HOW to cook with kelp

compound butter cook with kelp cooking with kelp how to cook with kelp kelp butter kelp compound butter sugar kelp sugar kelp compound butter umami

Seaweeds are easy to cook with. Dried sugar kelp can be pulverized into flakes, crumbled gently with the hands, or cut with scissors to achieve the desired shape. You can take that literally and start cutting your kelp into Matisse-inspired nudes. Or anything! 

Sugar kelp can be added to all the foods you prepare daily. It can be incorporated into scrambled eggs or sprinkled over oatmeal. It can be baked into bread, slipped into sandwiches, simmered in beans, soups, stews and pasta sauces. In recipes where there are many complex flavors, the gentle umami flavor of seaweed is present, but mellow. In a more simple recipe like compound butter or miso soup, the flavor is more bold. So far, everything I have added sugar kelp to has been better for it.

I love seeing how others enjoy seaweed. Please share photos of what you've been making and your recipes! On instagram @swell.seaweeds or email me at

Sugar kelp compound butter is one of my favorite, easy recipes to start with. 

1 stick of unsalted butter, warmed (not melted)

2 tbsp of sugar kelp flakes (grind in a mortar + pestal, or run through a food processor, or use your hands to crumble, or wait patiently for me to start selling flakes...) 


Combine warm butter and sugar kelp flakes. Use a food processor or a spatula until the kelp is evenly distributed throughout the butter.

If you are feeling wild + flavorful, add a heaping tablespoon of miso paste. Blend thoroughly.

Form butter into a roundish log in a slip of wax paper. Wrap it up, and put into the fridge to firm up. Cut into slim medallions and put on everything (enjoy with with tiny bright radishes, on jammy boiled eggs, on toast with caviar, on sardine sandwiches, on spaghetti, on sunny side up eggs, on crackers, on grilled oysters). 

three oysters roasting on a grate over an open fire surrounded by Maine granite

Older Post Newer Post

  • Sarah Wineberg on

    Hi! Here is a link to the Maine Seaweed Council’s breakdown. Also check out my page “KELP” for a more wandering, rambling approach.

    There is currently a study in Maine that just got funded to do a detailed nutritional analysis of Maine Seaweeds. That info should be coming out this time next year!

  • Ron SLoboda on

    What are the nutritional values of sugar kelp?

Leave a comment