A product is considered dairy if it is derived from milk. This doesn’t mean just cow milk but any mammal milk like sheep or goat milk.
Butter is made by churning milk or cream until the butterfat is separated from the buttermilk. The buttermilk is drained away leaving the butterfat, which creates the final butter product. Depending on if the products is salted or unsalted butter, salt is added to the butterfat at the end of the manufacturing process.
Is butter dairy? Butter is a dairy product because it is derived from milk or cream. The majority of the butter found in U.S. grocery stores is made from cow’s milk.
While butter is a dairy product, people with lactose intolerance can routinely tolerate butter. Butter contains only trace amounts of lactose because it is mostly removed from the product during the churning or manufacturing process. Essentially, you would have to eat butter until you were very sick in order to consume just one gram of lactose. In comparison, a high lactose food like ice cream has 6 grams of lactose in only a half cup serving.
Although butter contains trace amounts of lactose, this does not mean that all people can tolerate it. Those that are very sensitive to dairy or allergic to dairy may still have problems consuming butter.
Photo Credit: Mike Big 429