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Homemade buttermilk is likely the easiest cultured dairy product you can make. It’ll take less than 5 minutes of your time and you’ll be all set to make buttermilk biscuits, my easy blackberry cobbler, and other delicious recipes after it’s cultured.
- 2 cups milk see notes
- 2 tbsp cultured buttermilk
- Add cultured buttermilk and the milk to the jar.
- Stir together and cover with the lid.
- Place in a warm, dark place (like a kitchen cupboard or on top of the fridge) for 12-24 hours.
- Put the jar of freshly cultured buttermilk into the fridge.
- Make a new batch weekly to keep the culture strong.
A Little History of Buttermilk
Originally, buttermilk was the butter-flecked milk that was leftover after butter was churned. Most commonly, the raw milk or cream had soured first (aka cultured or clabbered) before the butter was churned. However, sweet (aka not soured) milk and cream were sometimes used as well.
Buttermilk was most commonly consumed by poor farmers and slaves before it gained widespread use in baking. At this time, the cultured form of buttermilk became the standard as compared to sweet buttermilk.
Nowadays, store-bought buttermilk is made using low-fat milk resulting in a thin, sour liquid. I always make my own with whole milk for thick, tangy buttermilk.
Equipment & Ingredients to Make This
To make buttermilk all you’ll need is a clean jar with a lid, a dairy-based milk, cultured buttermilk, and a spoon.
How To Make Homemade Buttermilk
Measure out your buttermilk culture and add to a clean jar.
Top with milk…
… and stir together. Then put the lid on the jar and place in a cupboard overnight.
In the morning, your milk should have cultured and become thick, tangy buttermilk.
Store in the fridge and make a new batch weekly.
How to Store Homemade Buttermilk
You can store your buttermilk in the fridge for about 1 – 2 weeks. To keep the culture strong you need to make a new batch at least once a week.
Buttermilk also freezes well and can be stored in your freezer for up to 3 months. I recommend using these 1/2 cup freezer molds for the initial freezing and then you can pop them out to store inside of a bag or container.