This Gouda Cheese Sauce is the perfect creamy cheese sauce for fries, pretzels, tortilla chips or pasta. The rich and creamy cheese sauce goes perfectly on cheese fries and makes both a great comfort food and a delicious cheese dip for party appetizers.
Homemade Cheese Sauce for Fries
Football season might be almost over, but there are still plenty of sports to cheer for! College basketball is one of my favorites, and since March is approaching fast there will be plenty of basketball games to watch on TV, which means we still need game time grub!
My family loves finger food like Fries and Onion rings, and dipping sauce only makes them better. For the most recent game we watched I wanted to come up with a fancier way to serve their favorite fries.
Sure covering fries in ketchup can be tasty, but I decided to branch out to a more gourmet experience. So I created this Smoked Gouda Cheese Sauce, and used it to make upscale fries.
How to Make a Cheese Sauce
Making a cheese sauce is actually easy and it is a great staple since cheese sauce can be used on pasta, rice, veggies and, of course, fries. It is easy and fun to vary the taste of your cheese sauce just be using different kinds of cheeses.
To make the smoked Gouda cheese sauce I started by making a simple cream sauce, combining butter and flour in a small saucepan. I put the sauce pan on low, and used a whisk to combine the flour with the butter as it melted.
Once the butter and flour are smooth it is time to add some milk. I slowly stirred the milk into the butter mixture and turned the burner heat up to medium.
This is the only even slightly complicated part of the making the cheese sauce, since you do need to keep stirring the mixture while it heats up. After about 3 minutes the milk starts to bubble and thicken, at which point it can be removed from the heat.
Then I stirred in some creamy, shredded, smoked Gouda cheese into the milk mixture and stirred it with a wooden spoon until it all melted.
Why use Gouda Cheese in Cheese Sauce
You can make a cheese sauce with many different kinds of cheese, but Gouda is a favorite of mine. Gouda is a semi-soft cheese with a very high butterfat content.
This means that is melts beautifully, much better than a hard cheese like cheddar. It also has a lower acid content than most cheeses, so the cheese sauce stays nice and creamy instead of getting stringy.
The only cheese I’ve tried that melts better than Gouda is processed cheese like Velveeta and I rarely use processed cheeses. Gouda comes in both smoked and not smoked varieties.
I usually use smoked Gouda because I think the smokiness adds depth to the flavor.
Best Ways to Use Creamy Cheese Sauce
My family and I love this cheese sauce as a quick and easy dip for fries. I can put a batch of fries in the oven to bake and have the cheese sauce made by the time it is done.
Kids especially love dipping the fries but you can also make a plate of cheese fries by covering the fries with the cheese sauce and toppings like jalapenos and onion straws.
The creaminess of sauce makes it an especially good complement to Spicy Sweet Potato Fries! I like the simplicity of this dish, and how quick and easy it was to take fries from the ordinary to the gourmet!
Other great suggestions for using this homemade cheese sauce include:
- Use as a dip for pretzels or pretzel bites
- Use for tortilla chips as a nacho cheese sauce
- Cook up some pasta and make everyone’s favorite – macaroni and cheese
- The creamy cheese sauce is a great topping for vegetables like broccoli or cauliflower. Just a little bit of creamy cheese can encourage kids to eat vegetables they might not love. And in my house this works on adults too!
- If you make some for a sports watching party and have leftovers it is delicious on an omelet the next morning or as a topping on a burger
- This recipe is for a small amount of cheese sauce meant to be used as a dip. But it is easy to double or even triple the recipe, just make sure your sauce pan is large enough.
- You can use essentially the same recipe and change the type of cheese if you aren’t as big a fan of Gouda as I am. I find that Monterey Jack works well in the recipe, as does Gruyere. Cheddar is also good, although the sauce won’t be as creamy.
- If you are making the cheese sauce for macaroni and cheese I like to triple the recipe and use three different cheeses.
Find more Appetizer Ideas for Parties
- Chile Rellenos Casserole
- Cheesy Broccoli Bacon Mac Bites
- Onion Dill Dip
- Homemade Fry Sauce