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How To Clarify Butter In The Microwave

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Do have to clarify butter on the stovetop or can you quickly clarify butter in the microwave without burning. From soften to browning, the ultimate guide to microwave butter will help to execute all of your favorite recipes.

Clarified butter is also called drawn butter or ghee, which only consists of the butterfat. The milk solids and water are removed and only the pure butter oil is left behind. 

To clarify butter in the microwave, add diced butter into a tall microwave-safe measuring cup. Microwave the butter until it separates into three layers.

Scrape away the milk foam on the top layer with a spoon, and keep the middle layer which is the clarified butter. Water sinks to the bottom and is also discarded

Ghee has a longer shelf life and much higher smoke point than regular butter because the milk solid burn easily and have been removed. Clarified butter can withstand high heat, which is perfect for baking, sautéing and roasting dishes. 

Is clarified butter the same as melted butter?

In order to know the difference between clarified and melted butter, you do need to understand individual terms.

Whole butter is made up of butterfat, milk solids, and water. Clarified butter it translucent golden color butterfat that is left over after the milk solids and water are removed. Clarified butter only contains pure butterfat, while melted butter contains all 3 components. 

The clarified butter has a much higher smoke point than regular butter, which allow you to cook at higher temperatures without burning whole butter. 

What happens when you clarify butter?

Whether you use stovetop or microwave method, butter encounters a physical reaction when heat is inputed.

When you clarify butter, you are breaking down the emulsion between oil and water that actually makes up whole butter. When butter is heated, the milk solids foam to the top and water layer containing milk sugar, minerals, and proteins sinks to the bottom. 

When you clarify butter in the microwave, it simply means you are cooking with low heat so the water evaporates and the milk solids can be easily removed. A translucent golden butterfat is left behind.

How long does it take to clarify butter?

Depend on what method you choose and how much butter you use, the cooking time can vary slightly.

If you use 2 cups or 4 sticks of butter, it takes about 2 minutes to microwave on high. Allow the melted butter to rest for 1 minute, and then spoon off foamy top layer and reserve the golden butterfat.

Make sure the butter is completely melted and the oil starts to separate, but has not started to bubble. Let the butter stand a few minutes and skim off the foamy milk solids.

Adjust the time to suit the wattage power of your microwave. Keep an eye on the butter because it will expand in volume and can easily boil over leaving a giant mess in the microwave.

If you continue microwaving beyond this point, then it will quickly start to turn into brown butter

Does clarifying butter remove fat?

Whole butter by itself has a low smoke point, and contain roughly 80% milk fat, 17% water, and 3% milk protein. 

When you clarify butter, you are removing the water and milk proteins to achieve an oil that is 100% milk fat. So, it is concentrating fat, not removing it. 

If you are left with milk solids from the clarified butter, instead of throwing them away. Use them to add flavor to steamed or grilled vegetables or even add to bread dough for a rich buttery flavor. 

Things to know before clarifying butter in the microwave

Clarifying butter is great dip for cooked seafood, roasting meat or even sautéing vegetables. Ghee has a pure and clean flavor that you can easily make in the microwave at home.

Here are tips to make clarified butter in the microwave to add to your kitchen essentials:

  • Use a tall microwave-safe glass due to butter will foam up and quickly expand in volume.
  • Cut the butter into tablespoon-size pieces to melt quickly.
  • Adjust the microwave to medium power or about 700 watts.
  • Add ½ tablespoon of cornstarch for every ½ cup of butter to easily separate the milk fat. The cornstarch will trap all water and proteins at the bottom of the container.
  • Strain the butter through a coffee filter to quickly discard the water-soluble proteins left behind.

To clarify butter in the microwave, dice up whole butter into tablespoon sized pieces, place in a tall microwave safe measuring cup and nuke for a minute or until the butter separates and begins to foam. Allow the melted butter to rest for a minute, then skim off the milk foam on the top and reserve the butterfat left behind.

Everything taste better with clarified butter, from veggies to pie crust, you name it. Clarified butter in the microwave takes less time compared to stovetop cooking. Choose the method wisely and use homemade clarified butter in your next meal!

How to clarify butter in the microwave.