Hand-Selected Recipes and Stories Straight to Your Inbox

Chicken Liver Mousse

Chicken Liver Mousse

Serves: 6 to 8

Hands On Time: 

Total Time: 


1 cup (2 sticks) plus 3 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 pound chicken livers, cleaned and patted dry
Kosher salt
2 shallots, minced
1 Granny Smith apple, peeled and finely diced
3 sprigs fresh thyme
4 cloves garlic, minced
3/4 cup bourbon
1/4 cup dry sherry
Toasted bread, for serving


In small saucepan over medium heat, melt 1 cup of the butter until the milk solids have separated and lightly browned on the bottom of the pot, 5 to 7 minutes. Remove from the heat.

Heat a large cast iron skillet over medium heat. While the pan is heating, season the livers with salt. Melt the remaining 3 tablespoons butter in the skillet and add the livers, making sure the livers are spaced evenly. Cook until the livers have started to brown on the first side, 2 to 4 minutes. Flip and cook until the livers are medium rare, 30 to 60 seconds. Transfer to a bowl.

Add the shallots and apple and cook until the shallots are soft and translucent, about 2 minutes. Add the thyme and garlic and cook until the garlic is fragrant, about 1 minute. Turn off the heat and add the bourbon and sherry.  Return the heat to medium and cook, stirring occasionally, until the liquid has reduced by half, 3 to 5 minutes.

Transfer the livers and the shallot mixture to a food processor. Process until the mixture is smooth. With the motor running, pour in the brown butter, and continue to process until fully incorporated. Season to taste with salt and transfer to a serving bowl. Serve warm or chilled with toasted bread.

About the recipe

If you’ve ever been curious to try chicken livers for the first time, this recipe for chicken liver mousse is the perfect place to start. Don’t be squeamish if you see a little bit of pink in the finished livers; cooking them beyond medium gives them a grainy texture and that funky flavor many of us associate with bad liver experiences. You can always pass the mousse through a mesh strainer if you prefer a smoother, creamier texture, “like buttah.”