Last Updated on 22nd April 2022 by Pauline
Probably my favourite dipping sauce, garlic butter is great for making steak, shrimp, Italian bread, and pizza more appealing. If you make it right, garlic butter sauce can be packed with flavour and is the perfect addition to any number of meals. It can be used to transform decent or even bland foods into something sensational.
Your preferences will determine how you make it, how strong the garlic flavour is, and how runny or thick the sauce is. So, you can have very different garlic butter sauces depending on what recipe you use.
I’ll share my recipe I use for how to make garlic butter sauce for pizza and other dishes. You may want to make some modifications based on what you are using the sauce for. I can show you a few ways to modify yours and make it better suited to different kinds of foods.
What Makes a Great Garlic Butter Sauce?
We have probably all had some garlic butter sauces that didn’t taste very good. Not everyone knows how to make butter garlic sauce and some people end up messing up the proportions in their ingredients. They use too much butter or too much garlic or make their sauce too oily. You may not realise it from the first bite, but after a few bites of the sauce you start to notice that it isn’t quite right.
How to make garlic butter sauce that’s just right? Even if you are using a different recipe each time you make it, there are some guidelines to follow that will ensure yours turns out good.
First of all, use fresh ingredients whenever possible. Fresh garlic, fresh parsley, and even fresh butter if you are using butter rather than margarine.
You also want to watch out for high oil or high fat butter bases. That makes a difference in how oily your garlic butter sauce turns out. You want the sauce to be a bit on the oily side, in most cases, but not too heavy on the oil. Striking that balance requires a butter that is of good quality and made with decent ingredients.
How you chop the garlic makes a different as well. Anyone learning how to make butter garlic sauce for pasta will want a sauce that leans into the garlic flavour a bit. That garlic really makes the pasta texture pop. However, the garlic needs to be prepared properly, minced, chopped, or grated in such a way that it is easy to work with and not chunky. If the pieces are too big, you end up with a chunky sauce rather than a smooth one.
Another issue to be careful of is using old garlic butter sauce. Part of knowing how to make a butter garlic sauce is knowing how to store it properly. If it is left in the fridge for more than four days, it will go bad and not taste fresh. If it is not stored in an airtight container, then it will lose its flavour, its potency, and its freshness. Make sure the container is airtight and the garlic butter sauce does not sit out of the fridge for long. Try to use up all of the sauce within three to four days.
How to Make Garlic Butter Sauce
How to make garlic butter dipping sauce? You only need a few basic ingredients for really good garlic butter sauce. This isn’t a complex dish at all, and I would say even cooking newbies can pull off a decent sauce on their first try. My recipe is purposely kept simple so that you will be happy with the results if you follow the directions.
Garlic Butter Sauce
- 4 cloves of fresh garlic
- ½ cup of butter
- 1 tbsp of parsley
- ½ tsp of salt
- 1 tbsp of fresh lemon juice
- 2 tsp of garlic powder
- Start by mincing or grating the garlic. The smaller the better, I say, but you will find some recipes for how to make a garlic butter sauce that call for chunks of garlic. Which way you go is up to you.
- Next, place the garlic into a frying pan and add some better to it- just enough to grease the pan with. Cook on medium heat until you can smell the garlic cooking. You want it golden colored but not dark brown or black. It should not be burnt when you take it off the heat. My method to making sure the garlic doesn’t burn is to cook it for about 45 seconds only and to stir it while it cooks.
- Add in salt, lemon juice, garlic powder and the rest of the butter. Combine in the frying pan and cook on low heat to melt the butter and combine smoothly.
- Take the butter off the heat and add in the parsley. Stir slightly to mix it in.
I recommend serving the garlic butter sauce hot for best results.
This is how to make garlic butter sauce for shrimp, steak, or any other dish, really, but you may want to make some modifications to yours to give it the desired consistency.
This is what I send to people who want to know how to make lemon garlic butter sauce, but you can take out the lemon juice and get a similar sauce that doesn’t have that flavour to it. A lot of the ingredients are entirely optional, like the lemon juice, the salt, and the parsley. These are simply things I like to have in the sauce most of the time, but they aren’t always necessary. For instance, I might leave out the salt if the dish I am using the sauce for as a dipping sauce is already salty.
How to make garlic butter sauce for crab? I say make it buttery rather than garlic-y, so watch your proportions carefully and emphasise on one while minimising the other.
How to Make Creamy Garlic Butter Sauce
If you want your garlic butter sauce to be thicker and suitable for a pasta sauce, then you will need to take the recipe up above and modify it slightly. You are looking to make a sauce that isn’t oily and one that will cling to the pasta and not run everywhere across the plate.
So, how to make garlic butter sauce for pasta that tis thick and creamy? You will need to add in flour and milk. The flour helps to thicken it, but it doesn’t do any favours for the taste. The problem with using flour is that it can kill the flavour, but the good news is that garlic sauce is so potent (especially the way I make it) that it’s flavour won’t be hurt too badly by the addition of some flour. You can add about a tablespoon of flour to your garlic sauce and a cup of milk. Whisk all that together until the flour is completely combined. This will make your sauce thicker than it was before.
Now you know how to make a garlic butter sauce that is thick and heavy. You can use it for a shrimp sauce too or even as a heavy dipping sauce for your bread.
This recipe is similar to making a roux, and you can follow the same guidelines you would for that sauce if yours comes out too thick or too thin. If it is too thick, just add some more milk and be sure to stir the sauce thoroughly to combine all of your ingredients. If it is too thin, add only a small amount of flour. You want to be careful about how much flour you add, because it can definitely affect the flavour of your sauce. If you end up with too much flour in the sauce, your final product will be bland and not very interesting to eat.
How to Make a Strong Garlic Sauce
Sometimes, you want a really potent garlic sauce that will go well with a bland bread or other dish that doesn’t have much flavour and is starchy enough to absorb a lot of the garlic. If you are having pasta, bread or potatoes, the starch there will counteract a lot of the strong flavour of the garlic butter sauce and lessen the impact. So, how to make garlic sauce for pasta or other starchy foods that has more bite to it?
You should increase the garlic powder rather than the minced garlic. Adding more fresh minced garlic may seem like the best way to make your sauce taste more garlic-y, but it isn’t. It will make your sauce thicker and chunkier, however.
If you really want to know how to make a garlic butter sauce for pasta that is really powerful, then just add more garlic powder. This is concentrated garlic, so it is packed with flavour. It doesn’t take much to spice up the garlic sauce and give it a stronger flavour. Just be sure to use it sparingly. Adding some should not change the consistency of your sauce much, so it is the safest addition to make to the sauce and yet still retain the integrity of the dish.
Now you have a few ideas for how to make butter and garlic sauce and different ways you can modify it. I hope this helps you as you make sauces for your pasta or dipping sauce for a pizza or bread. There is no need to buy sauce from the grocery when you can make your own and stay in control of the ingredients and make sure it tastes fresh.