Meal prep. It’s a life saver for busy people like me who need to save time (aka everyone!). Speaking as someone who spends a lot of time feeding a family of eight, it’s probably no surprise that I am always looking for ways to streamline the cooking process in my house.
One thing my family always incorporates into our meal plans is (you guessed it) butter. No matter your meal plan or preference, there’s no reason butter shouldn’t be a regular part of your diet – it’s a simple and healthy way to make meals savory and satisfying.
Coming from a family with a 125-year history of making buttery dishes and treats, I’ve learned a few helpful things along the way. So, the next time you are prepping meals for the busy week ahead, use these suggestions for saving a little bit of time and energy in the kitchen.
Three butter meal prep tips you need to know:
- Measuring. Does your recipe call for tablespoons? It’s okay if you don’t know what a tablespoon of butter looks like. Just remember that 2 sticks of butter is equal to 1 cup, and 1 cup is equal to 16 tablespoons. When pulling together the ingredients for your recipes, you can use the measurements for butter that usually are found on the butter’s wrapping, or you can divide 1 cup of butter (2 sticks) into four 1/4-cup portions (four half sticks).
- Cubing butter is one of the best ways to evenly disperse buttery flavor throughout your dish. And cubing helps you set aside different measurements of butter for different meals you are prepping for the week. (Heads up: You’ll need a marker.) Know how much butter goes into a certain recipe? Slice that measured portion off a stick of butter and then let the cubing begin. First, cut the portion you saved for the recipe in half lengthwise. Then slice the two halves horizontally into smaller sections. Place all your completed cubes into one baggy and label the bag with the total measurement of butter it contains, in case you forget how much is in there later in the week.
- Freezing and thawing. Food hack: You can freeze butter (and all Minerva butter flavors freeze well)! For safe storage in the freezer, simply keep the butter in its original package and place it in a freezer-safe bag. When it’s time to break out the good stuff, you can thaw it a few different ways. If left alone in the fridge, butter will thaw within a couple of hours. If you need a quick fix, treat it like cheese. (Yes, you read that right.) Grab your cheese grater and grate the frozen butter as you would a block of cheese. Let the grated butter sit for one minute and it will then be ready to combine with other ingredients. If you need melted butter, you can zap any frozen amount in the microwave for a few seconds. But remember, melted butter is not the same as softened butter. Softened butter will hold its shape but dent when pressed. Melted butter should be completely liquid.
I hope we’ve made your lives a little easier and a little butter with these quick meal prep tips. Next time you gather your ingredients and prepare for a week’s worth of meals, make sure Minerva butter finds its way into your recipes.
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