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How to Quickly Soften Butter for Cooking

Updated on May 9, 2015

Butter is used in thousands of dishes world wide. Most recipes call for softened butter, but how do you soften butter? While there are probably a few hundred ways to soften butter, here are five quick, effective ways to soften butter in the kitchen.

Sitting at Room Temperature

One of the best ways to allow your butter to soften is to allow it to sit at room temperature for several hours before use. If you have cats who like to get on the counter, this may not be the best method to use, as cats really like butter.


Microwaving your butter for 5 second intervals is a great way to bring it to room temperature in a a minute or two. However, there is a pretty good chance that you will accidentally melt the butter. If you do not want to melt the butter at all, this method should be avoided.

Sitting On Top of A Warm Oven

Sitting your butter on top of your stove while the oven is preheating is a great way to soften butter. However, if you forget about it, chances are that it will begin to melt before you get a chance to use it. If the recipe calls for softened butter and not melted butter, this method should be avoided.

Potato Smasher

A potato smasher is a great way to soften butter. Use up and down motions at first, and ensure that you stir it regularly to get the right consistency without leaving any lumps.

Use a Mixer

Using a hand mixer may be the most effective method in softening butter. It achieves the same goal as a potato smasher, without the risk of leaving lumps in the butter.

Softening Butter


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