Hollandaise Sauce: Tips and Tricks for a Perfect Sauce Every Time

Hollandaise Sauce: Tips and Tricks for a Perfect Sauce Every Time

Hollandaise sauce is a classic French sauce that has stood the test of time, and its popularity has only continued to grow over the years. Its history dates back to the 19th century, when it was created by the French chef Antonin Carême. Carême was a celebrated chef who is known for his contributions to the development of French cuisine, and his creation of hollandaise sauce is just one example of his culinary expertise.

The name “hollandaise” is actually a misnomer, as the sauce is not from Holland, but rather from France. The sauce was originally called “sauce Isigny,” after the town of Isigny-sur-Mer in Normandy, France, which is known for its butter and cream. However, over time, the name evolved to “hollandaise” and has stuck ever since.

The sauce itself is made by whisking together egg yolks, butter, lemon juice, and a few other ingredients. The key to making a good hollandaise sauce is to whisk the egg yolks and lemon juice together until they become frothy, and then slowly drizzle in melted butter while continuing to whisk. The result is a thick and creamy sauce that has a rich, buttery flavor with a hint of tanginess from the lemon juice.

Hollandaise sauce is a versatile sauce that can be used in a variety of dishes. It is most commonly associated with eggs Benedict, a breakfast dish that consists of poached eggs, Canadian bacon, and English muffins, topped with hollandaise sauce. However, it can also be used to top other breakfast dishes, such as scrambled eggs, as well as vegetables, such as asparagus, steamed broccoli, and roasted potatoes.

Hollandaise Sauce

Course Sauces, Stocks, and Accompaniments
Author N. J. Sorensen, RDN


  • 6 each egg yolks
  • 2 tablespoon water
  • 16 ounces clarified butter — hot
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice – fresh
  • dash tobasco sauce
  • ¼ teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon white pepper


  • In a small stainless steel mixing bowl, add egg yolks and 1 tablespoon water. Whip mixture and place over a pot of boiling water on a range top, making sure that the bowl does not touch the water. Whip continually until cooked to a soft peak, about 3 minutes. DO NOT OVER COOK. Remove from range. Place bowl on a wet towel to prevent slipping. Slowly pour clarified butter into eggs 1 ounce at a time and continue to whip. When half the butter has been added, add remaining water, continue to add butter. Add lemon juice, tobasco, Worcestershire sauce, salt and white pepper. Serve immediately.

Aside from its traditional uses, hollandaise sauce can also be used in more creative ways. It can be used as a dipping sauce for French fries or roasted vegetables, or as a topping for grilled fish or chicken. It can even be used as a base for other sauces, such as béarnaise sauce or sauce choron.

When it comes to serving hollandaise sauce, there are a few tips to keep in mind. First, it’s important to serve the sauce warm, as it can quickly solidify if it gets too cold. Second, hollandaise sauce is best served immediately after it is made, as it does not keep well and can quickly become lumpy or separated if it sits for too long.

In summary, hollandaise sauce is a classic French sauce that has a rich, creamy, and lemony flavor. It can be used to top a variety of dishes, from eggs to vegetables to grilled meats, and it is a versatile choice for many different meals and occasions. Whether you’re looking for a classic breakfast dish or a creative way to jazz up your favorite vegetables, hollandaise sauce is sure to add a touch of elegance and flavor to your meal.