Cool and Refreshing Buttermilk Granita Recipe

Photographs: Aki Kamozawa and H. Alexander Talbot

This granita made from buttermilk is light and refreshing, with soft crystals of ice softly melting on your tongue. It's what snowflakes should taste like when we catch them in our mouths. It also requires no special equipment: A freezer and a fork are all you need.

Recipe Facts

Active: 15 mins
Total: 4 hrs 15 mins
Makes: 1 1/2 quarts

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  • 1 quart (965 grams) buttermilk
  • 3/4 cup (150 grams) sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon (3 grams) fine sea salt


  1. Whisk together buttermilk, sugar, and salt in a bowl until sugar is dissolved. Pour granita base into a shallow baking dish and set in freezer for 30 minutes.

  2. Stir granita base with a fork, breaking up the ice crystals to keep it it from forming a solid mass (it will begin freezing around the edges first; mix the broken ice bits into the center). Continue to mix granita base every 30 minutes until it is completely frozen, about 4 hours total. Cover and keep frozen until ready to serve, up to 5 days.

  3. Use a fork to re-scrape the buttermilk granita into a soft, snowy mixture just before serving.

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