How to Make Buttermilk – Best Homemade Buttermilk Recipe

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How to Make Buttermilk

How to Make Buttermilk

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Introduction to Buttermilk

Buttermilk, a tangy and creamy dairy product, is a versatile ingredient that adds a delightful twist to various culinary creations. Contrary to its name, traditional buttermilk is not a byproduct of churning butter. Instead, it is the liquid left over after butter is churned from cream. In modern times, buttermilk is typically made by adding special cultures to low-fat milk.

Benefits of Using Buttermilk

Buttermilk isn’t just a flavorful addition to your recipes; it also offers several benefits. It enhances the taste and texture of dishes while providing essential nutrients like calcium, vitamin D, and probiotics. Moreover, buttermilk’s acidity can help tenderize meats and improve the rise of baked goods.

Making Traditional Buttermilk

1. Gather Your Ingredients

To make traditional buttermilk, you’ll need:

  • Fresh cream
  • Cultures or buttermilk starter

2. Mixing the Ingredients

  1. Pour the fresh cream into a clean, sterilized container.
  2. Add the buttermilk starter or cultures according to the package instructions.
  3. Stir gently to ensure even distribution.

3. Letting the Mixture Ferment

  1. Cover the container with a clean cloth or plastic wrap.
  2. Place the container in a warm, dark place to ferment for about 12 to 24 hours.
  3. Once it thickens and develops a tangy flavor, your buttermilk is ready to use.

Making Buttermilk Substitute

1. Using Milk and Lemon Juice

  1. Measure 1 tablespoon of lemon juice.
  2. Add the lemon juice to a measuring cup.
  3. Fill the measuring cup with milk to reach the 1-cup mark.
  4. Let it sit for about 5 to 10 minutes before using.

2. Using Milk and Vinegar

  1. Measure 1 tablespoon of white vinegar or apple cider vinegar.
  2. Add the vinegar to a measuring cup.
  3. Pour milk into the cup until it reaches 1 cup.
  4. Allow it to sit for 5 to 10 minutes to curdle.

3. Using Yogurt and Water

  1. Mix equal parts of yogurt and water until well blended.
  2. Your buttermilk substitute is now ready to use.

Cooking and Baking with Buttermilk

1. Fluffy Buttermilk Pancakes

  1. Combine flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in a bowl.
  2. In a separate bowl, whisk buttermilk, eggs, and melted butter.
  3. Pour the wet ingredients into the dry mixture and stir until just combined.
  4. Cook pancakes on a preheated griddle until golden brown.

2. Creamy Buttermilk Ranch Dressing

  1. Mix buttermilk, mayonnaise, sour cream, and various seasonings.
  2. Refrigerate the dressing for a few hours before serving.

3. Buttermilk in Baking

  1. Use buttermilk in recipes that call for a tangy flavor and tender texture.
  2. It’s a fantastic ingredient for cakes, muffins, and biscuits.

Storing Homemade Buttermilk

1. Refrigeration

  1. Store homemade buttermilk in an airtight container.
  2. Keep it in the refrigerator for up to two weeks.

2. Freezing

  1. Pour leftover buttermilk into ice cube trays.
  2. Once frozen, transfer the buttermilk cubes to a resealable freezer bag.
  3. Use within three months for best quality.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

  1. Can I use buttermilk in place of regular milk in recipes?
  2. Is there a non-dairy alternative to buttermilk?
  3. How does buttermilk contribute to the tenderness of baked goods?
  4. Can I make buttermilk from plant-based milk?
  5. What’s the difference between cultured buttermilk and traditional buttermilk?


Incorporating buttermilk into your culinary ventures can elevate your dishes and provide a unique flavor profile. Whether you’re making fluffy pancakes, creamy dressings, or tender baked goods, buttermilk’s tangy and creamy nature is sure to delight your taste buds. With easy-to-follow methods for making both traditional buttermilk and substitutes, you now have the tools to explore a world of delectable possibilities in your kitchen.

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