Simple, Homemade Cheese Sauce

Perfect for mac & cheese, baked pasta dishes or casseroles, this delicious, creamy cheese sauce is made with actual food (instead of processed cheese)! You can feel great about indulging in comfort foods. This sauce freezes beautifully. The recipe below makes enough for 3 batches of mac and cheese, so I usually freeze 2 freezer-friendly zip-top bags with 2 cups each.

Makes about 6 cups (enough for 3 lbs of pasta)


5 cups whole milk
4 tbs butter
4 tbs flour
pinch of cloves
pinch of nutmeg
1 tsp salt
1 tsp black pepper
1 1/2 cups shredded cheese – you can use any kind, I am partial to Havarti and Fontina, but works great with Cheddar or even Gorgonzola

  1. In a pot on the stove heat milk over medium heat until warmed (you can do this in the microwave if you prefer).
  2. Melt butter in a walled saucepan on low heat.
  3. Add flour, stirring occasionally until fragrant – you do not want the roux to darken.
  4. Slowly whisk the warm milk into the butter and flour mixture. Cook over medium low heat, stirring frequently until thickened to a creamy soup consistency, 10 to 15 minutes.
  5. Add the cloves, nutmeg, salt, pepper and cheese and stir just until cheese is melted.
  6. Et voila, pour over cooked pasta, use to make a white sauce lasagna, add to your casserole, etc.!

NOTE: If you cook the sauce too long, the cheese may get stringy, in which case you just need to bring it back to a simmer, add a a few drops of lemon juice or white wine and remove from the stove.