Cheese Sauce Recipe For Broccoli
You will be shocked how easy making your own homemade cheese sauce for broccoli is.
To get started, melt butter in a saucepan over medium-low heat.
Butter can burn easily, so do not walk away on this step as much as its tempting.
Keeping mixture on heat, add flour and whisk well for 1-2 minutes until mixture begins to thicken.
This happens pretty quickly so if you feel like its burning, remove from heat.
You can use a whisk to get the flour really involved with the butter, but I also find a spatula super helpful on this step.
If you pre-measure your spices, you can easily dump all your mixture in at once.
Make sure you mix and blend well so one side of your sauce isnt spice heavy.
Add half and half and whisk well just until mixture begins to boil/bubble around the edges.
You do not want it to get too hot or it will thicken up quickly and you need it for the next step.
Turn off heat and stir in your cheese.
Your cheese should melt pretty quickly, so make sure you are stirring quickly until all the cheese is liquid and melted.
While I typically use a whisk for all steps in the sauce process, cheese does get stuck in the wire ends, so you can just as easily use a fork, spoon, or spatula for this.
Nacho Cheese Sauce Ingredients
You only need 5 common ingredients for this amazing cheese dip.
- Evaporated milk This gives the nacho cheese dip an extra creamy texture while keeping it from feeling heavy.
- Sharp cheddar cheese Real cheddar cheese is the best cheese for nachos. It melts well and has a great flavor.
- American cheese I always add just a little processed cheese to help keep the mixture smooth and creamy.
- Cornstarch This is the thickener used for the homemade cheese sauce. It thickens better than flour and is basically flavorless.
- Jalapenos For a spicy nacho cheese sauce. You can omit if you want.
Making Mac And Cheese Ahead Of Time
- Make as directed , transfer to baking dish and cool completely. Cover tightly with foil and refrigerate 1-2 days ahead.
- Before baking, let dish sit on counter for 30 minutes.
- Bake at recipe temperature for 25-35 minutes, until hot and bubbly.
As a caveat, this recipe, as with most mac and cheese recipes, loses some of its creaminess when made ahead. This dish has been tested when made right away, which yields the best results.
I would increase the amount of sauce slightly if you need to make this recipe ahead of time.
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What To Serve With Cheese Sauce
This is an excellent side dish for many different meals and a great way to get kids interested in the vegetable you serve it with! I can remember many delicious dinners where this cheese sauce was served over cauliflower. Id imagine it would be a great with any other steamed veggies as well as a quick option for the sauce part of mac and cheese as well. Add some jalapeños or Rotel for a tasty queso or drizzle over baked potatoes. This is always great for dipping soft pretzels!
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Tips For Best Results
Grate the cheese yourself Nearly all pre-shredded cheeses have cellulose or anti-caking agents added to them in order to keep the shreds from sticking together. These are a disaster for your sauce. You must grate a real block of cheddar yourself for a smooth consistency.
Dont overcook the cheese Just like when you make mac and cheese, if you overheat the cheese, it will get grainy and have a horrid texture. Add the cheese off the heat and let it melt with the residual heat.
Serve immediately or keep it warm Because this is made with all-natural ingredients, as the nacho cheese sauce cools, it will lose its melty texture. If youre not eating it right away, I recommend keeping it warm in a crockpot, a fondue pot, or a saucepan over a warming plate, especially if youre serving this at a party.
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Mac And Cheese Sauce Versatility
Love this sauce and want to mix things up? Here are some ideas on how to repurpose this sauce for something other than mac!
Use on any noodle all out of macaroni noodles? You can literally use 1 lb. of any noodle under the sun!
Nachos we love using this sauce on top of nachos. Think loaded nachos with all the fixings + this cheese sauce.
Burgers/Sandwiches how good would this easy mac and cheese sauce be on top of a burger or sandwich?! Im drooling.
Chili Mac and Cheese mix this cheese sauce with 1 lb. of noodles and a batch of homemade beef chili for some chili mac! Check out our sister sites Chili Mac and Cheese recipe!
Dip when I dip you dip we dip. Grab your favorite tortilla chip and dip away!
More of our Favorite
Why This Mac And Cheese Sauce
Out of all the recipes on the internet, why choose this cheese sauce for mac and cheese?
- 7 simple ingredients
Technically the hot sauce is optional, but I promise it makes this cheese sauce SO GOOD. A little vinegar really does bring out the flavor of the cheese sauce.
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Creamy Mac And Cheese Recipe
FINALLY!! A homemade Mac and Cheese Recipe that my children eat ! The ultra creamy sauce is so easy to whip up and you can use a variety of pasta macaroni, shells, spiral you name it!
This post may contain affiliate links. Read my disclosure policy.
This makes a big batch but it does reheat well and stays creamy. Read our tips below on how to reheat leftover mac and cheese so it stays creamy.
Getting the cheese sauce right is no easy feat. Ive tried so many different combinations of cheeses sharp, fancy cheeses, mustards, nutmeg, etc. but this is the recipe that my children eat happily. The flavors of this homemade macaroni and cheese are very mellow and the texture is spot on. This recipe was adapted from the Sept 2016 issue of the Food Network Magazine .
Homemade Cheese Sauce Faqs
What is a Cheese Sauce made of?
Homemade cheese sauce consists of cheese, milk, a roux made up of butter and flour, and the seasonings of your choice. Its incredibly simple and so delicious!
What is a good melting cheese for sauce?
I love to keep it classic with sharp cheddar, but any melty cheese works great. Try Asiago, white cheddar, fontina, gouda, gruyere, havarti, Monterey jack, mozzarella, you name it. You can even use a combination. Whatever you do, shred the cheese yourself! Pre-shredded cheese includes anti-caking agents which prevent it from melting smoothly.
How to store:
Leftover sauce will last in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 2 days. To reheat, warm in the microwave or on low on the stove until heated through. You may want to add a splash of milk or water to thin the sauce when reheating.
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The 5 Ingredients Youll Need:
- Cheddar Cheese
- Ground Cayenne pepper
You can keep it simple, or you can jazz it up however you want. You can add tomatoes, jalapeños, scallions, ground beef, and whatever else strikes your fancy.
This method takes less than 10 minutes, and riffs on how youd make a roux and a béchamel sauce for mac and cheese.
Because the ingredients are natural and chemical-free, know that the nacho sauce firms slightly as it cools. It has a luscious, smooth and melty texture as long as its warm, but if you let it cool, youll need to reheat it to get that flowy texture again. It does reheat just fine though and Ill include instructions for that after the step-by-step.
Cheese Sauce Step By Step
Classic cheese sauce begins with béchamel a simple white sauce made of butter, flour, milk, and a few seasonings. Cheese is then added to the white sauce to create cheese sauce . Here are the three basic steps to make cheese sauce:
It’s that simple, but the trick is knowing how to make the roux, how to add the milk without creating lumps, and how to add the cheese so the sauce turns out smooth and not grainy.
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How To Make Single
In under 20 minutes, youll have rich cheesy mac and cheese for one, portion-controlled and so good you could cry. And if you are feeling extra hungry or want to make it for two or more, the recipe sizes up with just a slightly longer cooking time .
Best Mac And Cheese Sauce
This post may contain affiliate links. Please read my disclosure policy.
No matter if youre making stovetop mac and cheese or baked mac and cheese, this is the best mac and cheese sauce on the internet!
Made with simple ingredients such as a mac and cheese roux, cheddar cheese, salt, and pepper, this cheese sauce for mac and cheese is creamy and scrumptious.
Obviously, if youre on this site you are a cheese lover. I mean, we are The Cheese Knees after all!
Every cheese website deserves to have a signature mac and cheese sauce thats easy to make, creamy, and perfect on any noodle! PS: if you havent tried our classic mac and cheese, you need to now!
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Using The Cheese Sauce
While mac n cheese is the obvious choice, this cheese sauce is also an amazing dip or drizzle for vegetables, especially broccoli. Or how about pouring it over a baked potato and crumbling some bacon on top?
Its so good you can even just dip bread or crackers in it. Go for it!
Id love to hear all the ways you find to enjoy this.
- 1 tsp. Dijion mustard
- a pinch of cayenne pepper
How To Make Chicken Cordon Bleu Casserole
This casserole is very easy to make with only a few simple ingredients. In a large bowl, stir together cream of chicken soup, sour cream, grated swiss cheese, cooked chopped chicken, diced ham, onion powder, garlic powder, and dijon mustard. Season with salt and black pepper. Spread the chicken mixture into a baking dish sprayed with cooking spray. In a small bowl, melt butter. Add crushed Ritz crackers and stir to coat. Sprinkle the crackers over the top of the casserole. Bake uncovered in the oven until bubbly. Garnish with parsley.
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Quick Cheese Sauce Recipe
I love cheese, my family loves cheese, and I’m going to take a wild guess… you probably love cheese, too! My quick cheese sauce recipe is perfect for cheese lovers like us. It’s creamy, cheesy , and so easy to make.
Let me tell you, this creamy cheese sauce is good on everything. I make homemade macaroni and cheese with it, top nachos with it, dip french fries in it, and bake it over roasted vegetables. You really can’t go wrong with this melted cheese sauce.
It’s a perfect, easy cheese sauce for pasta, and the best ever cheese dipping sauce. Trust me, you will want to make this recipe again!
How Do You Make A Smooth Cheese Sauce
To get the smoothest cheese sauce possible, follow these golden rules:
- Use full-fat cheese that you grate yourself as bagged cheese has additives that can prevent it from melting smoothly.
- Let the shredded cheese sit at room temperature for a short time so youre not putting cold cheese into hot liquid.
- Remove the sauce from heat before you stir in the cheese. Overheated cheese can clump.
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Adding Cheese To Bchamel
Béchamel is a basic sauce so its easy to flavor it up in different ways. One of my favorite things to add is cheese. In fact, homemade macaroni and cheese is made with a cheese-doused béchamel.
You start by making your béchamel and then you take it off the heat to add in the cheese. I also like to add some Dijon mustard and cayenne to mine. A small amount of spice helps to balance all that delicious creaminess.
The Best Cheese For Mac And Cheese
Sharp Cheddar is my first choice for flavor however you can certainly use your favorite cheeses. Mix it up and use a bit of gruyere, or even pepper jack for a little kick. If you have bits of cheese leftover, you can combine them all together in this easy homemade cheese sauce.
This recipe has a special ingredient that is a little bit unconventional but makes it extra yummy AND it is optional. The addition of cheddar cheese soup makes the sauce a little bit extra velvety and just adds a little something. I think its much better than Mac and cheese with Velveeta! Give it a try! .
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Add Liquid To Make A Sauce
After cooking roux, youll usually add a liquid ingredient to make a sauce .
To ensure lump-free thickening when making sauces, the liquid ingredient should be cold or room temperature, and slowly whisked into the hot roux. Do this by adding the liquid a little at a time, whisking until smooth between each addition, until the roux forms a thin paste, then whisking in the remaining liquid and bringing the mixture to a simmer. Cold or room temperature roux is simply whisked into a simmering soup or sauce until it dissolves. These methods ensure the roux is incorporated slowly and the mixture will not form lumps.
Roux begins to thicken soon after it is combined with a liquid, but it must be simmered for 10 to 20 minutes in order to reach its full flavor and thickening potential. This additional cooking time allows the flour to soften and absorb the liquid, resulting in a silky smooth soup or sauce. If the simmering time is too short, the flour in the roux will remain grainy.
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How Do You Make Cheese Sauce From Scratch
This homemade cheese sauce is ready to enjoy in almost no time because the recipe is so simple. It uses well known ingredients that are easy to work with and prepare. You will be so glad you have this recipe in your collection!
The Recipe Critic Pro Tip:
Your cheese will start to get clumpy or stringy if it gets too hot. To avoid this, add the cheese end at the very end, then promptly remove it from the heat.
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Cheesy Chicken & Ham Casserole
This Chicken Cordon Bleu Casserole has quickly become a favorite at our house. Chicken and ham baked in a cheesy sauce. All of my favorite flavors in one pan. This recipe is super simple to make and tastes great! We ate this for dinner last week and finished off the leftovers for lunch. Add this to your menu ASAP! It is sure to be a hit!
Helpful Tips & Frequently Asked Questions
- I use rotisserie chicken for the cooked chicken in this recipe.
- Any cooked chicken works fine. Chicken breasts, chicken thighs, chicken tenderloins, or chicken legs.
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Quick Mac And Cheese For One
A quick recipe for mac and cheese for one. Easy, cheesy, and oh so good.
Is it lunchtime? Is it dinner time? Are you starving? Do you need a mac and cheese fix? Yes? Well, Ive got just the thing for you: mac and cheese for one.
This homemade macaroni and cheese is just as quick as the kind that comes out of a box, is one thousand times more delicious, and wont leave you with a mass of gross congealed leftovers.
I grew up in a boxed mac and cheese household, and just like when I learned how to make homemade mashed potatoes, when I discovered how easy homemade macaroni and cheese was to make, I had no idea why we hadnt just been making it from scratch all along.
It takes exactly the same amount of time, and if you keep a basic stocked kitchen, cheese and any sort of pasta in your house, YOU HAVE THE INGREDIENTS TO MAKE THIS.