Steakhouse Garlic Butter

Steak topped with thick slices of garlic butter

The Spruce Eats

Prep: 10 mins
Cook: 0 mins
Refrigeration: 60 mins
Total: 70 mins
Servings: 8 servings
Nutrition Facts (per serving)
104 Calories
12g Fat
1g Carbs
0g Protein
Show Full Nutrition Label Hide Full Nutrition Label
Nutrition Facts
Servings: 8
Amount per serving
Calories 104
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 12g 15%
Saturated Fat 7g 36%
Cholesterol 31mg 10%
Sodium 45mg 2%
Total Carbohydrate 1g 0%
Dietary Fiber 0g 0%
Total Sugars 0g
Protein 0g
Vitamin C 1mg 5%
Calcium 7mg 1%
Iron 0mg 0%
Potassium 13mg 0%
*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.)

A juicy steak with just salt and pepper is delicious and satisfying on its own, but when topped with a dollop of garlic butter, it becomes a rich and unctuous affair, which is why many steakhouses offer a savory pat of butter atop their sizzling cuts of meat. Also known as compound butter, flavored butter is a great enhancer of a good quality cut; it doesn't mask the true nature of the steak, it just makes it better. For our recipe, the garlic-infused butter will slowly melt over your steak, the natural flavors will be enriched, and you'll be in for a beautiful and filling meal.

The recipe for compound butter is straightforward: the base is just good quality butter, to which you can add your favorite flavor profiles. No need for pricey ingredients, but do go for a high-fat butter, and always choose unsalted when you're making compound butter. Just make sure the butter is soft before mixing with the other ingredients.

This flavored butter is perfect for steak, but also chops, chicken, and even seafood recipes. Garlic butter can be made well in advance and will keep in the fridge or freezer.


Click Play to See This Steakhouse Garlic Butter Recipe Come Together


  • 1/2 cup (8 tablespoons) unsalted butter

  • 3 cloves garlic, crushed and finely minced

  • 1/2 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce

  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground white pepper, or black pepper

  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt, or to taste

  • 1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh parsley

Steps to Make It

  1. Gather the ingredients. 

    Ingredients for steakhouse garlic butter recipe gathered

    The Spruce Eats

  2. Place the softened butter in a bowl and add the garlic, Worcestershire sauce, pepper, salt, and parsley. Mix with a fork to combine thoroughly.

    Soft butter, garlic, parsley, and seasonings mashed with a fork in a bowl

    The Spruce Eats

  3. Use a spatula to scrape the flavored butter onto a piece of plastic wrap. Using the wrap, shape the butter into a log. Pull the sides of the plastic wrap over to seal, twisting the ends to close tightly, or folding it like a small parcel.

    Butter lump placed on cling wrap

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  4. Roll the wrapped butter back and forth to create an evenly shaped log. Place in the refrigerator or freezer to harden.

    Evenly shaped butter log tightly wrapped in cling wrap

    The Spruce Eats

  5. When ready to use, unwrap and slice the butter into 1/4-inch rounds. Place on top of hot, sizzling steaks just before serving.

    Thick slices of garlic butter on a grilled steak

    The Spruce Eats

  6. Serve and enjoy.

Why Do I Need to Use Unsalted Butter?

Unsalted butter is best for making compound butter because you can control the seasonings and everything that goes in it. If you seasoned the steak with plenty of salt, and also use salted butter, the end result might well be a dish that is too salty. Unsalted butter is better becase you can always add salt and seasonings, whereas with salted butter the canvas you have to work with is very tight.

Shortcut Compound Butter

For a speedy preparation, you can make this flavored butter in the food processor, using other tricks too:

  • If you forgot to soften your butter at room temperature, simply grate it with a cheese grater and leave it at room temperature for 5 to 10 minutes. Alternatively, heat up 2 cups of water in the microwave until boiling, and once the microwave stops, quickly put the grated butter in the oven so the trapped steam softens it faster.
  • While the butter softens, use the food processor to mince the garlic first.
  • Add the softened butter and remaining ingredients.
  • Process thoroughly, place in plastic wrap, roll, and chill.

Other Delicious Compound Butters

Any flavorful compound butter needs to have some acid, aromatics, and herbs. Many cooks also add stronger flavors using powdered mushrooms, Parmesan cheese, or truffles, but the addition of such powerful flavors depends on personal taste. Here are a few variations on our recipe:

  • Add lemon zest for a citrus zing, and swap the parsley for chives.
  • Skip the Worcestershire sauce, and use lemon juice instead if using this butter on fish.
  • Add cilantro, rosemary, or oregano in place of the parsley. Cilantro gives a wonderful bright touch and is great served on pork tenderloin. The rosemary and oregano lend a Mediterranean flavor—perfect for grilled chicken, fish, or shellfish.
  • Add red chili flakes. Start with 1/8 of a teaspoon and taste the butter on a piece of bread. Add more to taste if needed.