When You Should Use A Butter Dish Over A Butter Crock

Butter is a staple ingredient in many kitchens, and choosing the right container to store it in can make a big difference in its taste, texture, and longevity. Butter crocks and butter dishes are two popular options, but they are very different and serve different purposes. Understanding the difference between these two options can help you choose the right one for your needs — or even when to use one instead of the other.

A butter crock is a ceramic container with a lid that is designed to keep butter at room temperature for extended periods of time, according to Martha Stewart. Butter crocks are made with a special glaze that is non-porous, preventing the butter from taking on odors in the kitchen (via Chatelain). But what really sets butter crocks apart is the lid which is designed to fit snugly over the crock. Combined with the water that sits in the bottom of the crock, the tight lid creates a seal that keeps oxygen out. Without exposure to oxygen, the butter can't spoil very quickly or easily. The water does, however, have to be changed every few days.

Butter dishes, on the other hand, are typically made from glass or ceramic and are meant to keep butter covered and protected from air and light. They often come with a lid that is easy to remove, making it convenient to use the butter as needed. As Martha Stewart explains, butter dishes are best used for short-term storage, as they do not have the same ability as butter crocks to keep the butter fresh for extended periods of time.

This is when you should reach for the butter dish

So, when is it better to use a butter dish better than a butter crock? The answer lies in how you plan to use your butter. If you use a lot of butter or keep it out for extended periods of time, a butter crock is the better option — even though it does require a little extra work.

However, if you only use a small amount of butter at a time and do not keep it out for extended periods, a butter dish is a good choice. The lid will protect it and the easy-to-remove design will make it convenient to use. A butter dish is also a better option under certain circumstances. According to Taste of Home, very hot weather can cause the butter to melt and fall into the water reserve in a butter crock. 

While both butter crocks and butter dishes have their own unique advantages, one type of butter keeper is not inherently better than the other. Understanding the difference between these two options and when it is best to use each will help you make an informed decision and ensure that your butter stays fresh and delicious no matter the length of time.