Compound Butters

Friday 9 July 2021

Compound Butters

One way of adding additional flavor to your meats, poultry, fish or vegetables is to dress them up with an easy compound butter.  Fresh, garlic, herbs,  and butter make for fabulous flavors when dolloped on top of your summer grills.

They are also wonderful on hot breads and baking powder biscuits.  Lets face it, they are pretty much wonderful any way you serve them! 
Compound Butters

They are not only delicious, but very easy to make!  Its like magic.  A few simple ingredients and you are well on your way to creating something incredibly and edibly tasty!  

Today I created a delicious Mustard-Chive one to enjoy with my steak.  To be honest, I have not had a really great steak since I moved back to Nova Scotia.  I sure am going to miss my Butcher in the UK.

Compound Butters 
Every single steak I have had here has been riddled with gristle and nasty bits, with the exception of some tenderloin my sister and I went halves on last winter. 

On this day it was a top sirloin steak, simply grilled. To be honest, with the exception of the butter, it was not very pleasant eating, and I always cook my beef medium rare. It really shouldn't be tough.

Compound Butters 

Even my steak knife had a difficult job of sawing through this piece of meat. I have never had a piece of grilling steak curl up on me like that.  Simply awful.

That is one thing (amongst many) that the British do right. Steak/Beef.  I believe I was well and truly spoiled.

Compound Butters 
This compound butter saved the day.  It was lovely and herby, tasting of fresh chives, which are growing against the back of my wee house.

Also grainy mustard. I used a grainy Dijon.  Lovely melting across the meat.

Compound Butters 
It would have also been very nice on the corn.  There is no end really to what you can use a tasty compound butter on.

I have given you a few choices here today, a plethora of wonderful flavors to enjoy on all your summer grills.

Compound Butters 

Along with the Mustard-Chive there is a lush Blue Cheese Compound Butter. I adore blue cheese.

Can you just imagine how delicious a dollop of that would be melting into the soft cragginess of a baked potato? That is the only version without garlic.  Garlic and blue cheese are not a great match, at least not in this.

Compound Butters 
Another brilliant flavor combination is the Rosemary Parmesan one. Green, woodsy and salty sharp from the cheese.

This would be fabulous spread onto  hot  and crisp slices of toasted French Bread, or baguettes.  Or can you imagine it melted and drizzled over hot popcorn?

Compound Butters 
Garlic and Herb, with sage, parsley and thyme.  Oh boy . . .  simply wonderful on grilled chicken and fish. 

Or even pan sautéed chicken and fish.  Why not try it on steamed asparagus, or green beans?

Compound Butters 
Anchovies may not be to everyone's taste, but trust me when I say they totally work in a compound butter.  Especially if you mash the anchovies so that they meld into the butter.

I can't think of anything this tasty butter wouldn't go with.

Compound Butters

Not only are compound butters easy to make and delicious, but they are also very pretty to look at.  Rolled into a log/sausage shape and chilled, you can simply slice them into rounds.

A round of a pretty butter looks really beautiful as a garnish on hot things.  Almost mesmerizing as you watch it slowly melt into whichever hot surface it touches. 

Compound Butters

Today I used a melon baller to shape it into small rounds. It really looked very pretty sitting on top of my steak. 

I hope you will be inspired to want to try to make some compound butters for your summer grills.  A bit of compound butter elevates even the simplest of foods into something really special. I guarantee!

Compound Butters

Compound Butters

Yield: Each makes 8 servings
Author: Marie Rayner
There is not a tastier way to garnish a grilled piece of meat, poultry or fish. These butters also go well on grilled or roasted vegetables.


For Garlic & Herb:
  • 1/2 cup (120g) unsalted butter
  • 1 1/2 tsp dried sage (2 TBS fresh)
  • 1 TBS minced fresh parsley
  • 3/4 tsp dried thyme (1 TBS fresh)
  • 2 cloves of garlic, peeled and minced
For Rosemary & Parmesan:
  • 1/2 cup (120g) unsalted butter, softened
  • 6 TBS finely grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1 tsp dried rosemary (4 tsp minced fresh)
  • 1/4 tsp red pepper flakes
  • 2 cloves of garlic, peeled and minced
For Blue Cheese:
  • 1/2 cup (120g) unsalted butter, softened
  • 1/2 cup (2 ounces) blue cheese, crumbled
For Mustard-Chive:
  • 1/2 cup (120g) unsalted butter, softened
  • 3 TBS minced fresh chives
  • 5 TBS grainy mustard
For anchovy-garlic:
  • 1/2 cup (120g) unsalted butter, softened
  • 1/4 cup (about 15 g) minced fresh flat leaf parsley
  • 2 anchovy fillets, rinsed and minced
  • 1 TBS fresh lemon juice
  • 2 cloves garlic, peeled and minced
You will also need:
  • fine sea salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste


  1. For all of the butters, place the softened butter into a bowl and using a fork, whip the butter until it is light and fluffy.  Mix in the remaining ingredients, seasoning to taste with salt and pepper.  
  2. Cover and let rest for ten minutes to meld the flavors, then shape into a log/sausage and wrap tightly in plastic cling film.
  3. Chill in the refrigerator for up to 4 days.  You can also freeze the log for up to 2 months.
  4. To use either slice into coins or, scoop into balls using a melon baller.  Place on top of the hot food to melt.
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  1. These look yummy, Marie, especially with corn-on-the-cob season almost upon us. I'm especially looking forward to the blue cheese one. Love and hugs, Elaine

    1. Oh, the blue cheese one is fabulous Elaine! I hope you do try it! Love and hugs, xoxo

  2. I love your idea of freezing them into a log and then slicing off what you need. That's a great idea and something I've not thought of, but a tip that will save time as I only need to mix once. I'm all for saving time and extra work.

    What a pity about the standard of the meat - it must be so disappointing as it's not cheap to buy. To spend that money and then not be happy is frustrating. I hope that once restrictions ease that you might be able to source better steaks.

    1. Thanks Marie. It is the best way to do it. It is frustrating to spend good money on steak and then come up short. I do enjoy a good steak, but not what I've had so far! xoxo

  3. Have you tried Costco steaks? My husband loves their strip loin and rib eye. Not cheap, so he makes it last two meals.

    1. We haven't been able to get to Costco because of the pandemic, but maybe once restrictions have been lifted we will be able to get there. I know their meat has always been really good! xoxo

  4. I love compound butters and these all look like wonderful recipes. Thanks, Marie. I know I will be incorporating some of these!


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