Think hollandaise sauce is too hard to make at home? This recipe will show you otherwise - make an EASY hollandaise sauce in just a few minutes in your microwave that turns out perfect every time - no blender needed! Perfect for eggs Benedict or topping vegetables like asparagus.
Traditional hollandaise sauce seems to be one of those recipes that takes way more effort than most people want to take.
I've read that it can be finicky as well, sometimes curdling or separating.
But honestly, I wouldn't know because I've always made this super easy hollandaise sauce that my sweet stepmom introduced our family to many years ago.
It uses just a few ingredients, takes just minutes to cook in a microwave, and only uses a whisk to mix - no blender needed.
Okay, but what does it taste like?
Once our family had this sauce, we've all been ruined for restaurant hollandaise sauces. The consensus among us is that those sauces tend to be greasy, flavorless, and sometimes oddly sweet.
This sauce, on the other hand, is bright, tangy, and buttery. This is because there are a couple extra ingredients that cut the butter and bring more flavor.
And we've had a long time to test this - this hollandaise sauce over eggs Benedict has been our traditional extended family Christmas breakfast for more than 30 years (yep!).
If you, too, have never cared for traditional hollandaise or you'd just like a delicious, easy sauce to dress up garden vegetables (in addition to eggs Benedict), try this - I bet you'll like this as much as we do!
Easy Hollandaise Sauce
In addition to the traditional ingredients of butter, egg yolk, and lemon juice, and salt, this recipe also calls for:
- whole milk/cream
- dry mustard
I believe it's the milk that cuts the greasy tendency of traditional sauces and the mustard brings a nice sharpness that counters the richness of the butter and cream.
Separate the eggs, placing the yolks in a microwave safe bowl (I like a 4-cup glass measuring cup with a handle) and then add the remaining ingredients, stirring it all well.
PRO TIP: If making Eggs Benedict, add some of the whites to each egg in a cup before poaching.
If making the sauce for vegetables or meats, keep the whites in a sealed container in the fridge for up to a week and use in scrambled eggs or a frittata.
Microwave on Roast (usually power level 6, which is medium power) for 2 minutes. It should look like the photo above.
Stir it well, and put it back into the microwave for another 2 minutes on the Roast level.
Now it may look like the photo above when you take it out and you may think, "darn...what happened?
Don't panic, just stir it well and it will smooth right out and you have a lovely sauce.
See? Fool-proof and E.A.S.Y.
All that's left is to pour it over the top of whatever you'd like.
Like I mentioned, we usually use this sauce over Eggs Benedict at our early Christmas celebration.
It's so beloved, though, that my kids have requested it for their birthday dinners and sometimes just special breakfasts throughout the year.
But this sauce is equally good over roasted asparagus or broccoli.
As well as this ham and asparagus recipe I created mainly to use this sauce, lol.
Easy Hollandaise Sauce FAQs
Béarnaise sauce is actually a step beyond hollandaise, using it as a base but then adding white wine vinegar, shallots, and tarragon. However, both sauces are used for similar foods - eggs, and vegetables, as well as meat and fish.
Yes, the egg yolks are cooked slowly to avoid curdling, but are cooked.
If you want to be doubly sure, you can take the temperature of the sauce at the end of cooking - the FDA say eggs are “safe” to eat once they reach an internal temperature of 160 degrees Fahrenheit.
Yes! While it's best to make it right before serving if you can, when we make it for our extended family Christmas eggs Benedict tradition we have to make a huge batch of 20 servings the day before.
We've never had a problem with curdling when we gently reheat it in the microwave the next morning. Instructions for this are included in the recipe card below.
I've also read that you can spread the cold hollandaise "butter" on toast if you have leftovers, but I wouldn't know since we never have any left!
What others are saying:
"I made this last week! It was great and super easy!" -Sherry
"Yum! So easy, reheats (gently, low microwave power), can thus be made ahead. Wonderfully light and silky texture." -Linda
Best No-Fail Hollandaise Sauce
- 4-cup glass measuring cup (or medium glass bowl)
- 1/2 cup butter
- 4 egg yolks (reserve whites for another use)
- 1/2 cup light cream (whole milk also works)
- 2 tablespoons lemon juice
- 1 teaspoon dry mustard
- 1/4-1/2 teaspoon salt (use 1/4 if butter is salted, 1/2 if unsalted - or to taste)
- Place the butter in a 1-quart glass measuring cup and microwave on HIGH for 1 minute or until melted.
- Separate the eggs, adding the yolks to the melted butter along with the remaining ingredients. Stir with a whisk until smooth.
- Set microwave to "roast" (usually power level 6 - medium) and cook for 2 minutes. Remove and stir well.
- Cook for another 2 minutes on "roast," power level 6.
- Stir until smooth and serve.
More Easy Sauces to Try:
This recipe has been updated - it was originally published in April of 2010.