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How To Make Ghee

Ghee is clarified butter, popular in the Indian subcontinent and many middle eastern nations. It has a unique flavor, high smoking point and is attributed to have many health benefits and nutitinal values compared to other fats.

Home Made  ghee - easily made at home

Ghee  has  been used by the   cooks  in the Indian   subcontinent for  ages. This  golden  fat  can  be  found  in desserts   to  curries to  medicinal   preparations.   It is  allergen  free,    easy to make at  home  and stays  fresh without  refrigeration  even  in the  hot and  humid  tropics.  There  was   always  a bottle  in mom’s  kitchen  and  it  was  this   that  transformed  the  plain dosa   into  the  coveted  ghee roast .

What is  ghee ?

Ghee is  a   version of  clarified  butter  with the  water  cooked out  as well as  the  milk solids.  This  makes ghee  pure  fat – devoid  of   casein and   lactose  the  common milk allergens.   Unless  the  weather is  warm  it  solidifies  in   room  temperature similar  to  virgin  coconut oil.

Benefits of  ghee

Ghee is  believed   to  help  with  absorption  of  nutrients.  In  Ayurveda, the  most  predominant  alternative  medicine  system  in India it is  used as   the  medium to  deliver  many medicines. It is  pure  fat , but   most of  it  is   beneficial  fat.  One  of  them is CLA ,  a  type  of  fatty acid   with  a  long  list  of  health  benefits,  another  one  is  butyric  acid. Ghee  helps  with  the  absorption of  fat  soluble  vitamins  like  Vit A , E  and K  –  all  essential in  maintaining   healthy bones, skin and  eyes.

It  is  even  credited  to  aid   weight  loss  and   detoxification.  When   used  in moderation,   the  benefit  definitely  tend  to outweigh  the   calorie  intake.

How  to  make  ghee ?

Making  ghee is   one  of  the  simplest  things  you can  do.     Keep the  butter on  low  heat when you are  doing  other things  in the   kitchen . Every few  minutes  check on it  to  see how  it is  progressing.   As the  butter  fat solidifies  give an  occasional   stir    and  listen  to the  way it  bubbles.   It is  the  water  cooking  out.  Finally the   sound  of bubbling  changes  and   you see  clear  bubbles – that  is the  cue . Take off the heat  and   strain .  That  is  it  !

A  word  on  butter/s

Traditionally  ghee in India  was  made   from  cow’s  butter.  Though   you can  make  it  with   butter  from other  bovines or even  sheep or  goat  milk.   There are  slight  flavor  variations for  each ,   just  like  cheeses.

Traditionally   ghee  was  made  from cultured  butter.   Cultured  butter  used is   churned  out  of   full fat  yogurt.   The  yogurt  will be  home  made,   which in turn  used  to be  non homogenized.    This  yogurt  will separate   into  butter   and   lite  butter  milk   upon  churning.

Cultured  butters  are  available  in  stores  in  the  US, but  these  are  usually  made  with  cream to  which bacteria (the  culture)  is  introduced.  Cultures  of   health  has a  good  article on this. If  you can’t  find  it  don’t  worry,  ghee  can  be  as  easily  made  with regular  butter.

Ghee in its Golden liquid form

The  case for  making  ghee this  at  home ?

A  medium bottle  of  ghee   could  set  you  back  about $20  if   it  is  made  from  organic ,  grass  fed  cows  (the way it  was  meant  to be ).  About  half  that   amount  if  it  is  made  from  regular  milk.   Making   it  at  home  is  much more  economical, even  better  if  you can make  butter  at  home ..  More  on that  another time.

Here is  the other  reason  why  I like  making it at  home.  It  is  kind  of a  natural  perfume – so to  speak.   It  makes  the  kitchen   smell  warm   and  often  tricks  my kids into  thinking  that  I am  baking  cookies ? .

What  would  you choose , butter  or  ghee on the  toast ?

Here  are a  few  pictures  of  the  different  stages  as  the  butter melts  and  transforms   into  ghee ..

Note :  If  you are  starting  with  cream take  the  butter  out of  it  by using  the whipping  attachment  in  the  mixer.  Whip more  after  the  cream  has   reached  full volume  and it  will separate out  into  whey  and   butter.   You could  heat  the  cream  directly , but  that  is  a  much longer  process as there is  more  water  and   solids  to  cook out.

Heat  the butter  at   low   till it  melts .  At  the  stage   the  heat  could  be a  little  higher  if  you are   keeping  an  eye  on it  and   be  ready to stir.

Home Made Ghee From Scratch

Once the  butter  is   melted  it  is   safer  to keep the   heat  on low  to   prevent  any of  the butterfat from   sticking  to sides  and  burning.   As  it  cooks  you will see the  milk solids  separate    and  froth  up  as  well as  stick to the  sides.

Home Made Ghee From Scratch

Give a stir  every few  minutes   to  dislodge  the  solids  from the  sides.  This   way nothing   gets   burnt . Once the  solids  are  congealed ,  frothing  stops  and  you  get  to see  clearer  bubbles.

Home Made Ghee From Scratch

Wait  for  the   bubbling  to   reduce (keep the  heat  low)  and  once   the  surface  seems  to  clear  turn off  the  heat !   There is  plenty of  residual heat  in the  ghee ,  so if  you  suspect  that  you have past  the golden  yellow  point (the  solids  are  dark  brown  almost to the point  of  being  bunt ) immediately strain into  waiting  container.

Now  if  you  like t he  burnt  flavors ,  More caramel like , nutty flavors  , by all  means  go  ahead  and   set it  aside .  The  ghee  will not  be  golden  anymore ,  but I know  a  few who  would  prefer  it  that  way.

Ghee in its golden liquid form
Strained and begining to cool.

Ghee is  best  made  on  stove  top .  You could  use  the  the slow cooker  or  instant pot  but  I would  stay away from  microwave.    Melting  so much butter  in the  microwave  for the  desired  results   invariably causes   splatter  and  hot spots.  All the  time  saving that one  aims  for  will be  lost  to  cleaning.   When melting  butter  in  the slow  cooker  or  instant pot  be  mindful of the residual cooking  time of the  appliance .

Home Made ghee - easily made at home

How To Make Ghee

By Syama
Ghee is  the preferred  choice  of  fat  in   cooking  many curries  and  other  dishes.  It is  believed to have  many beneficial properties  compared  to other  cooking  oils  and  fats.   Making  ghee at  home is a  simple  and easy  process  and  the  rewards  are  absolutely worth it.   
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Cook Time 30 minutes
Course other
Cuisine Indian
Servings 1 C


  • 1 lb Butter , preferably organic , grass-fed , cultured

Equipment Needed

  • Thick bottomed pan at least 3 inches deep
  • Wooden spoon / Spatula
  • Mesh strainer (optional but good to have )
  • Cheesecloth muslin or similar to strain
  • Glass Jar/s to store ghee


  • Place the butter in the skillet over medium-low heat and watch it melt slowly.  Depending  on the  water  content  of  butter it  may  splatter a  little   (the  deep pot  helps in containing the splatters).
  • Let  the  melted  butter  simmer  over low to medium low  heat   for  about 15 to  20 minutes.  Stir every few  minutes  to prevent  the  solids  from s ticking  to the  sides.     Skim off the foam  if  excessive.  Otherwise continue to simmer, stirring occasionally.  As  it  cooks  the  bits  of   solids  begin to  congeal and  settle  on the   bottom of  the pan.
  • Slowly the  white  foam  on top   gets  replaced  by clear  bubbles  and the   solids in the  bottom turns  golden  brown.  Keep the  heat on  low  a t this  point  as  it  can easily  overheat  and   burn.  As  soon as  the   liquid  is  clear  and   the  milk fats  at  the   bottom is  light  brown, take   off  the heat.
  • Let it  cool    a  little  before  straining   into the  containers.  The   residual heat  in the  ghee  will keep the   solids   cooking  after it  is  taken  off  the  heat.
  • Strain using  several  layers of  chees  cloth  set  on a mesh  strainer or  using a  muslin  cloth.


  • The more  butter is  used  to make  ghee  the longer the  cooking  time is .
  • Use  only clean  dry  spoons  to  scoop  ghee. Moisture  will interfere with  its  shelf life.
  • From 1 lb of  butter  you get  about  1 C  ghee.
  • Use a wide  bottomed  pan so that  the  spoon  can   reach all sides  to  dislodge  the  milk solids  stuck to the  sides. 
  • Use a  deep  pan  so  the  splatters   and  foam are  contained.

Important: Nutrition Values are estimates. Actuals vary based on ingredients and serving size.

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Here are a  few  ways  I like  to  use  ghee

  • Ghee  Rice
  • Serve  with   parippu or  the  Mung  Dal
  • Frying  certain  garnishes  for  soups  and  payasam.
  • For  all  biryanis
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