Make Your Own Buttermilk

Though many people have an aversion to buttermilk, this tasty, cultured dairy staple has a place in every frugal household. Apart from being a delicious, nutritious drink, it is also used in making many a tasty treat such as biscuits, pancakes, waffles - but also in pies, cakes, breads, and even soups and ice cream. In a pinch, it also makes a super substitute for sour cream on a baked potato, and can be used in making dressings and dips. It isn't hard to make your own buttermilk, and good to have on hand for many frugal recipes. You must start with a little of the "store-bought" kind, but after that, you can keep a supply going indefinitely for only pennies.


The supplies for making one's own buttermilk are few - all you need is a few pint jars, a bit of powdered milk, a small amount of the "store-bought" stuff, a dash of salt, and 24 hours. It's as easy as this:

Mix up a quantity of about a pint of dry milk - a thrifty staple in all frugal households. Having it at room temperature works slightly better than chilled; Sterilize a pint jar in the dishwasher, or with boiling water, and fill halfway with your mixed dry milk. I find that a mayonnaise jar is just the right size for me. Fill the other half with the store-bought buttermilk - you must have this for the "culture" that's in it. It works the same way as yogurt, sour cream, and sourdough or "friendship" bread. Add a dash of salt, give it a good shake, and leave it on your kitchen counter for 24 hours to "clabber". Oddly enough, it does not spoil. After the 24 hours, refrigerate it, and it's all ready to drink, or to use in biscuit recipes, and a plethora of others.


When you've used half, simply add more mixed dry milk (or the regular kind) and leave to clabber another batch. I use it so often that I keep two jars going at once. That's all there is to it! Think of the money you can save mixing up your own buttermilk for all sorts of wonderful baking recipes - all for the cost of one pint of cultured buttermilk, and a little powdered milk mix. Enjoy!

By Savannah from The Deep South

September 18, 20080 found this helpful

Does this make REAL buttermilk - thick and creamy - or is it the thin watery stuff they are currently selling in the supermarket today and are calling buttermilk.

I grew up with the real stuff; but, the stuff they sell now tastes like buttermilk FLAVORED water and it is disgusting.

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September 18, 20080 found this helpful

Thanks, I want to try this! Buttermilk is so good for you. When you want to make the second batch, do you pour it all into a new sterilized jar?

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September 18, 20080 found this helpful

Thanks, I really want to do this. Buttermilk is so good for you! When you are ready to make the second batch, do you get another sterilized jar and put everything in it?

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