My favorite things about the holidays are the family, friends, and, of course, good food! As much as I love food, though, I don’t love having pounds of cookies, chocolates, and other treats around the house. So when I’m gift giving, I try to do something savory instead of sweet. These delectable compound butters keep for a long time, aren’t sweet, and encourage people to get in the kitchen and start cooking (I think that should be everyone’s New Year’s resolution). They’re delicious when you spread them on bread, but I also love to use them to sauté veggies, cook eggs, add to grains, or top off meat or fish. The options are endless, so whip up a batch, and get everyone in the kitchen, enjoying delicious food!  

Bacon Jalapeño Butter

Prep time: 10 minutes
Cook time: —

Serving size: 1 tablespoon
Makes: 1 cup

Ingredients

  • 1 cup butter, at room temperature
  • 8 strips maple bacon, diced and cooked
  • 1 jalapeño, diced

Directions

  1. In a medium bowl, place all the ingredients.
  2. Using a fork, mash the butter and stir in the bacon and jalapeño.
  3. Once well incorporated, transfer the mixture onto a long piece of parchment paper or plastic wrap.
  4. Roll into a log and twist the ends.
  5. Refrigerate immediately, so it keeps its shape.
  6. Compound butter can be refrigerated for 5 days or frozen for up to 6 months.

Lemon Tarragon Butter

Prep time: 10 minutes
Cook time: —

Serving size: 1 tablespoon
Makes: 1 cup

Ingredients

  • 1 cup butter, at room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon lemon zest
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
  • ⅓ cup fresh tarragon, finely chopped

Directions

  1. In a medium bowl, place all the ingredients.
  2. Using a fork, mash the butter and stir in the zest, juice, and tarragon.
  3. Once well incorporated, transfer the mixture onto a long piece of parchment paper or plastic wrap.
  4. Roll into a log and twist the ends.
  5. Refrigerate immediately, so it keeps its shape.
  6. Compound butter can be refrigerated for 5 days or frozen for up to 6 months.

Rosemary Balsamic Butter

Prep time: 10 minutes
Cook time: —

Serving size: 1 tablespoon
Makes: 1 cup

Ingredients

  • ½ cup balsamic vinegar
  • 1 cup butter, at room temperature
  • 2 teaspoons honey
  • 1 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons fresh rosemary

Directions

  1. In a small saucepan, place the balsamic vinegar and bring to a boil.
  2. Reduce to a simmer.
  3. Allow the balsamic vinegar to reduce to about ½ the amount—it should have a syrupy consistency when it’s done.
  4. In a medium bowl, place all the ingredients.
  5. Using a fork, mash the butter and stir in the balsamic vinegar, honey, pepper, and rosemary.
  6. Once well incorporated, transfer the mixture onto a long piece of parchment paper or plastic wrap.
  7. Roll into a log and twist the ends.
  8. Refrigerate immediately, so it keeps its shape.
  9. Compound butter can be refrigerated for 5 days or frozen for up to 6 months.

Roasted Garlic and Chive Butter

Prep time: 10 minutes
Cook time: —

Serving size: 1 tablespoon
Makes: 1 cup

Ingredients

  • 5 roasted garlic cloves
  • 1 cup butter, at room temperature
  • 2 tablespoons fresh chives, chopped

Directions

  1. To roast garlic, slice the top off of a head of garlic and place it in a large piece of tin foil. Wrap the bottom and sides, leaving the top open.
  2. Drizzle olive oil over the top, then wrap the exposed portion with remaining tin foil. Place in an oven or toaster oven at 400°F for 30–35 minutes.
  3. Once cooled, the garlic will be soft, like butter, and easily squeeze out of the tough shells.
  4. In a medium bowl, place all the ingredients.
  5. Using a fork, mash the butter and garlic.
  6. Stir in the chives.
  7. Once well incorporated, transfer the mixture onto a long piece of parchment paper or plastic wrap.
  8. Roll into a log and twist the ends.
  9. Refrigerate immediately, so it keeps its shape.
  10. Compound butter can be refrigerated for 5 days or frozen for up to 6 months.