Brown Sugar Sage Sauce, a sweet, savory, and simple homemade sauce with browned butter, brown sugar, and fresh sage. You'll love this delicious sauce that's so quick and easy to whip up!

a bowl of brown sugar, sage, and butter sauce in a white ramekin on a white table with fresh sage leaves

Looking for a fall-themed sauce to spice up your meals this season? Look no further! This sage brown butter sauce recipe is as easy as it gets with just 3 ingredients and no-fuss instructions.

👉 Here are three reasons why you should be preparing Brown Sugar Sage Sauce this fall:

  • It's simple. Say goodbye to complicated sauce recipes! This one only takes a few minutes to make, and it's so versatile that you'll always have something to pair it with.
  • It's satisfying. Between the nutty brown butter, caramely brown sugar, and earthy sage—this recipe has depths of flavor that will please anyone's taste buds!
  • It's perfect for the holidays. If you're anything like us, you crave warm comfort foods during the holidays—and the flavors and aromas of this sauce are sure to bring those “warm fuzzies” to holiday parties and gatherings.

Ready to learn how to make this buttery sauce with brown sugar and sage? Let's do it!


🌿 Ingredients

You only need three super easy and familiar ingredients to make sweet sage sauce, including the following:

  • Butter: or make it plant-based by swapping with vegan butter. For this recipe, the butter is browned resulting in a drool-worthy nutty flavor.
  • Brown Sugar: adds to the oh-so-sweet flavor of this recipe.
  • Sage: one of our favorite autumn seasonings. It has a piney, woody flavor that pairs perfectly with just about anything. Use purple or green sage depending on what you can find!
  • Recommended tools: medium saucepan, strainer
bowls of butter and brown sugar on a white countertop with fresh sage leaves
Ingredients: butter, brown sugar, fresh sage leaves

🥣 How to make (step-by-step photos)

1️⃣ Step One: Melt the butter

First, heat a saucepan on the stove over medium-high heat.

When the pan is warm, add a stick of butter and allow it to melt. Cook it until it begins to brown and releases a nutty aroma, about 4 minutes.

a white sauce pan with melted butter on a white countertop
Melt the butter

2️⃣ Step Two: Add brown sugar + sage to the pan

Next, add the brown sugar to the pan with the butter and cook until dissolved, about 1.5-2 minutes more.

a white sauce pan with melted butter and brown sugar on a white countertop
Add brown sugar

Add sage slices and fry in the butter until they start to harden, about 1 minute.

brown sugar and butter sauce with sage leaves simmering in a sauce pan on a stovetop
Add fresh sage leaves

3️⃣ Step Three: Strain the sauce + serve

Finally, take the pan off the heat. Pour the butter mixture through a strainer to remove the sage.

Serve drizzled over vegetables or desserts, and enjoy!

sage butter sauce straining through a sieve into a white ramekin
Strain and serve

❓ Recipe questions + quick tips

Why use brown sugar in sauces?

Brown sugar is commonly added to sauces to make them sweet. It has a deep, caramel-like flavor due to the added molasses, making it a great addition to a variety of recipes including sauces. In addition to its delicious and complex flavor, brown sugar also contributes color to sauces that you wouldn't get from using white sugar.

How do you thicken a brown sugar sauce?

One of the best ways to thicken a brown sugar sauce is to add cornstarch. Simply mix in a little cornstarch and stir until your desired consistency is reached. You can also try adding a little more brown sugar, which should help to thicken it.


🍨 How to serve

This recipe checks all of the boxes for the perfect sauce! It's simple, delicious, and fun to make. Here are our favorite ways to serve brown sugar sage sauce:

  • With roasted vegetables: Add a touch of sweetness to roasted veggies! This sauce would taste great with our Roasted Sweet Potatoes and Carrots, Roasted Carrots and Parsnips, or even Roasted Brussels Sprouts and Broccoli.
  • On dessert: Try adding a spoonful of Brown Sugar Sage Sauce on top of Espresso Grounds Brownies, a scoop of ice cream like a Hazelnut Affogato, or on baked fruit like Hasselback Fall Fruit Platter.
  • Sprinkle with toasted breadcrumbs or pine nuts: Bring some crunch to the sauce by adding a pinch of toasted breadcrumbs or pine nuts to the sauce after you make it.
  • Serve on top of meat or fish: If you're a meat-eater, this sauce is the perfect flavor enhancer. Serve it on top of scallops, salmon, chicken, or steak!
  • With pasta: Last but not least, one of our favorite ways to enjoy this brown butter sauce is with pasta. It tastes delicious with ravioli, tortellini, risotto, or gnocchi.
brown sugar sage butter sauce in a white bowl on a marble table with a bowl of brown sugar

🧊 How to store

If you have leftovers or prep the sauce in advance, allow it to completely cool before storing it in the following ways:

  1. Refrigerator storage: Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to one week.
  2. Freezer storage (if applicable): Place in a freezer-safe storage container and enjoy within two months for best quality.

♻️ Sustainable kitchen tips

From main dishes to sauces, we make sure that each and every one of our recipes is as environmentally friendly as possible. Here are some ways that you can take your sustainable kitchen to the next level with this sauce recipe:

Use eco-friendly cookware and responsible ingredients. Every green eater needs a set of green cookware; we love Greenpan’s cookware because they are non-stick but toxin-free. We try to source local and organic ingredients when possible, and we use glass storage containers to store extra sauce in the freezer to eat all winter long.

Make a big batch and freeze. To prevent extra trips to the store, buy Brown Sugar Sage Sauce ingredients in bulk and make a batch of it weeks or even months before the holidays. That way, you'll have some ready to use when Thanksgiving rolls around and even some extra to add to meals throughout the winter.

a bowl of butter and sage sauce on a white table with a floral napkin and fresh sage leaves

🍁 More fall-themed recipes

Looking for a recipe to serve with Brown Sugar Sage Sauce? Here are some delicious options:

♻️ Want more inspiration for going green in the kitchen? Join the Green Living Community for plant-based recipes, sustainable kitchen hacks, and get our FREE guide to meal planning to reduce food waste!

Brown Sugar Sage Sauce

Brown Sugar Sage Sauce, a sweet, savory, and simple homemade sauce with browned butter, brown sugar, and fresh sage. You'll love this delicious sauce that's so quick and easy to whip up!
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Ingredients

  • ¼ cup unsalted butter, vegan butter if plant-based
  • ¼ cup brown sugar
  • ¼ cup sage leaves, thinly sliced

Instructions 

  • Melt butter: Heat a saucepan over medium-high heat. When pan is heated, add stick of butter and cook until it begins to brown and releases a nutty aroma, about 4 minutes.
  • Add brown sugar + sage: Add brown sugar and cook until dissolved, about 1.5-2 minutes more. Finally, add sage slices and fry in butter until they start to harden, about 1minutes.
  • Strain sauce + serve: Remove pan from heat and pour butter through a strainer to remove sage. Serve drizzled over vegetables or desserts.

Notes

  • Recommended tools: medium saucepan, strainer
  • Recipe notes: get creative with herbs for a different flavor profile! Add some crunch to the sauce by finishing it off with toasted breadcrumbs or pinenuts. Serve on top of dessert, roasted vegetables, pasta, or meat-based dishes.
  • Leftovers + storage: allow sauce to completely cool and then store in an airtight container in refrigerator for up to one week. Freeze for up to two months.
  • Make it vegan: Use vegan butter to make it completely plant-based.
  • Nutrition notes: This sauce using the original recipe is gluten-free and nut-free.

Nutrition Information

Serving: 1serving, Calories: 78kcal, Carbohydrates: 7g, Protein: 1g, Fat: 6g, Saturated Fat: 4g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g, Monounsaturated Fat: 1g, Trans Fat: 1g, Cholesterol: 15mg, Sodium: 3mg, Potassium: 13mg, Fiber: 1g, Sugar: 7g, Vitamin A: 177IU, Calcium: 10mg, Iron: 1mg