Homemade Chicken Liver Pate with Port

Chicken liver pate recipe

I have to admit, growing up as a kid, my parents would occasionally cook liver for dinner, not only because it was a cheap meal, but because of the health benefits and a way to get more iron into my system. However, I always hated the taste. Even though it was fried in onions and garlic it still had a grainy flavour that didn’t sit well in my mouth (however, it wasn’t as bad as kidney!). Since growing up though, my tastebuds have changed for the better and I’m a big fan of chicken liver pate (smooth or coarse), which I find simply moreish and delicious plus it’s really healthy.

I hope my homemade pate recipe below tempts you to try this chicken liver delicacy.

Is chicken liver pate good for you?

I’m often asked whether chicken liver pate is actually good for you. Firstly, chicken liver is high in protein and an excellent source of nutrients and vitamins including iron, zinc, folate, phosphorus and riboflavin as well as vitamin A (for eye health), vitamin B-12 (for healthy nerve and blood cells) and vitamin B-6 (benefiting the central nervous system). Chicken livers are also low in calories and high in nutrition, and being homemade, you know exactly what goes into your pate, making it far healthier than the processed pate found in shops.

When to serve chicken liver pate?

My homemade chicken liver pate with Port is super simple to make, tastes amazing plus it is affordable. In fact, this dish cost me less than $6 to make as I already had the Port at home. Ideal as an entrée, canapés, as part of a cheese platter or simply as a snack, chicken liver pate is great to make when you’re entertaining friends and family or for a quick midweek dinner.

What do you serve with chicken liver pate?

I love to spread chicken liver pate over a freshly toasted baguette or on crackers. For a healthier alternative, I sometimes use Ryvita. Garnish with watercress and cherry tomatoes on the side and top with onion relish. You can also add anything pickled such as cornichons, pickled onions and gherkins. Capers also go well with pate, as does olives and sundried tomatoes. For extra protein, why not add some roasted chicken breast or pork on top.

Chicken liver pate also pairs perfectly with a cheese and charcuterie board. Accompany this with a glass of red wine, or a glass of tawny Port and you’ll be in food heaven.

Chicken liver pate recipe closeup toast

Chicken liver pate recipe closeup

How to buy your chicken livers?

I recommend buying your chicken livers as fresh as possible – I get mine from the butcher. If you want to splurge, you can also purchase organic chicken livers. Make sure you choose livers that look moist and shiny without any dry patches and don’t smell. If any parts of the liver look green, discard these as they will taste bitter. This green colouring is caused when the gall bladder breaks and the bile is leaked.

Make a day in advance for easy entertaining or simply make on the day.

Homemade Chicken Liver Pate with Port: Serves 4 | Easy | 45 minutes


  • 500g chicken livers
  • 80g unsalted butter, plus 20g butter
  • 1 clove of garlic, finely diced
  • 1 shallot, finely diced
  • 1 tbsp fresh thyme
  • 3 tbsp port/sherry
  • Salt and black pepper to season
  • 3 Bay leaves
  • Toasted baguette slices, to serve
  • Watercress, to serve (optional)
  • Onion relish, to serve (optional)
  • Cornichons, to serve (optional)


  1. Rinse the livers under cold water in a colander and gently pat dry with kitchen paper.
  2. Dice the chicken livers and cut away any white stringy sinew.
  3. Melt the 80g butter in a frying pan over a medium heat and fry the shallot and garlic.
  4. Stir in the chicken livers and add in the thyme and fry for approximately 5 minutes until cooked. The liver should be light brown on the outside and just pink inside. Let it cool for 5 minutes and drain off any excess liquid.
  5. Pour the liver mixture into a food processor or blender. Add salt and pepper and Port and puree until smooth.
  6. Spoon out into two ramekins and add a bay leaf on top of each. Melt the remaining butter in a pan and pour the melted butter over each bay leaf to fill the ramekin. Cover tightly with cling film and place in the fridge for at least four hours to set.
  7. Serve chilled with toasted baguette, onion relish, watercress and cornichons.


The chicken liver pate can be placed in the refrigerator for up to one week or can be frozen for up to two months.

Homemade chicken liver pate with port recipe