Hollandaise Sauce

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Hollandaise sauce is a classic French sauce that every home cook can master. The secret to making it effortlessly? Let your blender do the hard work!

hollandaise sauce in bowl

Hollandaise sauce—oh, the memories of culinary school and restaurant kitchens! I can still feel the burn in my arms from that constant whisking over a double boiler, always on edge about the sauce breaking. But all that effort resulted in a silky and delicious sauce —an emulsion of egg yolk, melted butter, lemon juice, salt, and cayenne pepper. Hollandaise sauce, also known as sauce hollandaise or “Dutch sauce” in French, is one of the five French mother sauces, which form the base of countless other sauces (béarnaise sauce is a “child” of hollandaise).

Thankfully, nowadays, there’s an easier way to achieve hollandaise perfection: let your blender do the hard work! That’s right—no more whisk-induced arm fatigue or worrying about the sauce breaking. With this simple blender method, you’ll make perfect hollandaise every time. Not just reserved for eggs Benedict, this sauce complements steamed or roasted asparagus, steamed broccoli, and a variety of other veggies beautifully.

What You’ll Need To Make Hollandaise Sauce

ingredients for Hollandaise sauce
  • Egg Yolks: Provide richness and emulsifying properties, giving the sauce its creamy texture.
  • Lemon Juice: Adds brightness and tanginess, cutting through the richness of the sauce.
  • Salt and Cayenne Pepper: Season the sauce and adds a very subtle layer of heat.
  • Butter: Contributes flavor and richness; its emulsifying properties help stabilize the sauce and create a smooth, velvety texture.
  • Water: Used to adjust the sauce to the proper consistency.
  • Jump to the printable recipe for precise measurements

Step-By-Step Instructions

Add the egg yolks, salt, cayenne pepper, and lemon juice to a blender. Blend until frothy (about 20 seconds).

egg yolks, salt, lemon juice, and cayenne pepper in a blender

Melt the butter in a small pot over medium heat until bubbling but not browning.

Transfer the hot butter to a liquid measuring cup for easy pouring.

melted butter in measuring cup

With the blender running on a low speed, open the center knob and gradually add the hot butter to the egg mixture until the sauce thickens.

hollandaise sauce in blender

If the sauce is too thick, blend in 1 to 2 tablespoons of hot water until you reach the desired consistency.

Video Tutorial

Frequently Asked Questions

Can Hollandaise sauce be made ahead?

While hollandaise sauce is best made fresh, simply because you don’t need to fuss with keeping it warm, you can prepare it up to 2 hours ahead of time. To keep the sauce warm, pre-warm a thermos with boiling water, then pour out the water and transfer the sauce inside. Alternatively, use a makeshift double boiler: fill a small pot with water, bring it to a gentle simmer, then remove from the heat. Place your bowl of hollandaise sauce on top. The residual heat will keep the sauce warm without further cooking, preventing it from curdling or separating. If using the double boiler method, remember to stir the sauce occasionally to maintain an even temperature throughout.

Can you freeze Hollandaise sauce?

Unfortunately, hollandaise sauce doesn’t freeze well. Its texture tends to break down when thawed, resulting in a separated mess. It’s best enjoyed fresh.

Can I make the Hollandaise sauce without a blender?

No blender, no problem! You can whisk the egg yolks, salt, cayenne pepper, and lemon juice together in a bowl until frothy. Then, slowly drizzle in the melted butter while whisking vigorously to emulsify the sauce.

What are some other uses for Hollandaise sauce?

There are lots of other ways to use Hollandaise sauce! With its creamy texture and subtly tangy flavor, it elevates dishes like fish, chicken, potatoes, cooked veggies, stuffed mushrooms, and even steak.

hollandaise sauce topped with chives in bowl with spoon drizzling the sauce into the bowl

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Hollandaise Sauce

Hollandaise sauce is a classic French sauce that every home cook can master. The secret to making it effortlessly? Let your blender do the hard work!

Servings: About ¾ cup
Prep Time: 10 Minutes
Cook Time: 5 Minutes
Total Time: 15 Minutes

Ingredients

  • 3 large egg yolks
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • Pinch cayenne pepper
  • 1½ tablespoons fresh lemon juice, from 1 lemon
  • ¾ cup (1½ sticks) unsalted butter
  • 1 to 2 tablespoons hot tap water, as needed

Instructions

  1. In a blender, combine the egg yolks, salt, cayenne pepper, and lemon juice. Blend for 15 to 20 seconds, until the mixture becomes frothy.
  2. Melt the butter in a small pot over medium heat until bubbling but not browning. The butter will be poured into the blender with the egg yolk mixture; for easier pouring, transfer it to a glass measuring cup.
  3. With the blender running on low speed, gradually add the hot butter in a thin stream to the egg yolk mixture. The butter should be hot to ensure the sauce emulsifies properly.
  4. Check the consistency of the sauce. If it's too thick, blend in 1 to 2 tablespoons of hot water to achieve a thick but pourable consistency.
  5. Serve the sauce or transfer to a bowl for up to 2 hours (see make-ahead notes below).
  6. Make-Ahead Instructions: While hollandaise sauce is best made fresh, simply because you don't need to fuss with keeping it warm, you can prepare it up to 2 hours ahead of time. To keep the sauce warm, pre-warm a thermos with boiling water, then pour out the water,and transfer the sauce inside. Alternatively, use a makeshift double boiler: fill a small pot with water, bring it to a gentle simmer, then remove from the heat. Place your bowl of hollandaise sauce on top. The residual heat will keep the sauce warm without further cooking, preventing it from curdling or separating. If using the double boiler method, stir the sauce occasionally to maintain an even temperature throughout.

Gluten-Free Adaptable Note

To the best of my knowledge, all of the ingredients used in this recipe are gluten-free or widely available in gluten-free versions. There is hidden gluten in many foods; if you're following a gluten-free diet or cooking for someone with gluten allergies, always read the labels of your ingredients to verify that they are gluten-free.

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