Pure Maple Butter (also known as maple cream or the best spread on earth!)

by Angela (Oh She Glows) on January 29, 2013

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You know when someone asks what you’d want to eat for your last meal? I never know what the heck to say. Umm, everything?! There are really so many foods I adore, such as this maple butter. To be honest, I’d love nothing more than a huge vat of maple butter on my death bed. Ok, and maybe some homemade almond milk to wash it down. I’d kindly ask someone to feed it to me with a big wooden spoon and I wouldn’t even worry about ruining my appetite or splitting my pants. What a glorious way to kick the bucket.

I’ve wanted to make maple butter since I had my first visit to a maple farm as a little girl. They sent us home with maple leaf candy (the start of a lifelong obsession) and I’d watch in awe with my classmates as the adults showed us huge pots of boiling syrup in the chilly Canadian outdoors. The best part was when they’d throw syrup onto the snow and it turned into big chunks of maple candy for us to eat. Us kids, of course, thought that was magic. Even though I was very young, this experience instilled a warm curiosity about food from nature and an interest in making things from scratch.

In case some of you aren’t familiar, maple butter (or maple cream) is pure maple syrup that has been boiled to a certain temperature, left to decrease in temperature, and then whipped/stirred like crazy for a good 30-35 minutes. This technique is hard-freaking-work, but I certainly don’t regret making it. I was thankful though that Eric helped me with the stirring. Every 5 minutes we’d switch so one person could rest and watch the other moan and complain about how long it was taking. Ok, ok, it was more like a 7 minute to 3 minute split, but who’s counting?

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Twenty-five minutes into the 35-minute marathon stirring session, self-doubt crept in. I was sure that it wasn’t brought to the right temperature or we didn’t use the right grade of maple syrup.

Eric, as always, shows me why I shouldn’t give up so easily. Not just with cooking, but with everything in life.

“Oh it will work, keep the faith.”

Of course he was right.

Right before my eyes, the shiny amber candy turned into a beautiful tan matte butter. It was the most rewarding, magical thing.

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And then I got to lick the wooden spoon! And then scrape the pot! Suddenly, I forgot all about my tired, weary arms. I could now climb mountains.

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Then we had it on muffins. Needless to say, it’s “hidden” in the back of the fridge where I will obviously discover it multiple times per day just by coincidence. Did I mention it’s good on oatmeal? And by good on oatmeal I mean good on everything.

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Anyway, there’s no need for me to re-write the recipe today. I’m not reinventing the wheel, just using a technique that has been explained wonderfully elsewhere. America’s Test Kitchen has a video and step-by-step photos on their site and it helped me a lot. You can find the directions here.

The only thing I would add to their directions is to test your candy thermometre before you start. Just bring a pot of water to a boil and make sure that your thermometre reads about 212 F (the boiling point of water). Once you know it’s working properly, you can proceed with confidence. Oh and it’s also worth mentioning that you shouldn’t have any kids or pets around when making this. The syrup is extremely hot and dangerous so be careful. My last tip is to increase the heat fairly gradually from the start. I, of course, cranked the burner heat to MAX and it nearly boiled over sending me into a panicked frenzy (as if I wasn’t already). I’m sure the next time will go much more smoothly now that I know what to expect.

One more thing. Sketchie says hi. ….and stop bugging me when I sleep.

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Have you ever tried maple butter before or made any type of candy at home?

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{ 18 comments… read them below or add one }

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Irena June 1, 2015 at 8:22 am

Thanks for sharing this great idea! However I have already tried to make this maple butter twice without success. I’ve followed the instructions exactly and used a candy thermometer to determine the temperature. It seems to me that my maple syrup is weird. Every time I heat it up to 235 F it already becomes similar to a thick very sticky caramel, that is extremly hard to stir. After I’ve been stirring it continuously, it changes its color but gets really really thick and sticky, more like a caramel ball than a spread. When I try it, I can’t taste any cristals and the consistency seems ok, but its just not spreadable. The only thing I think might have made a difference is the maple syrup I’ve used. Has anyone had similar experience? I’ve used grade A maple syrup.

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Chef Elle June 4, 2015 at 12:05 pm

Can you post the actual recipe? Its hard to find amongst all of the wording. Beautiful cat :)

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Katherine Taylor November 18, 2015 at 10:25 am

Where can I find the recipe??? I’ve only found recipes that add real butter and I cannot have butter.

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Reza @ detoxopedia December 16, 2015 at 12:49 pm

Stirring a very thick syrup for 30 minutes is a freaking hard work! I don’t recommend anyone to go it alone…

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mamaorganic February 20, 2016 at 12:04 pm

I can’t see the recipe for this???

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Angela Liddon February 25, 2016 at 5:50 pm

Hi there, I didn’t write a recipe out for the maple butter, just included a link to the America’s Test Kitchen how-to video because they already explain the process so well! Here’s the link (it’s so easy to miss in the post!): http://www.americastestkitchenfeed.com/do-it-yourself/2012/12/how-to-make-maple-cream/

Hope this helps! :)

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mamaorganic February 25, 2016 at 6:00 pm

Thank you so much, I can’t wait to make this!!! ?

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rebecca March 2, 2016 at 9:15 am

how much syrup for how much butter?
after you reach the 212 temp. what temp. do you bring it down to before the stirring process?
we make our own syrup and would love to try this

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Angela Liddon March 25, 2016 at 1:14 pm

Hi Rebecca, this link to America’s Test Kitchen gives super helpful, step-by-step directions: http://www.americastestkitchenfeed.com/do-it-yourself/2012/12/how-to-make-maple-cream/. Good luck and enjoy! :)

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Tamara March 2, 2016 at 9:09 pm

Maple butter is an incredibly happy memory from my childhood. I would love to have it again!

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Amanda September 27, 2016 at 8:28 am

Oh wow, I bet this stuff would be the perfect substitute for marshmallows in rice crispy treats, or my other favorite buckwheat crispy treats!! Thanks for sharing :)

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Anita Cross November 24, 2016 at 8:34 am

Love this recipe, turned out perfect, tks. I have a ?. I would love to send a coupole jars to my daughter using UPS. I estimate it would take 3 to 5 days. Would the maple cream stay stabilized that long. If not, any suggestions would be appreciated.

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Doreen November 24, 2016 at 11:16 am

It was amaaaazing! Especially on the vegan banana bread :O

It took a bit of time to make (as you had mentioned) but it makes a pretty good quantity that will last a while so it’s definitely worth it!

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Caro January 19, 2017 at 5:37 pm

Mine turned out real hard within a few minutes of stirring. What did I do wrong.? Is this batch redeemable, or do I have to throw it out.
Please reply. I really want to do this.

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Kendra March 27, 2017 at 11:10 pm

That is maple cream. Maple butter is maple syrup and butter mixed together.

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liza May 25, 2017 at 7:17 am

hi
Where can I find the recipe??? I’ve only found recipes that add real butter and I cannot have butter.

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Angela Liddon June 9, 2017 at 10:38 am

Hi Liza, I believe I included a couple links in the post text that should help you out. :)

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Gabrielle Paskins May 29, 2017 at 10:39 am

I’ve been mixing it in an electric mixer for 45 minutes now and it’s still runny! It turned into a lighter color like it supposed to but its still very liquidy! What should I do?

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