Master Recipe: Parmesan Cream Sauce

Andy Anderson !


Every chef worth his or her salt needs a decent method for creating a creamy Parmesan sauce.

Remember: The trick to making a worthy Parmesan sauce (besides taste) is that it is thin enough to flow when drizzling over chicken or fish, yet thick enough to cling to things, like pasta.

A good Parmesan sauce forms a base for many dishes; including but not restricted to, chicken, fish, pasta, and shrimp.

So, you ready… Let’s get into the kitchen.

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4 - 6
10 Min
15 Min
Stove Top



2 Tbsp
sweet butter, unsalted, i recommend clarified butter
2 Tbsp
flour, all purpose variety
1/2 c
chicken stock, not broth
1 c
heavy cream
1/4 c
parmesan cheese, freshly grated
white pepper, freshly ground, to taste
salt, kosher variety, freshly ground, to taste


skinned/seeded/chopped fresh tomatoes
cream cheese
baked garlic
freshly chopped herbs (basil, oregano, thyme, etc.)
a pinch of nutmeg during the holidays


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2Gather your ingredients.

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3Add the butter to a saucepan over medium heat.

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4If you are not using clarified butter, wait until the foaming subsides.

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5Add the flour.

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6Whisk until completely incorporated, about 1 quick minute.

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7Chef’s Note: Adding fat and flour together creates a roux. There are different stages of a roux; the longer your cook it, the browner it gets, and the nuttier it tastes. We want a light roux… no browning. So, 1 minute on the heat is about all you want.

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8Slowly whisk in the chicken stock.

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9Chef’s Tip: Do not use hot chicken stock, or you will get lumps in your sauce.

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10Continue to whisk until completely smooth.

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11Add the cream.

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12Stir to incorporate, about 1 minute.

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13Chef’s Note: At this point, season with salt and pepper.

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14Chef’s Note: We are using white pepper, because we don’t want to see little black flakes in the sauce. In addition, white pepper is milder than black pepper, so adjust your seasoning accordingly.

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15Continue to cook and stir for an additional 2 minutes.

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16Add the Parmesan

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17Stir until incorporated, about 1 minute.

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18Chef’s Note: If the sauce is too thick, add more cream or chicken stock, one tablespoon at a time, until the desired consistency is achieved.

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19Chef’s Tip: If you are making this sauce ahead of time, put a piece of wax paper or plastic wrap over the sauce while it cools to prevent a skin from forming.

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21FOR FISH AND CHICKEN: Add about 1/2 teaspoon of dried thyme and oregano and 1 or 2 baked/mined cloves of garlic.

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22A VEGGIE DIP: Use the same variations for fish and chicken, but melt about 2 ounces of cream cheese into the sauce.

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23PASTA: Use the master recipe without variations over most pasta.

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24PASTA VARIATION: Skin, seed, and chop one large plum tomato add a tablespoon of chopped basil, and serve over pasta.

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25Chef’s Note: When I use garlic in a sauce, I like to bake the garlic first. Place the garlic cloves on a piece of parchment paper and drizzle with a bit of olive oil. Pull the ends of the parchment paper together and twist together, like a beggar’s pouch.
Bake for about 20 minutes. Remove from the oven, and allow it to cool. Add a few pinches of salt, and then mash into a paste with the flat side of your kitchen knife.

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26Keep the faith, and keep cooking.

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27If you enjoyed this recipe, and would like to be notified when I post more yummy food, just click here to follow me:

About this Recipe

Course/Dish: Other Sauces
Main Ingredient: Dairy
Regional Style: Italian