In this article, I’ll list six alternatives to truffle butter (and explain why they make suitable substitutes) along with their recommended substitution ratios. I’ll also provide a few easy recipes to create these alternatives if you don’t have them on hand. Finally, I’ll dive into the differences between butter and truffle butter, what truffle butter tastes like, and how it’s made.
The best substitutes for truffle butter include truffle oil, regular butter, garlic butter, shiitake butter, portabella rosemary butter, porcini butter, and chanterelle butter. Each of these substitutes has a soft, velvety texture or an earthy flavor comparable to truffle butter.
1. Truffle Oil
Truffle oil is one of the primary ingredients in truffle butter and works as a substitute in a pinch. This musky, rich oil is what gives truffle butter its much-loved earthy, pungent flavor and aromatic profile.
When you don’t have regular butter on hand to combine with truffle oil, just use the oil on its own as a replacement. To use truffle oil in place of truffle butter, replace ¾ of the recommended butter in the recipe with oil.
Truffle Butter Substitute (Truffle Oil) Conversion Chart:
|Truffle Butter Amount||Truffle Oil Substitute|
|1 cup||¾ cup|
|½ cup||⅜ cup|
|4 tablespoons||3 tablespoons|
Truffle Oil Recipe
If you have truffles and olive oil, you can make your own truffle oil in about an hour. Keep in mind that this oil has a shelf life of 24 to 48 hours, so only make as much as you need and use it immediately.
Make truffle oil by combining ½ cup of extra-virgin olive oil with 1 to 2 tablespoons of chopped fresh truffles. Heat oil over medium heat until it reaches 130°F (54.4°C). Turn off the stovetop and place truffles into the oil. Allow them to marinate until the oil cools to room temperature.
What Truffle Oil Tastes Best With
Like truffle butter, truffle oil has a smooth, velvety texture with small bits of truffle throughout. It has a subtle, slightly bitter yet sweet, earthy flavor with a hint of greens. It works well with most savory dishes, including:
- Roasted Potatoes
- French Fries
A good rule of thumb is to use approximately one to two teaspoons for every 6 ounces (170 g) of food.
2. Regular Butter
When you don’t have truffles, truffle oil, or truffle butter readily available, opt for regular butter. Regular butter doesn’t have the same earthy muskiness as truffle butter, but it is an easy way to add fat to any recipe. If you’re looking for a more flavorful alternative as opposed to a simple fat alternative, opt for another substitute on this list.
When using regular butter in place of truffle butter, do not change the amount when substituting.
Regular Butter Recipe
Did you know that you can make your own butter at home with just one ingredient? This easy butter recipe creates approximately 1 cup (225 g) of butter, plus buttermilk.
Make butter with 2 cups (473 mL) of whipping cream. Pour into a jar with a lid and shake continuously until the butter separates. Alternatively, use a food processor for about 10 minutes. Strain the liquid (buttermilk) and reserve. Press the butter into a jar with the back of a spoon. Refrigerate.
Season the butter with salt, if desired.
What Butter Tastes Best With
Plain butter is a versatile ingredient. Use it for light pan frying, caramelization, and for sauces to create a soft, buttery mouthfeel. This ingredient is great for almost any food, including:
2. Garlic Butter
White truffles provide an intense musky acidic flavor with subtle garlic-like notes. You can get away with using garlic butter as a substitute for truffle butter — but keep in mind that truffle butter is softer and more subtle than most garlic butter recipes.
When substituting truffle butter with garlic butter, you needn’t make any alterations to the amount.
Subtle Garlic Butter Recipe
Add 1 cup of unsalted, softened butter to ½ tablespoon of minced garlic. Whip until well combined. Stir in ¼ teaspoon of garlic salt. You can also incorporate grated parmesan and herbs, such as oregano, rosemary, parsley, thyme, and paprika. Add salt and pepper to taste, if desired.
When using a garlic butter recipe other than the one above, only use ½ the amount of recommended garlic in the recipe to avoid producing an overpowering butter. Also, use unsalted butter and don’t overheat the mixture, as this could lead to a more pronounced garlic flavor.
Of course, you can always incorporate more garlic if you prefer, but when substituting truffle butter, it’s best to keep things toned down.
What Garlic Butter Tastes Best With
Raw garlic has an acidic flavor but, once cooked, transforms into a nutty, almost mustard-like taste. When combined with butter, it becomes a smooth, savory, spicy, earthy ingredient that goes best with a number of foods, including:
3. Shiitake Butter
Shiitake mushrooms taste raw and subtle when raw, but once exposed to high temperatures, their flavor becomes richer and more developed. When mixed with butter, it provides a deep, earthy flavor with a rich, hearty body, making it an excellent substitute for truffle butter.
When using shiitake butter as a substitute for truffle butter, use the same amount — there is no need to make alterations to quantities within the recipe.
Shiitake Butter Recipe
Make shiitake butter by sautéing a pound of chopped mushrooms in two tablespoons of oil. Stir every three minutes until soft. Add a teaspoon of sea salt and sugar. Reduce heat. Stir until the liquid clears. Add a tablespoon of soy sauce. Cool. Blend in a blender, then whip with 1½ pounds of butter.
Store your homemade shiitake butter in individual lidded jars, or roll it into a log using clear wrap and freeze for up to a month.
Did you know that you can keep shiitake stems and use them to create soup stock? Keep your stems in zip lock bags and freeze them until you have at least two cups saved. Then, use them in your favorite stock recipe.
What Shiitake Butter Tastes Best With
Shiitake butter pairs well with soups, breads, pastas, and stir-fry vegetables. It also complements Asian cuisines that incorporate ginger, soy, fish, and fish-based sauces.
Try this earthy butter in one or more of the following recipes:
- Asian Noodles
- General Tso’s Chicken
- Cabbage-Based Dishes
- Black Bean Dishes
4. Portabella Rosemary Butter
Like truffles, portobellos have distinctive umami (savory) flavor, though more intense than their elusive counterparts. The rich, earthy undertones make it ideal for pairing with rosemary in this portobello rosemary butter recipe. It creates a woodsy, piney, pepper-like flavor with a delectable savoriness that pulls it all together.
When using portabella rosemary butter in place of truffle butter, use the same amount included in the recipe.
Portobello Rosemary Butter Recipe
Make portobello rosemary butter by sautéing two mushrooms (one de-gilled) in two tablespoons of butter until lightly browned. Add five rosemary sprigs and ½ teaspoon of toasted cumin. Stir. Remove from heat and cool. Whip a pound of butter with juice from ½ lemon. Add mushrooms to butter and whip.
You can store this butter in individual containers and leave it in the freezer for up to a month.
What Portobello Rosemary Butter Tastes Best With
Rosemary is a staple herb in Italian dishes, so if your recipe calls for truffle butter for use in pastas, tomato-based sauces, or red or white-meat dishes, you can easily substitute it with portobello rosemary butter. Here are some recipes in which this savory butter works well:
- Tomato-Based Sauces
5. Porcini Butter
Porcini mushrooms have a delicate woodsy flavor, often described as “nutty” or similar to freshly tilled soil. These earthy mushrooms become more full-bodied when combined with butter, making them an excellent substitute for truffle butter in meat and starch-based recipes.
You don’t have to change the amount of butter used in a recipe when replacing truffle butter with porcini butter.
Porcini Butter Recipe
To make porcini butter, boil ½ cup of finely chopped porcini for 20 minutes. Strain, reserve water, and press to remove excess liquid. Rinse porcini. Strain reserved liquid into a saucepan. Add porcini to the saucepan and simmer until reduced to one tablespoon. Cool, then mix with ½ cup of butter.
If you’re using unsalted butter in your porcini butter recipe, you can add salt and pepper to taste. Once it’s to your liking, transfer it to a sheet of wax paper or plastic wrap and roll it into a log. Store the butter in the refrigerator for up to two days or in the freezer for a month.
What Porcini Butter Tastes Best With
Porcini butter’s earthiness works well with a variety of dishes, including:
- Red Meat
- Vegetarian Dishes
6. Chanterelles Butter
Chanterelles are golden, wild mushrooms found throughout the world. Some describe this golden mushroom’s flavor as “fruity” with a hint of peach. They’re not particularly sweet; instead, they have more of an umami flavor.
You can create chanterelles butter to use in place of truffle butter. You do not have to change the butter amount within the recipe. However, if you’re looking for fewer fruity notes, opt for fewer chanterelles and replace them with a more savory mushroom, such as portabella or porcini.
Chanterelle Butter Recipe
Make chanterelle butter by sautéing 7 ounces (200 g) of mushrooms in olive oil for three minutes. Add an onion and four sprigs of thyme and fry for about four minutes. Remove from heat and cool. Chop the mushroom mixture and whip with 2 ¼ sticks of room temperature butter. Salt and pepper to taste.
Use immediately or wrap this butter in parchment paper or plastic wrap, forming it into a log, and then store in the fridge or freezer.
What Chanterelle Butter Tastes Best With
Chanterelle butter’s subtle, fruit-like notes pair well with light, savory dishes and acidic foods, such as:
- Sourdough Bread
- Tomato-Based Dishes
What Is the Difference Between Butter and Truffle Butter?
The differences between butter and truffle butter are ingredients and flavor. Regular butter is churned cream, whereas truffle butter is churned cream mixed with truffle oil and/or truffle pieces. Butter has a soft, slightly sweet flavor, whereas truffle butter is earthy, musky, and savory.
Butter has many applications, from pan frying to baking, and is regularly used in sweet recipes, like cake and cookies. Truffle butter, on the other hand, is used to complement savory dishes, such as eggs, seafood, and vegetables.
What Does Truffle Butter Taste Like?
Truffle butter has a rich, creaminess like regular butter but features complex earthy notes and a savory though slightly sweet taste. When made with black truffles, truffle butter may have garlic or grass-like flavors. White truffle butter is more earthy and acidic, often compared to mild cheeses.
It’s an incredibly unique flavor, sometimes even referred to as “meaty” due to the mushroom’s texture and bold umami notes.
What Is Truffle Butter Made Of?
Truffle butter is made using regular butter (salted or unsalted) mixed with truffle oil, bits of truffle, or both. Some recipes opt for olive oil instead of truffle oil, though these have less of an earthy flavor. Other recipes incorporate salt and herbs that complement the mushroom’s earthy flavor.
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