Few things to keep in mind before starting:

  • White sauce / Bèchamel sauce pasta is an Italian cuisine. It is basically prepared by tossing al dentè cooked pasta with cheesy white sauce also known as bèchamel sauce, sauteèd vegetables and some herbs.
  • The secret to my super creamy yummilicious white sauce pasta recipe is the addition of cheese slices along with grated processed cheese to the sauce. My kids just love to have this recipe any day or any time! And I love to serve them this pasta with lots and lots of veggies!
  • I sautè my vegetables first and then add flour and milk to that only. This way I reduce my hassle of preparing the sauce and sauteèing the veggies separately. Also, I have found that this way the chances of developing lumps in the white sauce reduces too. You may still prepare your sauce separately and sautè your veggies separately, if you like.
  • Any kind of pasta like macaroni, fusilli, penne or even spaghetti can be used for this recipe. I have used a mix of both mini penne and mini fusilli pasta.
  • The best way to make sure that your pasta is al dentè is either by tasting it or by looking at its edges which will turn white when the pasta is al dentè. Al dentè means it should be cooked only till it is tender yet chewy. Do not over cook it.
  • Do not put oil in water used for boiling pasta as you need your pasta to be sticky so as to allow it to absorb the sauce you prepare.
  • Take lots of water(usually 4-5 cups of water for each cup of pasta), let it boil and then add salt to the water and finally add pasta to the salted boiling hot water.
  • As this is milk based recipe, so preferably use Rock salt in it.
  • Do remember to reserve some pasta water for your white sauce before you empty the contents of boiled pasta into a colander. The starch in this pasta water will add thickness to your white sauce.
  • Do not rinse your boiled pasta with water as you need your pasta to be starchy.
  • Full fat milk works well as it adds richness to the recipe. You may even use Almond milk instead of dairy milk to make it vegan.
  • Do not add milk in one go. Add it in batches and keep on mixing well.
  • Usually cheddar, parmesan, mozarella or a mix of many kinds of cheese is used to prepare the bèchamel sauce. I have used processed cheese along with cheese slices.
  • Use vegetables of your choice like zucchini, spinach, mushrooms, bell peppers, broccoli, baby corn etc. I usually chop the veggies in very small size making it unavoidable for kids to consume the veggies too along with the pasta.

Ingredients: ( for 4 servings)

  • Pasta – 2 cups (mini fusilli & mini penne)
  • Water – 8 to 10 cups(to boil pasta)
  • Rock Salt – 1 tsp + to taste
  • Garlic – 1 tbsp
  • Butter – 3 tbsp
  • Olive oil – 1 tsp
  • All Purpose flour (Maida) – 2 tbsp
  • Milk – 2 cups
  • Boiled pasta water – 1/4 cup
  • Processed cheese – 1/4 cup
  • Cheese slice – 3
  • Mixed herbs – 1 tbsp
  • Red chilli flakes – 1/2 tsp
  • Black pepper powder – 1/4 tsp
  • Mixed Vegetables(broccoli, bell pepper, capsicum) – 2 cups

Method:

  • Boil 8 to 10 cups of water in a large vessel. When the water starts boiling, then add 1 tsp salt to it and finally add the pasta to boil. Let it boil till al dentè on low flame. It took me around 7 minutes to do so.
  • Reserve 1/4 cup of pasta water for preparing sauce and drain the rest to a colander. Do not rinse the pasta with water and also do not add oil to it. Let it be sticky.
  • Heat butter with olive oil in a heavy bottomed vessel. Add chopped garlic to it and sautè it.
  • Now add the veggies which need more cooking time like broccoli, mushrooms etc and cook these covered on low flame along with 1/2 tsp salt. It took me 6 mins to cook the broccoli.
  • After that add the veggies which need very less time to cook like bell peppers and cook these for another 1 minute.
  • Now add maida and sautè it continuously stirring it till the raw smell of the flour goes off making sure that the colour of the flour does not change.
  • Then add milk to it in batches and continuously keep on stirring it. Add boiled pasta water too at this point. Let it come to a boil. Keep on stirring it continuously. Cook it till it becomes thick and creamy.
  • Lower the flame and add cheese slice, grated processed cheese, mixed herbs, chilli flakes, black pepper powder and salt to taste. Mix these well and finally add the boiled pasta.
  • Serve the hot pasta immediately garnishing it with some grated cheese and chilli flakes.
Cheesy White Sauce Pasta

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