The Cozy Cook

Easy Cheese Sauce

This easy, extra creamy cheese sauce has just four simple ingredients and tastes great with broccoli, cauliflower, baked potatoes, and more!

Black Cast Iron Skillet Filled with creamy cheese sauce with a hand dipping broccoli into it.

Baked Potato Day. I would look forward to it every single Wednesday in middle school, when you’d get a big ol’ baked potato for lunch and a helping of the cafeteria’s cheese sauce. No one liked baked potato day like I did. In fact, I’m probably the only one who even liked it at all. 🤣

Alright, there are in fact a few things you need to know to make sure that you have super creamy consistency, otherwise you could easily end up with a grainy texture. Read on!

How to Melt Cheese for the Creamiest Consistency

-Melted cheese will have the best, most creamy consistency if it’s at room temperature prior to being melted.

-Avoid using cheese that’s pre-shredded. The cheese melts best if it’s purchased as a block and shredded or sliced at home.

Avoid aged cheeses. Stay away from hard cheeses like Parmesan. Those won’t melt nearly as well.

-Add the cheese to a warm base gradually. If the liquid is too hot, the fat from the cheese will separate too quickly and the consistency will be grainy or clumpy.

What to Serve with Cheese Sauce

Aside from pairing cheese sauce with roasted broccoli, cauliflower, and baked potatoes, you can also drizzle it over  homemade french fries or burgers! It also makes a great dip for pretzels, bread sticks, chicken tenders, tortilla chips, and more!

Storing Leftover Cheese Sauce

This sauce is best if refrigerated and used within 3-5 days.

Reheating

  • Reheat in a skillet over medium-low heat. Add splashes of milk to loosen it up and restore it back to it’s original form.

Can You Freeze Cheese Sauce?

I love to freeze anything and everything, however creamy, dairy-based sauces such as this one don’t usually freeze well, the consistency just isn’t the same when reheated.

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Easy Cheese Sauce

5 from 16 ratings
This easy, extra creamy cheese sauce has just four simple ingredients and tastes great with broccoli, cauliflower, baked potatoes, and more!

Ingredients

  • 2 Tablespoons butter
  • 2 Tablespoons Flour
  • 1 cup milk
  • 8 oz. cheddar cheese, shredded, **See Notes

Instructions

  • Shred the cheddar cheese and set it aside, it should be at room temperature when you add it to the sauce.
  • Melt the butter over medium heat in a small saucepan.
  • Whisk in flour. Continue to whisk for 1-2 minutes, until you can no longer smell flour.
  • Slowly add the milk in splashes, whisking continuously as you do so. Bring to a gentle boil, then reduce to a simmer.
  • Reduce the heat to low. Gradually sprinkle in the cheddar cheese, whisking constantly as you do so. Continue to whisk until the mixture is well-combined.
  • Let the sauce continue to heat over low heat, it may appear thin at first but it will continue to thicken upon standing.
  • Once it's reached your desired level of thickness, remove it from the heat and serve!

Notes

*Milk can also be used instead of half and half, or you can use a combination of both.
**Colby and Monterey Jack Cheese can also be combined with Sharp Cheddar in this cheese sauce if you want to mix it up!

Nutrition

Calories: 659kcal, Carbohydrates: 13g, Protein: 33g, Fat: 53g, Saturated Fat: 33g, Trans Fat: 1g, Cholesterol: 161mg, Sodium: 857mg, Potassium: 284mg, Fiber: 1g, Sugar: 7g, Vitamin A: 1684IU, Calcium: 960mg, Iron: 1mg

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40 comments on “Easy Cheese Sauce”

  1. Sounds great. I live alone and am a senior, so won’t subscribe to anything involved.  Love finding recipes one at a time.  Thanks for being a person who shares her expertise.  L Hamner

  2. This is the simplest and best cheese sauce ever. In use it in all dishes. Thank you!

  3. I can’t eat wheat. May I substitute a gluten=free flour blend (eg. Measure for Measure)? If not, would corn starch work instead? And if so, how much corn starch?

  4. Can you refrigerate this cheese sauce?

  5. I love cheese sauce but did not know about shredding and leaving it at room temp beforehand. Great tips. I also didn’t know you are not supposed to keep heating it or simmering it after the cheese is all melted. So now I know why sometimes my cheese sauce was grainy!! My favorite use of it is to crisp steam BOTH broccoli & cauliflower and have that as a side with a nice Pork Roast for Sunday dinner. Or mix it in with a little riced cauliflower – it’s divine!

    • Hi Julia! I’m so happy to hear you found the tips helpful! It’s amazing how keeping the cheese at room temperature before heating is so important! I love having this with broccoli as well. Even my 4 year old daughter loves it over broccoli!❤️

  6. Ohmygosh it came out perfect!! I detest cooking, but being married means I have to do some once in a while. More often than not something turns out messed up. Either flavor wise or visually unappealing…(ill tell you all about the jack o lantern orange gravy I made -someday! Lol) Cheese sauce was kind of scary to attempt. My fears were for nothing as this is the simplest and most flavorful recipe ever! No lumps, no grainy texture, just blissfully cheesy smoothness. Thank you so much. Oh and I used lactose free milk! Yep, yep. Delicious.

    • I’m so happy this worked out for you!😃 I laughed out loud when I ready “Jack O Lantern Orange Gravy” 🤣🤣🤣. At least it sounds like you got a good handle on this recipe! Thanks so much for the review!!!

  7. I had some left over cheese slices and it worked out great on some French fries and brat dinner. Definitely yummy 🤤. 

  8. Used some pepper jack was great fast easy recipe

  9. Huge hit with my wife and kids. 

    • I’m so happy to hear!😃 I love how this goes with everything, especially broccoli! It’s one of the only ways I get my daughter to eat her veggies!😍 Thanks so much for the review!

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