How to Make Herb Butter: 5 Compound Butter Recipes (2024)

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Herb butter is so versatile and can be used to enhance so many recipes. It can be made with plant based butter or traditional butter.

It's delicious on sourdough bread, vegetables, pasta dishes and more.

Learn how to make savory compound butter with 5 different variations!

How to Make Herb Butter: 5 Compound Butter Recipes (1)
Jump to:
  • What is compound butter?
  • Step by step instructions
  • Storage options
  • Tips for success
  • Flavor Variations
  • How to make Herb Butter: 5 Compound Butter Recipes

What is compound butter?

Simply put, compound butter is butter mixed with other ingredients. This combination is also referred to as "flavored butter".

Herb butter is a compound butter made by mixing butter, herbs and seasonings. Once blended it can be formed into a log and sliced or kept in a jar and spooned out as needed.

How to Make Herb Butter: 5 Compound Butter Recipes (2)

Pretty much anytime you add butter to a savory dish, there's probably a compound butter that can be used to enhance the flavors!

If you follow a vegan or dairy free diet, use plant-based butter for your compound butter base!

Step by step instructions

Herb butter is very easy to make, so let's dive straight into the details!

  1. Bring 8 tablespoons, or 1 stick, of unsalted butter to room temperature.
  2. Mix with your choice of herbs and seasonings.
  3. Keep in the fridge for up to 7 days, in the freezer for up to 2 months.
How to Make Herb Butter: 5 Compound Butter Recipes (3)

Storage options

OPTION 1 - WRAP IN WAX PAPER

  • Place the herb butter onto a piece of wax paper and use a spatula to spread it out into a log shape. Roll the wax paper up and twist the ends.
  • Put the log into the fridge to set up. Slice as needed!

OPTION 2 - CONTAINER WITH LID

  • Put the butter into a glass jar with a lid and store in the fridge.
  • Take butter out and let come to room temperature to use as a spread.

State Food Safety says that store-bought butter can be left at room temperature, safely, for up to 10 days. However, because we are mixing other ingredients into the butter, I would recommend storing in the refrigerator.

Tips for success

  • Homemade butter or cultured butter can be used in this recipe. It's super easy to make and the taste is fresher and much creamier than store-bought butter!
  • Salted butter can be used but you will need to adjust the salt in the recipe in order not to add too much.
  • Dried herbs can be used instead of fresh herbs. Cut the amount called for in half for dried herbs.

Flavor Variations

The following flavor combinations are great with sourdough bread slices, pasta, corn, baked potatoes and roasted vegetables.

Garlic Herb Butter

  • 8 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 2 teaspoons finely chopped chives
  • 2 teaspoons minced garlic
  • ½ teaspoon fine sea salt
How to Make Herb Butter: 5 Compound Butter Recipes (4)

Lemon Thyme Butter

  • 8 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 2 teaspoons fresh thyme leaves
  • zest of 1 lemon
  • ½ teaspoon fine sea salt
How to Make Herb Butter: 5 Compound Butter Recipes (5)

Garlic Rosemary Butter

  • 8 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 2 teaspoons finely chopped fresh rosemary
  • 2 teaspoons minced garlic
  • ½ teaspoon fine sea salt
How to Make Herb Butter: 5 Compound Butter Recipes (6)

Cilantro Lime Butter

  • 8 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • ¼ teaspoon ground chipotle pepper
  • zest and juice of 1 lime
  • 2 teaspoons finely chopped fresh cilantro
  • 1 teaspoon minced garlic
How to Make Herb Butter: 5 Compound Butter Recipes (7)

Old Bay Lemon Butter

  • 8 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • ½ teaspoon Old Bay Seasoning
  • 1 teaspoon minced garlic
  • zest of 1 lemon
  • 1 teaspoon fresh minced parsley

How do you like to use compound butter? Let us know in the comment section below!

Don't forget to pin the recipe for quick reference.

How to Make Herb Butter: 5 Compound Butter Recipes (8)

How to make Herb Butter: 5 Compound Butter Recipes

Learn how to make compound butter with 5 different variations. These herb butters are great flavor enhancers for your savory recipes!

Rate this recipe!

5 from 1 vote

Print Pin Recipe

Prep Time: 10 minutes minutes

Servings: 8

Author: Amy

INGREDIENTS

Herb Butter Base

  • 8 tablespoons (113 g) unsalted butter (or plant based butter)

Garlic Herb Butter

  • 2 cloves garlic (minced)
  • 2 teaspoons chives (finely chopped)
  • ¼ teaspoon fine sea salt

Garlic Rosemary Butter

  • 2 cloves garlic (minced)
  • 2 teaspoons fresh rosemary (finely chopped)

Lemon Thyme Butter

  • 2 teaspoons fresh thyme leaves
  • 3 cloves garlic (minced)
  • zest of 1 lemon
  • ¼ teaspoon fine sea salt

Cilantro Lime Butter

  • zest of 1 lime
  • 2 teaspoons fresh cilantro (finely chopped)
  • ¼ teaspoon chipotle chili powder
  • ¼ teaspoon fine sea salt

Old Bay Lemon Butter

  • zest of 1 lemon
  • ¼ teaspoon Old Bay seasoning
  • 2 cloves garlic (minced)
  • 1 teaspoon fresh parsley (finely chopped)

INSTRUCTIONS

  • Let butter come to room temperature. Use a stiff spatula to mix in your choice of add-ins until throughly combined. Salt to taste.

  • Store herb butter in a jar with a lid or in wax paper in the fridge.

NOTES

  • Salted butter can be used as a base. Taste the butter before adding additional salt.
  • Make sure to let the butter come to room temperature to make mixing easier.
  • Store in fridge for up to 7 days or in the freezer for up to 2 months.

Nutrition

Serving: 1tablespoon | Calories: 108kcal | Carbohydrates: 2g | Protein: 1g | Fat: 11g | Saturated Fat: 7g | Cholesterol: 30mg | Sodium: 76mg | Potassium: 9mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 403IU | Vitamin C: 6mg | Calcium: 12mg | Iron: 1mg

How to Make Herb Butter: 5 Compound Butter Recipes (2024)

FAQs

When using fresh herbs for compound butters, what is an important step? ›

Mince Herbs

First, remove the rosemary and thyme leaves from their branches (using a cheese grater and running them through is a great hack!), then finely chop up the herbs and set them aside. Using chopped fresh herbs will add a lot more flavor than dried herbs in the compound butter.

What is herb butter made of? ›

At its core, herb butter is basically fresh herbs and real butter mixed with some salt and pepper. It's a savory and flavorful butter that tastes amazing on bread, rolls or spread on top of a hot steak.

What is compound butter made of? ›

A compound butter ("beurre composé" in French) is simply butter mixed with other ingredients that add sweet or savory flavor, like honey, herbs, or garlic.

How long does herb infused butter last? ›

It is a mixture of real butter with a variety of fresh or dried herbs and salt. You can also add other things like garlic, sun-dried tomatoes, red pepper flakes, or lemon juice. How long does herb-infused butter last? It will last about 3-4 weeks in the fridge and up to six months in the freezer.

How long does compound butter with fresh herbs last? ›

Once the compound recipe is complete, you must store butter in the refrigerator as you normally would. In many cases, herb-infused compound butter can last up to two months in the refrigerator. However, storage time really depends on the ingredients you've included in the compound butter recipe.

What are the 5 steps to clarifying butter? ›

Melt butter in 1-quart saucepan over low heat, without stirring, 10-15 minutes or until melted and solids separate from fat. Remove from heat; let stand 5 minutes. Skim off foam. Slowly pour off clear yellow liquid, leaving behind the residue of milk solids that has settled to bottom of pan.

Does herb butter need to be refrigerated? ›

Fresh Herb Butter can be stored and sealed in the fridge for up to 1-2 months, it can be stored longer in the freezer many times up to 6 months if properly stored.

Can I leave herb butter out overnight? ›

The USDA recommends leaving butter out at room temperature for only a day or two. But if it's stored in all of the proper conditions listed above, it can stay fresh for up to two weeks. So don't leave out more than you think you'll be able to get through in that small period of time.

Can you freeze homemade herb butter? ›

It can also be flavored with vegetables such as shallots or garlic. Some variations around the world include ingredients such as anchovies, caviar or nuts. Compound butter can also be called 'herb butter' or in French, 'beurre compose'. It is a great butter to keep in the fridge or freezer.

Should you melt butter for compound butter? ›

Bring your butter to room temperature.

Cold butter won't blend with your mix-ins, and melted butter won't keep its consistency to hold them in place. Room temperature is like Goldilocks and the Three Bears: not too cold and not too hot.

Can you melt butter for compound butter? ›

Don't do it! If you microwave the butter, it will likely start to melt, and if your butter is cold, you won't be able to stir in the herbs. Instead, put a stick of butter on the counter, walk away, and let it soften for an hour or so.

Why do chefs use compound butter? ›

Compound butter or “beurre composse” in French is simply unsalted butter mixed with other ingredients that add sweet or savory flavor, like honey, herbs, or garlic. This creamy spread can be easily added to meats, and sauces sides to add extra flavor.

Does herb butter go bad? ›

Herb butter lasts about 4-5 days in the fridge and up to 6 weeks in the freezer. This makes it a great make-ahead condiment. Now you know the technique and the tips, here are different flavour combinations that work particularly well for different meats and veggies. Get the recipes!

Can compound butter go bad? ›

How To Store Compound Butter. You should store compound butter in the fridge or freezer in an airtight container. Depending on the ingredients you've added to the butter, it should last in the refrigerator for one week and a maximum of one month. In the freezer, compound butter will last for months.

How do you make infused butter without it smelling? ›

But with the sous vide method, you stick your fat and decarbed weed in a bag or airtight jar and place it in a bath of temperature-regulated water. “Since the cannabis and oil or butter are sealed and placed under water to infuse, there's no smell.

How do you preserve fresh herbs in butter? ›

You can also add minced garlic or shallots if you wish. Stir into the softened butter until well combined. Roll the herb butter into a loaf shape, and wrap tightly with aluminum foil, wax paper, or plastic wrap. Label the roll-up, place in an airtight container and freeze.

Can you freeze compound butter with fresh herbs? ›

It can also be flavored with vegetables such as shallots or garlic. Some variations around the world include ingredients such as anchovies, caviar or nuts. Compound butter can also be called 'herb butter' or in French, 'beurre compose'. It is a great butter to keep in the fridge or freezer.

When should you use fresh herbs during the cooking process and why? ›

Fresh herbs should be added close to or at the end of cooking because you want to preserve their delicate, fragrant qualities (ex. parsley on pasta or mint on meatballs). It's not as important in cold dishes like salsa and ceviche, though cilantro will look and taste brighter if added closer to serving time.

What are 3 steps in making butter? ›

Pour heavy cream into a food processor or blender. Process on high until butter separates, about 10 minutes. Strain off liquid, then press butter into a small bowl with the back of a spoon to further remove liquid. Season with salt.

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