Easy Cheese Sauce
Yield: about 2 cups (recipe may be cut in half)
A side of steamed broccoli tastes especially good with this easy, kid-friendly cheese sauce!


  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour or 2 teaspoons cornstarch
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt and several turns of the pepper mill
  • 1 cup milk (works best with 2% milk but I have used nonfat with good results)
  • 1-1/2 cups (6 ounces) freshly shredded cheddar cheese (Cooper sharp is a delightful option that’s especially delicious on cheesesteaks)


  1. Melt the butter in a saucepan over medium heat. (Watch carefully. Once melted, the butter will brown quickly. Lower the heat to medium-low if starting to brown or if making a half batch.)

    Add the flour or cornstarch and whisk or stir for about 1 minute over medium heat—the mixture should be simmering. Slowly whisk in the milk, and then add the salt and pepper.

    Cook, stirring regularly, until slightly thickened, about 4 minutes. Remove from the heat, add the cheese, and stir until melted and smooth. Serve immediately.

Notes & Tips

  • For the smoothest sauce, choose a medium cheddar over an extra sharp variety.
  • Upon cooling, the cheese sauce will thicken and develop a skin on top. Simply reheat over low heat, stirring regularly, to bring it back to saucy perfection.
  • For a hint of kick, add 1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper along with the salt and pepper.
  • If you decide that you’d like a thinner sauce after adding the cheese, stir in an extra tablespoon or two of milk.

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