What is the Point of a Butter Dish? Get The Low Down On Butter

Have you ever wondered what purpose a butter dish serves? Find out why it's essential to keeping your butter fresh, and how to find the best one.

Cold butter

Butter has long been a staple in many households, and as such, so has the butter dish. A butter dish is a container specifically designed to hold and store butter, keeping it fresh and delicious while also adding a touch of style to your meal presentation.

In this blog post, we will delve into the history of butter dishes and their influence on design, as well as the benefits and drawbacks of using one.

We will also discuss the different types of butter dishes and which situations are best suited for each.

Finally, we will offer tips on how to maintain and clean your butter dish, and conclude with our personal opinion on whether or not investing in a butter dish is worth it.

The History of Butter Dishes: Where Did They Come From?

Butter dishes have been around for centuries, and it's difficult to pinpoint an exact time of their creation.

However, they have most likely been in use since the Middle Ages, when butter was commonly served with bread as a staple for meals.

Early butter dishes were made of wood or pottery and typically featured a lid to keep the butter protected.

As butter became more refined, so did the design of butter dishes. In the 19th century, butter dishes became a popular item for table presentation and were often made of fine china or silver.

How Butter Dishes Keep Your Butter Fresh and Delicious

While many people simply store their butter in the fridge, a butter dish has the added benefit of keeping your butter at room temperature, making it easy to spread.

The lid also helps keep the butter from absorbing any unpleasant odors or flavors from other foods in the fridge. Butter dishes with built-in water wells also keep the butter from becoming too soft or melting in warmer climates.

Wax paper

Butter Keeper

Butter keepers are typically made of ceramic or clay and feature a lid that sits atop the container. This type of butter dish is perfect for those who want to store their butter at room temperature to keep the butter soft. However, the lid does not provide much protection from odors and flavors absorbing into the butter.

Butter Crock

Butter crocks are a ceramic container that features two pieces, with the bottom part filled with water and the top serving as a butter dish. This type of butter dish helps keep your butter at room temperature for the best spreadable butter. It does this while also providing some protection from odors and flavors absorbing into the butter. However, it is important to remember to change out the water in the crock regularly.

Butter Bell

A butter bell is a butter dish with two pieces that fit together, with the bottom part filled with water and the top portion acting as a lid to keep the butter contained. This type of butter dish is perfect for those who want an easy way to store their butter at room temperature without fear of it becoming too soft or melting in warmer climates. Additionally, the lid provides some protection from odors and flavors absorbing into the butter.

French Butter Dish

Keeping butter cold helps prevent the butter turning rancid, and butter dishes are the perfect solution for doing so. Covered butter dishes, such as French butter dishes, are designed with a water-filled base that helps keep the butter cold and fresh. Simply place a stick of butter into the top portion of the dish, fill the bottom part with cold water, and replace it when necessary.

Maintaining and Cleaning Your Butter Dish

In order to keep your butter dish in good condition, it is important to regularly clean it with hot soapy water. Be sure to dry the dish thoroughly after each cleaning.

By using mild soap and a dish scrubber to clean the dish you help prevent bacteria growth. Additionally, if you are using a type of butter dish with a water well, such as a butter crock or butter bell, you should remember to change water periodically.

From Ceramic to Glass: A Look at Different Butter Dish Materials

Butter dishes are available in a range of materials, including ceramic, glass, and metal. Ceramic butter dishes are classic and often come in a variety of colors and patterns to match any kitchen decor.

While glass butter dishes look sleek and modern, they are also more fragile and may not be suitable for outdoor use.

Metal butter dishes, such as those made of stainless steel, are durable and easy to clean but may not be the most aesthetically pleasing option.

Traditional vs. Modern Butter Dishes: Which is Right for You?

When choosing a butter dish, think about the types of meals you typically serve and what type of table presentation you prefer.

Traditional butter dishes, made of fine china or silver, are best for formal dining or occasions where food presentation is essential.

More modern butter dishes, such as those made of glass or plastic, may be more suited for casual meals or outdoor gatherings.

Ultimately, the choice comes down to personal preference and the aesthetic you want to achieve.

Airtight seal

Butter Dishes and Sustainability: Eco-Friendly Alternatives to Plastic Wrap

One of the biggest selling points of a butter dish is its sustainability. Instead of using plastic wrap or aluminum foil to store your butter, a butter dish is a reusable and eco-friendly option.

Some butter dishes are even made of recycled materials or come with biodegradable packaging.

Making the switch to a butter dish not only reduces waste but also adds a stylish and functional element to your kitchen.

Why You Should Invest In a Butter Dish

Cold butter is not the most spreadable butter option out there. Having the right container  to store butter at room temperature is essential for making sure your toast, croissants, muffins and other baked goods always come out perfectly spreadable.

Plus, a butter dish can last many years with proper care and cleaning – so it’s an investment that pays off in the long run.

A butter dish is also a great gift idea for any occasion, so don’t hesitate to get one your family and friends.

Here are a few more reasons why investing in a butter dish is a good idea:

  • Keeps butter fresher for longer: Leaving butter exposed to air can cause it to spoil quickly, but a butter dish with a lid helps to seal in freshness and preserve its flavor.
  • More convenient: Instead of fumbling with a slippery, greasy butter wrapper every time you need to spread some on toast or a muffin, a butter dish makes it easier to access and use the butter.
  • Reduces waste: When using a butter dish, it's easier to gauge how much butter you actually need, which can help reduce waste and save money over time.
  • Adds a touch of elegance to your table: A butter dish can look more attractive on a table than a raggedy butter package or a slab of butter on a plate.
  • Can be used for serving other condiments: A butter dish can also be used to serve other condiments such as honey, jam, or relish, making it a versatile addition to your tableware.

Final Thoughts

In conclusion, investing in a covered butter dish is definitely worth it for anyone who enjoys the taste and convenience of room temperature butter. Whether you are looking for a traditional, formal butter dish or a modern, casual option, there are a variety of designs and materials to choose from. The added benefits of keeping your butter fresh and reducing waste make it a practical and sustainable choice as well. So why not add a touch of style to your meals and invest in a particular butter dish that meets all your needs today?