Bread sauce is an absolute British classic! Infused with bay leaves & cloves then finished with cream & butter, this is the type of sauce you could eat with a spoon!
And in all serious that’s usually how I end up eating it. Bread sauce is one of those sauces that absolutely make a meal and quick frankly a roast dinner ain’t a roast dinner without it!
For those of you who are wondering what the heck bread sauce is, it’s essentially exactly what it says on the tin – a sauce made from bread and milk.
Sounds pretty lame right? It gets better (promise). With just a few little tips and tricks you actually end up with a really delicious and flavoursome sauce.
Infusing the milk
- Quarter a large white onion and stick 4 cloves in.
- Place in a saucepan with 2 bay leaves and milk.
- Bring to a boil then quickly reduce to a simmer before it boils over.
Now, you have two options. First is pop the lid on and leave it on a very gentle simmer for 20mins OR pop the lid on, take it off the heat and leave it somewhere warm(ish) for 1+ hours to infuse.
Strain away onion, cloves and bay leaves when done.
What bread to use for bread sauce?
Wholemeal/seeded bread doesn’t taste great as a sauce so most types of white bread will do the trick. For the best result you actually want it a little bit stale too. Using bread that’s a couple of days old will gives a better texture and is less likely to dissolve into complete mush. I’ve added a little note in the recipe for how to replicate stale bread.
The only other ingredients you need is nutmeg for some gorgeous flavour, and cream & butter just because why the heck not.
How to make bread sauce on the hob
- Tear your bread into tiny chunks, or pulse into crumbs and gradually stir into your milk until your desired texture.
- Keeping the heat on low, grate in nutmeg and add seasoning to taste.
- Stir through a knob of butter and a few tbsp of cream.
Voila! Easy as that.
Can you freeze bread sauce?
You absolutely can. Just let it cool and pop in an airtight container. To serve, allow it to come to room temperature either in the fridge overnight or on the kitchen top for a few hours. Pop back in the saucepan and gently warm through, using milk to thin out as necessary.
What’s the best way to make bread sauce ahead of time?
I recommend just infusing the milk and tearing the bread, that way everything’s ready to just heat up and mix. You can make it and pop it in the fridge, but just like I mentioned above have some milk on hand to thin out as necessary; bread sauce does thicken as it sits.
What to serve with bread sauce?
Typically it is served at a roast dinner with turkey, but it pairs nicely with most meats. Below I served it with some crispy chicken thighs, carrots and green beans.
And there we have it! A traditional British bread sauce recipe ready and waiting 🙂
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How to make Bread Sauce (Full Recipe & Video)
Bread sauce is an absolute British classic! Infused with bay leaves & cloves then finished with a cream & butter, this is the type of sauce you could eat by the spoon!
- 200g / 7oz Stale Bread, torn into very small chunks or pulsed into crumbs
- 500ml / 2 cups Milk
- 1 White Onion, peeled & quartered
- 4 Cloves
- 2 Bay Leaves
- 1/2 Whole Nutmeg, or to preference
- 1 tbsp Butter
- 2-3 tbsp Cream
- generous amounts of Salt and Black Pepper
Pierce your onion with cloves (see video) and pop in a saucepan with your bay leaves and milk. Bring to a boil and quickly reduce to a simmer before it boils over.
To infuse, you can either pop on the lid and reduce to a very gentle simmer for 20mins or turn off the heat completely and leave in a warm place for 1+ hours.
Once infused, strain out the onion/cloves and put on a very low heat. Gradually add your bread, until you have your desired consistency. It's likely you won't need all the breadcrumbs.
Grate in your nutmeg and add your seasoning to taste. Stir in your butter and cream. Serve hot!
Watch how to make it!
a) Can you freeze bread sauce?
Yup, just defrost at room temp or overnight in the fridge and warm back up in the hob. Thin out with milk as needed.
b) Make ahead bread sauce
You can either have the milk ready and infused, or make the whole thing and pop in the fridge/freezer until needed. Same as above, as the sauce continues to thicken once it's left the hob just make sure you have milk on hand to thin out as needed.
c) Stale bread for bread sauce
Stale bread gives the sauce more texture, but you can just use fresh bread. A tip to make your bread 'stale' is pop it in the oven at a very low heat until it firms up.
Based on sharing between 6 people.
For another must have recipe for your roast dinner, check out my Goose Fat Roast Potatoes!