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What Is A Knob Of Butter?

Norah Clark
Butter on a board

Leveraging years of experience working at Michelin-starred kitchens, I can say with confidence that a knob of butter is a versatile, easy-to-use measurement for any cook.

When creating recipes, I often use this measurement as a starting point, gradually adding more butter to the recipe’s pan in small cubes.

Moreover, I’ve found that a knob of butter is an excellent way to bring rich flavor and creaminess to a huge variety of dishes.

Whether whisking in butter to add richness to a sauce or using it to sauté vegetables, learning to use a knob of butter effectively can take your cooking to the next level.

Read on to explore what a knob of butter is, and provide you with some useful tips and guidelines to make your cooking experience easier and more accurate.

What Is A Knob Of Butter?

In the culinary world, a “knob of butter” is an inexact measurement of butter, usually defined as a small cube or amount.

The actual amount of butter in a knob can vary depending on the recipe and the cook’s preference.

However, a general rule of thumb is that a knob of butter is equivalent to about two tablespoons or 30 grams of butter.

How Much Is A Knob Of Butter?

The amount of butter included in a knob can be quite subjective and can vary depending on the recipe.

However, as mentioned earlier, a knob is generally equivalent to approximately two tablespoons of butter, or around 30 grams.

This measurement is commonly used in many recipes, particularly in British and European cookbooks, where cooks are more likely to use a knob of butter instead of strictly measuring the quantity using teaspoons or cups.

How To Measure A Knob Of Butter?

One of the great things about using a knob of butter is that precision is not always necessary.

However, if you want to be more accurate, use a kitchen scale to measure the butter’s exact amount.

Alternatively, you may also use a butter dish that comes with markings or measurements to help you estimate the proper quantity.

When To Use A Knob Of Butter?

A knob of butter is often preferred over exact measurements when cooking savory dishes like stews or sauces.

In these cases, a knob of butter is added to the pan, where it slowly melts, releasing its flavor and aroma, and enhancing the dish’s richness.

When it comes to baking, however, precise measurements are more crucial, and a standard measurement like grams or ounces is preferred.

That said, you may still use a knob of butter in particular recipes. Used to grease baking dishes or pans before adding the batter or dough, the exact amount of butter required will depend on the recipe’s size.


Can I Use A Knob Of Margarine Instead Of A Knob Of Butter?

Yes, you can substitute margarine for butter in many recipes, but keep in mind that margarine differs in texture, taste, and nutritional composition from butter.

Can I Freeze A Knob Of Butter?

Yes, you can freeze the butter and use it later. When properly stored, frozen butter can last up to six months without going bad.

How Can I Soften Butter For Baking?

Leave it out at room temperature for a while before using it. Alternatively, use a microwave to soften it, but be careful not to melt it.

Is A Knob Of Butter The Same As A Pat Of Butter?

Yes, a pat of butter is another name for a knob of butter, but its exact measurement can differ depending on the recipe.


A knob of butter is a versatile and flavorful way to enhance nearly any dish. While its exact measurement might not always be necessary, learning the equivalent measurements and ways of measuring can prove crucial in some recipes, particularly in baking.

As a chef with years of experience working in Michelin-starred kitchens around the world, I can attest to the value of using knobs of butter to bring rich flavors and aromas to a wide range of dishes.

Profile Image Norah Clark

Norah Clark

Norah Clark, Editor of Boyd Hampers! Norah is a food writer with over a decade of experience in hospitality as a pastry chef, sous chef, and barista; former chef at the Savoy Hotel, Ritz Carlton, Four Seasons and Plaza Hotel.

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