Canned butter: How to make your own

A guest post by Martine L

[This is an entry in our non-fiction writing contest where you could win – First Prize a 10 Person Deluxe Family Survival Kit,  Second Prize an Herb Seed Bank or Third Prize a copy of Dirt Cheap Survival Retreat.  For complete rules and list of prizes see this post.]

Post removed because the sender (without my knowledge) had copied most of the content from another site. I don’t know why people do this sort of thing. Sorry, Wolf Pack and a big thank you to Gayle for letting me know.

About M.D. Creekmore

M.D. Creekmore is the owner and editor of He is the author of four prepper related books and is regarded as one of the nations top survival and emergency preparedness experts. Read more about him here.


  1. The National Center for Home Food Preservation has this to say about home ‘canning’ butter:


    In conclusion, with no testing having been conducted to validate these methods, we would NOT recommend or endorse them as a safe home-canning process, let alone for storing butter at room temperature for an extended period. We do know that the methods given for preheating empty jars, or even filled jars, in a dry oven are not recommended by the jar manufacturers or by us for any food. Aside from the physical safety and quality issues, and the fact that it is not canning at all, if there happened to be spores of certain bacteria in there, these procedures will not destroy those spores for safe room temperature storage.

  2. I have home canned my butter for years using this same recipe. It seals well and keeps a long time, I had a jar that was 5 years old and it was GREAT! Sam’s club has butter in large packs and it works very well for this recipe. Happy Canning.

  3. Matt in Oklahoma says:


  4. I have canned butter using this method with unsalted butter. Been using this butter since 2009 and it is just fine. You cannot leave it out for more than a few days as it will go bad.
    I made a batch (11 pounds) for my mother which turned out wonderful. It took about 45 minutes of stiring to bring to a boil at her house. Once the jars were filled (1/2 pints), I BWB canned them for 60 minutes. This is Jackie Clay’s method. My Mom’s butter is does not have the typical gritty texture that my first method had. The butter used for her batch was Costco brand butter. Mine came from sales of Safeway brand butter. When my batch is gone in about a year I would make more using the BWB method. Just my thoughts on the subject.

  5. Kate in GA says:

    Why not just store shelf-stable cream and then make the butter when you need it. There isn’t any saftety issues if done that way and it doesn’t take very long to make butter.

    Butter can then be stored in a butter jar, the same way it was done in the 1800’s using water to seal it. Butter is good for 30 days. However, in the summer, in the south, it only lasts about 15 days. (The rest of the year here it will last 30 days.) At my house, this isn’t just a plan for TEOTWAWKI, I have been making my own butter for years and I never put it in the fridge.

    • Kate,
      Where do you get your shelf stable cream and what is it’s storage life?

      • Kate in GA says:

        Ohio Prepper,

        The manfacturer says the storage life is one year – same as shelf stable milk. However, the supplier I bought it from only guarantees it for 6 months. I bought it anyway and that is what I got. I don’t mind the 6 months life this time of year because I make lots of ice cream, whiped cream, butter, sour cream and other goodies in November and December. I have located another potential supplier but I haven’t called them yet to see what guarantee they can give on the date. It is late now, but I will call the company tomorrow (they are in Utah) and post here what they say. Stay tuned, I am looking for a good supplier – the cream is really tasty too!

        Oh, the manufacturer says they also have shelf-stable half & half!

  6. bushman joe says:

    Can you freeze canned butter to extend life, so when the power goes out you can then put them on your shelf? or will this cause the butter to get freezer burn/separation after it thaws?

    • I buy several one-pound boxes of butter when they go on sale, both salted and unsalted, and keep them in my freezer for several months. There’s no breakdown of the butter when it’s thawed and no change in how it acts when used. With the date I froze them written on the boxes, it’s easy to rotate my inventory. If you have the freezer space, you can stock up on butter by taking advantage of sales, especially around the holidays. Also, our local bulk food store sells two-pound rolls of butter made locally. This butter is very good and comes from a source that I feel confident is clean.

      • Hunker-Down says:


        I was wondering about buying during the holiday sales and freezing butter. THANK YOU for sharing with us.

        • H-D,

          I have always put my butter in the freezer. I picked up butter for $2 lb. two weeks ago. You can find some great deals this time of year. Butter also goes on sale in June, if I recall correctly. Do a search for National Dairy Month.

  7. Tom the Tinker says:

    Kate ala Ga.: Self stable cream? Who, where, how & how long? I found an atiquetsqe qt. glass and wood paddle churn and haven’t had the time to figure out how to move it to the useful side of my preps….. RSVP if you would be so kind.

    Thomas T. Tinker

    • Kate in GA says:


      I can’t comment on the glass and wood paddle churn because I don’t use one. However, has one for sale and you may be able to find some helpful tips and instructions there on how to use it.

      I use a glass canning jar – any size you choose. Fill it up half way then shake the dickens out of it. Depending on how cold the cream is, it could take anywhere from 5 to 30 minutes of shaking for it to turn to butter. It will go through stages, first whipped cream, then the whipped cream will get a very ‘grainy’ look – keep shaking it. Then finally it will look like a big ball of butter sitting in a jar of milk. That is how you know it is finished.

      Don’t throw the butter milk out – is is super sweet and perfect for baking breads and other goodies. Use a slotted spoon to scoop the butter out and place in another bowl. Fill that bowl with cool water and mash the butter against the sides of the bowl with the slotted spoon. When the water turns milky white, drain the water and repeat. Repeat and repeat and repeat. This is the key to good butter. If you don’t rinse it well, you won’t be able to eat it in 2 days. (Ask me how I know this!) In Carla Emery’s book ‘The Encyclopedia of Country Living’, she states that you continue rinsing the butter until the water stays clear. THEN, repeat this two more times. When finished, pour out all the water and then you can add salt to taste. (I usually put it on a piece of parchment paper to fold in the salt.) At this point I place it in my butter crock. Fill the crock with water and you are done.

      The whipping cream is made by Gossner Foods. They also have shelf-stable half & half. (See my post above to Ohio Prepper.)

      It is good cream and I like the taste. A couple weeks back I wrote a review in the WDYDTPTW and gave it 4 out of 5 wolves. I will give it 5 out of 5 when I can find a better supplier.

  8. Kate in GA says:


    FYI – I don’t have any electrical kitichen appliances. (As I mentioned here once before, I have a toaster I received as a present when I got married 30 years ago but I don’t know if it still works.)

    You do NOT need electricity or any electrical applicance to make butter. You also don’t need a butter churn.

    All you need is a jar and the ability to shake it. (I will assume Tuperware will work too but I have never used it.) AND of course you need the cream. Stocking up on cream now will hold you over until you can establish other methods of getting cream after the world as we know it ends. Using it now will assure of good rotation of your supplies under the rule of ‘store what you eat and eat what you store.”

    Today, my calculations put the cream turned to butter cheaper than Red Feather canned butter ordered over the internet, but not cheaper than Walmart butter. But this isn’t about today or tomorrow, it is about when TEOTWAWKI comes.

    When that happens, I won’t miss a step. I have an adversion to using electricity now in everyday life. I store pots and pans in my oven and use my solar oven more often than not. (My husband tells me that is isn’t normal to want to play pioneer!)

    I use the computer now because I run my own business. This business won’t exist at the end of the world, so I won’t miss the computer either.

    My point here is that you don’t need electricity, or any fancy appliances to do anything the pioneers could do.

    • Hunker-Down says:


      I was hoping someone would bring up the ‘shake’ method of making butter. That was one of the most disliked chores I had on the farm (about 1949) ((ain’t I ancient?)). I had a ‘shake’ attention span of about 5 minutes, but the cream had a shake time of about 25 minutes. The difference was torture, with moms eagle eye on me making sure I didn’t stop. She even made me separate the water from the butter and adds the salt.

  9. SrvivlSally says:

    I used to hand churn and salt my own butter when I could afford the cream. And, stored it in a crock with water over top. There is nothing like homemade.

  10. Josh,

    The original article can be found on the following site.

  11. Thank you, Gayle, for pointing out the plagiarism. And to you, Josh, for taking it down. I appreciate the integrity!

    Unfortunately this has not been the first (nor will it be the last) time this has occurred.

  12. bushman joe says:

    guess my question will never be answered or is unanswerable! 🙁

    • Bushman Joe,

      I didn’t see your question until now. You can put your butter in the freezer. The stated shelf live for butter in the freezer is 9 months; however, I’ve kept it for a year with no problems. I have never had problems with freezer burn. About the electricity going out–get a generator. I have a lot of meat packed in my freezer and I wouldn’t take a chance of it going bad before I could pressure can it all.

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