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Béarnaise Sauce

Try our express version using a mix if you're short on time or not comfortable making it from scratch.

Southern Living NOVEMBER 2008

  • Yield: Makes about 3/4 cup
  • Cook time:25 Minutes
  • Prep time:15 Minutes


  • 4 shallots, finely chopped (about 1/2 cup)
  • 3/4 cup dry white wine
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh tarragon
  • 3 tablespoons white wine vinegar
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 3 egg yolks
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground red pepper
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1/2 cup butter, cut into pieces and at room temperature


1. Cook first 5 ingredients in a small saucepan over medium heat, stirring occasionally, 8 to 10 minutes or until liquid has evaporated.

2. Pour water to depth of 1 1/2 inches into a 3 1/2-qt. saucepan over medium-high heat; bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium, and simmer.

3. Whisk together egg yolks, salt, and red pepper in a 3-qt. heatproof bowl; gradually add lemon juice, whisking constantly. Place bowl over simmering water, and cook, whisking constantly, 3 minutes or until mixture thickens.

4. Whisk butter pieces, in 3 batches, into egg mixture, whisking constantly until butter is melted and mixture is smooth and thickened. Remove from heat. Stir in shallot mixture. Serve immediately.

Speedy Béarnaise Sauce: Prepare 1 (0.9-oz.) envelope béarnaise sauce mix according to package directions, stirring in 1 Tbsp. lemon juice and 1 Tbsp. chopped fresh tarragon during last minute of cook time.

Note: For testing purposes only, we used McCormick Béarnaise Sauce Mix. The classic Béarnaise Sauce cannot be made ahead. However, Speedy Béarnaise Sauce can be made 1 day ahead and stored in the refrigerator. To reheat, place bowl over simmering water, and cook, whisking constantly, until mixture is warm.


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Béarnaise Sauce recipe