What is compound butter?

I want to talk about an ingredient that has become an essential staple in my kitchen: compound butter. This is what takes the gorgeous cuts of beef I pick up at the butcher shop from good enough to great. A big fat scoop of the Kitchenista’s Citrus and Herb Butter on top of my filet is damn near my favorite thing I have been making lately. 

What is compound butter?

Compound butter is butter that has been blended with other ingredients. Typically butter is blended with fresh ingredients like herbs and spices, but also citrus, sweeteners, or vegetables/fruit. That’s it. Compound butter is great for adding a creamy, flavor-filled sauce to meat with minimal effort. It packs on a ton of extra flavor and also can you think of anything that wouldn’t taste better with a fat pat of butter? Didn’t think so.

How do I make compound butter? 

Just as beauty is in the eye of the beholder, your compound butter can be nearly whatever flavor you’d like. Blend your butter with cinnamon and honey and you’ll have something close to what they serve with those sweet rolls at Texas Roadhouse. Or add some sage, parsley, rosemary, and garlic, and you’ll have something that will go great with your steak or chicken. Or try the recipe posted below. 

Can compound butter be infused? 

I’m so glad you asked because yes, Virginia, you can infuse compound butter. You can infuse compound butter in one of two ways (or you can combine the two for an extra powerful bunch). 

First, you can infuse the butter in the same old way you normally would (check out this method, or this one). Then allow the infused butter to cool before adding the other herbs and seasonings to make the infused compound butter. 

The other way to infuse the butter would be to decarb your flower as normal. Then instead of infusing the butter, you’d just add the decarboxylated flower with the rest of your herbs and seasonings and blend or whip it all together. 

Personally, I recommend trying to do both, if you can spare the flower. 

The right kind of flower is going to taste great with the other flavors in your meal and shouldn’t take away from it. I recommend something citrusy if you’re going to blend it into the butter with the other herbs. 

How do I use compound butter? 

Compound butter is great because you can use it in the same manner as plain butter. However, traditionally most use it to finish a piece of meat or roasted vegetables. My personal preference is to add a little pad on top of a delicious steak. It’s open-ended and depends on what you’ve seasoned or flavored the butter with. 

And that’s a quick little dive into the world of compound butter. I hope you try your hand at making your own compound butter and take your meals up a notch in impressiveness. 

Photo by Sorin Gheorghita on Unsplash

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