Beurre Rouge (Red Butter Sauce)

Close-Up Of Fish with Beurre Rouge
Nicholas Yong / EyeEm / Getty Images
  • 25 mins
  • Prep: 5 mins,
  • Cook: 20 mins
  • Yield: 8 servings (2 oz each)
Ratings (18)

Red Butter Sauce Recipe (Beurre Rouge)

Beurre rouge is a simple butter-based emulsified sauce that's great with fish or seafood.

It's a nice sauce to have in your repertoire because you can whip up a batch on the spot (all you really need is red wine and butter), making it ideal for emergencies.

Good wines for the reduction (or au sec, meaning "nearly dry") include Cabernet Sauvignon, Pinot Noir or Chianti, but any drinkable dry red will do.

Tip: Cold butter keeps the emulsion from breaking.

What You'll Need

How to Make It

  1. Heat wine, vinegar, and shallots in a saucepan until the liquid boils, then lower the heat a bit and continue simmering until the liquid has reduced down to about 2 tablespoons. This should take about 10 minutes.
  2. While the liquid reduces you can cut the butter into medium (½-inch) cubes, but either leave this until the reduction is nearly finished or return the butter cubes to the refrigerator to keep them cold while the liquid finishes reducing.
  1. Once the wine-vinegar mixture has reduced to 2 tablespoons, reduce the heat to low and start adding the cubes of butter, one or two at a time, and whisk rapidly with a wire whisk.
  2. As the butter melts and incorporates, add more butter and keep whisking. Continue until you only have 2-3 cubes remaining. Remove from heat while whisking in the last few cubes, and whisk for a moment or two more. The finished sauce should be thick and smooth.
  3. Season to taste with Kosher salt. Traditionally the shallots would be strained out before serving, but doing so is optional. Serve right away.

Note: For a Beurre blanc ("white butter") sauce, use white wine in the reduction instead of white.