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Learn how to make compound butter and you’ll never live without it. I’ve used variations of this recipe in so many other recipes, that it was time to show you the standalone version on its own, including variations and over a dozen ideas for how to use it. Use this garlic compound butter for steak, seafood, chicken, and more! It’s a simple way to add amazing flavor and richness to just about anything.
What Is Compound Butter?
Compound butter is a combination of butter and ingredients that add flavor, most commonly garlic, herbs, and spices, to use over meats, vegetables, or even warm bread.
Why You’ll Love This Garlic Compound Butter Recipe
- Savory, garlicky flavor
- Smooth and creamy
- Takes just 5 minutes to make
- As easy as mixing the ingredients together
- Can be used so many ways
This section explains how to choose the best ingredients for garlic compound butter, what each one does in the recipe, and substitution options. For measurements, see the recipe card below.
- Unsalted butter – I prefer to use unsalted butter so that I can control the amount of salt and use a higher quality sea salt, but you could also use a salted butter and omit the added salt. I also recommend grass fed if you can get it, though any regular butter will work fine.
- Garlic – I recommend using fresh garlic cloves, so that you can press them through a garlic press. But if you happen to have jarred minced garlic on hand, you could also use that. One clove equals approximately 1/2 teaspoon of minced garlic.
- Fresh herbs – I used dill and parsley, but depending on the time of year, you could swap those with rosemary and thyme. Garlic herbed butter is generally not as good using dried herbs, but if you insist on using them, the conversion is 1 teaspoon dried to replace each tablespoon of fresh herbs.
- Sea salt
How To Make Compound Butter
This section shows how to make garlic herb compound butter with step-by-step photos and details about the technique. For full instructions, see the recipe card below.
- Press garlic. Peel your garlic cloves, then press through a garlic press.
- Mash butter. In a small bowl, mash butter with fork.
TIP: Use room temperature butter. Soft butter is easier to mash and will ensure that the ingredients can incorporate smoothly.
- Add seasonings. Mash the garlic, fresh herbs, and salt into butter, until combined.
- Refrigerate (optional). If you want to be able to slice it, place the herb compound butter mixture on a piece of plastic wrap, wax paper, or parchment paper, and roll into a log shape. Refrigerate until firm. You can skip this step if you just want to dollop it over something.
- Enjoy! Slice your herb butter log, and use in your favorite way (see below for compound butter uses!).
Compound Butter Variations
With this basic homemade compound butter recipe, you can make other flavor combinations:
- Blue cheese compound butter – Mix together butter and blue cheese and use on top of steak or even sauteed mushrooms.
- Rosemary compound butter – Swap out the parsley and dill for rosemary that is finely chopped.
- Black garlic compound butter – Use black garlic for a deeper, interesting flavor. Use it just as you would regular garlic butter… on anything.
- Pesto compound butter – Mix together butter and pesto and use it over zucchini noodles or grilled shrimp skewers.
- Lemon compound butter – Add a teaspoon of lemon zest to the base recipe.
You can use the softened butter right after preparing it, or store compound butter in the refrigerator if you prefer firmer pats.
While I personally keep a stick of butter on the counter, compound butter is best refrigerated since it has fresh herbs in it.
How long does compound butter last in the fridge?
Compound butter will last 1 month in the refrigerator.
Can you freeze compound butter?
Yes, you can freeze compound butter for up to 3 months.
How To Use Compound Butter
There are so many ways to use easy compound butter recipes like this one! Here are a few of my favorites…
Compound butter for steak:
Using compound butter for steak is an instant way to add richness and take your steaks to a whole new level:
Other ways to use compound butter:
- Salmon – Another popular usage is compound butter for salmon! Top grilled salmon with it, or use it for pan fried salmon like this.
- Seafood – Instantly elevate your seafood dishes with a pat of compound butter. It’s delicious on scallops, broiled lobster tail, cod fish, or steak and shrimp.
- Chicken – Top chicken recipes like juicy chicken breast, roasted chicken and vegetables, or even spatchcock chicken with a pat of compound butter. My favorite way to use it on chicken is to put it underneath the skin before cooking.
- Turkey – Using compound butter for turkey is a great way to keep your turkey nice and juicy. Try it with slow cooker turkey breast or roasted turkey.
- Bread – And of course, spreading compound butter on bread is also always delicious. Try my almond flour bread for a hearty and healthy option.
- Vegetables – You can use compound butter for corn or potatoes, but I prefer adding it to healthier options like green beans, asparagus, sauteed cabbage, or cauliflower mash. Don’t use it for sauteing, due to the low smoke point of butter, but you can add it at the very end of cooking over low heat, or just place over hot veggies and let it melt.
How To Make Compound Butter:
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How To Make Compound Butter
Learn how to make compound butter in just 5 minutes, with 5 variations! Use this easy garlic compound butter recipe for steak, vegetables, bread, and more.
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Tap on the times in the instructions below to start a kitchen timer while you cook.
In a small bowl, mash the butter with a fork.
Add the garlic, fresh herbs, and salt. Mash again.
To store for later, or if you need firm pats of butter, place the butter on a sheet of plastic wrap and wrap in a log shape, twisting the ends. Refrigerate for at least 2 hours, until firm. To use, slice butter into tablespoon-sized pats.
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Serving size: 1 tablespoon
Nutrition facts are provided as a courtesy. Have questions about calculations or why you got a different result? Please see our nutrition policy.
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