Ghee Whiz: How to Make Ghee at Home

homemade ghee

What is ghee? It’s a type of clarified butter, originally popular in India (in part because it’s more shelf stable) and often considered to be a healthier saturated fat than regular butter. Ghee is easy to make at home.

If you’ve seen recipes (possibly for Indian dishes) or diets (like Paleo or raw) that call for ghee and then scoffed at the high price tag of the store-bought stuff, you can find comfort in knowing that it’s super easy to make ghee at home. The simple process involves heating regular butter to separate the milk solids. (If you’re really ambitious, you can even start with homemade butter.) I’ve eaten ghee before but this was my first time to make it at home, and I was surprised how it easy it is. Alton Brown’s recipe for ghee served as my guide, though I heeded some cautions in the comments and reduced the heat a bit, which worked fine. Seriously, why would you ever buy it when it’s this simple?

Now, how to use it? The options are endless. I use it like I would butter — for frying an egg or sautéing vegetables or spread on bread. Food Network swears by ghee for popcorn and also offers an amazing-sounding ravioli recipe involving ghee. Do you eat ghee? What’s your favorite way to use it?

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Step 1

 Open Galleryorganic butter

Start with plain unsalted butter, preferably organic. Alton Brown’s recipe called for 1 pound of butter, but I used just a half pound instead. The process was the same.

Step 2

 Open Gallerymelting butter

Melt butter in a medium saucepan for 2 to 3 minutes until just boiling. Adjust the heat according to your stovetop. The butter should begin foaming but it shouldn’t be popping out.

Step 3

 Open Galleryfoam on butter for ghee

A layer of foam will form and then milk solids will start floating to the bottom of the pan. A second foam will then form. This process should take 5 to 7 minutes.

Step 4

 Open Galleryfiltering ghee

Pour through cheesecloth or a fine strainer into your container.

Step 5

 Open Gallerymaking ghee

Discard the milk solids that you’ve collected.

Step 6

 Open Gallerywarm ghee

If any milk solids remain (like those here), scoop them off the top.

Step 7

 Open Galleryghee reflectionGhee has a lovely clear quality — hence it’s other name: clarified butter. After the ghee solidifies, you may notice that is has a slightly gritty texture. This is totally normal and disappears once the ghee is heated again. Ghee will keep unrefrigerated in an airtight container for a month.

Materials

  • 1/2 to 1 pound of unsalted butter

 

Tools

  • Medium saucepan
  • Fine strainer or cheesecloth
  • Airtight container
About Kelly Smith Trimble 

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I grow vegetables wherever I can find enough sunlight and forage roadsides and hiking trails for plants that can be used to make natural dyes. You can find both vintage ...

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3 Responses

  1. Babar zahoor says:

    well thank you for this recipe but you will be surprised to know that we use ghee in our daily routine. it is essential ingredient of our every dish, we use ghee in breakfast, in lunch, in diner and almost in every single cooking.

  2. Trish says:

    So thankful to see this recipe! I went into a local grocery recently and asked where the ghee was. Two of the cashiers had no idea what this item was. They asked the manager who knew. It's the true foodies who know what ghee is. Thank you for this recipe when stores no longer carry it.

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