Chicken Liver Pâté

So, it seems as though the time has come to accept that Christmas is just around the corner. The idea of beginning to celebrate a public holiday more than a couple of weeks in advance of its arrival has always sickened me somewhat. Alas, these days the build-up to such events begins before the preceding holiday. It has reached the point at which we always seem to be celebrating something; there should be a law which restricts the sale of themed paraphernalia to its relevant month. There is a distinct possibility that we shall soon be celebrating Christmas a year in advance.

However, there are some benefits which arise due to my reluctant acceptance of the holiday season; one of them being delicious Christmas-themed recipes. There can be no denying that the month of Santa really is the ultimate period of self-inflicted gluttony and potentially damaging food related misdemeanours. As such, I shall bring you a small host of recipes traditionally followed during the latter 2-3 weeks of the year. Alas, my family recipe for Christmas pudding was going to grace the fold of FrugalFeeding, but it has been left a little late as there would be no time for them to mature. It’s a jolly good job that grandmother has made at least 5 of the little wonders already.

I must admit that this was the first time I had ever willingly cooked, or eaten, offal. However, the flavour of the chicken livers pleasantly surprised me. Of course, they have a slightly odd texture and perhaps aren’t something I’d want to eat whole, but when blended that hardly matters. The taste is not overpowering either, since the recipe contains more than a little cream and butter. This makes for a wonderfully smooth and elegantly tasty festive treat, perfect on crackers before or after one’s main meal. This pâté is also incredibly simple, making it an ideal recipe for Christmas morning.

Got some leftover liver hanging around? Check out my recipes for Duck Liver and Onions and Duck Liver on Toast…

Chicken Liver Pâté

Makes 3-4 small pots


• 200g butter

• 225g trimmed chicken livers

• 2 tbsp brandy

• 1 ½ tsp chopped fresh sage

• 1 clove of garlic

• 150ml double cream

• Salt and pepper


1. Melt 40g of the butter in a large frying pan. Add the livers and cook on a medium heat until browned all over, the inside should still be pink. Food process until they have the consistency of a paste.

2. Stir the brandy into the frying pan, scrape away any leftover liver from the bottom and add to the food processor along with the sage, garlic and 100g of butter, process until smooth. Add the cream and season well, process once more. Spoon the pâté into small pots and leave in the fridge to set.

3. Melt the remaining butter in a saucepan, spoon it over the surface on the set pâté. Garnish each pot with a leaf of sage and return to the fridge in order to let the butter set. This is delicious served with a little melba toast.

Cost: As we all know, chicken livers are incredibly cheap. There seems to be some kind of cultural taboo surrounding the ingestion of offal, therefore it is not particularly popular. If something isn’t popular, it’s price will stay low. As such, 400g of chicken liver cost me around 90p, which was a complete and utter bargain. This meant that the entire recipe cost only £2 to make, not bad for something which sells for a premium in the supermarket.


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57 comments on “Chicken Liver Pâté

  1. cookinginsens
    December 13, 2011 at 10:45 am

    Good one frugal! By the way, you could also salt, pepper and dust with flour the chicken livers. Deep fry and dip into a piquant sauce. Offal is good! And usually cheap.

    • bamasteelmagnolia
      December 13, 2011 at 4:13 pm

      This cause me to smile rather large. Your method is a true “Southern” cooking. My mother used to prepared chicken liver this way when I was a young child. I have to admit I never acquired the love of chicken livers that she had 😉

    • frugalfeeding
      December 15, 2011 at 11:42 pm

      Thanks, Sens. My mum does something similar, only without the sauce!

  2. RecipeAdaptors
    December 13, 2011 at 11:51 am

    I love pâté!

  3. The Opinionated Foodie
    December 13, 2011 at 12:18 pm

    This does seem quite easy and quick. I may have to try it. Many people in my family love chicken livers, but we aren’t quite the pate sort. It would be fun to try this. Thanks for sharing!

    • frugalfeeding
      December 15, 2011 at 11:41 pm

      Oh yes, it is very! Give it a go, I wouldn’t say we were the pate types either…

  4. Dawnies Kitchen
    December 13, 2011 at 1:04 pm

    I totally agree with you in every aspect! Why must every celebration be manipulated as a money-making tool aimed at squeezing every last

    • Dawnies Kitchen
      December 13, 2011 at 1:06 pm

      Oops, on a rather bumpy train and pressed send before I meant to! Anyway, I won’t continue my rant, but like you, I do enjoy cooking for Christmas and this pate looks like a ‘must try’! A good option for a home made present too!

      • frugalfeeding
        December 15, 2011 at 11:52 pm

        Woops! I’m glad you agree :D. You should give it a go. It’d be so nice for Christmas morning,

  5. Michelle
    December 13, 2011 at 1:21 pm

    I adore chicken livers. Alas, my husband hates them. I may have to sneak this in during the holidays when he’s not looking! (Lovely photos, too.)

    • frugalfeeding
      December 15, 2011 at 11:41 pm

      Sneak it in, he’ll never be able to tell!

  6. Food, Flowers, Herbs and Life!
    December 13, 2011 at 1:49 pm

    When my son was a young four years old he loved chicken liver pate – sadly now he doesn’t! I haven’t made it in years!

    • frugalfeeding
      December 15, 2011 at 11:41 pm

      That’s a shame! You should get back into it.

  7. Yinzerella
    December 13, 2011 at 2:04 pm

    I love pate and have always wanted to make it at home. I might not be able to do it before Xmas, but this may be a 2012 treat. Thanks!

    • frugalfeeding
      December 15, 2011 at 11:40 pm

      Let me know how it goes, if it goes. It is a real treat.

  8. thecompletecookbook
    December 13, 2011 at 2:22 pm

    FABULOUS recipe!
    🙂 Mandy

  9. Alli
    December 13, 2011 at 3:38 pm

    I love pate but I never get a chance to make it at home because I’m the only one who eats it…not that that’s a bad thing, just that much pate on a regular basis probably isn’t a good idea!

    • frugalfeeding
      December 15, 2011 at 11:52 pm

      That’s such a shame :(. This one is extremely rich, so it probably isn’t… which is also a shame.

  10. daisy
    December 13, 2011 at 3:45 pm

    Wow! Looks fabulous and sounds easy enough to do. I love this.

    • frugalfeeding
      December 15, 2011 at 11:39 pm

      Thanks! yes, it’s very simple indeed.

      • daisy
        January 15, 2012 at 12:28 am

        Made chicken live paté today thanks to your inspiration. My version will be up sometime tomorrow. THANKS for posting this. It gave me the push to make it. Yummy!!

  11. jo-lyn
    December 13, 2011 at 4:02 pm

    hhhmmmm i may have to try this, we like braunschwager (sp) which i believe to be the beef version or at least something very similar…

    • frugalfeeding
      December 15, 2011 at 11:39 pm

      Ah, I’ve never heard of that. I’ll look it up. You should try it, you won’t be disappointed.

  12. bamasteelmagnolia
    December 13, 2011 at 4:14 pm

    This just might be one pate I’d be willing to try:)

  13. Rufus' Food and Spirits Guide
    December 13, 2011 at 4:24 pm

    Oh this looks great. I was just thinking how we don’t bake a whole lot and don’t have a lot of posts on cookies and sweets for Christmas. Gotta say, I’d rather have pate!

    • frugalfeeding
      December 15, 2011 at 11:38 pm

      One can have too many sweet things, so I think I might too.

  14. Huy-zer
    December 13, 2011 at 5:10 pm

    Offal is so under-appreciated. Whenever I brine a chicken I usually take the opportunity to throw in a package each of chicken livers, hearts and gizzards, then fish them out and freeze. The livers are delicious sauteed in butter and the hearts and gizzards are awesome tossed in bread crumbs and deep fried.

    • frugalfeeding
      December 15, 2011 at 11:51 pm

      It really is, which is why it’s so cheap…. I love that it’s so cheap though. That sounds great. Perhaps I’ll do that sometime in the future.

  15. promenadeplantings
    December 13, 2011 at 5:16 pm

    Frugal, that’s a fab recipe, I’ve never got round to making pate before, all the recipes I’ve seen have been very long winded. Yours sounds simple and tasty. Thanks

    • frugalfeeding
      December 15, 2011 at 11:38 pm

      Thanks so much! It is so simple, you should try it!

  16. ceciliag
    December 13, 2011 at 8:36 pm

    i love pate, this is a great recipe. c

    • frugalfeeding
      December 15, 2011 at 11:34 pm

      Yes! Good to see so many pate lovers on wordpress.

  17. countrywoodsmoke
    December 13, 2011 at 10:00 pm

    A big fan of pate too. And chicken livers are delicious, a real treat, i love them quickly fried and served on good toast. Will give this one a go for sure.

    • frugalfeeding
      December 15, 2011 at 11:34 pm

      Jolly good! That sounds nice too, though I’ve never tried them whole.

  18. Gaby
    December 14, 2011 at 2:40 am

    Funny thing, I’ve never related pate with Xmas, I guess it’s not the tradition where I come from. I do love it and used to have it at breakfast smeared on French bread.

    • frugalfeeding
      December 15, 2011 at 11:34 pm

      Really? I’ve always related them, strange :). That sounds like an amazing breakfast.

  19. Pierotucci
    December 14, 2011 at 10:18 am

    Chicken Liver patè is a traditional plate here in Tuscany – they call it crostini neri (black spread) and I adore it. In Florence they add two special ingredients, which though may up the price, do add to the flavor. Chopped capers and anchovies!! Normally the Tuscans will take two to three day old bread, dip it in either chicken broth or better yet … brandy / vin santo – so as to soften the bread a little bit and then spread the patè. You will always find this on the table for each and every holiday and Sunday lunch.

    • frugalfeeding
      December 15, 2011 at 11:49 pm

      Oh awesome. That sounds delicious! I think anchovies are fairly pricey. I love the way the Italians eat!

  20. leaf (the indolent cook)
    December 14, 2011 at 12:28 pm

    I’m all for offal. This looks really rich, I don’t know if I can have too much at a time but I’ll probably enjoy it!

    • frugalfeeding
      December 15, 2011 at 11:48 pm

      Me too now! It’s more of a treat, no one should eat too much pate at once.

  21. mamafritz
    December 14, 2011 at 8:28 pm

    yum! this looks awesome, and i really love any recipe that begins with 200g of butter! 🙂 i bet the brandy is a really nice touch in this. thanks for the recipe!

    • frugalfeeding
      December 15, 2011 at 11:33 pm

      Thanks! All the best ones do. Yes, one must have a little brandy at this time of the year anyway.

  22. whilehewasout
    December 14, 2011 at 9:51 pm

    I never really wondered what is actually in pates (and as I am a great fan, I never dared to look at the stickers of grocery store versions). Recipe sounds interesting, thank you!

    • frugalfeeding
      December 15, 2011 at 11:31 pm

      Thanks! You should give these a go, they are tasty and only use proper ingredients 😀

  23. Tara
    December 15, 2011 at 2:07 am

    My Dad loves pate! Sounds like something I could try to make for him sometime!

    • frugalfeeding
      December 15, 2011 at 11:31 pm

      So does mine! You really should, he’ll love it.

  24. Pasta Princess
    December 16, 2011 at 1:16 pm

    Ohhh I must make this! I love pate but have never tried making it. Now if I can just get past the looks of the liver – yikes! lol Happy holidays!

    • frugalfeeding
      January 1, 2012 at 1:52 pm

      I think the liver is quite nice looking – the texture is what puts me off.

  25. clumsylawyer
    December 20, 2011 at 8:08 am

    My dad makes chicken liver paté every year at Christmas time – usually a “plain” version and a super-hot chilli one. I started to make it for an annual Christmas meal with friends a couple of years ago, and have developed my own cranberry, port and orange version which (though slightly sweet) is very tasty! I used duck livers this year, as I’ve been eating a lot of duck which comes with giblets etc. I can never understand how people so often throw the liver away when they get a whole bird like that!

    • frugalfeeding
      January 1, 2012 at 1:47 pm

      This one was very yum. I adore pate, but only in small quantity – it’s very rich. Duck pate sounds like a nice idea. I know – such a waste!

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