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Photograph: Time Out / Shutterstock
Photograph: Time Out / Shutterstock

Three-Ingredient Recipe: Ricky Evans’s butter from scratch

Written by
Kate Lloyd

Welcome to our cookery series Three-Ingredient Recipe, where London chefs share the tastiest, simplest dishes they know. Today, Ricky Evans of The Ingredientist at Milroy’s in Spitalfields is taking charge with a recipe for... literally just butter. Churn your own and you can say goodbye to Anchor and Lurpak: you’ll never have to give money to Big Butter again. 


This is one of the first recipes I learnt as a child and has stuck with me ever since. I still use it now to minimise wastage whenever I have leftover cream. This simple recipe will not only give you butter when you run out, it also creates buttermilk which is great for making tasty marinades when combined with your favourite herbs and spices.’

What you need

250ml heavy whipping cream

Bowl of ice water

½ tbsp salt (optional)


What you need to do 

1. Pour heavy whipping cream into a blender or a jar with the lid firmly fitted.

2. Blend or shake the cream until it breaks to form butterfat (solid) and butter milk (liquid). This will take approximately eight to ten minutes in a blender and longer by hand if shaking. Warning: this method requires serious elbow grease so perhaps take turns to shake with your isolation buddies.

3. Pour off the buttermilk into a cup. You can drink it or use it to cook something else. (Use it as replacement for milk when making pancakes or to marinate chicken overnight. This also works great with cauliflower if you want to make a meat-free option.)

4. Spoon the butter into a bowl and rinse. You do this by pouring ice water into the bowl, pressing the butter down with a spatula and then pouring away the cloudy water. Repeat this step twice or until the water remains clear when pressing the ice water into the butter.

5. If you like your butter salted, add rock salt and combine into butter with a fork.

6. Spread on some good bread. 

Find out how to make Tom Aikens’s sweetcorn pancakes or Keshia Sakarah’s green plantain chips.

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