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Does butter HAVE to stay refrigerated?

post #1 of 14
Thread Starter 
This may sound like a stupid question but does butter HAVE to stay refrigerated? Everytime I want to make anything I have to wait for the butter to soften.

Thanks,
Lazy_Susan icon_wink.gif
"God will probably not be interested in how much we included in our day, but how much of our day included Him." - Allia Zobel-Nolan
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"God will probably not be interested in how much we included in our day, but how much of our day included Him." - Allia Zobel-Nolan
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post #2 of 14
During this time of the year, I keep a stick of butter on a dish sitting on the counter. For toast, muffins, grits, etc. I can't do it in warmer temperatures because it will go bad quickly, but when the weather is cool I do. I cook & bake a lot and we always seem to feed at least 1 or 2 extra people (our employees, a friend, etc.) every day...so it gets used up within at least 48 hours...sometimes a stick will be gone in 24 hours. I would say that if you're going to use it within the next 24 hrs or so to bake with that it would probably be ok. If I know I'll be baking the next day, I always sit a stick out on the counter (still in its wrapping) and it's softened just right by the morning.
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post #3 of 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lazy_Susan

This may sound like a stupid question but does butter HAVE to stay refrigerated? Everytime I want to make anything I have to wait for the butter to soften.

Thanks,
Lazy_Susan icon_wink.gif


I work fulltime so im not home most of the day. So when i know i have to make a cake when i get home at night, i take out the butter out of the fridge in the morning and it's fine by the time i get home. Usually out for about 8-10 hours.
No problem
Nati
post #4 of 14
If you're really in a rush, you can microwave it for 10 - 15 seconds to give it a jump start.
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"I just hate health food"--Julia Child
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post #5 of 14
Hec, I leave butter on the counter, just like my mom always did. Of course its only by the stick, but i usually always have one sitting in the butter dish. As far as if i'm baking, i will either take the butter out before i go to bed or before i go to work, depends on what i have going on the next day. In a pinch i will soften in the microwave, but tend to melt it then.
post #6 of 14
I wonder the same thing - I'm anal about food safety...
Has anyone tried the soft baking butter from Land o Lakes?
post #7 of 14
Regular salted butter is fine at normal room temp for a few days. Obviously if it's 100 degrees out, it will be shorter.

Unsalted butter should only be out for 12-24 hours (the salt acts as a preservative, so unsaltd won't last as long)
post #8 of 14
Yes, salted butter is fine for 2-3 days as per the Dairy Institute of Canada, but often even up to 2 weeks in cooler temperatures, they use the 2-3 days as a guideline. With room temperatures over 75F, it should be refrigerated.
Butter will smell rancid when it is no longer good to eat.
Hugs Squirrelly
post #9 of 14
If you cut the butter into small pieces, it will soften a lot faster. I'll cut my butter up and put it into the mixer then measure out my dry ingredients. I'll stick my eggs in some hot tap water to warm up, get the pans ready, etc. By the time I'm ready to cream the butter it's usually soft enough and the eggs are warmed up.

Sandra
post #10 of 14
Thread Starter 
Thanks! I was wondering about the eggs as well and now I know icon_smile.gif
"God will probably not be interested in how much we included in our day, but how much of our day included Him." - Allia Zobel-Nolan
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"God will probably not be interested in how much we included in our day, but how much of our day included Him." - Allia Zobel-Nolan
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post #11 of 14
If you are in a big hurry, and you don't want to risk the microwave, use a grater. The shredded butter warms up in a very short time.

I buy butter in large quantities and keep it in the freezer. If I need it in a hurry, I put it in a zip lock bag and immerse it in cool water. It thaws more quickly.

Dairy and eggs are considered "perishable" and should be kept chilled as much as possible. Selling product to the public requires extra caution that we wouldn't worry about for home use.
Cake. So many flavors, so little time.
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Cake. So many flavors, so little time.
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post #12 of 14
i just want to comment on how strict you have to be these days with food safety. my stepmom grew up in rural kentucky and she says they left stuff out all the time and they never knew of anyone that got sick, even things like meat and my mom used to hide the easter eggs the night before and we never got sick. of course, i'm not saying to take chances, i just think it's kind of funny to talk to people who laugh at the idea of having to refrigerate everything and how they think we're being over vigilant
post #13 of 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by JoAnnB

If you are in a big hurry, and you don't want to risk the microwave, use a grater. The shredded butter warms up in a very short time.

I buy butter in large quantities and keep it in the freezer. If I need it in a hurry, I put it in a zip lock bag and immerse it in cool water. It thaws more quickly.

Dairy and eggs are considered "perishable" and should be kept chilled as much as possible. Selling product to the public requires extra caution that we wouldn't worry about for home use.


That is true JoAnn and in some areas you must refrigerate any butter based icing if you run a licensed commercial bakeries but that also has to do with the kitchen temperature. You would have to follow whatever food safety regulations apply in your area.
Salted butter is considered to be safe for 2-3 days according to Government Dairy Institutes, also the salt and the sugar work to preserve cream and milk when they are not the main content of an icing such as in the Wilton recipe. Wilton itself also recommends that these icings are safe at room temperature below 75F for 2-3 days, I find even longer for home use.
I have been using this same recipe for more than 30 years with absolutely no issues, following the Wilton guidelines.
Hugs Squirrelly
post #14 of 14
Just wanted to add this, I rarely remove the butter from the fridge ahead of time. I just slice it up and whip it with the paddle, eventually it softens up and gets warm and then I use it. It has never caused any problems for me doing it this way either. I will use room temperature butter when I remember to take it out ahead, but cold butter soons warms and softens when you whip it.
Hugs Squirrelly
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