full of cream. Place the clean lid on the jar and start shaking. Now you’re going to want to keep shaking. And shaking and shaking.

Guess what’s next? More shaking! After around ten minutes of shaking (you can take little breaks or take turns with other people hanging around trying to figure out what you’re doing), you’ll notice that the foamy whipping cream gives way to a thin liquid (that’s the buttermilk) and a solid portion (can you guess it?) — the butter!

Once you’ve shaken it this way for about a minute, you’re ready to separate them for storage or use. Start by carefully pouring the buttermilk into another jar or storage container. Then use a mesh strainer and pour the entire contents gently into the strainer. Press the butter lightly and keep turning and pressing it (with the back of a spoon works) until you get as much liquid out as possible. You can now refrigerate or use the buttermilk and the butter in any recipe calling for either! Store in the fridge. Buttermilk should last about a week, and the butter a couple of weeks.

This project saves money and would be a great fun and educational activity for kids or grown-ups alike!

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