Chicken Liver Pâté Recipe


Liver pâté is delicious and, if you buy it in the store, it can be expensive. Fortunately, it’s easy to lớn make at home, as I’ve recently discovered. Since I now know the joys of at-home liver pâté, I wanted lớn write this article so you can too! Today, let’s talk about what you need khổng lồ make liver pâté, how you make it & how to lớn eat it once you’ve completed your masterpiece!

Note: we’ll define terms shortly, but this article is not about pâté cooked in a crust or pâté cooked in a terrine. It’s basically about smooth & creamy liver pâté. Yum.

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This Liver Pâté 101 guide covers these topics:

Defining terms: What is pâté? (Official definition)Defining terms: What is pâté? (Common usage)Defining terms: What is pâté en croûte?Defining terms: What is pâté en terrine?Defining terms: What is pâté fois gras?Defining terms: What is pâté en roulade?Defining terms: What is mousseline pâté?What’s the difference between pâté & terrine?What’s the difference in cooking techniques for different types of pâtés?What is liver pâté made of?Does all pâté contain liver?Is liver pâté healthy?How khổng lồ make liver pâté.Step 1 for making liver pâté: Choose your recipeStep 2 for making liver pâté: Gather your ingredientsStep 3 for making liver pâté: Gather your toolsStep 4 for making liver pâté: Decide to soak or not to soak the liverStep 5 for making liver pâté: Prepare the liverStep 6 for making liver pâté: Sauté the aromaticsStep 7 for making liver pâté: Fry the liver Step 8 for making liver pâté: địa chỉ cửa hàng the boozeStep 9 for making liver pâté: Remove from the heatStep 10 for making liver pâté: Grind/blend/mix the liver mixture with the remaining ingredientsStep 11 for making liver pâté: Strain your pâtéStep 12 for making liver pâté: Put your pâté in the serving containers and bang out air bubblesStep 13 for making liver pâté: Cool your pâté in the fridgeStep 14 for making liver pâté: Melt some animal fat (butter, lard, duck fat)Step 15 for making liver pâté: showroom a fat layer to lớn the đứng đầu of your cooled pâtéStep 16 for making liver pâté: Chill overnight or longerStep 17 for making liver pâté: Enjoy your accomplishment!How to lớn eat liver pâté.How to serve liver pâté for guests.Easy liver pâté recipes.Liver pâté troubleshooting: What to vị if your liver pâté is too gritty.

What I love about pâté is its simplicity, though it seems complicated. Let’s get started learning about the various types of pâtés & then get into the star of today’s show: liver pâté!

Defining terms: What is pâté? (Official definition)

According lớn Garde Manger: The Art & Craft of the Cold Kitchen, Fourth Edition, The Culinary Institute of America, pâté is, “A rich forcemeat of meat, game, poultry, seafood, and/or vegetables, baked in pastry or in a mold or dish.”

To give you a sense of the gravitas of this definition, the Garde Manger is lượt thích the Bible of cold cooking for professional chefs. According to the CIA itself, “Garde Manger: The Art và Craft of the Cold Kitchen has been the market’s leading textbook for culinary students và a key reference for professional chefs since its original publication in 1999.”

While this is probably an extremely useful definition for professional chefs, it doesn’t quite hit the reality of common usage amongst regular folk.

Defining terms: What is pâté? (Common usage)

While I certainly don’t dispute the definition given by Garde Manger, I want lớn explore more common usage. In North America, the home cook và the general public tend to think of pâté as liver pâté, a smooth và creamy spread that goes well on crackers và crusty bread.

The second thing that probably comes to lớn mind with the term pâté is terrine, also known as pâté en terrine.

These are both pâtés, but it gets confusing when one name can be applied to lớn many variations. So before we get into the details of liver pâté, let’s talk about the various other definitions of pâté.

Defining terms: What is pâté en croûte?

Pàté en croûte is the French for pàté in crust. But because we steal so many culinary terms from the French, it’s common to lớn say pàté en croûte even when the rest of the words we use are English. Pàté en croûte is cooked in a terrine which is lined with pastry.

On the Forcemeat Academy site, when I’m talking about this type of pàté, I’ll say pàté en croûte instead of just pàté.

Defining terms: What is pâté en terrine?

Pàté en terrine—also just called terrine or pàté—is a pâté that’s cooked in a terrine. A terrine is a dish typically made of glass, enameled cast iron or stoneware. defines terrine as, “a paté or similar dish of chopped meat, game, fish, or vegetables baked in such a dish & served cold.”

Defining terms: What is pâté fois gras?

Pâté fois gras is pâté made from fattened duck or goose livers. In this instance, the ducks or geese are fed a lot until their livers become large and fatty.

According to lớn the article, What Is Foie Gras, and Why Is It Being Banned?, “This buttery French delicacy of fattened duck or goose liver can sell for as much as $125 for 2 pounds (0.9 kilograms).” Which means that whether you think this fattening up practice is unethical or not, the price point will likely keep pâté fois gras off your pâté rotation.

So, even though pâté fois gras is definitely a liver pâté, it’s not the type of liver pâté I’m referring to lớn when I say pâté.

Defining terms: What is pâté en roulade?

A pâté en roulade is pâté that’s rolled and wrapped in an edible or non-edible wrapping before being cooked. Non-edible wrapping includes plastic wrap, tin foil and wax paper. Edible wrapping includes sliced (and often cured) meat or fish. This is exciting because I just learned about pâté en roulade while writing this article!

Defining terms: What is mousseline pâté?

Garde Manger: The Art và Craft of the Cold Kitchen, Fourth Edition, The Culinary Institute of America, defines mousseline as “A very light forcemeat based on trắng meats or seafood lightened with cream & eggs.”

It’s more common lớn hear this dish called mousseline rather than mousseline pâté. Mousselines are one of the four main types of forcemeat. Forcemeat 101: A Beginner’s Guide to lớn Meat Emulsions.>

What’s the difference between pâté và terrine?

Now that I’ve gone to the trouble of defining several terms, here’s the bad news: Pâtés and terrines are basically the same. They’re both forcemeat dishes made of an emulsion of meat & fat. As mentioned above, a terrine is cooked in a terrine dish, which is the most technical difference.

Are Pâtés và Terrines the Same? Mostly Yes: 10 Chefs Tell You Why.>

However, as a beginner in the world of forcemeat, I find it confusing khổng lồ use these words interchangeably which is why I use the longer descriptions.

What’s the difference in cooking techniques for different types of pâtés?

Pâtés can be cooked in the oven (baking, poaching và in a water bath) và on the stovetop (steaming & frying/sautéing).

These are the types of pâtés that are generally cooked in the oven:

Pâté en croute.Pâté en terrine.Pâté en roulade (if baked).Mousseline pâté.Pâté fois gras (if cooked in a water bath).

These are the types of pâtés that can be cooked on the stovetop:

Liver pâté (this pâté is generally cooked on the stovetop).Pâté en roulade (if steamed).Pâté fois gras.

And now, after all that, let’s dig into liver pâté!

What is liver pâté made of?

Liver pâté ingredients include liver, butter, whipping cream, milk, eggs, spices, aromatics & wine, brandy or cognac. Of course, not all recipes contain all these ingredients. As you can imagine from this ingredient list, what makes liver pâté creamy và delicious is the fat from the dairy products. Mmmmm…

You can use any type of liver for liver pâté including beef, pork, chicken, rabbit, duck, goose, etc. If you don’t lượt thích the taste of liver, start with poultry liver for a milder flavour. I’m not a fan hâm mộ of liver (but I love pâté) so I stick with chicken livers rather than trying a stronger-flavoured beef liver.

Do all pâtés contain liver?

Pâtés that are also known as terrine and pâté en terrine may contain liver but many of these recipes vì chưng not contain liver. The pâté we’re talking about here—liver pâté—always contains liver as it’s the main ingredient.

Does Terrine Contain Liver? Yes và No; It’s Up to You!>

Is liver pâté healthy?

Pâté is made with whole foods, it’s high in fat & nutrient-dense liver. When it comes lớn health, people determine healthiness by looking khổng lồ their preferred nutrition dogma. If you follow a low-carb, keto, carnivore, whole foods way of eating, you’ll probably think liver pâté is healthy. If you follow governmental health guidelines like the Canada Food Guide, MyPlate (the USDA food guide), the Eatwell Guide (Britain’s food guide) or the World Health Organization’s food guide, you’d say liver pâté is not healthy due lớn it’s high saturated fat content.

As the proprietress of Forcemeat Academy, I stand with the folks who promote a whole food, animal-based way of eating. Your decision is up lớn you.

Is Forcemeat Healthy? 16 Answers According to Popular Diets. Scroll down lớn the over for the danh mục of folks going against the grain lớn help people feel good và reduce medications with low carb eating and animal foods. Also, a free, no-strings-attached infographic!>

How lớn make liver pâté

Okay, let’s get started on the road lớn creamy & delicious liver pâté that even appeals to people who don’t like liver!

Step 1 for making liver pâté: Choose your recipe

Look for a recipe that matches your style and sensibilities. For me, that’s a simple one with not too many ingredients. If you like complexity, you’ll look for a different type of recipe than I will và that’s okay.

But, if you’re like me và think that eating liver on its own is disgusting, I encourage you lớn look for a recipe that calls for a lot of butter and/or whipping cream/crème fraîche, plus a strong flavouring agent like wine, brandy, cognac or even orange juice or zest. These ingredients tame the liver flavour & the fatty dairy products give pâté the luxurious creaminess that many people desire in a pâté—including me.

As for how much butter, it should be an amount that makes you go, “That’s a lot.” lượt thích for every pound of chicken liver, are you adding at least half that amount in butter? If yes, you’re on the right track.

A cảnh báo about whipping cream: in this type of stovetop pâté, it’s less common to lớn find recipes that hotline for epic amounts of whip cream, as you would in a liver mousse pâté that’s cooked in a terrine & a water bath. If you find a recipe that calls for a large amount of whip cream (at least one cup), it may also gọi for gelatin to help mix that much liquid. I’ll share an example of this type of recipe in the recipe section at the end.

Step 2 for making liver pâté: Gather your ingredients

Before starting, lay out all the ingredients you’ll need for your recipe on the counter so they’re all easy khổng lồ reach at the right time. Unlike with many pâté en terrine recipes, you don’t have to lớn worry about keeping your ingredients chilled with liver pâtés you make on the stovetop.

If you only eat liver in its pâté form, look for how much liver your recipe calls for and buy that amount of liver, so you don’t have leftovers. Or buy multiples of that amount that you can divide và freeze for later. A lot of liver pâté recipes điện thoại tư vấn for around a pound of liver so if you’re at the butcher siêu thị and you forget what the recipe says, just buy a pound and it’ll probably be okay.

Step 3 for making liver pâté: Gather your tools

To finish the prep work for your liver pâté recipe, assemble all the tools you need on your counter, as space permits.

Equipment you’ll probably need for making liver pâté:

Sharp knife.Cutting board.Bowls.Spatula.Mixing device such as food processor, immersion blender, Magic Bullet or blender.Frying pan or large pot for sautéing.Utensils.Measuring spoons và cups.Kitchen scale.Strainer or tamis.

Step 4 for making liver pâté: Decide lớn soak or not khổng lồ soak the liver

Some people advocate soaking liver khổng lồ tone down the liver taste. I’ve read recommendations that include soaking the liver in water and lemon juice, milk và salt or brandy. I don’t know if soaking is necessary or not. I’ve tried soaking chicken liver in water and lemon juice, và I couldn’t tell if it made a difference.

If you don’t love the taste of liver on its own, and you choose a recipe with a lot of butter, as I recommended earlier, I’m guessing the soaking part is unnecessary. However, if you’re really curious, try the same recipe twice, once soaking the liver và once not bothering. I’d love to hear your observations about this experiment!

Step 5 for making liver pâté: Prepare the liver

Even though I just said soaking liver is probably not necessary, you vị need to lớn give it a rinse. I throw it in a bowl of water & change the water a couple of times at the beginning of the prep work. Then I just leave it in the bowl of water & take pieces out one at a time to trim.

To trim the liver, cut off any fatty & sinewy or veiny bits, cut the liver into smallish chunks (like in half for chicken livers) & set the prepped liver aside. When I first started making liver pâté, I was more anal retentive about this part. But since I put my liver pâté recipes through a strainer (see section 11 below), I don’t have to be as picky up front as the strainer takes care of that for me.

This part is a little gross but not as gross as cutting beef tongue or prairie oysters. You’ll be okay.

Step 6 for making liver pâté: Sauté the aromatics

Here’s where you’ll have khổng lồ start paying attention to the instructions in your recipe, but they generally start out with sautéing the spices, herbs, onions, etc. In the pan. Some recipes will call for vegetable oil to vì this work; you can replace this with butter, lard, duck fat, etc.

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This sautéing will only take a couple of minutes if you’re only using herbs and spices. If you’re using onions, fry them up first and throw in the herbs and/or spices at the end for a minute.

Step 7 for making liver pâté: Fry the liver

Throw the liver into the pan & spread it out. After a minute or two, flip it over và get ready for the next step. This cooking the liver step is tricky because you don’t want khổng lồ over cook it because it makes the pâté gritty. But you don’t want lớn undercook it, or your pâté will taste “livery” & that’s not what I want! I learned this the hard way.

So, basically a couple of minutes of frying.

Step 8 for making liver pâté: add the booze

Now it’s time to lớn toss the booze, orange juice/zest, etc. Into the pan and—with gentle heat—finish cooking the livers until ‘just pink’ inside.

Talia Lavin, in her Bon Appetit article called, How to lớn Make Pâté at trang chủ and Be a Person Who Eats Liver, explains how lớn achieve this, “Let the livers brown in the liquid, turning them over with a spatula so that both sides are an even color, & the insides remain slightly pink, about two to three minutes on each side. The aroma in your kitchen should be sharp, meaty, with an alliaceous kick…Turn off the burner and let the livers stand in the liquid for a few minutes, until the liquid has stopped bubbling và cooled slightly…My experiments have indicated that this is the perfect amount of time before the next step.”

When your liver is cooked khổng lồ perfection, it may seem lượt thích there’s still a lot of liquid left in the pot, depending on how much your recipe called for. Don’t worry about that because it will all get mixed into the liver and should be okay if you’re following a good recipe.

Step 9 for making liver pâté: Remove from the heat

This one is easy: just take your pot off the stove và let it cool down a bit while you phối up your blending equipment.

Step 10 for making liver pâté: Grind/blend/mix the liver mixture with the remaining ingredients

Now, at this step you’ll have ingredients in the pot và the rest of the ingredients which could be butter, whipping cream, gelatin, milk, etc. Follow the recipe instructions, of course, but the gist of it is simply mixing the remaining ingredients together until your pâté is smooth.

Many of the big butter recipes (yum) điện thoại tư vấn for gradually adding the butter cubes to your pâté as you phối it up. This is so your butter doesn’t melt much before being mixed in which only applies if your phối is still hot off the stove. I can’t remember where I read this or why it’s exactly important, so I apologize!

Lots of recipes call for using a food processor at this stage. I don’t have one so I use an immersion blender which works fine though I’m guessing a food processor would be easier. With the immersion blender, I have to lớn whiz (wiz?) it up in batches.

Step 11 for making liver pâté: Strain your pâté

If you’ve read any of my other articles, you’ll know I like to keep things simple và avoid superfluous steps. The first time I saw the instruction lớn strain my pâté, I wanted to lớn rebel as it seemed like more work than necessary. But I wanted khổng lồ follow the recipe so I did it—under duress, ha ha.

My pâté was so smooth that I became a believer in straining! Now I think of straining my pâté as an essential and unskippable step in the process. Especially because I’m a little laissez-faire about trimming the liver bits.

I use a mesh colander or a small mesh strainer, lượt thích the ones in the picture below. (The mini strainer I actually use is a bit bigger than the one shown but it was dirty when I took the picture.) The base on my colander makes this a bit fussy to lớn use because things get stuck in there.

You can also use a tamis which is a fine-meshed strainer that looks like a drum. I haven’t tried one, but my not-so-fine-meshed solutions work a-okay & I encourage you khổng lồ use what you have on hand. You can always upgrade later.

One thing to lớn keep in mind … if you use fried onions or big chunks of sage for flavouring và they don’t get blended into oblivion, you’ll thua thảm these chunky bits in the straining process.


Step 12 for making liver pâté: Put your pâté in the serving containers và bang out air bubbles

Plop your pâté into small serving containers like mason jars, stoneware or Pyrex dishes. I recommend using smaller containers, in a form size where it’s pretty much guaranteed you’ll eat the whole container within a couple of days. This means you won’t have a big batch of pâté sitting in the fridge getting exposed to lớn air (and speeding up the going-bad process).

I use one cup, wide-mouth mason jars và quarter-cup, regular-mouth mason jars for my pâté & some small Pyrex containers. They’re also great because you can freeze your liver pâté right in the containers.

Once your pâté is in the containers, gently push it down with a spatula and, still gently, bang the bottom of each container on the counter lớn push out air bubbles. I bởi vì the banging on a cork trivet on the counter as that seems better than hitting the counter directly. You could also put down a tea towel to lớn soften the blows.

Step 13 for making liver pâté: Cool your pâté in the fridge

Put your containers of liver pâté in the fridge to lớn cool. Again, follow the recipe but half an hour or so should be good. This step is from one of the recipes I’ve used (can’t remember which one) & I’m not sure if it’s truly essential. Try for yourself and let me know!

Step 14 for making liver pâté: Melt some animal fat (butter, lard, duck fat)

This melted animal fat will provide a fat seal at the vị trí cao nhất of your pâté container; this keeps air out of the meat & preserves the pâté. Many recipes hotline for a butter topping, but this isn’t my favourite because I often eat pâté right out of the fridge and the butter is super hard. Which means when you put your knife through it, the butter cracks instead of just relenting lượt thích lard on the top of rillettes. If you also prefer a softer fat, you can use lard or melted bacon grease (which is basically lard with a bit more flavour).

Experiment và see what you like best! In this situation of butter vs lard as a liver pâté topping, there is no wrong answer!

Anyway, this step is just melting the fat gently.

Step 15 for making liver pâté: địa chỉ cửa hàng a fat layer to the vị trí cao nhất of your cooled pâté

Now take your melted animal fat of choice & pour it over your pâté in a generous layer, around half a centimetre thick. You don’t want khổng lồ be able lớn see the pâté underneath. This pouring over is a bit of a rough and tumble method. Alternately, you could also scoop up the fat in a spoon & then put it over the pâté. This is slower than the rough and tumble method.

Okay, now I remember why step 15 calls for cooling the pâté first. It’s so you can use the rough và tumble method of pouring the fat over the pâté. If the pâté is still warm, the melted fat can disrupt the surface of the pâté which makes the pâté get mixed in a little with the fat. That’s happened to lớn me. When it’s chilled, the melted fat sits on top and gently oozes into any cracks.

Of course, don’t go wild by pouring the fat out of the pot from two feet above the mason jars; this is too rough and tumble!

Alternately, you could make a jelly layer out of port (etc.) and gelatin khổng lồ keep the pâté away from air.

Step 16 for making liver pâté: Chill overnight or longer

Now put that pâté back in the fridge lớn chill. Once it’s completely cooled, take the pâté out of the fridge, put the lids on the containers và put it back in the fridge. (If you put the lids on before the pâté is completely chilled, it can cause condensation to gather on the lid which then drips back into your beautiful pâté lượt thích a crime.)

It may be hard lớn wait a whole day for the pâté but this time in the fridge gives the flavours time khổng lồ mingle, which some say makes the pâté taste better.

On a pâté troubleshooting post at Reddit/AskCulinary, user quodo1 asks, “Did you leave it khổng lồ rest for a few days? I know my first pâté didn’t taste that great at first, but after a few days, it really became delicious.”

Step 17 for making liver pâté: Enjoy your accomplishment!

While you’re watching the clock và counting down khổng lồ pâté time, take a moment khổng lồ clean up the mess in the kitchen and enjoy the accomplishment of making liver pâté at home. You now have a new skill that will inject nutrient dense food into your system & impress dinner guests!

Good job!

How lớn eat liver pâté

When it’s time khổng lồ eat your pâté, you can choose whatever method you lượt thích best, including spooning it right from the jar into your mouth. I know this method is possible because I’ve done it with a seasonal và kosher chicken liver mousse I bought from Sanagan’s Meat Locker, my local butcher shop.

Great ways lớn eat pâté:

On a baguette.On toasted brioche.On cucumber slices.On crackers.With crudités (fancy name for raw vegetables).On boiled eggs.On a sandwich.Stuffed in pasta.Wrapped in prosciutto (if you don’t eat grains or veggies).With one of the above methods and a bit of jam or marmalade.As part of a charcuterie board.As part of a ploughman’s lunch.

How khổng lồ serve liver pâté for guests

Remember that if you’re a regular person like me, with regular dinner guests, your guests will already be impressed that you made pàté so you won’t need to lớn fuss too much more.

Assuming your guests eat bread, slice up a baguette và serve it with the pàté, some cheese, olives, gherkins & jam. Maybe throw in some devilled eggs and sliced meats. You can put all this on a platter or cutting board and stick a xinh tươi little knife in the pàté so your guests can serve themselves. This approach is a mix between a charcuterie platter and a ploughman’s lunch.

Easy liver pâté recipes

I’ve found a bunch of easy liver pâté recipes in the last year and I’d like to giới thiệu a few with you now.

Chicken Liver Parfait from World Food Tour – This recipe is based on Jamie Oliver’s chicken liver pâté recipe. I consulted this recipe và the next one lớn create the chicken liver pâté và it turned out great. So great that I regretted promising khổng lồ give two of my neighbours pâté from the next batch I made. I know, selfish, but I wanted to eat it ALL.

Homemade chicken liver pâté from Garlic Matters – Another one based on the masterpiece by Jamie Oliver.

Chicken Liver Pâté by David Leibowitz – This one is inspired by Michael Ruhlman and I look forward khổng lồ trying it. I tried the jelly recipe that’s included here on a chicken liver terrine but it didn’t turn out great as I didn’t địa chỉ the sugar and used regular wine instead of port … so did I really even try his recipe? Ha! Also, David Leibowitz’s site is a great read.

Chicken Liver Mousse Pâté with Port Gelée by The Daily Brine – This is on my must-try list as I’m a sucker for mousse. Plus, they tell you how khổng lồ make this mousse either on the stovetop or in the oven. This is the recipe I mentioned earlier that uses whipping cream & gelatin, which is uncommon with stovetop liver pâté recipes, as far as I’ve seen.

And I’ve lost one that I really enjoyed. It had about a tablespoon of orange zest in it và since I put my raw chicken hands all over the orange, I squeezed out the juice to lớn use in the pâté instead of serving the contaminated orange khổng lồ my husband. All that khổng lồ say, a little orange zest và juice is a great cảm biến for liver pâtés.

Liver pâté troubleshooting: What to vì if your pâté is too gritty

If you’re pâté is too gritty, you can:

Get into your time machine và go back lớn the moments just before you overcooked the liver. Then remove the liver from the heat & carry on.Put it through your strainer. If you’ve already done this, you could try using a finer-mesh strainer (this is where a tamis comes in handy).Put it on a sandwich so the grittiness is less noticeable.


And that’s how you make delicious, nutritious & luxurious liver pâté without breaking a sweat! I hope you’ve enjoyed this article and that liver pâté is in your near future.