Creamy peppercorn sauce has a lovely rich warmth to it that goes so well with a juicy steak.
You can make it in about 10 minutes, so it can be bubbling away while your steak is resting.
Personally, I love it over chips (without the steak) for a comforting weekend lunch!

Peppercorn sauce being spooned over a cooked steak on a blue plate with green beans
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A classic steak sauce made with black peppercorns, cream and brandy for a lovely, rich sauce that’s just right for a date night or a special occasion.

We like lots of peppercorns in our sauce, and although it does seem like a lot, the harshness of the pepper cooks out and becomes milder.

📋 What do we need?

A table with all of the ingredients set out on the top
  • Black Peppercorns You can also use green peppercorns for a milder flavour
  • Cream Always use double (heavy) cream rather than single or light cream to ensure a luscious sauce that won’t split.
  • Brandy Any brandy, cognac or marsala will be fine, but if you don’t want to use alcohol, then you can leave it out or add an extra spoonful of Worcestershire sauce.
  • Stock We used beef stock but any good strong stock will work.
  • Shallots You can also use brown or white onions, chopped finely.

📺 Watch how to make it

Full recipe with detailed steps in the recipe card at the end of this post.

  1. Place the peppercorns in a small bag and crush lightly (or use a mortar and pestle)
  2. Sauté the shallots, salt and peppercorns in butter and oil until softened
  3. Add the brandy, then the stock and Worcestershire sauce and boil rapidly for five minutes
  4. Stir in the cream and any pan juices and bring to a simmer, then turn off the heat and serve.

👩‍🍳PRO TIP Although it sounds like a lot of pepper, the flavour of the pepper cooks out and becomes milder. You may even want to add MORE pepper. Simply taste the finished sauce  and stir in more freshly ground pepper to taste, before serving

I love chips dipped in this peppercorn sauce, very decadent and delicious, and oh so moreish, a guilty pleasure that’s for sure.

Do you like to serve yours with anything other than steak? I’d love to hear in the comments.

A tall image of a pan of peppercorn sauce being stirred with a metal spoon

🍽️ What to serve it with


Peppercorn sauce poured over a perfectly seared steak is the stuff of dreams, it just needs some of my homemade oven chips and I really am in heaven

A tall image of a cooked steak with peppercorn sauce, served with green beans on a blue plate. There is a fork on the plate.

🍲 More fantastic Steak Sauces

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4.86 from 14 votes

Peppercorn Sauce Recipe

Creamy peppercorn sauce has a lovely rich warmth to it that goes so well with a juicy steak. Ready in 10 minutes!
Prep Time: 2 minutes
Cook Time: 8 minutes
Total Time: 10 minutes
Servings: 4
Course: Sauces
Cuisine: French

Ingredients

  • 4 tsp black peppercorns
  • 1 tbsp (15g) unsalted butter
  • ½ tbsp sunflower oil if you’ve just cooked steak to go with this sauce, use the oils/meat-drippings that are left in the pan, instead of the sunflower oil and butter.
  • 2 shallots peeled and chopped finely
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • 3 tbsp brandy
  • 180 ml (3/4 cup) beef stock
  • 1 tsp Worcestershire sauce
  • 120 ml (1/2 cup) double (heavy) cream
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Instructions 

  • Place 3 teaspoons of the peppercorns in a zip-lock back, and roughly crush with a rolling pin (or use a pestle and mortar if you have one). Don’t bash too much – we want a bit of texture, rather than a fine powder. Put to one side.
    4 tsp black peppercorns
  • Add the butter and oil to a frying pan and heat over a medium heat.
    1 tbsp (15g) unsalted butter, ½ tbsp sunflower oil
  • When the butter has melted, add the shallots, salt, the crushed peppers from earlier, and the remaining 1 teaspoon of whole peppercorns. Cook for 2-3 minutes until the shallots are just starting to soften.
    2 shallots, ¼ tsp salt
  • Add the brandy to the pan, bubble for 1 minute, then add in the stock and Worcestershire sauce. Bring to the boil and simmer rapidly for 5 minutes until reduced by half.
    3 tbsp brandy, 180 ml (3/4 cup) beef stock, 1 tsp Worcestershire sauce
  • Stir in the cream (if you have any juices from resting your steak, add them to the pan now too). Bring back to a simmer, then turn off the heat.
    120 ml (1/2 cup) double (heavy) cream
  • Serve over steak.

Video

Notes

Can I make it ahead?
Yes, allow the sauce to cool completely then store in the fridge for up to two days. Reheat on a low heat, stirring until piping hot.
Ingredient swaps
  • Want it without the alcohol? Leave out the brandy and add an extra teaspoon of Worcestershire sauce.
  • Try green peppercorns instead of black for a milder flavour
Nutritional information is per serving. This recipe serves 4.

Nutrition

Calories: 193kcal | Carbohydrates: 6g | Protein: 2g | Fat: 16g | Saturated Fat: 9g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 5g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 49mg | Sodium: 439mg | Potassium: 140mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 554IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 47mg | Iron: 1mg

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

Some of the links in this post may be affiliate links – which means if you buy the product I get a small commission (at no extra cost to you). If you do buy, then thank you! That’s what helps us to keep Kitchen Sanctuary running. The nutritional information provided is approximate and can vary depending on several factors. For more information please see our Terms & Conditions.

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Hi, I'm Nicky and I love to cook! I want to share with you my favourite, delicious family friendly recipes. I want to inspire you to create fantastic food for your family every day.

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Comments

  1. David Kirk says:

    5 stars
    Really love this recipe. Simple but amazingly tasty. Did it first without the brandy ( because I didn’t have any) but did it tonight with it and it does make a difference, providing you cook the alcohol out. Had it with steak but would work equally as well with pork chops.
    Top drawer!!

  2. Annika Corley says:

    5 stars
    Made this last night. I used the single malt I had on hand rather than brandy. It was delicious! Many thanks.

  3. David Clinton says:

    5 stars
    I wasnt willing to buy cognac or brandy just for sauce, so i splashed a little zinfandel in there and it was delicious!

  4. Donna says:

    4 stars
    Green peppercorn sauce is sensational over grilled fresh tuna steaks Trust me on this!!!

  5. Amparo Ayestaran says:

    5 stars
    Finally one recipe for peppercorn sauce I can make
    Thank you

  6. Hannelore says:

    I’ll give it a 5 star and Thank you.

  7. Michelle says:

    4 stars
    This sauce was delicious. I used it on pork chops instead of steak. I gave it 4 stars instead of 5 because that last tsp of whole peppercorns was just too much. I will crush all next time. That is the only thing I will change otherwise it was great.