Ghee

By Angela Glaz

500 Hour E-RYT and Ayurvedic Counselor

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What is ghee?

Ghee is clarified butter or oil made from unsalted butter that has been gently cooked and the milk solids removed. Because the milk solids are removed, the lactose is also removed, so those with a lactose allergy can also enjoy.

It is sweet in taste and cold in nature, which is the Ayurvedic concept of vipaka or taste conversion after digestion. Ghee is considered soothing, soft, and oily and can be consumed by all doshas, but is extremely beneficial for pacifying vata and pitta.  

Benefits

The Charaka Samhita, one of the classical texts of Ayurveda, states “the intake of ghee is prescribed for those whose bodily constitution is dominated by vata and pitta, who is suffering from diseases due to the vitiation of vata and pitta, those desirous of good eye sight, the old, children, the weak, those desirous of longevity, those desirous of strength, good complexion, voice, nourishment, progeny, tenderness of the body, luster, ojas [life-sustaining vitality], memory, intelligence, power of digestion, wisdom, proper functioning of sense organs, and those afflicted with injuries due to burns.” 

  • Enhances agni (healthy digestion)
  • Enhances the absorption of nutrients
  • Enhances the absorption of herbal medicines
  • Lubricates the body, nourishing the tissues and the nervous system
  • Promotes memory and intellect
  • Promotes the elimination of toxins within the body
  • Strengthens the sense organs and immunity
  • Improves strength and tone of the voice

How to make

  • In a medium to large size saucepan, cook 1lb of unsalted organic cultured butter for 10-15 minutes on low-medium heat.
  • Cook until bubbling stops and milk solids have settled at the bottom of the pan (brownish color).
  • Take off of heat and let cool.
  • Strain milk solids out via a cheesecloth into a glass jar.
  • To make ghee more beneficial for kapha, add a pinch of cinnamon or turmeric.
  • Ghee does not need to be refrigerated.