Lemon Beurre Blanc Sauce

Lemon beurre blanc sauce over salmon

The Spruce Eats

Prep: 5 mins
Cook: 10 mins
Total: 15 mins
Servings: 6 to 8 servings
Yield: 1 cup
Nutrition Facts (per serving)
225 Calories
24g Fat
2g Carbs
1g Protein
Show Full Nutrition Label Hide Full Nutrition Label
Nutrition Facts
Servings: 6 to 8
Amount per serving
Calories 225
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 24g 30%
Saturated Fat 15g 74%
Cholesterol 63mg 21%
Sodium 48mg 2%
Total Carbohydrate 2g 1%
Dietary Fiber 0g 1%
Total Sugars 1g
Protein 1g
Vitamin C 1mg 7%
Calcium 13mg 1%
Iron 0mg 1%
Potassium 54mg 1%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
(Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)

Beurre blanc is a French sauce that is both light and creamy at the same time. The name means "white butter," and this recipe relies on the butter to create the silky texture and yellow color, while the lemon juice, white wine, shallots, and crème fraîche create a slightly tangy flavor. The crème fraîche may not be in the original recipe, but it adds a bit of flavor, ups the creaminess, and helps to stabilize the sauce. This velvety sauce is perfect spooned over poached fish, grilled chicken, or even turkey cutlets.

"This was a flavorful sauce, and it was quick and easy to make. I followed the directions and it was perfectly creamy and delicious. I left the shallots in the sauce and it was wonderful served with baked chicken." —Diana Rattray

Lemon beurre blanc sauce in a bowl
A Note From Our Recipe Tester


  • 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice

  • 1/4 cup dry white wine

  • 2 medium shallots, finely chopped

  • 1 tablespoon crème fraîche

  • 8 ounces (16 tablespoons) cold unsalted butter, cut into 16 pieces 

  • Kosher salt, to taste

  • Freshly ground black pepper, to taste

Steps to Make It

  1. Gather the ingredients.

    Ingredients for lemon beurre blanc sauce recipe gathered

    The Spruce Eats

  2. In a medium saucepan over medium-high heat, bring the lemon juice, wine, and shallots to a boil. Continue boiling the mixture for 3 to 5 minutes, until it reduces and thickens slightly.

    Shallots in a saucepan

    The Spruce Eats

  3. Add the crème fraîche and boil for an additional 2 minutes.

    Crème fraîche in the saucepan with shallots

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  4. Lower the heat to medium-low. Add the butter, 1 cube at a time, and whisk, allowing each piece to fully melt before adding the next one.

    Melt butter in mixture shallots and crème fraîche

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  5. When the last of the butter has just melted, remove the pan from the heat and strain out the shallots if desired.

    Strain ingredients for lemon beurre blanc

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  6. Season the beurre blanc sauce with salt and pepper and serve immediately.


  • If you need to make the sauce ahead of time, keep it warm over very low heat, whisking every so often to keep the emulsion intact.
  • Make sure to lower the heat before adding and whisking in the butter; if the heat is too high, the butter will melt too quickly, and the sauce will not thicken properly.
  • For added flavor and color, sprinkle capers atop the finished dish.

Why Did My Beurre Blanc Break and Can I Fix It?

If your beurre blanc splits, it could be that your butter was not cold enough and was not added one piece at a time, or maybe the heat was a little too high. If your burner tends to run hot, you might have to move the pan off and on the heat so that the butter melts but doesn't overheat. If your beurre blanc does break, you might be able to fix it. Put a tablespoon of ice-cold water in a clean bowl. Slowly pour in the broken sauce while whisking briskly. Or try whisking ice chips into the sauce until the emulsification returns.

Can You Reheat Leftover Chilled Beurre Blanc?

Beurre blanc is best served immediately. The sauce may be made up to 2 hours in advance and kept warm (not hot) in an insulated container or thermos, or you may keep it in the covered saucepan and place it in a warm oven (around 170 F). If the sauce is not served right away, it will thicken somewhat and may need to be thinned with a liquid. If you've refrigerated leftover beurre blanc, it doesn't have to go to waste. The reheated sauce will still be flavorful and delicious when spooned over seafood, chicken, or steamed vegetables.

What's the Difference Between Beurre Blanc and Hollandaise?

Although both are yellow-colored French sauces, beurre blanc and hollandaise are different from each other and used to dress different foods. Whereas the main ingredient in beurre blanc is butter, hollandaise is known for including raw egg yolks, which are whisked along with lemon juice in a double boiler; melted butter is slowly added in until the mixture is thick. Hollandaise is the quintessential sauce for the brunch-favorite eggs Benedict, while beurre blanc makes its presence on the dinner table.

What Is a Medium Shallot?

Shallots come in various sizes, from very small to very large. In general, a medium shallot will yield about 1/4 cup chopped.

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