Monica's favorite gear for
making Microwave Cheese Sauce
This is my go-to mixing bowl. Love the handle and lid for fridge storage, when needed. The tall sides keep this cheese sauce from flying out when it's whisked.
This is another tool that gets lots of use in my kitchen. It's essential for this recipe to achieve a smooth sauce.
This small 1.5 qt. slow cooker is perfect for dips and small batches. It has a removable, dishwasher safe stoneware insert. The "warm" setting is perfect for keeping this cheese sauce at the perfect temperature for easy dipping.

Microwave Ballpark Cheddar Cheese Sauce and Dip

For nachos, fries, pretzels and more. Make in under 5 minutes with real cheese--no Velveeta!


Cheddar Cheese Sauce | Microwave

By Monica              makes 2 cups
Easy to make in microwave in 3 minutes. Real cheese with no Velveeta! Drizzle on nachos, fries, broccoli, baked potatoes, hot dogs or tacos. Great as sauce for macaroni and cheese. From TheYummyLife.com

Drizzle on nachos, fries, broccoli, hot dogs or potatoes. Use sauce for macaroni and cheese. Easy to make in under 5 minutes with real cheese--no Velveeta!

Ingredients
  • 8 oz. block sharp or extra sharp cheddar cheese (pre-shredded not recommended)
  • 1 tablespoon corn starch
  • 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon white pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon dry mustard
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons hot sauce (optional), or more to taste
  • 1 can (12 oz) evaporated milk, divided

Directions
Grate cheese on large holes of box grater and add to 6-8 cup microwave safe bowl. Add corn starch, garlic and onion powders, white pepper, dry mustard, and salt. Toss together with a fork until cheese is evenly coated with dry ingredients. Add hot sauce (optional); pour 1 cup evap. milk over top. (Reserve remaining milk for thinning sauce later, if needed.) Stir.

Microwave uncovered on high for a total of approx. 3-4 minutes, stopping to whisk after 2 minutes. After 3rd minute, whisk vigorously again until any lumps dissolve into a smooth sauce; if still lumpy, cook and whisk in 30 second intervals just until sauce is smooth. Do not overcook.

NOTE:  Microwave power/heat can vary, so exact cooking times can vary, as well.

To thin sauce more, whisk in more evaporated milk 1 or 2 tablespoons at a time, until desired consistency is achieved.

Sauce will thicken as it cools. May be kept warm in mini crockpot or fondue pot.

MAKE AHEAD AND REHEAT: Sauce may be made a day or two ahead and reheated in the microwave, just until hot. Whisk until smooth. Add more evaporated milk if it needs thinning.

USES: Serve as dip for tortilla chips, fries, or raw veggies. Drizzle over steamed broccoli, baked potatoes, hot dogs, tacos or nachos. Mix with cooked macaroni for quick macaroni and cheese.

OPTIONAL STIR-INS:
--can of drained Rotel (or diced tomatoes and green chiles)
--diced jalapenos (fresh or pickled)
--browned chorizo
--chopped cilantro
--chopped green onions
--corn

CREATE-YOUR-OWN NACHO BAR. Set up a party buffet with this cheese sauce, tortilla chips and a variety of toppings: jalapeno slices, cilantro, chopped green onions, sliced black olives, bacon crumbles, salsa, guacamole, sour cream, browned chorizo, and chopped tomatoes.

NUTRITIONAL INFORMATION (per 2 tablespoons): 81 calories, 5.9g fat, 3.7g sat fat, 19mg cholesterol, 155mg sodium, 64mg potassium, 2.4g carbs, 1.7g sugars, fiber 0, 4.6g protein; Weight Watchers SmartPoints: 3

Inspired by Kenji's cheese sauce recipe at SeriousEats.com


Print this Recipe Share this Recipe

In less than 5 minutes, you can whip up a batch of this cheesy happiness that is similar to the cheese sauce enjoyed at sports stadiums and sold in jars in grocery stores. But, this sauce is made with real cheese--no mystery ingredients. It's velvety smooth but doesn't turn to rubber when it cools like Velveeta-based cheese sauces (what's in that stuff, anyway???).

Now you can make ballpark nachos and cheese fries at home, so it's perfect for Super Bowl and Game Day parties. Since all you need is a microwave, it can be made in dorm rooms and office kitchens, too. 

This sauce is so versatile. In addition to nachos, fries, and pretzels, you can drizzle it over steamed veggies (like broccoli or cauliflower-yum!), hot dogs, scrambled eggs or baked potatoes. Mix the sauce with cooked macaroni for the easiest ever mac-n-cheese. 

Nutritional Information (per 2 tablespoons): 81 calories, 5.9g fat, 3.7g sat fat, 19mg cholesterol, 155mg sodium, 64mg potassium, 2.4g carbs, 1.7g sugars, fiber 0, 4.6g protein; Weight Watchers SmartPoints: 3

My inspiration for this cheese sauce was a recipe by Kenji at Serious Eats. I created this microwave version for added convenience and boosted the flavor with additional seasonings.

Step-by-step photos for making
Microwave Cheddar Cheese Sauce

Step 1. Assemble the ingredients:

  •  Sharp or Extra-Sharp Cheddar Cheese. Buy it in block form and grate it with the large holes of a box grater. Pre-shredded cheese is not recommended; it is coated with a substance to prevent clumping that makes it more difficult to melt into a smooth sauce.

cheese_sauce.jpg

  • corn starch (for thickening)
  • evaporated milk (it holds up to heat better than milk or cream and makes a smooth sauce)
  • garlic, onion, and mustard powder
  • white pepper (finely ground)
  • hot sauce (optional)

IMG_8308.jpg

Step 2. Add grated cheese to a microwave-safe bowl. I use an 8-cup Pyrex measuring bowl--the large size and tall sides make it easy to whisk the sauce without it flying out.

Step 3. Add cornstarch and dry seasonings. Toss with a fork to evenly coat the cheese shreds. This helps avoid lumps--the cornstarch dissolves into the sauce evenly.

Step 4. Add the evaporated milk and hot sauce (if using). You can also stir in the hot sauce later, waiting to taste the sauce to see if you think it needs the addition of hot sauce--this is a personal preference thing.

cheese_sauce2.jpg

Step 5. Microwave the cheese mixture on high for a total of 3-4 minutes, stopping to whisk after 2 minutes. After the 3rd minute, whisk vigorously again until any lumps dissolve into a smooth sauce. If it's still lumpy, cook and whisk in 30 second intervals just until sauce is smooth. Do not overcook. (NOTE: Microwave power/heat can vary, so I can't recommend exact cooking times. My 1100-watt microwave takes exactly 3 minutes total cooking time.)

cheese_sauce1.jpg

If the sauce is too thick, whisk in additional evaporated milk 1-2 tablespoons at a time until the desired consistency is achieved.

IMG_8490.jpg

OPTIONAL STIR-INS. Customize this sauce to your liking by adding any or all of these:

  • can of drained Rotel (or diced tomatoes and green chiles)
  • diced jalapenos (fresh or pickled)
  • browned chorizo
  • chopped cilantro
  • chopped green onions
  • chopped black olives
  • corn (fresh or frozen)

Easy, right? This smooth, cheesy, sauce is great served as a dip with tortilla chips.

squareIMG_8492.jpg

squareIMG_8522.jpg

CREATE-YOUR-OWN NACHO BAR. Set up a party buffet with this cheese sauce, tortilla chips and a variety of toppings: jalapeno slices, cilantro, chopped green onions, sliced black olives, bacon crumbles, salsa, guacamole, sour cream, taco meat, and chopped tomatoes. I did this at a Super Bowl party and it was a hit--an easy crowd pleaser!

vertIMG_8531.JPG

Cheese fries anyone? This sauce is perfect for that!

squareIMG_8539.jpg

MAKE AHEAD AND REHEAT: This sauce may be made a day or two ahead and reheated in the microwave, just until hot. Whisk until smooth. Add more evaporated milk if it needs thinning. You can also reheat it in a small slow cooker.

KEEP IT WARM. The sauce will thicken as it cools. It may be kept warm in a mini crockpot or fondue pot--great options if it will be set out for an extended time at a party. I have a small 1.5 quart slow cooker that is perfect for holding a double batch of cheese sauce. It can hold on the warm setting for hours and keeps the sauce at a smooth dipping consistency.

squareIMG_8644.jpg

Make it a Yummy day!

Monica

Link directly to this recipe Print this recipe
Cheddar Cheese Sauce | Microwave
By Monica              Servings: makes 2 cups
Ingredients
  • 8 oz. block sharp or extra sharp cheddar cheese (pre-shredded not recommended)
  • 1 tablespoon corn starch
  • 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon white pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon dry mustard
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons hot sauce (optional), or more to taste
  • 1 can (12 oz) evaporated milk, divided
Directions
Grate cheese on large holes of box grater and add to 6-8 cup microwave safe bowl. Add corn starch, garlic and onion powders, white pepper, dry mustard, and salt. Toss together with a fork until cheese is evenly coated with dry ingredients. Add hot sauce (optional); pour 1 cup evap. milk over top. (Reserve remaining milk for thinning sauce later, if needed.) Stir.

Microwave uncovered on high for a total of approx. 3-4 minutes, stopping to whisk after 2 minutes. After 3rd minute, whisk vigorously again until any lumps dissolve into a smooth sauce; if still lumpy, cook and whisk in 30 second intervals just until sauce is smooth. Do not overcook.

NOTE:  Microwave power/heat can vary, so exact cooking times can vary, as well.

To thin sauce more, whisk in more evaporated milk 1 or 2 tablespoons at a time, until desired consistency is achieved.

Sauce will thicken as it cools. May be kept warm in mini crockpot or fondue pot.

MAKE AHEAD AND REHEAT: Sauce may be made a day or two ahead and reheated in the microwave, just until hot. Whisk until smooth. Add more evaporated milk if it needs thinning.

USES: Serve as dip for tortilla chips, fries, or raw veggies. Drizzle over steamed broccoli, baked potatoes, hot dogs, tacos or nachos. Mix with cooked macaroni for quick macaroni and cheese.

OPTIONAL STIR-INS:
--can of drained Rotel (or diced tomatoes and green chiles)
--diced jalapenos (fresh or pickled)
--browned chorizo
--chopped cilantro
--chopped green onions
--corn

CREATE-YOUR-OWN NACHO BAR. Set up a party buffet with this cheese sauce, tortilla chips and a variety of toppings: jalapeno slices, cilantro, chopped green onions, sliced black olives, bacon crumbles, salsa, guacamole, sour cream, browned chorizo, and chopped tomatoes.

NUTRITIONAL INFORMATION (per 2 tablespoons): 81 calories, 5.9g fat, 3.7g sat fat, 19mg cholesterol, 155mg sodium, 64mg potassium, 2.4g carbs, 1.7g sugars, fiber 0, 4.6g protein; Weight Watchers SmartPoints: 3

Inspired by Kenji's cheese sauce recipe at SeriousEats.com
Print this Recipe   Share this Recipe




Posted on Wednesday, February 1st, 2017








Home    |    Recipes    |    Archives    |    About The Yummy Life    |    Contact
The Yummy Life is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to amazon.com.
Privacy Policy - © 2017 The Yummy Life - All rights reserved