Delicious Caramelized Scallops Recipe with White Wine

Welcome to my kitchen, where I am thrilled to share my recipe for caramelized scallops with white wine. As a seafood lover, I have always been fond of scallops but wanted to elevate them in a unique way that would leave anyone who tried them wanting more. In this recipe, I combine the juicy sweetness of sea scallops with a splash of dry white wine to create a mouth-watering culinary experience that simply can’t be beaten.

The process of cooking scallops can seem intimidating, but with this easy-to-follow recipe and a few tips and tricks, you will be cooking up flawless seared scallops in no time. Whether you’re looking for a main course to impress your dinner guests or simply treating yourself to an elevated weeknight meal, these caramelized scallops with white wine will not disappoint.

So come on in, tie on your apron and let’s get started!

Why You’ll Love This Recipe

Caramelized Scallops With White Wine
Caramelized Scallops With White Wine

Are you looking for an amazing dish to impress your dinner guests? Look no further than the caramelized scallops with white wine recipe. This dish will have your taste buds singing and your dinner guests begging for the recipe.

First of all, let’s talk about the sweetness factor. The caramelization of the scallops with granulated sugar spread flat on top of each one results in a sweet caramelized crust that will satisfy a sweet tooth. Aside from that, the white wine sauce adds a perfect balance of acidity to cut through that sweetness and creates an explosion of flavors that will dance across your palate.

Secondly, this recipe is versatile. You can serve it elegantly as a main course or as an appetizer with smaller scallops seared perfectly in clarified butter. Whatever way you decide to cook them, these scallops make a great addition to any meal.

Thirdly, this recipe is easy to make. While it may seem like a dish reserved for fancy restaurants, it doesn’t take long to pull off at home. All you need are some simple ingredients and the courage to give it a try.

Lastly, there is added gratification in finishing this dish despite its intricacies. The end result offers indulgent, pan-seared sea scallops: savory bites soaked in lemony white wine sauce and topped with seared grapes whites. You’ll have everyone falling in love with you with every bite they take.

Overall, whether you’re entertaining guests or just treating yourself, you can never go wrong with caramelized scallops with white wine recipe. Trust me – it’s worth giving this recipe a shot!

Ingredient List

 A mouth-watering recipe of caramelized scallops in white wine sauce.
A mouth-watering recipe of caramelized scallops in white wine sauce.

Here are the Ingredients you’ll need to make this delicious caramelized scallops with white wine recipe:


  • 4 tablespoons clarified butter
  • 1 tablespoon white wine vinegar
  • 2 cup dry white wine
  • Juice of one lemon


  • 12 large sea scallops, patted dry with paper towels
  • Pinch kosher salt
  • Cracked black pepper, to taste
  • 4 tablespoons clarified butter
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar, spread flat on a plate
  • Flat leaf parsley and fresh chives, chopped (for garnish)

This recipe is easy to prepare if we have all the ingredients ready beforehand. The sauce and the scallops require different ingredients and cooking times; let’s take a closer look at each of them.

The Recipe How-To

 A stunning presentation of seared scallops with a golden crust.
A stunning presentation of seared scallops with a golden crust.

Now that you have all the ingredients ready, it’s time to cook up these succulent Caramelized Scallops with White Wine. This recipe is easy and quick to make, and it will leave your taste buds craving for more!

Step 1: Prepare the Scallops

  • Ingredients: 12 large sea scallops, pinch of kosher salt, pinch of cracked black pepper.
  • Pat the scallops dry with a paper towel.
  • Season them with kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper on both sides.

Step 2: Make the Sweet Caramelized Coating

  • Ingredients: 4 tablespoons clarified butter, 1/2 cup white sugar spread flat into a large plate.
  • Melt the butter in a medium saucepan over medium heat.
  • Pour the sugar onto a plate.
  • Gently press each side of the scallops onto the sugar, covering them entirely.

Step 3: Pan-sear the Scallops

  • Ingredients: olive oil or clarified butter (for cooking), 1/2 cup dry white wine, juice of one lemon.
  • Heat up a pan with olive oil and add pan seared scallops until golden brown on both sides for about two minutes per side.
  • Remove the scallops from the pan and place them onto a serving platter. Cover them to keep warm.
  • Add wine and lemon juice to the hot pan while scraping off any brown bits left behind by the scallops using your wooden spoon.
  • Let it cook for about 4 minutes until reduced by half.

Step 4: Make The Wine Sauce

  • Ingredients: 1 tablespoon cold unsalted butter, chopped chives or flat leaf parsley for garnish (optional).
  • Reduce heat to low and whisk in one tablespoon of cold unsalted butter into the wine reduction.

Step 5: Serve and Enjoy!

  • Drizzle the sweet caramelized coating on top of scallops, followed by the white wine sauce.
  • Garnish with chopped chives or flat-leaf parsley.
  • Serve immediately and enjoy a glass of Sauvignon Blanc with your Caramelized Scallops with White Wine.

Substitutions and Variations

 The perfect dish to impress special guests with a fancy and elegant meal.
The perfect dish to impress special guests with a fancy and elegant meal.

There are plenty of ways to customize this recipe to make it your own. Here are some substitution ideas and variations that you can try:

– Scallops: If you’re not a fan of scallops or can’t find any at your local seafood market, you can substitute them with shrimp or another type of white fish like cod or halibut. Just make sure to adjust the cooking time accordingly.

– Wine: This recipe calls for a dry white wine like Sauvignon Blanc, but you can use any dry white wine that you prefer. Chardonnay or Pinot Grigio would work well too.

– Sugar: For a healthier alternative, you can substitute the granulated sugar with honey or maple syrup.

– Lemon juice: If you don’t have fresh lemon juice on hand, you can use bottled lemon juice instead.

– Sauces: Instead of the white wine sauce in this recipe, you can serve the scallops with a beurre blanc sauce, lemon caper sauce, creamy garlic sauce, or any other type of seafood sauce that you like. You can even toss the scallops with pasta such as cavatappi or angel hair pasta recipe.

– Garnishes: To add more flavor and texture to the dish, try adding chopped chives or flat leaf parsley on top of the scallops before serving. You can also sprinkle some caramelized grapes on top for a sweet twist.

There are endless possibilities when it comes to substituting and varying this recipe. Use these suggestions as a starting point and get creative in the kitchen!

Serving and Pairing

 The aroma of scallops caramelizing in white wine fills the kitchen with a heavenly smell.
The aroma of scallops caramelizing in white wine fills the kitchen with a heavenly smell.

The sweet caramelized scallops with white wine sauce pairs perfectly with a crisp, dry white wine like Sauvignon Blanc. The refreshing notes of the wine complement the richness of the dish, leaving a delightful taste in your mouth.

To serve, place the scallops on a platter with a sprinkle of chopped flat-leaf parsley and chives. The lemony white wine sauce can be drizzled over the top of the scallops or served as a side sauce for dipping.

For additional sides, consider pairing the dish with steamed vegetables like asparagus or green beans, garlic mashed potatoes or a lemony pasta such as Cavatappi.

If you’re hosting a dinner party, this recipe will impress even your most sophisticated guests. For an elevated experience, create a seafood course by pairing this dish with pan-seared shrimp and crab cakes.

The natural sweetness from the caramelized scallops would also be an excellent match for tangy sauces like lemon caper or creamy garlic sauce.

In summary, serve these caramelized scallops with white wine recipe alongside sides that provide balance to this rich and flavorful dish. Consider serving it with Sauvignon Blanc and complementing it with other seafood dishes, tangy sauces or lemony pasta for a luxurious dining experience that will leave your guests wanting more.

Make-Ahead, Storing and Reheating

 A true delicacy - caramelized scallops with a hint of sweetness and tanginess.
A true delicacy – caramelized scallops with a hint of sweetness and tanginess.

The caramelized scallops with white wine recipe is perfect for hosting dinner parties or preparing in advance. You can easily make the dish a day ahead and store it in the refrigerator until you’re ready to serve.

To reheat, gently warm the pan of scallops on the stovetop over low heat. Take care not to overcook the scallops when reheating as this can make them tough and rubbery.

If you have leftover scallops, they can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to two days. For best results, reheat the scallops using the stovetop method mentioned above.

When reheating, it’s important to note that the sauce may thicken in the fridge. To thin the sauce, add a little bit of chicken broth or white wine while warming up on the stove.

The caramelized scallops are also freezer-friendly, but it’s best if you store them without any sauce. Layer them between sheets of parchment paper and store them in an airtight container in the freezer for up to one month.

When ready to serve, simply thaw out the scallops in the refrigerator overnight and prepare a fresh batch of white wine sauce by following the recipe as you normally would.

By preparing and storing these delicious caramelized scallops in advance, it allows you to entertain with ease and have more time to spend with your guests during your dinner party.

Tips for Perfect Results

 The dish that will turn you into a scallop lover, even if you weren't before!
The dish that will turn you into a scallop lover, even if you weren’t before!

Achieving perfectly caramelized scallops with a lemony white wine sauce may seem like a daunting task, but with a few simple tips and tricks, you can elevate your dish and impress your guests. Here are some tips for achieving the best results with the caramelized scallops with white wine recipe:

1. Keep Your Scallops Dry: Before cooking, pat the scallops dry with a paper towel to ensure they caramelize properly. Wet scallops will release moisture and steam instead of browning, resulting in a less desirable texture.

2. Use High Heat: For perfectly seared scallops, use a high heat pan and clarified butter, which has a higher smoke point than regular butter. This will give you those beautiful browned edges that add depth and flavor to the dish.

3. Season Generously: Don’t be afraid to season your scallops generously with salt and pepper before cooking. A pinch of kosher salt and freshly cracked black pepper will help bring out the natural sweetness of the scallops.

4. Choose the Right Wine: When it comes to selecting wine for this dish, opt for a dry white wine like Sauvignon Blanc or Pinot Grigio. Avoid using sweet wines as they can overpower the delicate flavor of the scallops.

5. Cook Wine Down: To create a rich and flavorful sauce, cook down the white wine with lemon juice and butter until it reduces by about half. This will intensify the flavors and create a velvety texture that pairs perfectly with the sweet caramelized scallops.

By keeping these tips in mind, you’ll be able to create perfectly caramelized scallops every time with a delicious lemony white wine sauce that’s sure to impress.


Now let’s move on to the FAQ section of this Caramelized Scallops with White Wine recipe. Here you will find answers to some of the most frequently asked questions about this dish, including ingredient substitutions, cooking time variations, and storing recommendations. Don’t hesitate to refer back to this section if you encounter any issues during the cooking process or have additional inquiries about the recipe.

What is the best wine to cook scallops in?

When it comes to pairing wine with seared scallops, it’s important to choose a wine that has the right weight and texture to complement the dish. According to Lemoine, a sommelier with years of experience, white Burgundy is an excellent choice because it has both structure and density, especially if it has been aged in oak. Another option is an old Chenin Blanc or a Condrieu made with Viognier grape that has some age to it. For those looking for something more adventurous, wines made from Petite Arvine or Ribolla could be a great option.

What is the best white wine to cook with scallops?

If you’re looking for a wine that matches perfectly with scallops, sauvignon blanc could be your best bet. This wine’s lively and citrusy flavor profile makes it an ideal pairing for almost any recipe involving scallops. Whether you’re cooking them raw, sautéed, or poached, sauvignon blanc’s bright and zesty notes will complement the scallops’ taste in the best way possible. In particular, if you’re serving raw scallops, the wine’s lemon and lime undertones will enhance their subtle flavors wonderfully.

Should you rinse scallops before cooking?

Before cooking the scallops, it’s important to give them a quick rinse and dry them using a paper towel. Removing excess moisture from the surface is crucial to getting a beautiful, golden-brown sear on them. In case the recipe calls for it, make sure to properly halve the scallops to ensure even cooking.

What wine is best for steak and scallops?

When it comes to pairing wine with scallops, I would suggest opting for a white wine. In my experience, both Pinot Grigio and Sauvignon Blanc work well, but out of the two, I slightly lean towards the Sauvignon Blanc. However, if you are more inclined towards red wine, then I would advise picking one with low tannin to ensure that it doesn’t overshadow the gentle taste of scallops. In such a situation, a Pinot Noir would be a perfect choice.

Bottom Line

In conclusion, I urge you to try this delicious caramelized scallops with white wine recipe. It’s a unique blend of sweet caramelized scallops, fragrant herbs, and tangy white wine sauce that’s sure to leave your taste buds singing with joy.

Not only is this dish an explosion of flavors in your mouth, but it’s also easy to prepare and perfect for any occasion. Whether you’re hosting a dinner party or cooking up a special meal for your family, this recipe is sure to impress.

And if you’re worried about substitutions or variations, fear not! This recipe is incredibly versatile and can be tweaked to fit your preferences. You can switch up the herbs or even add some pasta or seafood to make it even heartier and more filling.

So what are you waiting for? Head to the kitchen, gather up the ingredients listed above, and create this impressive dish today. Trust me; your family, friends, and loved ones will thank you for it. Cheers!

Caramelized Scallops With White Wine

Caramelized Scallops With White Wine Recipe

Christina Ferrare's Big Bowl of Love
No ratings yet
Cook Time 10 mins
Course Main Course
Cuisine Seafood
Calories 209.9 kcal


  • 12 large scallops
  • 1 pinch kosher salt
  • fresh cracked black pepper
  • 4 tablespoons clarified butter
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup dry white wine
  • 1 lemon, zested and juiced
  • 1 tablespoon flat leaf parsley, finely chopped
  • 8 chives (optional garnish)


  • Check each of your scallops for a small crescent-shaped muscle that may be attached on the side. If you find one, just peel it off with your fingers - it is easily removed. This muscle toughens during cooking.
  • Rinse the scallops and dry them thoroughly. Season both sides with salt and pepper.
  • Spread the sugar in a thin layer on a plate.
  • Heat a skillet over medium-high heat. Add the clarified butter - when it starts to foam, you are ready to add the scallops. Dip only one side of each scallop in the sugar and place that side down in the pan. Cook for 2-3 minutes, or until nicely seared. Flip and scallops and cook for another minute. Add the wine and lemon juice to the pan. Reduce the liquid by half. After about 1 1/2 minutes, transfer the scallops to a warm platter and pour pan juices over top.
  • Serve the scallops with the pan sauce and garnish with the parsley, chives and lemon zest.

Add Your Own Notes


Serving: 116gCalories: 209.9kcalCarbohydrates: 16.1gProtein: 5.8gFat: 11.8gSaturated Fat: 7.4gCholesterol: 41.3mgSodium: 216.7mgFiber: 0.4gSugar: 13.1g
Keyword < 15 Mins, Citrus, Fruit, Lemon
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