This delicious lemon caper sauce takes your meal to the next level! Great for salmon, shrimp, chicken, pasta: you name it.
Want to take your dinner to the next level? Try this Lemon Caper Sauce! This magical meld is so full of savory, salty, buttery goodness, you’ll want to swim in it. Drape it over a piece of grilled or baked fish or chicken, and you won’t want each bite to end. It’s full of big Mediterranean flair and it takes just a few minutes to whip up. And it’s not too terrible for you, either. This is our favorite trick for making dinner taste fancy restaurant quality meal in minutes.
Reading: how to make lemon caper sauce
Ingredients in lemon caper sauce
This lemon caper sauce has a very short ingredient list and takes just a few minutes to put together. In fact, reading about it might take longer than the steps to make it! Here’s what you’ll need for this simple caper butter sauce:
- Jarred capers (see below)
- Salted butter
What are capers, exactly?
Trust us: capers are some sort of kitchen magic. They bring the best salty and savory flavor to foods, and they’re especially great for vegetarian and vegan dishes because they taste meaty. What are they, exactly?
Capers are a berry of the caper bush that’s native to the Mediterranean. They’re round and dark green gray, about the size of a peppercorn. You’ll find them in Italian and Mediterranean recipes. Capers taste tangy, briny and salty, and add an incredible amount of flavor to any dish.
Where to find capers in the grocery
Capers are served pickled, so they’re always sold in a jar. It’s a long and thin jar, and after you buy it once, you’ll recognize it instantly. Find capers for this lemon caper sauce in the condiments near the olives at the grocery store. Or check in the international aisle near the Italian products. Other recipes that use capers? Try this Roasted Eggplant Pasta or Eggplant Caponata.
How to make lemon caper sauce: some tips
This lemon caper sauce is so simple, it’s just a matter of melting butter and cooking for 3 minutes. Here are a few quick tips on the method:
- Use salted butter. It has a noticeably more robust flavor than unsalted.
- Add a whole garlic clove, then remove it. This butter sauce is infused with garlic instead of sauteed with it. All you do is add a garlic clove and then discard after cooking: no mincing necessary!
- Use lemon juice and zest. Using the zest gives it a depth that’s not there with just juice. We like to use a microplane for zesting: it makes quick work of it.
Want more with lemon? Try these 15 Zesty Lemon Recipes.
5 ways to serve lemon caper sauce
Here’s the fun part: how to serve this sauce! This one works in so many ways, it’s hard to know where to start. But our favorite way is as a sauce for salmon…so let’s start there! Here are our top ways to serve lemon caper sauce:
- Salmon: This makes an especially good sauce for salmon: pair with Oven Baked Salmon, Broiled Salmon, Perfect Grilled Salmon or Grilled Salmon in Foil
- Tilapia: Try it with Easy Grilled Tilapia.
- Cod: It’s fantastic with Pan Fried Cod, Baked Cod, or Perfect Grilled Cod.
- Shrimp: Serve it with Easy Baked Shrimp or Sauteed Shrimp.
- Pasta: This sauce would make enough for 8 ounces pasta.
This lemon caper sauce recipe is…
Vegetarian and gluten-free.
More recipes with capers
Got a jar of capers to use up? Here are some of our favorite ways to use them:
Read more: how to make a cheese sauce for mac n cheese
- French Potato Salad or Dill Potato Salad Capers add intensely savory flavor to potato salad! Pair them with zingy red potatoes and fresh herbs.
- Roasted Eggplant Pasta Meatless pasta is another great place for capers to shine! This eggplant pasta is flavor-packed with roasted eggplant & zesty marinara sauce.
- Paprika Goat Cheese Spread Capers add great flavor to dips. This goat cheese spread takes happy hour to the next level in 5 minutes!
- Italian Vegan Pasta Salad Capers round out the Italian flair in this pasta salad, helping to add cheesy flavor without the dairy.