February 04, 2016

Béchamel Sauce / White Sauce

Béchamel sauce also known as white sauce is one of the mother sauces of French cuisine. Despite being French ordinated, this sauce is used worldwide to make delicious recipes. The very basic ingredients for this sauce are roux (butter and flour) and milk, can be tailored using flavored ingredients required for different recipes. The thickness of sauce depends upon the ratio of roux to the milk. This recipe yield medium thick sauce which means béchamel in French. The perfect way to attain a perfectly smooth sauce is to have the milk hot when added to the butter and flour.

Cuisine: French/World | Recipe Category: Spice Sauce & Condiments
Prep Time: 5 Minutes | Cook Time: 10 Minutes | Serving: 1 cup


All-purpose flour
2 Tbsp.
2 Tbsp.
Milk, heated
1 cup
White Pepper Powder
½ Tsp.
1/8 Tsp.
Nutmeg powder
1 pinch

Step by Step Instructions: 

  1. Melt the butter in a heavy-bottomed saucepan. 
  2. Stir  in the flour and roast, stirring constantly, until you get a nice aroma and the paste bubbles a bit around 2 minutes. Don't let it brown or burnt.
  3. Add the hot milk, continuing to stir as the sauce thickens. Bring it to a boil.  
  4. Add salt, nutmeg powder, pepper to taste, lower the heat, and cook, stirring for 2 to 3 minutes more.
  5. To cool this sauce for later use, cover it with wax paper or pour a film of milk over it to prevent a skin from forming. 

Quick Tips:
  1. Always use heated milk to this recipe. Warm the milk on low heat just until little bubbles begin to form at the edges. 
  2. Use black pepper powder if white pepper powder is not available.
  3. Consistency: The thickness of this sauce can adjust by using more or less milk as per your recipe requirement. Generally sauce thickens once it cools down.
  • One Tbsp. each of butter and flour per cup of milk makes a thin, easily pourable sauce.
  • Two Tbsp. of each makes a medium thick sauce used to make creamy dishes like Au gratin.
  • Three Tbsp. of each makes an extra thick sauce used to fill croquettes or as a soufflé base.

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