Butter is a staple ingredient in cooking and baking. Instead of throwing out unused sticks, freezing can extend butter’s shelf life for 6-9 months. However, freezing does impact butter’s texture and performance. Follow proper guidelines to freeze butter successfully.

1. Does Butter Freeze Well?

Butter contains at least 80% milk fat, which means it can be safely frozen. However, freezing alters butter’s consistency, making it more crumbly and flaky. Frozen butter won’t hold its shape well for spreading on toast or baking in certain recipes.

The milk solids and water separate slightly when frozen, leading to graininess. Using frozen butter for pan frying can also cause it to burn quicker. But it still works great for baking, cooking, and flavoring.

2. How To Freeze Butter

To freeze butter properly

  • Freeze sticks in original packaging for short term (2-3 months). Double wrap sticks after opening.
  • For longer freezing, portion butter into freezer-safe containers or bags. Remove as much air as possible and seal tightly.
  • Divide butter into usable amounts like tablespoons, 1/4 cup sticks, or 8 oz bricks depending on intended use.
  • Place wax paper between butter disks or bricks to prevent them from fusing together.
  • Label butter bags or containers with amount and freeze-by date.
  • Freeze butter for up to 9-12 months for best flavor and texture.

3. How To Thaw Butter

  • Thaw frozen butter sticks in fridge overnight until malleable. Do not microwave or leave at room temperature.
  • If needed sooner, cut butter into pieces to thaw quicker.
  • Use thawed butter for baking, cooking, or spreading on warm bread.
  • Freeze-thaw butter up to 2-3 times total for best quality.
  • Check for rancid odors or mold before using fully thawed butter.
  • Refreeze any unused portions.

Properly frozen butter works great in baked goods, mashed potatoes, sautes and more. The impact is most noticeable when spreading directly onto bread or scones. Be sure to rewrap and return any leftover thawed butter to the freezer right away. With proper handling, frozen butter can be a handy staple in your freezer.

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julia jane

Julia Jane is a home cook inspired by her mother's cooking. With the desire to share my cooking experiences with everyone, she created this website

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