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Making Niter Kibbeh (Ethiopian Spiced Clarified Butter)


  • 1 lb butter
  • 2 cloves garlic sliced
  • ½ medium onion sliced
  • 1 ½ tablespoons ground korerima
  • 1 tablespoon dried koseret
  • 2 tablespoons dried besobela
  • 1/8 teaspoon turmeric


  • In a medium saucepan begin melting the butter over low heat.
  • Once butter is just melted, add garlic, onions, korerima, koseret, besobela, and turmeric.
  • Increase to medium heat and bring mixture to a boil, then reduce to low or medium-low and simmer for about 20 minutes, stirring often.
  • Once mixture is completely cooked, turn off heat and allow to rest for a minute.
  • Line a fine-mesh strainer with a folded piece of cheesecloth (the cheesecloth helps to catch any milk solids). Set the strainer on top of storage container of your choice.
  • Carefully pour hot niter kibbeh through the strainer to remove all the solids.
  • Using the back of your spoon, mash the solids to strain as much oil out as possible.
  • Cover and store in the refrigerator and use in your favorite Ethiopian dishes.
  • Keeps for about 1 month.