Best Cheese Sauce for Veggies or Pasta

Learn how to make a delicious and simple cheese sauce that is perfect for homemade macaroni and cheese or to drizzle over vegetables.

Learn how to make a delicious and simple cheese sauce that is perfect for homemade macaroni and cheese or to drizzle over vegetables.

A couple of weeks ago I shared a recipe for béchamel sauce (with a fairly elaborate How-To and troubleshhooting). Béchamel is a basic white sauce made from whisking melted butter and flour together into a paste and then using that paste to thicken milk. It’s used in all kinds of other recipes, such as lasagna (like this one!) and soufflés.

Béchamel is a basic sauce so it’s 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.

Cheesy béchamel is also an amazing dip or drizzle for vegetables, especially broccoli.

That’s what I have for you today, an easy, basic but delicious cheese sauce that you can use on pasta or vegetables. It’s so good you can even just dip bread or crackers in it. Go for it!



Best Cheese Sauce

  • Author: Christine Pittman
  • Prep Time: 5 minutes
  • Cook Time: 15 minutes
  • Total Time: 20 minutes
  • Yield: 2 cups


Learn how to make a delicious and simple cheese sauce that is perfect for homemade macaroni and cheese or to drizzle over vegetables.


  • 2 Tbsp. unsalted butter
  • 2 Tbsp. all-purpose flour
  • 2 cups whole milk
  • 2 cups shredded sharp cheddar cheese
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1 tsp. Dijion mustard (optional)
  • a pinch of cayenne pepper (optional)


  1. In a medium saucepan, melt the butter over medium-low heat. Add the flour and whisk together to form a paste. Cook for 2 minutes while whisking continuously.
  2. Add 1/4 cup of the milk and whisk until smooth. Repeat until you’ve added 1 cup of milk. Add remaining milk and stir to combine. Increase heat to medium-high and bring to a boil while whisking constantly. Let boil one minute and take off the heat.
  3. Add cheese, salt, and Dijon and cayenne pepper, if using. Stir until cheese is melted.

22 responses to “Best Cheese Sauce for Veggies or Pasta”

  1. Hansini says:

    Holyy!! This is AMAZING! Great texture, it’s like restaurant sauce! I used mozzarella cheese instead of sharp cheddar since I did not have any. But it is so good! I am going to cook this for my friends! I am a college student so this was super fast and easy! I never comment on blogs but this is so awesome I just had to. Thanks!

  2. Calvin says:

    Sounds good for the cheese lovers in the family.

  3. Amanda B. says:

    Going to give this a try for my kids!

  4. Debbie Yoder says:

    Would use this for a dip or on baked potatoes,Yum!

  5. Susan P. says:

    This is the cheese sauce I make for scalloped potatoes (which is really potatoes au gratin). . I usually use 2 kinds of cheese, depending on what I have on hand. So easy.

  6. Deborah Waddell says:

    Great veggie sauce

  7. Judy Gregory says:

    This sounds perfect for us . We eat a lot cheese sauce.

  8. Sarah L says:

    That does look pretty easy. I don’t think I’ve ever made a cheese sauce like this.

  9. Andrea Hatfield says:

    This cheese sauce sounds delicious! Maybe if I make it I can actually get my sons to eat more veggies?!? Thank you for sharing!

  10. Brenda Jackson says:

    Made this tonight to put over some extra Italian vegetable noodles.  It was great. I halved the recipe and it turned out perfect!
    My husband had thirds he liked it so much.  I added chopped garlic as we has just harvested ours.  Delicious!

  11. Chanda McBride says:

    I am absolutely in love with your site and your videos!! I googled up the recipe for cocktail sauce because I couldn’t remember the proportions and found myself still watching the quick recipe videos 45 minutes later!! Awesome site, awesome layout, awesome recipes and absolutely fabulous videos!! Thank you for putting your creative awesomeness out there! 😋

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