Brown Butter

Brown Butter

(also known as beurre noisette or hazelnut butter)

There are few flavors as decadent and comforting as brown butter. As long as you have some butter, heat, and a pan, this beauty is always just a few minutes within reach.

Here’s the thing. I recommend reading this recipe (and all recipes) in its entirety before starting.  From brown butter to burned butter is a fine line. My first times making brown butter, I erred on the light side in fear of burning it, but after a few times I got familiar with the color stages and learned I could go a little longer before pulling the pan off the heat.  It’s one of the magical moments in cooking, like watching a time lapsed flower bloom. But it’s in your kitchen! Happening right before your eyes and in only a few minutes your house is going to smell insanely delicious.


1 stick (¼#) of unsalted butter (that’s it!)


  1. Cut butter into 8 pieces.
  2. Next to the stove have a heatproof rubber spatula handy as well as a heatproof bowl large enough to hold the melted brown butter.
  3. Melt butter over medium low heat in a light colored pan (so you can see the color of the butter changing). It is important that the heat be low and you let this happen relatively slowly. But don’t wander off,  you need to be watching and swirling the pan pretty much the entire time.
  4. After the butter melts, it will soon start bubbling.  This is great! This is what will allow the butterfat to separate from the milk solids.
  5. Just keep on watching.
  6. Along with the bubbles, you will notice foaming.  This is awesome and a sign you are getting close! This is just escaping water vapors.
  7. You will eventually notice, that the butter solids are sinking to the bottom of the pan. Keep the pan moving and keep watching.
  8. In the matter of seconds you will see the butter solids turn a golden brown and a rich smell of French pastries waft up at you.  No, you are not dreaming, this is your kitchen. Wake up! It’s go time!
  9. Turn off the heat.
  10. Transfer butter to heatproof bowl with your rubber spatula.
  11. Now, the super important part. Take a moment to enjoy the little itty bitty magical thing you just did, because if this is new for you, (and I wish I could be there to celebrate with you), your cooking life will never, ever, be the same.
  12. Use right away warm or put in fridge to cool. You can keep in fridge for around a week.


Component in Action

How to use this beloved classic sauce? This is the fun part…YOU are the boss, it’s totally up to you. Brown butter can be drizzled, tossed, dipped, spread, whisked and incorporated in countless ways.  here’s a few of my favorites:

  • tossed with root vegetables and herbs
  • drizzled over green vegetables (cooked or raw)
  • spooned over chicken,red meat, fish, scallops, towards the end of cooking
  • tossed with pasta, lemon and parmesan cheese
  • use in place of olive oil for a warm vinaigrette for kale, spinach, or vegetable salads
  • pastry doughs
  • cookie doughs
  • frostings
  • as a dip for crusty bread
  • on popcorn
  • spread on toast with honey
  • spread on ham and cheese sandwich with some dijon mustard (can you tell I’m hungry?)

I’d love to hear how you incorporate this gem into your cooking life! (comment below)

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  • Kelsey November 26, 2015 at 7:33 pm

    Adding it to our sweet potato carrot suffle for thanksgiving dinner. Smells amazing! I’m so excited to use this on everything!!!

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