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How To Make Compound Butter (For Steak & More!)

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.

Full ingredients + instructions are on the recipe card at the end. Before you scroll or jump down, don’t miss the useful tips in the post!

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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 adds instant flavor and richness to just about anything.

What Is Compound Butter?

Compound butter is a mix of butter along with other ingredients, most commonly garlic, herbs, and spices, to use over meats, vegetables, or even 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
Compound butter in a bowl

The Ingredients

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.
  • 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 herb 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
Ingredients to make compound butter

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.
Butter mashed in small bowl
Pressed garlic

  • Add seasonings. Mash the garlic, fresh herbs, and salt into butter, until combined.
Fresh herbs in mashed butter
Garlic compound butter mashed with a fork in a small bowl

  • Refrigerate (optional). If you want to be able to slice it, place the herb compound butter on a sheet of plastic wrap 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, and use in your favorite way (see below for compound butter uses!).
Compound butter in plastic wrap

Sliced compound butter

Compound Butter Variations

  • Blue cheese compound butter – Mix together butter and blue cheese and use on steaks 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.

Storage Instructions

Store compound butter in the refrigerator. 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.

Log of compound butter for steak

How To Use Compound Butter

There are so many ways to use this garlic and herb compound butter recipe! Here are a few ideas to get you started.

Compound butter for steak:

Using compound butter for steak is an instant way to add richness and flavor to cooked steaks.

Compound butter on steak

Other ways to use compound butter:


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Recipe Notes

Serving size: 1 tablespoon

Nutrition Facts

Amount per serving. Serving size in recipe notes above.

Calories 104

Fat 11.5g

Protein 0.2g

Total Carbs 0.5g

Net Carbs 0.4g

Fiber 0.1g

Sugar 0.1g

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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