Looking for an American Cheese sauce that will go well with nachos, broccoli, asparagus, burgers, and a lot of other dishes? Give a try this 5-minute American homemade cheese sauce that you can make very easily and adjust exactly to your taste. Feel free to add your favorite spices to it.
I always love experimenting with different sauce recipes because you can’t have too many recipes for sauces. They all the times get handy and you can give your meal a more special taste and feel. If you are a cheese lover then you will get crazy about this American cheese sauce. All you will need is to melt the cheese, add a few spices to it, and play with the sauce texture by adding milk and all-purpose flour.
It has a creamy texture that is full of flavor because the American cheese will add the fresh cheddar cheese which will bring the sauce to another level.
I love this recipe because you can experiment all the time with different cheeses and get different flavors to your dish. Just make sure that the cheeses that you plan to use are melting well.
🥰 Why You Will Love This Recipe?
- I like this recipe because you can start small from using only a little bit of milk and some melted cheese to some crazy combinations.
- By making your own American cheese sauce, you can customize the taste as you wish and exactly to your family’s taste. You can adjust the exact level of spiciness, cheese flavor, and cheese mixtures.
- It is very simple to make. All you will need is to melt the cheese and combine it with a few spices that you like to make it more unique.
- It is so easy that even your kids can make it. It will take you about 5 minutes to make it.
- It is a lot cheaper to make your own sauce plus you know exactly what ingredients were used to make this sauce.
- It fits perfectly with almost anything.
🥘 Ingredients and Substitutes
- Cheeses. I used a mix between American cheese and cheddar cheese. American cheese melts incredibly well while the cheddar cheese comes into the lights with some amazing flavor. I would recommend sticking to the American cheese and instead of or near the cheddar cheese use other types of cheeses that you like. Just make sure that they melt well. If you can’t find the American cheese, then you can get a similar texture by replacing it with Velveeta cheese or Colby Jack, Fontina, and why not the mozzarella cheese?
- Whole milk. I used 2% milk, but keep in mind that if you will decide to go for lower fat milk you will lose from the creaminess of the sauce.
- All-purpose flour. We will use all-purpose flour to control the thickness of the sauce.
- Butter. You can use salty or unsalty butter. If you will pick the salted butter, just keep in mind that the cheddar cheese is also salted. So make sure that the sauce will not be too salty. Optionally, you can add a small stick of butter that will give a more flavorful taste and texture to the sauce.
Want More Flavor?
Consider adding some chili flakes, smoked paprika, dried garlic or onions, crumbled bacon, and so on. Don’t limit yourself. Just make sure that the ingredients you will add will fit with the cheeses and with the food that you will serve.
Also, before starting to melt the cheeses, you may caramelize a little some fresh onions, small chopped jalapenos, and bell peppers.
👩🍳 Step-by-step Directions
This American cheese will be ready in almost no time. You can make it very simple by only melting the cheese and adding a little bit of milk into it to make it more liquid.
As a base, we will use melted butter with milk and all-purpose flour. By cooking the butter with the flour we will get rid of the raw texture of the flour from our sauce.
Quick Note: If you plan to caramelize a little fresh onion, jalapeno papers, and other vegetables, now is the time for doing that, before adding the rest of the ingredients.
First of all, pick a medium saucepan and put it on the stove on medium heat. Now, you can add the butter into the saucepan and melt it.
Right after that, you can add all-purpose flour. Whisk slowly until a homogenous composition. Right after the flour, add the milk into the saucepan and continue to mix until you will have a nice creamy uniform sauce.
Quick Note: When you will add the all-purpose flour, mix continuously the sauce to make sure that you will not form lumps.
Now, turn off the heat or set it to low, and add the freshly shredded American cheese and cheddar cheese. Also at this stage, you can add other dried spices.
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Quick Note: Sure, you can go only with American cheese, but I usually prefer going with both. I’m taking the creamy texture from the American cheese and the rich flavor from the cheddar. If you don’t have the American cheese under your hands, you can easily replace it with Velveeta cheese. Sure, it is not an exact cheese, but you will get a similar creamy texture.
Continue to mix everything until the cheese will melt and you will get the desired texture.
🍽️ Serving Suggestions
This sauce goes well with almost anything. Usually, I served it near all the crunchy stuff like french fries, eggplant fries, broccoli, asparagus, diced potatoes, burgers, burritos, and of course near some nachos.
🏆 Expert Tips. What to Pay Attention To?
- If we will add the cheese right from the beginning, it will become too hot and as a result, the American cheese will get clumpy or stringy. Because of that is recommended to add the cheese at the end, right after the rest of the ingredients.
- Use full-fat cheeses. They will get you a better texture.
- Grate the cheese by yourself right after you will add them to the sauce. In that way, the sauce will be more flavorful.
- Let the cheese sit for 15-20 minutes at room temperature. By doing that, their inner temperature will increase and when you will add the cheeses into the hot sauce, the temperature difference will not be so big.
- Add the shredded cheeses after you will remove the saucepan from the stove. By doing that you will not overheat the cheese and it will not form clumps.
♻️ Storage and Reheating:
As the cheese needs to melt, you will get the best taste from the freshly prepared sauce. If you have some leftovers then transfer them to an airtight container and keep them in the refrigerator for up to 3-4 days. If you need to keep it for even longer, you can move the sauce into the freezer where you can keep the American cheese sauce for up to 2 months.
Before serving, remove the American cheese sauce from the fridge and move it to the microwave oven, where you should set the timer for 30 seconds after that time removes the plate, mix the sauce, and return back to the microwave. Repeat these steps until you will get the desired texture.
To make the reheating process for the American cheese sauce I would recommend putting it in a saucepan on the stove. Set the heat to medium, and mix from time to time. In that way, on the countertop, you will see all the time what texture your sauce has right now.
Answering Your Questions:
While it is easier to use the pre-shredded cheese from the store, it is always recommended to shred the cheese freshly just before you will use it in your dishes. In that way, it will be a lot more aromatic and will get to your meal a richer taste.
It will thicken back as it will become cooled. Because of that, you should warm it in the microwave on in a saucepan just before serving.
There are two options: you add too much all-purpose flour, or you didn’t cook it enough initially to remove the raw flour taste. Cook the butter and flour until it will have a nice golden color.
📋 Recipe Card:
Homemade American Cheese Sauce
- Melt the butter in a medium saucepan.2 tablespoons Butter
- Add over it the flour, mix and cook until a nice golden color.2 tablespoons All-purpose Flour
- Add milk and mix until a nice creamy composition.1 cup Milk
- Turn off the heat and add freshly shredded cheddar cheese and American cheese.3 oz American Cheese, 3 oz Cheddar Cheese
- At this stage you can add other dried spices and adjust the salt and pepper to taste.