Chef John's White Sauce

Chef John's White Sauce

Chef John 27002

"White sauce is one of the “mother sauces” in traditional culinary training and is used in many popular dishes."
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22 m servings 192 cals
Serving size has been adjusted!

Original recipe yields 8 servings



  • Calories:
  • 192 kcal
  • 10%
  • Fat:
  • 14 g
  • 22%
  • Carbs:
  • 11.8g
  • 4%
  • Protein:
  • 5 g
  • 10%
  • Cholesterol:
  • 40 mg
  • 13%
  • Sodium:
  • 180 mg
  • 7%

Based on a 2,000 calorie diet

See full nutrition

Nutritional Information

1 Serving
Servings Per Recipe:
Amount Per Serving
  • * Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
  • ** Nutrient information is not available for all ingredients. Amount is based on available nutrient data.
  • (-) Information is not currently available for this nutrient. If you are following a medically restrictive diet, please consult your doctor or registered dietitian before preparing this recipe for personal consumption.


  • Prep

  • Cook

  • Ready In

  1. Melt butter in a saucepan over low heat. Stir in flour and cook for about 5 minutes.
  2. Stir in 1 cup cold milk, about 1 minute. Stir in second cup of milk for an additional minute.
  3. Stir in remaining 2 cups of milk, cayenne pepper, salt, thyme, and nutmeg; bring to a simmer over low heat until sauce begins to thicken, about 10 minutes.


  1. 20 Ratings

Most helpful positive review

I didn't change a thing and loved it!!

Most helpful critical review

Looks better than it tastes unfortunately

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Most positive
Least positive

I didn't change a thing and loved it!!

I skipped the thyme in this recipe. I browned some chopped onion and fresh minced garlic in the butter before adding the flour. After the sauce was made, I added some ground mustard and a touch ...

This is a BASIC sauce. Add whatever spices will complement whatever you're going to use it on. Important: you want to cook the butter/four mix at a temp that will cook the flour without burni...

For a basic, more versatile white sauce, omit the nutmeg and thyme. (Actually, I’m not sure I’d like that combination. For my tastes it would be either/or) For a thinner white sauce, use 1 T....

I cannot resist making a comment here. Chef John did a great job presenting this recipe, however, I have to laugh when I read reviews of folks who consider themselves "pro's" and obviously have...

Thank you so much! I had a basic recipe for white sauce and lost it and couldn't find a good one to replace it. This was exactly what I was looking for. I did add some chopped onion and garli...

This turned out good-but made alot so I had to throw out the rest..I used this sauce for my macaroni and cheese dish and my son loved it...A keeper!!!

I consider myself a pretty good cook, but I had some trouble with this sauce. It took me over half an hour to be able to come up with something good because it was very bland. I ended up adding ...

This was absolutely awesome! I made a vegetarian lasagna but didn't really like the sauce that was with that recipe. So, I went looking for something with a bit more flavor. I found this!! It is...

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