Does Butter Need To Be Refrigerated? Here’s the Truth

Last Updated on May 29, 2022 by

Does Butter Need To Be Refrigerated? Everyone knows that dairy products such as milk and cheese must be kept refrigerated, or they will deteriorate. Butter, on the other hand, isn’t quite like the others. Some people keep it in the refrigerator, while others keep it on the counter, so it’s always available to spread over toast or crusty bread. So it’s time to end the debate: does butter have to be refrigerated?

You could either store butter in the refrigerator or on the counter. Freshness is maximized by keeping butter in the refrigerator, but putting it out on the counter keeps it soft and spreadable for instant use. 

Does Butter Need To Be Refrigerated? The Best Way To Freeze Butter

Room temperature butter is delicious for regular usage, but keeping a stash on hand to bake for your kids and late-night banana bread cravings is a wonderful idea. Where is the most excellent spot to keep things for a long time? It’s in your freezer. Butter will stay in the freezer for a year if properly stored—as long as it’s sealed and in its original packaging, it will last. If you wish to freeze a partly used stick of butter, remove the wax paper, wrap the butter in plastic wrap, then rewrap everything in wax paper and freeze. Remove the lid from a tub or jar of butter, place a piece of plastic wrap over the butter, replace the cover, and store everything in a freezer bag.

Leave frozen butter on top of the oven while it’s preheating, or put it in the fridge overnight to soften it gradually. Use a cheese grater to soften one or many whole sticks swiftly. The little slivers will quickly reheat to room temperature. There’s also the microwave to consider.

How Long Does Butter Last In The Fridge?

The butter kept in the fridge can last for three to six months. Butter may be kept “safe” in the freezer forever. However, the quality will deteriorate with time. It’s preferable to utilize frozen stick butter within 8 to 12 months after it’s been frozen.

In all circumstances, temperature and storage techniques determine the actual amount of time. It also relies on your taste and texture sensitivity; since butter absorbs scents and aromas from its surroundings, it might become unsuitable long before it expires.

Wrap stick butter with foil, parchment paper, or cling wrap to keep it fresh. Avoid using wax paper since it diminishes the taste and quality of the butter. Replace the packaging with foil or parchment paper for a longer-lasting product.

Ideally, butter should be packaged in such a manner that it is protected from air, light, and moisture (to prevent freezer burn). Butter should also be kept away from anything that has a strong odor.

The butter kept in the refrigerator or freezer door will spoil quicker since it will be warmer (or more variable in temperature). Store butter at the rear of the compartment, where the temperature is the lowest and most stable, to get the most out of it.

How Long Can Butter Last After Being Frozen?

Unsalted butter may be kept in the freezer for up to 6 months, whereas salted butter can be kept for around a year. To keep the butter from collecting aromas from other foods and lowering the danger of “freezer burn,” wrap it in its original packaging, heavy-duty aluminum foil, or place it in a freezer bag. However, after the butter has thawed, it should not be stored for more than 6 months.

Can You Refrigerate Salted Butter?

Yes, salted butter can be frozen. However, you may want to avoid it since the salt content may grow more powerful after freezing. This is due to fluid loss (due to the freezing process), which causes the cellular structure to disintegrate. Knowing this and the consequences of eating too much salt may deter you from freezing it.

Salted butter is a well-known butter for cooking and spreading that includes 2% salt. Any butter with additional salt will keep in the refrigerator for a longer amount of time, so you won’t need to freeze it if you want to use it within a month.

Can You Refrigerate Cultured Butter?

Yes, cultured butter may be frozen, but only once. This is due to the different bacterial cultures, increasing the risk of food illness if thawed. There is no salt in the cultured butter. Instead, a bacterial culture is introduced to the butter before the churning step.

This bacterial culture imparts an ancient flavor and a more acidic taste to the butter. Ensure the amount you have is enough to eat since thawing may restart bacterial development and cause food poisoning if not consumed within 24 hours after defrosting.

Can You Refrigerate Clarified Butter/Ghee?

Yes, clarified butter/ghee may be frozen. Ghee (clarified butter) is a South Asian delicacy. The milk particles in the butter are dissolved, sink to the bottom, and become brown when the butter is cooked. To give the butter a longer shelf life, it is allowed to melt until the water has gone. Ghee can be frozen and refrozen, but pure ghee with no additives may keep in the refrigerator for up to a year, so you may not need to do so.

Although freezing butter is pretty simple, you may still have some unresolved questions. Here’s a comprehensive explanation of some of the various issues you could be having with freezing butter.

What Is The Shelf Life Of Melted Butter In The Refrigerator?

This is a question that many people are asking. The response, on the other hand, could surprise you. Melted butter can keep for up to two weeks in the fridge. You may freeze melted butter if you want to keep it for an extended time.

Melted butter can keep for up to six months in the freezer. Just make sure it’s completely thawed before using it in a recipe. Melted butter is an excellent technique to flavor and moistens dishes. Sauces, salads, and baked items may all benefit from it. So keep these guidelines in mind the next time you have a recipe that asks for melted butter.

What Is The Best Way To Defrost Frozen Butter?

Allow frozen butter to defrost overnight in the refrigerator for 3–4 hours at room temperature. Do you need a more practical solution? Here are a few quick suggestions:

  • Grate the frozen butter on a box grater with big holes and set it aside to defrost at room temperature.
  • Set the butter adjacent to the oven while it preheats if you’re cooking. The heat from the oven will aid in the thawing of the butter.
  • Microwave the butter for 10 seconds at a time until it softens slightly. It’s best to err on caution here since butter rapidly turns from soft to soupy in the microwave.

Is It Necessary To Defrost Frozen Butter Before Using It?

It is debatable! The nicest aspect about storing butter (apart from shortbread biscuits are never far away) is that frozen butter is sometimes preferred in recipes. As it steams in the oven, chilled butter helps to produce that delicious flaky texture in pie crust and biscuits.

To use frozen butter in pie crust, shred it on a box grater with big holes and stir with flour (instead of cutting it in with a pastry cutter or your hands).

How To Keep Butter At Room Temperature For A Long Time

Most butter can be stored for as long as the expiry date if kept in the refrigerator (about four months). It’s closer to two weeks on the counter. Here’s how to keep room temperature butter fresh for the whole 14-day period:

Reduce your exposure to light, heat, and air. When butter is exposed to air, the fat oxidizes, making it more prone to spoilage. Light and heat may also break up the fat molecules, resulting in rancidity.

Please keep it in an airtight, opaque butter dish. A French (and incredibly cute) butter crock will keep you safe from the elements.

Remove the salted butter from the equation (keep unsalted in the fridge). Because salt acts as a preservative, salty butter has a longer shelf life on the counter. It protects against germs in the same way as pasteurization does.

Know when it’s time to call it a day. Put your butter in the fridge if your house is hotter than normal or if you’re going away for a few days. (Unless, of course, your pet understands how to operate the toaster.)

Conclusion on Does Butter Need To Be Refrigerated?

Butter is a popular and staple ingredient in most households across the globe. To take advantage of its versatility in cooking and baking, you will be pleased to know that it can be frozen. This will allow you to buy in bulk (saving you time and money) and enable you to preserve it so you can always have an available supply in your kitchen.