How to Make Bechamel Sauce

by Mary Papoulias-Platis

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Bechamel sauce is one of the staples in the Greek kitchen, often used in multiple traditional dishes . Growing up I cannot forget the many instances my mother and aunts couldn’t get it right. Why? It’s not just a simple white sauce. There are details you must remember to make a creamy-nutty sauce, with no remaining after taste from the flour. Bechamel sauce is the basic white sauce used in the Greek cuisine, it is used as a topping for casseroles in which eggs are added to the basic recipe. Cheese can be added for a cheese sauce, along with herbs, spices, relishes, white wine, or sherry for added flavors. Once you mastered this sauce you no longer need to purchase any canned soups again. Bechamel Sauce can be used in the following dishes:

  • Moussaka, Pastitsio and casseroles such as mac and cheese, tuna casserole, lasagnas.
  • Ladled over open-face sandwiches with cheese-choice and then broiled.
  • Used as a filler for any type of turnover or phyllo triangles.
  • Creamed spinach, baked cauliflower, endive au gratin
  • Crepe filling, cream soups, creamy pastas, warm dressings.

 Here’s how!

melting butter

 Melt the butter over medium heat until foamy.

Steps to a bechamel sauce

 Add the flour, whisk until smooth, continue cooking until golden.  

How to whisk a sauce

 Slowly, add the milk and salt and continue whisking until thick and creamy.

Perfect bechamel sauce

 After 10-12 minutes it should look like this. Thick and smooth. If adding eggs and other spices, now is the time.

How to Make Bechamel Sauce

Bechamel sauce is a mother sauce to add to your kitchen basics. This is one of the most versatile sauces for making many delicious dishes. Master this sauce so you never have to buy canned soups again.

Course sauce
Cuisine Greek
Keyword bechamel, Greek, Sauce
Author Mary Papoulias-Platis


Basic Bechamel Sauce

  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 2 tablespoons flour
  • 1 cup milk
  • salt and pepper

Greek Bechamel Sauce

Make the above sauce and add ingredients below.

  • 1-3 egg yolks
  • cheese - optional for certain dishes
  • dash of grated nutmeg
  • Thinner Sauce: for Moussaka, Pastichio, Baked Dishes
  • Reduce the butter and flour to 1 tablespoon per cup of milk
  • Thicker Sauce: for stuffing vegetables, stuffed meats
  • Use 3 tablespoons of butter and flour per cup of milk
  • Professional Use
  • 10 parts milk with 1 part roux, 10 ozs. to 1 ounce


  1. Melt butter in a saucepan over low heat.
  2. Slowly add the flour, continue whisking until blended thoroughly.
  3. Add the hot milk slowly whisking continuously until sauce thickens.
  4. Remove from heat.
  5. Greek Sauce

  6. When using eggs with sauce, temper the eggs by adding a little bit of the white sauce to the eggs and whisking until blended.
  7. Add egg yolks, salt and pepper to white sauce and blend thoroughly.
  8. Note: When doubling the sauce, do not double the eggs.

Recipe Notes

Sauce can be kept in the refrigerator for up to 4 days in an airtight container. To reheat, place sauce in a double boiler, stirring constantly.

In case you interested in making other sauces, here are a few more:

Pesto Butter Sauce

Apple Cider Vinaigrette

How to Make Brown Butter

Enjoy learning how to make Sauces,


© 2013 – 2022, Mary Papoulias-Platis. All rights reserved.

{ 4 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Virginia Kallins

Hi Mary:
Can I substitute Crème fraiche in a recepie that uses béchamel sauce?
maybe your Eggplant and potato pie?

2 Mary Papoulias-Platis

Hi Virginia, It’s so nice to hear from you! The bechamel is a thick sauce use to hold everything together, such as a lasagna. I don’t know why you couldn’t use it, you may have to thin it out a little. Mary

3 Patricia@FreshFoodinaFlash

Hi Mary – I rediscovered your blog, as I read that we both posted a recipe for Béchamel Sauce this week. How funny! Mine is to go with a Ham & Peas Pizza from my Pizza Class. I love what you are doing on your blog and signed up to get updates. Congrats on finishing the e-book. I salute you! Patricia

4 Mary Papoulias-Platis

Hi Virginia,
You won’t have the fluffy light sauce and texture that you have with Bechamel. Certainly, you can use other alternatives. Creme Fraiche is a substitute for sour cream, also great in tarts with added cheeses. Try it an let me know.

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