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Grilled or Baked Oysters with Bacon Compound Butter

Posted on November 22 2021

Grilled or Baked Oysters with Bacon Compound Butter

This crowd-pleasing take on oysters will convert even the pickiest of eaters. This recipe is basically bacon, butter, and cheese. In other words, you can’t go wrong. The compound butter can be made in advance and will last up to three weeks in the freezer. 

Ready in 1 hour Makes enough for 12 oysters 

  • 5 slices of bacon, chopped 
  • 2 shallots, finely chopped
  • 1 stick (½ cup) unsalted butter, room temperature
  • ½ head of garlic, minced
  • ½ cup finely-chopped parsley
  • Juice from 1 lemon or more to taste 
  • Sea salt and pepper
  • ½ cup finely-grated Parmesan cheese, divided
  • 1 dozen fresh oysters, shucked 
  • Rock salt if baking 

STEP 1 Cook the bacon in a skillet until crispy, stirring occasionally. Once crispy and cooked-through, transfer the bacon and fat to a small bowl and set aside, leaving about 1 tablespoon bacon fat in the pan. 

STEP 2 Add the chopped shallots to the pan with the bacon fat and cook until soft and translucent. Add more bacon fat if needed. Place the cooked bacon and shallots in a large mixing bowl with the butter and garlic. Discard excess bacon fat or save for another use such as breakfast potatoes. 

STEP 3 Stir the chopped garlic, parsley, and lemon juice into the bowl with the butter and bacon. Season with salt and pepper. Mix in ¼ cup of the Parmesan cheese. Stir until well mixed. Position a sheet of parchment paper over a large piece of plastic wrap. Spoon the compound butter onto the paper, and roll into a log. Seal tightly and set in the freezer to firm up for at least 20 minutes. 

STEP 4 When you are ready to cook, set your grill to high heat or your oven to 450°F. If baking, spread a thick layer of rock salt on a rimmed baking sheet. This will keep the oysters (and all that delicious flavor) in place while you transport and cook them. Burrow the shucked oysters into the salt and top each with a round or spoonful of compound butter. Top oysters with remaining Parmesan cheese. If grilling you can skip the salt. 

STEP 5 If baking, set the sheet in the hot oven and bake for 5-7 minutes or until the butter is melted and bubbling. If grilling, use tongs to set the oysters directly on the grill grates. Cook until the butter bubbles and the cheese is melted. Serve immediately.