How to Make Ghee (Clarified Butter)

Clarified butter (ghee) in a glass jar

The Spruce

Prep: 5 mins
Cook: 10 mins
Total: 15 mins
Servings: 48 servings
Nutrition Facts (per serving)
152 Calories
17g Fat
0g Carbs
0g Protein
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Nutrition Facts
Servings: 48
Amount per serving
Calories 152
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 17g 22%
Saturated Fat 11g 54%
Cholesterol 46mg 15%
Sodium 4mg 0%
Total Carbohydrate 0g 0%
Dietary Fiber 0g 0%
Total Sugars 0g
Protein 0g
Vitamin C 0mg 0%
Calcium 5mg 0%
Iron 0mg 0%
Potassium 5mg 0%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
(Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)

Ghee, which is also known as clarified butter, is a great alternative to cooking oil. Homemade ghee is fragrant and is used in countless cuisines including Indian and Middle Eastern dishes, along with Holland, Australia, and Scandinavia. Regardless of how it's used, ghee adds an incomparable richness to any dish.

If ghee is unfamiliar, you may wonder why one would use it, and what kinds of advantages it has over butter or cooking oil. First, it doesn't burn as easily as butter. It can be purchased in the grocery store, but also made at home. Ghee is really versatile, too; it becomes solidified at lower temperatures but can easily be melted when required, and it spreads easily. Ghee also is beneficial if you need to avoid lactose because the process of making ghee removes the milk solids, making it suitable for someone who is lactose intolerant.

This recipe makes approximately three cups of ghee. Add it to curry and dal dishes, use it in baking (such as this banana bread), or try it on popcorn with fine sea salt and pepper.

Ingredients

Steps to Make It

  1. Gather the ingredients.

    Ingredients for ghee
    The Spruce
  2. Heat a deep, heavy-bottomed pan over medium heat and add butter and bay leaves. Simmer, allowing butter to melt and cook.

  3. When a froth appears on the surface of the butter, spoon it off and dispose of it.

    Butter heated so the milk solids separate to make ghee
    The Spruce
  4. Keep cooking till all froth has risen and been removed.

    Butter simmering to remove the milk solids
    The Spruce
  5. Allow mixture to cool, remove bay leaves, and strain or filter the ghee. It should be a pale golden color.

    Allow mixture to cool and strain
    The Spruce
  6. Add a pinch of salt and mix it well. This gives ghee a lovely grainy texture when solidified.

    Add salt to ghee
    The Spruce
  7. Store unrefrigerated for 4 to 6 months, or keep it refrigerated for even longer.

Tip

If you can afford a high-quality butter, you'll really taste it in the ghee.

Variations

You can infuse ghee with all kinds of ingredients, such as roasted garlic, truffle oil, some good-quality Himalayan pink sea salt, herbs such as rosemary or chives, or grated ginger or turmeric root.