Bechamel Sauce

Editor's Note: Admit it — your beloved recipes for lasagna, savory pies, and potato dishes could use a boost in the flavor department. While you could simply add more herbs or seasoning, consider giving the dishes a smoother, richer, and creamier taste and texture by making your own Bechamel Sauce. If you've always thought it would be complicated to make Bechamel Sauce, then you need to see this recipe by the famed Julia Child. The five-ingredient sauce recipe is easy to make and won't take long to prepare. This recipe makes 2 cups of sauce, which is just the right amount for including in some of your favorite recipes for dinner.

Serves2 cups (medium-thick consistency)



One Pot MealYes

Five Ingredients or LessYes

Taste and TextureCreamy, Spiced

Type of DishSauces


  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 3 tablespoons flour
  • 2 cups hot milk
  • Salt and freshly ground white pepper
  • Pinch of nutmeg


  1. Melt the butter in a heavy saucepan, blend in the flour with a wooden spoon, and cook over moderate heat, stirring, until butter and flour foam together for 2 minutes without turning more than a buttery yellow color. 

  2. Remove from heat, and when bubbling stops, vigorously whisk in all the hot milk at once. Bring to the boil, whisking. Simmer, stirring, for 2 minutes. Season to taste.


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I use this sauce to create what my family calls: Hamburger Crumble! I brown the chop meat with an onion, make the Bechamel Sauce but add 2T dry mustard. I combine the meat and sauce and cook 3-5 min. You can serve it over jasmine rice or mashed potatoes for a "warm fuzzy" meal anytime!


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