Hollandaise sauce recipe: the perfect sauce for your egg brunch

This hollandaise sauce recipe is the real deal and perfect to accompany fish, brunch classics, and more; give it a go!

hollandaise sauce recipe: Eggs Royale with hollandaise sauce
(Image credit: Getty)

This easy hollandaise sauce recipe is the crowning glory of a weekend egg brunch, with your have yours a la Benedict, with ham, Florentine, with spinach, or Royale, with smoked salmon.  A classic sauce, hollandaise is easy and quick to prepare, but it does take a bit of practice to perfect. Try out our recipe several times – you'll notice how you get better at it each time. 

We will say straight away that the classic hollandaise recipe does not use vinegar. You can, of course, add it if you like the additional tart note, but you should be able to get the right acidity from just lemon juice. If you have no fresh lemons right now, a bit of white wine vinegar will work as a substitute.

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How to make hollandaise sauce

Ingredients:

  • Egg yolks, 3
  • Unsalted butter, 150 grams
  • Juice of one large lemon 
  • Salt, to taste

Method:

1. Melt the butter in a pan and whisk the egg yolks in a heat-proof mixing bowl.

2. Bring water the boil in a separate saucepan. Add the butter, lemon juice and salt to the egg yolks and gently whisk over the pan of boiling water. You want gently steaming action but no more, to prevent overcooking.

Voila, your warm hollandaise is ready to be poured over your poached egg.

Why has my hollandaise split?

The Hollandaise sauce recipe may look simple, but it is notorious for splitting. Usually, there's one main cause for the sauce splitting – impatience. Mix the eggs too vigorously – your hollandaise will split. Add too much butter, or add it too quickly – your hollandaise will split. Cook the sauce over overly high heat – you get the drift. 

Gently does it with this sauce; in fact, the less you do to it, the better. Lazy stirring over low heat will produce much better results than energetic whisking. And if you're not sure you're putting in too much butter, start with half the amount you were planning on using and then keep adding a little more at a time to get the perfect consistency.