I am not a health nut. I love sweets, I love junk food, I love anything fried. But I do understand how important it is to eat healthy, nutritious foods every day. So I just try to keep everything in balance: if we grab fast food for lunch, I’ll make sure our supper includes fresh veggies and isn’t fried; if I hit up the salad bar at work, maybe we’ll pig out on pizza that night. It’s never really about taking away the things I (we) love to eat, it’s more about being sure to add in healthy, whole foods to maintain the balance. But let’s face it–it’s still gotta taste good, right Hubby? And the answer is simple: easy cheese sauce.
This easy cheese sauce is so creamy and delicious that it makes steamed broccoli taste like a treat! But it’s simple enough to add to any weeknight super. It’s made with just four ingredients, and you probably have them all already: butter, flour, milk and cheese, plus a little salt and pepper. You can add in other seasonings like garlic powder or even some red pepper flakes to suit your own tastes. And you can use your family’s favorite cheese, too. I went with a marbled Colby Jack this time because I love how easily Monterrey jack cheese melts and Colby is The Hubby’s favorite cheese. Cheddar is a always a nice choice and pepper-jack would be a great twist! When you’re melting cheese into a sauce, though, it’s always a good idea to shred it yourself. Pre-shredded cheese has a coating on it so the cheese doesn’t clump together in the bag, but the coating doesn’t melt very well and can end up making a gritty sauce. But honestly, shredding the cheese is the hardest part, and definitely worth your effort.
If there are any picky eaters or veggie haters in your house, try spooning this easy cheese sauce over just about anything green and watch it disappear! And if you end up with some sauce leftover, warm it up the next day with some chili powder and a pinch of red pepper flakes and dunk in some French fries or tortilla chips. See? Balance.
Easy Cheese Sauce
- 2 T butter
- 2 T flour
- 1 and 1/4 c milk
- 1 c shredded cheese such as Colby Jack
- In a sauce pan, melt butter over medium heat
- Add flour, whisk until smooth making a roux
- Heat the roux until it bubbles and then cook for 1 more minute, whisking constantly
- Slowly add the milk, whisking constantly
- Heat until the mixture bubbles and thickens, stirring frequently (if mixture is too thick, add more milk 1 T at a time)
- Add the cheese and stir until smooth
- Season with salt and pepper
- Add additional seasonings to taste (garlic powder, chili powder, red pepper flakes, etc.)
- Serve warm over cooked veggies, or as a dip for chips or French fries
- Store leftovers in the fridge for 2-3 days