Butter sticks? Do you use them?

louiseab Ibbotson

My husband is doing the grocery shopping until my surgery heals. I asked him to pick up a pound of butter. He came home with a pound of butter sticks. I love them for measuring for baking and I would happily switch to that over the regular pound. But I checked the price. A lb. of regular butter is $4.29 and the lb of sticks is $7.69. That’s a lot for the convenience. But except for Christmas baking time a pound lasts us a while, so maybe that ok.

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gardengal48 (PNW Z8/9)

Maybe I am misunderstanding but unless one is buying imported butter, it all comes in sticks here - 4, 1/4 pound (1/2 cup) sticks per pound. No local providers have offered anything but sticks for years!!

And it would be the opposite with pricing here, as the imported, block butter is much more expensive than the local "sticks"!!

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party_music50

Around here butter comes in sticks as the default. I might find a 2lb block at one store, but I've never seen a 1lb block. I'm in dairy country and I typically pay $2.29 lb for butter when it's on sale.

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fawnridge (Ricky)

Ditto here. I don't even think the local supermarkets carry 1 pound blocks of butter. Unsalted, organic butter is $5.99 a pound here. 4 sticks per package.

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biondanonima (Zone 7a Hudson Valley)

You can buy butter in whole pound or four quarters format here pretty much everywhere - in fact, I always check to make sure I am getting four quarters because the two formats are usually side by side on the shelf. No difference in price that I have noticed, but then I haven't checked closely.

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louiseab Ibbotson

The norm here is the 1 lb. block. When a recipe calls for a stick, I always have to figure out how much that is. And that’s not imported. The price on this today is $5.99. I tried to post a picture but can’t seem to.

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2ManyDiversions

Only sticks here. So, yes : )

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writersblock

Here for imported butter it's just as Louise says. You pay a premium for sticks. Store brand or stuff like Land O' Lakes comes in sticks by default.

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Jasdip

Louise is in Canada, as am I. Our butter comes in 1 lb blocks same as you get shortening and lard in.

One company, Country something started selling the butter in sticks a few years ago, but it's at a premium.

Louise, I slice the butter into 1/4 cup slices, using the markings on the foil. Wrap individually and freeze. It works very well for me.

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louiseab Ibbotson

Thats a great idea. And I will start to do that. My problem is that I start out at the marking, but by the time I’ve sliced to the botttom, I’m so crooked that it’s likely closer to 2/3 cup instead of 1/2.

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writersblock

Our butter comes in 1 lb blocks

The butter we get in blocks is usually only a half pound. Not too hard to slice one in two.

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chloebud

You can buy sticks and blocks here. I buy sticks.



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carolb_w_fl_coastal_9b

For future reference, 1 "stick" of butter is 1/4 pound or 1/2 cup or 8 Tablespoons, so if 1# is in a solid block, simply cut it in half, then cut 1 half in half.

Default here also is a 1# box of 4 sticks, I buy Trader Joe's organic butter and it's $4.69/lb. I've only seen solid 1/2# packages of gourmet/imported butter in the stores here.

P.S. My apologies for the redundancy - earlier comments didn't show up until now.

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foodonastump

I buy Plugra in a one pound block. Funny, I used to find that it was more expensive than Land o Lakes sticks, but now I see it’s slightly cheaper. Sticks are for corn season.

Louise - What brand are you looking at? Your high sounds high and your low sounds low.

ETA - didn’t see before posting that Louise is in Canada. My bad eyes read Boston.

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louiseab Ibbotson

Yes I’m in Canada, but southern B.C. seems to have slightly better prices than we do up here in the North

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writersblock

Funny, I used to find that it was more expensive than Land o Lakes sticks, but now I see it’s slightly cheaper.

I wonder if that's because there's so much more foreign competition. Plugra was an attempt to equal the butterfat content of European butters, back when they weren't so readily available in regular grocery stores. But now that I can buy Kerrygold or President, I don't buy Plugra anymore, and I daresay that's true for many people.

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foodonastump

That’s a good question. Truth be told I don’t go through a lot of butter here, maybe a couple pounds a year, not much of it in a format where I’d notice the difference.

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Martha Scott

Thanks for the clarification -- sometimes you can get butter cheaper here in one pound blocks but for the most part it's only in sticks. Thought that was odd!

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eandhl2

The only way to get butter without getting the sticks is butter with olive oil & sea salt in a tub. K

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artemis_ma

I just about only can get butter in sticks. Unless I go to Whole Wallet.

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plllog

But then there's the question of American style sticks vs. logs, vs. Euro style wider shorter blocks vs. balls, and which fit your butter dish. ;) I like the quarter pound sticks that are the USA standard because they fit most of my butter dishes (I do have a round domed one which will hold a ball). I also like them because they're easy to grate for pastry, and put in a sandwich bag in the prep fridge for cooking. :) We don't go through nearly enough butter to warrant a butter bell or any such non-fridge storage...

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ghostlyvision

Every once in a while I'd ask my hub to pick up some butter, and invariably he'd bring home the 1 lb. block (I didn't even know they sold it anymore, I think he got them at Kroger). When that's happened, I'd open it and slice down the center long-ways with a big knife, and then turn it on its side and slice through the center again, giving me 4 1/4 lb sticks, put one of those in my butter dish and zip lock baggie the remainder.

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bragu_DSM 5

sticks and blocks both here, 2.99 per pound, and 3.99 when its NOT on sale. salted or unsalted.

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colleenoz

We don’t have sticks at all here, and different manufacturers shape their 500g blocks slightly differently as well. I just mark the block from corner to corner crosswise with a knife to find the middle, cut it in half then repeat to get quarters. A quarter fits into my butter dish nicely.

I also find that 125g is close enough to 4oz for the purpose of recipes as to make no difference.

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arkansas girl

I'm glad that here in the US, we have slicks of butter. I wouldn't want to have to mess with slicing it up to use it. We use a lot of butter at our house.

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lindac92

I can get sticks or blocks....and there is no difference in price. When it's on sale, I stock up and freeze it. I guess I use a lot of butter for a single lady ( doing the dance!)...I get out a stick and put it in my covered butter dish and it never goes in the refrig. In the summer I use a half a stick at a time as the kitchen is warmer. A stick lasts about a week. and no it doesn't get funky!

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colleenoz

Arkansas girl, I can assure you that “slicing up” the butter is about as onerous as unwrapping an individual stick- and better for the environment.

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LoneJack Zn 6a, KC

Since we don't use very much butter most of the year I've been buying the 1/8 lb. sticks (1/4 cup or 4 Tbls.). I don't recall ever buying a 1 lb. block.

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Sherry

I looked yesterday at Publix, and even the imported butter was in sticks. Now I saw this online yesterday. Is it something I need or just want, lol? Butter Slicer.

https://www.amazon.com/HIC-Butter-Stainless-7-75-Inches-2-625-Inches/dp/B009J9A562/ref=sr_1_4?ie=UTF8&qid=1549986935&sr=8-4&keywords=butter+slicer

Also, Linda. I use unsalted butter. Do you think it would last a week (out of the frig)? I know most use salted, but we don't like a lot of salt.


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plllog

Hm... Sherry, I thought I had absconded with my mother's butter slicer of very similar design (though aluminum, I think), but I haven't seen it recently. It may just be sitting here in the drawer biding its time. Or maybe I never actually took it.

If you're making a banquet and need to slice a lot of butter, it's very convenient. The butter has to be well chilled, but not frozen to slice cleanly. If I'm serving baked potatoes or corn on the cob, I put spreadable in pretty ramekins. The slicer comes out more for brunches which have pancakes or challah.

My kitchen is too warm for butter to set out. It turns into a sloppy mess and can easily go rancid. Outside of baking, we use maybe a stick a month, and even sealed air tight in the fridge can start down the rancid path. The rest of the box always stays in the freezer. If your butter is just a little bit too warm on the counter, you can use a butter bell, which cools, and the water also seals it.

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arkansas girl

I wonder why stick butter has not caught on in Canada? I remember my mother having stick butter and margarine when I was just a child way back in the 60s! I think it's about time for Canada to get on the ball with this fancy trend...HA!

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Jasdip

Arkansas, I've been wondering that for years.......:D

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party_music50

We can also buy our butter in lamb form for Easter. lol! Is that true everywhere? :)

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colleenoz

“I think it's about time for Canada to get on the ball with this fancy trend...HA!”

With the current trend towards minimising unnecessary waste due t environmental concerns and the difficulty of coping with vast amounts of landfill waste, why should they?

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plllog

PM, I've seen lamb shaped butter molds at Easter time, but not the preformed butter!

LOL, Colleen. I don't think it matters about the wrappers. The little waxed paper wrappers on the sticks are probably less waste than the amount people use to wrap their poundage once they get it home and cut it up. My guess is that when butter sticks became popular in the USA, and someone or other I once read about got the great idea to put the tbsp measures on the wrappers, all the dairies jumped on this as the new norm, and invested in the molds and wrapping machines. If the dairies in Canada didn't tool up that way, they probably aren't making the investment now that dairy use/butter use is down. Perhaps the one with the expensive sticks had to retool for another reason and having a captive market, with little competition for sticks, are trying to pay for the new line with specialty pricing.

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colleenoz

I don’t wrap my butter into separate pieces, I just cut off what I need and rewrap it in its original wrapper.

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louiseab Ibbotson

Colleen, that’s what I do.

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arkansas girl

I hope they never stop making sticks of butter here...I would be POed! I would definitely have to slice the bulk one and spend a bunch of time wrapping it up in parchment paper to store it...it would be a total PITA!

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Jasdip

I slice and wrap individually in plastic wrap then in a ziploc bag. Frozen butter is handy to grate into pie dough, biscuits etc.

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amylou321

Mmmmm..buttah.

I prefer the sticks. They are easier to measure. My sister has a dairy cow and makes buttah. It's delicious but as she has a husband and 6 kids,i never get any of it,even though her hubby is allergic to dairy. The kiddos and her inhale the rest of it.

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ci_lantro

Always sticks. The solid one-pound chunks are available at the cheese stores around here. Also available at the cheese stores are free form chunks of various weights (made in house) that wrapped in plastic wrap.. I stock up on 1# boxes at Aldi or Quik-Trip when it is on sale. I remove it from the box and store it in the freeze in zip-loc mylar bags (recycled from the Aldi croutons that DSII eats a lot of). The mylar seems to ward off freezer off-tastes better than plastic Zip-Locs. My neighbor wraps butter in foil before she freezes it.

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lisaw2015 (ME)

I don't know that I have ever even seen butter in anything other than sticks. Unless, as stated above, it's creamed and in a tub. I buy both. The tub butter is used the most, sticks are for cooking and baking, when measuring is required.

We go through at least 1 lb of butter a week, and it's just DH & I.

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