Best ready made cheese sauce?

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Hi


Just wondering if any one has recommendations for a good ready made cheese sauce to be used for pasta bake/macaroni?


I know most will suggest to make it ourselves but we have tried several recipes and it just comes out tasting tasteless , bland and lumpy-


I'm considering buying Asda / Waitrose cheese sauce (comes in a tub). Any one tried it and is it any good? or maybe the packet ones?


Thanks
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  • maisie_cat
    maisie_cat Posts: 2,077 Forumite
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    Are you making a roux as a base for the cheese sauce, and are you using butter? Add a strong cheese to the white sauce and add mustard to enhance the cheese flavour. It is indeed quicker to make a cheese sauce than to go to the shop and buy it ready made.
    An alternative, depending on what you are having is to melt creme fraiche in a pan and add grated cheese, that also make a nice sauce albeit very rich, or at least richer.
  • Euphoria1z
    Euphoria1z Posts: 952 Forumite
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    yes making a roux and adding butter. We use strong cheddar cheese-we've given up. even tried the recipe from Serious eats using evap milk but that was also a disaster.


    Going to try the ready made stuff now-
  • Owain_Moneysaver
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    I use Bisto Cheese Sauce Granules- it's like Gravy Granules but for cheese sauce. Has the advantage I can make only what I need.

    It is not very cheese however.
    A kind word lasts a minute, a skelped erse is sair for a day.
  • McKneff
    McKneff Posts: 38,831 Forumite
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      Just add some finally grated cheese to the bisto granules
      make the most of it, we are only here for the weekend.
      and we will never, ever return.
    1. suki1964
      suki1964 Posts: 14,313 Forumite
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      I never bother with a roux, too time consuming

      Flour, butter and milk in a pan, put on the heat and whisk like its going out of fashion till the sauce has come to a boil and thickened, Turn right down, add strong cheddar or stilton or whatever ( I don't bother grating, just cut into lumps) and let it melt through and cook out. Teaspoon of Colemans English mustard, white pepper ( black shows specks) and maybe some salt ( depends on the cheese)

      Never lumpy, never bland and easy peasy

      If you do get lumps, sieve :)
    2. RainbowDrops
      RainbowDrops Posts: 4,674 Forumite
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      Euphoria1z wrote: »
      Waitrose cheese sauce (comes in a tub). Any one tried it and is it any good? or maybe the packet ones?

      The waitrose one is just ok, I wouldn't buy it again due to the cost. Not hugely flavoursome, just salty.

      I know you say you have given up, but it might be worth persevering to save money.

      I follow a baby friendly recipe, and find it's quite good. It has added nutmeg and worcester sauce for flavour.

      And as for lumps, I find the trick is to really cook out the flour & butter roux (for about 5 mins), then add the milk in REALLY slowly, like a few tablespoons at a time, that way you go from a thick paste to a smooth sauce.

      But I get it, sometimes time & effort isn't what everyone wants.
      Good luck!
    3. Gnocchi
      Gnocchi Posts: 860 Forumite
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      A cheese sauce is not the easiest thing in the world to make, using a roux. I'm an ex chef and I don't bother with all that stirring. If the flour isn't cooked out it tastes nasty, it takes a lot of elbow power to get the lumps out and many people add too much/little milk or don't remember to add the liquid off the heat.



      Here's a trick from Pierre Dukan of the Dukan Diet. If you buy full fat creme fraiche or double cream, it won't split when heated. Just stir in your grated cheese (the smaller the better) and when you are happy with the taste and temperature, use it how you want. Must be the higher fat stuff or it will split.



      If you go for a tub/jar suggest checking for nasties. Also, I don't recommend the Seeds of Change b!chamel sauce despite it being organic. Have seen that split in the jar !
    4. Owain_Moneysaver
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      Gnocchi wrote: »
      If you go for a tub/jar suggest checking for nasties. Also, I don't recommend the Seeds of Change b!chamel sauce despite it being organic. Have seen that split in the jar !

      Probably because it doesn't have any "nasty" emulsifiers in it like lecithin.
      A kind word lasts a minute, a skelped erse is sair for a day.
    5. PasturesNew
      PasturesNew Posts: 70,698 Forumite
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      I microwave sauce/cheese sauce - no lumps, ever.

      Roughly: rounded spoon of butter/marg, melt. Add heaped spoon of flour, mix in using a fork and really wiggle it hard, scraping round to get it to come together.... add a splash of milk.... wiggle that fork again to make it come together.... nuke it for 1 a minute or so ... remove and then go through adding a bit of milk and wiggling the fork/scraping it so the sauce is smooth and nuking it ... until it's right. So: Splash of milk, fork it together, nuke 30-60 seconds, repeat until it's sauce like.

      Then add cheese and nuke it again ... add a bit more milk to loosen it off, or add more cheese to thicken it.

      The above NEVER fails....

      OR ..... in all honesty - artificial cheese sauce is pretty rank, so you're better off getting a white sauce pack/whatever and making it up, then adding your own cheese.
    6. Bacman
      Bacman Posts: 537 Forumite
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      suki1964 wrote: »
      I never bother with a roux, too time consuming

      Flour, butter and milk in a pan.......

      That is a roux!

      Actually, cheese doesn't help with the flavour in the sauce compared to adding it as a topping to the dish and melted under a grill.

      Use a little more weight of plain flour than butter; melt butter in a saucepan, use a hand whisk to mix in the flour, then after a few more seconds of cooking add a little milk at a time until the mixture is quite runny and smooth; add a couple of teaspoons of mustard (I use Asda own brand). I used to then add cheese however find it better to add cooked crushed garlic to the sauce. Add cheese to the topping not the sauce.


      If you look at the ingredients on cheese sauce jars, it is pretty much all chemicals and artificial enhancers - do you really want to eat rubbish when you can make your own healthy sauce, easily, in less than 10 minutes from scratch; and far cheaper too??
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