Sage and Caramelized Shallot Brown Butter

This Sage and Caramelized Shallot Brown Butter is perfect for your holiday gatherings. It’s great on crackers, bread and perfect with these Pumpkin Biscuits!

Sage and Caramelized Shallot Brown Butter

I’ve mentioned to a couple of friends that I was developing some compound butters for Kerrygold, my favorite butter for baking. They were unfamiliar with that phrase and though I could explain it easily enough the fact is that I think what’s come from this effort deserves a new name. The result with this Sage and Caramelized Shallot Brown Butter had me over the moon.

I can’t help but think of ‘compound fractions’ when I hear that word and my relationship with algebra was nowhere near as fun as this experience has been. If you can help, let me know what you might call a tasty blend of butter, herbs, fruits, nuts…whatever. Not so compound as much as so fabulous!

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Sage and Caramelized Shallot Brown Butter

I was provided samples of Kerrygold’s new Naturally Softer Irish Butter and Reduced Fat Irish Butter and asked to come up with some creative ideas on how I would use them. You know, beyond eating them with a spoon.

Anyone who reads this blog knows that I’ve been in love with Kerrygold butters for a long time. My experience with their product in baked goods is legendary in this home, so I was excited to see if they could live up to my expectations with these two new products meant for spreading and finishing dishes; not for baking.

The new Kerrygold butters are made from the milk of the same grass fed cows that produce their regular European-style butter; milking the cows in the summer produces a product with a higher milkfat content which helps create these soft butters.  An all natural churning process allows for the soft and spreadable consistency without additives or stabilizers; a win for all of us in my book.

Recently I created another topping using the Naturally Softer Irish Butter which I combined with  toasted walnuts, cranberries, orange zest and brown sugar and used for a breakfast dish of French Toast.

I wanted to also develop something using the Reduced Fat Irish Butter with ingredients that did not add any significant calories to the end result. Browning the butter, caramelizing some shallots and adding sage added huge flavor while still keeping the product one that could be labeled reduced fat. The biscuits? I made no such commitment!

I admit some of my inspiration to go this direction is because I am feeling a little melancholy that I won’t be making my Maple Bacon Roasted Turkey this year that is rubbed with sage butter.

I have a sage bush in my herb garden that is over 20 years old and it’s singular purpose for existing is to flavor that amazing bird. I felt an obligation…yes, to sage (no I do not talk to the plant silly!). These Sage and Caramelized Shallot Brown Butter with Pumpkin Biscuits were the perfect direction. I can’t express how much we LOVED this butter!

Pumpkin Biscuits with Sage and Caramelized Shallot Brown Butter

I spent yesterday making Cranberry Liqueur, Cider Syrup (coming Friday in a cocktail) and pretty much knew what direction I was going with the sage. Still when I tweeted that I would be making something with it, it was fun to see the conversation that ensued and to have my one dilemma absolutely answered for me. What to serve my sage/onion butter on.

I owe a debt of gratitude to @TheRunawaySpoon for suggesting her Pumpkin Sage biscuits with my Sage and Caramelized Shallot Brown Butter. So PERFECT! I cut back on the sage in the biscuits a bit since I was going to be serving them with the sage butter; without that addition I would absolutely follow her original recipe. The Sage and Caramelized Shallot Brown Butter on Pumpkin Biscuits is simply holiday perfect.

More Jellies and Spreads

Sage Compound Butter on Pumpkin Biscuits

Sage and Caramelized Shallot Brown Butter on Pumpkin and Sage Biscuits

Topping pumpkin biscuits with a brown butter, sage and caramelized onion mixture is the perfect holiday breakfast.
5 from 50 or more votes
Prep Time 6 minutes
Cook Time 18 minutes
Total Time 24 minutes
Course Appetizers, Breakfast
Cuisine American
Servings 8
Calories 379 kcal


For the Brown Butter

  • 6 ounces Butter divided
  • 2 Shallots
  • 6 Fresh sage leaves

For the Pumpkin Sage Biscuits

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour plus more for rolling
  • 1 Tablespoon light brown sugar
  • 2 ½ teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 ½ teaspoons kosher salt
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • 6 fresh sage leaves finely chopped (this is half of original recipe so double if you want more sage flavor)
  • 6 Tablespoons butter cold and cut into small cubes
  • cup buttermilk cold and well-shaken
  • ¾ cup pumpkin puree
  • 1 Tablespoons butter melted


To Make the Brown Butter

  • Put 4 oz of butter into a small saucepan; heat on medium heat until a foam appears on the top. Watch carefully until the butter solids turn brown.
  • Add the minced shallots to the butter and cook on low heat for a minute or two until starting to turn brown.
  • Remove the butter from the stove, pour into a bowl and refrigerate until solid.
  • Put onion butter and another 2 oz of butter into a processor (I used a mini one) and pulse until mixed and smooth. Remove to a clean bowl, add the chopped sage, mix thoroughly and return the butter to the refrigerator to keep firm until ready for serving.

To Make the Biscuits

  • Preheat the oven to 425 degrees.
  • Line a 9 inch round pan with parchment paper or spray it with cooking spray; I used a springform pan and it was the perfect size.
  • In the bowl of an electric mixer, stir together the flour, brown sugar, baking powder, salt and baking soda to combine.
  • Lightly stir in the chopped sage.
  • Drop the cubes of cold butter into the flour and with the paddle attachment, blend on low speed until the mixture looks like coarse meal, with a few pieces of butter still visible.
  • In a small bowl, whisk together the buttermilk and pumpkin puree. Add to the flour mixture and blend until the dough just comes together. If the dough is too moist, add a bit more flour and mix until not sticky.
  • Pat or roll dough to a thickness of 1/2 inch. Cut with 2″ biscuit cutters; re-rolling one time after the first cut. You should get 10 biscuits that should fit into the 9″ pan comfortably.
  • Bake for 10 minutes, remove from the oven and brush the melted butter on top of each biscuit.
  • Return to the oven for another 2 minutes and bake until risen and lightly golden.
  • Serve with the ‘I’m not calling it compound’ butter.


The biscuits will keep in an airtight container for 2 days, or you can make the dough, pat it out, wrap it in plastic and refrigerate overnight. Cut and bake the next day.


Nutrition Facts
Sage and Caramelized Shallot Brown Butter on Pumpkin and Sage Biscuits
Serving Size
1 Biscuit with Butter
Amount per Serving
% Daily Value*
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
Keyword brown butter, pumpking, sage
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!

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  1. Yum!! Having roasted pumpkins;a’plenty and made Pumpkin Soup, Pumpkin Gnocchi, Spicy Stuffed Pumpkin and Chocolate Chip Pumpkin Bread, I thought I was done. Apparently not; I simply must try this.


    1. You have most definitely made up for my lack of pumpkin making…but I’m glad I saved it for this; this was a killer combination.

    1. Yes you do. The butter is really easy…I just made some sweet potatoes with it last night. I would post it but ate them all up. 🙂

  2. Oh, where to start? I love baking with Kerrygold butter and now I must find the softer and reduced fat varieties. Compund butter is such a fun was to play with flavors. Don’t think I’ve ever tried sage…note to self. But okay a 20 year old sage bush, wow. And oh those biscuits. I do have a question: the spreader (?) in your photos…Love it. I was wondering if I you wouldn’t mind me asking where you got it.

    1. I’ve enjoyed this adventure so much I’ve got more on the plate to try. And the spreader? I made it several years ago; I’ve gone out of the spreader business, sorry. I actually sell some nice spreaders from France made by Laguiole but nothing as pretty as this I admit.

    1. Me too! Because it’s all gone. Last night I made the best, quick dinner. Put some boneless chicken thighs in a dish; topped them with sweet potato slices, dabbed some of this butter on top and baked it for 30-35 minutes til the chicken was done. So easy and so good.

    1. So here’s the plan for you Shelby. Make the butter which is really pretty quick and put it on some packaged dinner rolls. I still love the Parker rolls that are so readily available during the holidays each year…I’m sure they will have a place at our table before the season is over.

  3. Love the flavors here Barb, sage shallots love! I hardly make biscuits but this Thankgiving I just might. Only thing I need to reinvent these as GF because of a guest with an allergy. Looking good!

    1. Someone else suggested I make pumpkin rolls but even the process of waiting for a rise was not in the cards for me the other day. These were easy and so good.

  4. Sage is my favorite fall herb and it’s a natural with pumpkin, and stuffing, and biscuits and butters. I think you did a terrific job with the two butters – good luck in the competition – Kerrygold butter for a year, oh my! Love your fall header – I wish I was a webmaster 🙂

    1. Well, you know someone who is! 🙂 When I changed my site in June of this year to an all new identity, that ability to change seasonally was important. Knowing that going in makes it relatively easy for me. I can change the food photos, the background behind the menu and the colors I used in a short time. I’m going to be like Nordstrom’s too…Christmas will only come out the day after Thanksgiving!

  5. I had never thought about how unappetizing the term compound butter is…but now that you’ve pointed it out, I can’t believe I didn’t see it before!!! Yes, we need a new name. 🙂 These biscuits look beyond amazing (I’m a sucker for anything pumpkin) and the addition of the sage butter takes them into the realms of the divine.

    1. Now between us girls…next I think I have to try them with a bit of my home cured bacon. I know I could put that in almost anything so have to pull myself back occasionally but that’s next on the agenda! Name hasn’t come to me yet…it will one night when I can sleep I’m sure.

    1. Thanks so much Shawnda…I liked it too. It is gone now. Thankfully I have more sage, onions and butter!

    1. Thanks Red…make sure you check out the first one with cranberry, orange, walnuts and brown sugar. Bet your monkeys would enjoy on French toast or pancakes.

    1. My sage typically lasts til after Thanksgiving Carrie…I have a suspicion it’s why holiday foods use it; maybe it was the only herb that weathered the first chill? And thank you…it’s been fun to see everyone’s entries; what creativity abounds.

  6. Holiday perfect indeed! I can’t imagine a better Thanksgiving roll and butter recipe. I love compound butters, and it’s so great that you introduced the concept to Kerrigold – crazy! I’ll brainstorm a better name 🙂 In the meantime, I’ve bookmarked this recipe!

    1. Holiday perfect for sure…and also this week perfect. I had good intentions of freezing the biscuits but they were so good for breakfast and now? Gone.

  7. I love everything about this recipe, and that photo of the butter melting on the biscuits? Help! There are so many amazing flavours coming together here that I can practically taste them. Gorgeous photos too, Barb!

  8. Oh, these biscuits look picture perfect AND delicious! And pairing them with the sage compound butter is pure genius! These would be fabulous on our Thanksgiving table 🙂

  9. bravo Barb – these would make ANY compound butter PROUD!!! seriously, my mouth is watering right now and all i can think about is my sage bush standing at the ready right outside my back door – WOO!!

  10. Kerrygold is the best butter. Even here in Ireland where there is quite a bit of butter snobbery going on it is still the one we reach for. Unless of course when we make our own! I love the biscuit recipe Barb. We have friends (from Michigan) coming over next week to celebrate an Irish Thanksgiving and they are loading up their suitcases with a bunch of foodie stuffs for us so I can’t wait to see them. Have a great holiday!

  11. I saw this earlier on my phone, but the small screen did not do your photos justice. This butter and the biscuits are so festive with the leaves at the top of your banner…it can’t get much closer to Thanksgiving than this! These flavors must be incredible together. I have some Kerrygold butter left, so I will have to try your recipe 🙂 BTW, thank you for adding my link!

    1. Thanks Toni; these are the perfect ones for sure and not just the taste; the color is a real standout from the norm. Just love them.

  12. Kerrygold has to be absolutely falling in love with you and your recipes! This is yet another fantastic recipe and hopefully another winner in their eyes. Certainly is in mine.

    P.S. Other possible choices re *compound butter* term:

    Harmonized Butter
    Blended Butter
    Infused Butter

    1. I guess the best news is that it was fun to do and we truly loved the results. Enough that some gifts for the holidays will most certainly be compound butters! We should do a ‘name that compound butter’ contest huh?

  13. Oh wow Barb, now you’ve done it. I’ll be eating KerryGold butter at every meal. First your wonderful Cranberry Walnut spread and now a savory. Love this! Anything with sage has me piqued, but you’ve extended that to perfection.

    If you don’t win this contest, I don’t know why.

    1. Gee, shuck, thanks my friend. You want to know the truth? I had such fun experimenting and making something truly worthy of putting in a post, I forgot it was for a contest. Those things can drive you nutso…I won just by getting the product and getting to participate.

  14. Holiday perfect, indeed! I adore compound butters and have been making a “bernaise” compound butter for years. It’s so much fun to experiment with different ingredients in them. They’re so easy to prepare and make a real statement on the dinner table. Totally agree, too, that Kerrygold is fabulous stuff. I’m lucky that my local grocery carries it so my supply is secure 🙂 I fell in love with Kerrygold on a trip to Ireland where we enjoyed it every day with every meal. Wonderful product!

    1. Ah, you had the real deal with the whole Irish experience. Not just great butters but a great company to work with.

  15. Compound butters are such a great ditto on to any meal. Like vinaigrettes I’m not sure why home cooks don’t make more of these fresh. Thanks for the post!!!

    1. Next up? Well, it’s not the holidays if I don’t add bourbon to something new. Maple bourbon butter anyone?

  16. I’m with you on that Kerrygold butter, it is the best. Your compound butters just sound wonderful. I don’t know which one I might make first if I had to choose. I’d love to have one of these biscuits drowned in some of your compound butter on a snowy winter afternoon with a cuppa. Mmmmm!

    1. We might be able to make that work you know? Tasty biscuits and such a great color too; was the perfect recommendation.

  17. Wow I love this combo! The pumpkin sage biscuits are fabulous – I love how pumpkin goes both savory and sweet! And your compound butter is extraordinary – and that photo with the butter melted onto the warm biscuits? Heaven! I have to try this!

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