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+ servings
spicy nacho cheddar cheese sauce in small bowl with nachos on side
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5 from 9 votes

Homemade Nacho Cheese Sauce

A bowl of silky smooth, cheesy, spicy nacho cheese sauce is super easy to make than you thought. It’s perfect for dip, nacho cheese, with fries, steamed or roasted broccoli, as mac and cheese sauce and so much more.
Prep Time5 mins
Cook Time7 mins
Course: dip
Cuisine: American
Servings: 2 cups
Calories: 697kcal


  • 2 tablespoon butter unsalted
  • 2 tablespoon plain flour
  • 1 ½ cup milk whole/ full cream milk
  • ½ teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1 ½ tablespoon hot sauce
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 2 cups sharp cheddar cheese


  • Start by melting 2 tablespoon of unsalted butter in a small sauce pan on medium flame. Sprinkle flour over the top.
  • Whisk together until it’s form a thick paste. Keep whisking continuously and cook flour for about 1 minute. It’s important to cook out the floury flavor and not burn the flour.
  • Slowly add milk (or half and half) to the butter-flour paste in a steady stream.
  • Continue whisking and cooking until the mixture thickens. It will take about 5 minutes. Keep cooking on medium flame.
  • Once mixture begins to thicken add hot sauce, cayenne pepper, salt and pepper to taste. Whisk together.
  • Always turn off heat and remove sauce pan from stove before adding cheese to ensure you don’t burn cheese or over heat and turn it into a lump. Residue heat will be enough to melt cheese.
  • Add grated cheese to the sauce pan while whisking constantly until cheese is fully melted.
  • Taste and adjust seasoning or spice if required.
  • Pour into serving bowls and serve immediately with nachos. Can be used to pour it over steamed or roasted broccoli, stirred with mac and cheese, used as a dip.
  • Any leftovers can be stored in air tight containers refrigerated for about 5 days


  • Grated your own cheese! Always buy only block cheese. DO NOT buy pre-grated cheese as it will have addictive like corn starch to keep it from sticking.
  • Buy the best quality cheese for the best flavor.
  • Use whole milk/full cream milk to get smoother sauce. Fat content in milk will help turn sauce smoother.
  • Always turn off heat before adding cheese to ensure you don’t burn cheese or over heat and turn it into a lump. Residue heat will be enough to melt cheese.
  • Cheese sauce will be bit runny at first, don’t worry. The sauce thickens upon cooling.
  • Depending on your spice tolerance adjust the amount of hot sauce and cayenne pepper used in the recipe. If you can’t tolerate heat, skip both. If you like sauce spicier, increase it to your taste preference.
Nutrition: values mentioned below is for 1 cup (cup size approximately 230 ml)
Nutritional Info – Please keep in mind that nutritional information provided is only a rough estimate and can vary greatly based on products used.


Calories: 697kcal | Carbohydrates: 16g | Protein: 35g | Fat: 55g | Saturated Fat: 34g | Cholesterol: 167mg | Sodium: 1138mg | Potassium: 352mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 10g | Vitamin A: 1987IU | Vitamin C: 7mg | Calcium: 1022mg | Iron: 1mg