Miso Butter

By Ann Fulton

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When kitchen motivation is lacking, multi-purpose, 2-ingredient miso butter is the answer.  This incredibly simple condiment has the power to transform basic meat, vegetables, and pasta into something special.  And chances are that the more you use it, the more ways you will find to work it into your weekly repertoire.

(If you’re new to miso, you may enjoy this quick guide to miso.  The accompanying miso chicken recipe is pretty tasty, too!)

2-INGREDIENT MISO BUTTER - an incredibly simple condiment that will transform basic meat, seafood, vegetables and pasta

Years ago, David Chang of the renowned Momofuku showed Mark Bittman how to create a fantastic compound butter with miso, and Bitttman then shared it in the New York Times in March of 2012. (As an interesting side note, I recently learned that Momofuku means “Lucky Peach.”)

The nuanced flavor of this versatile, umami-rich condiment belies its utter simplicity.  The mixture has a long fridge life, so I keep it on hand to perk up otherwise plain meats and vegetables.  It truly has the power to transform the incredibly simple into something special.

2-INGREDIENT MISO BUTTER - an incredibly simple condiment that will transform basic meat, seafood, vegetables and pasta

So how can we use miso butter?

  • Let it melt over cooked fish (salmon is my favorite), chicken or steak…
  • Or roasted asparagus, broccoli, Brussels sprouts, carrots, or cauliflower
  • Mash into a perfectly baked potato, sweet or russet
  • Spread over corn on the cob or stir into sautéed corn
  • Stir into cooked noodles for an easy pasta sauce (especially good with sautéed mushrooms!)
  • Butter bread with it

Feel free to experiment with the miso butter whenever you use butter in a savory way.  It will add depth of flavor and the possibilities truly go on and on!

Whether you choose white, yellow, or red miso, the container will look something like this. Look for a gluten-free label, if needed, as some miso is fermented with barley.

Miso Butter
Yield: 6 tablespoons
The nuanced flavor of this incredibly easy compound butter elevates plain meats, veggies, and pasta. A pinch of the optional cayenne isn't enough to make the butter spicy but does add a little something special.
  • 4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) butter, softened to room temperature
  • 2 tablespoons miso
  • Optional: a pinch of cayenne or freshly ground black pepper

Cream the butter and miso together with a fork, adding the optional black pepper or cayenne if desired.

Use immediately or roll into a log in plastic wrap or parchment paper and refrigerate or freeze for cutting into slices later.


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A pat or two of miso butter melted into a Perfectly Baked Potato ⇧⇧adds a little something special.

Miso Chicken ⇩⇩is another delicious way to enjoy that tub of miso that’s now in your fridge!

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  1. Mary Post author

    I used your idea of melting this into cooked pasta and added sautéed mushrooms and it was DIVINE!!! (Beyond easy too!)