New recipes

White sauce with ham and herbs recipe

White sauce with ham and herbs recipe

  • Recipes
  • Dish type
  • Side dish
  • Sauce

This is an easy recipe that works well over short pasta or toast.

7 people made this

IngredientsServes: 4

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 onion, minced
  • 80g finely chopped ham
  • 250ml water
  • 1 chicken stock cube
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh basil
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 250ml double cream

MethodPrep:10min ›Cook:40min ›Ready in:50min

  1. Heat the olive oil in a large frying pan over medium-high heat. Stir in the onion and ham; cook until onions turn translucent. Pour in the water; season with the stock cube, parsley, basil and black pepper.
  2. Simmer for 30 minutes, uncovered, stirring occasionally. Pour in the cream, and simmer for an additional 2 minutes.

Recently viewed

Reviews & ratingsAverage global rating:(5)

Reviews in English (3)

by Karisma

This was fantastic and simple. I made it exactly as stated as there were no other reviews to build on, and I'm very glad it worked out that way. I served this over a bed of egg noodles with fresh spinach.-12 Jan 2012

by Carol

I made this exactly as printed and used fresh basil and parsley from my garden. We used it as a baked potato topping and the two of us ate all four servings at one meal. I am now making it to serve at a wedding shower on a baked potato bar. Delish!-19 May 2016

How to Make White Sauce

Homemade white sauce is so easy to prepare and once you learn how to make it, you&rsquoll find yourself using it or the base of it (a roux) quite frequently in cooking from scratch.

I&rsquom all for a good shortcut, but white sauce is one of those things that tastes so much better when it&rsquos made from scratch. It&rsquos worth taking a few minutes to prepare it yourself.

No more cream of ____ canned sauces.

I have a few recipes that do call for these cream-of sauces for convenience but to be honest when I make these recipes, I make my own sauce. So, I thought it was time I shared with you how to make a white sauce too so you have the option to make your own cream sauces.

White sauce is otherwise known as Béchamel sauce.

If you&rsquore fancy. Or you can call it white sauce like I do. Béchamel sauce is one of the French mother sauces that is made with a white roux plus milk.

What is a roux?

Another fancy French word. I don&rsquot have another less-fancy name for this one, but a roux (pronounced rue, rhymes with clue) is something I use all the time in my cooking and if you browse all my recipes, you&rsquore sure to find a roux at play in many of them.

A roux is flour and fat heated together to form a thickener. Any type of fat works but I often make my roux with butter and flour. You can, however, use bacon fat or any animal or vegetable fat. The ratio of fat to flour is 1:1. Pretty easy to remember.

A white roux is one that you let cook for just about a minute to cook away the floury taste, but not so long that the butter browns and becomes a brown roux. A brown roux is not wrong and actually can taste really great! Browning the butter adds a nutty flavor so if you&rsquore into that, go for it. Just don&rsquot burn the butter.

For this recipe, since we&rsquore aiming to make a white sauce, we will start with a white roux.

Going from a roux to a sauce.

Once you&rsquove made your roux, you then add a liquid to make it a sauce.

For this white sauce, we&rsquore adding milk. There is no golden ratio or proper amount of liquid to add.It really just depends on how thick or thin you like your sauce. The less liquid, the more thick your sauce. I typically add liquid and bring it to a boil. Bringing it to a boil sort of activates the thickener and makes everything combine and so you can see how thick your sauce is. You want to stir the sauce until it&rsquos smooth as it heats to a boil to help it combine. I usually eyeball how much liquid I add and I start with a minimal amount. You can always add more liquid to thin it out. It&rsquos more difficult to add more thickener because you can&rsquot just add butter or flour separately or it will clump and you&rsquoll end up with a lump sauce.

Other than seasoning it a bit, once you have your desired thickness, you&rsquore done! A white sauce is just flour, butter and milk. To season your white sauce, some chefs recommend adding nutmeg to give it a depth of flavor and you should add salt and white or black pepper to taste as well.

This is a basic white sauce!

Beyond the basic white sauce.

Once you&rsquove mastered how to make a roux and you&rsquove turned it into a delicious sauce by adding a liquid, then you can experiment and branch out almost indefinitely.

Here&rsquos how to take your roux and sauces beyond a basic white sauce:

&bull Brown your butter by cooking it longer to achieve that nutty flavor.

&bull Try different fats other than butter.

&bull Add cheese to your white sauce. Melting in Parmesan cheese creates an awesome homemade Alfredo sauce. Adding cheddar cheese creates a wonderful cheese sauce for mac and cheese. Add white American cheese and you have the start of a yummy queso dip! The amount of cheese you add is totally customizable. I typically start with 1/2 cup of cheese per every 1 cup of milk but you can do less or more depending on how cheesy you like your sauce.

&bull Instead of adding milk to your roux, try adding other liquids. For example, adding chicken broth creates a lovely chicken gravy. Beef broth for a beef gravy. And so on. This can be used as gravy, or a base for stews as well as fillings for things like pot pies.

Homemade Cream of Chicken Sauce

To make your own cream of chicken sauce (similar to the canned condensed soup), create a thick white sauce using a 1:1 butter and flour mixture then slowly add milk until you reach the desired thickness of your sauce. Don&rsquot forget you need to bring the sauce to a boil for the thickening agent to combine with the milk and &ldquoactivate.&rdquo Then add 1-2 tsp of chicken bullion powder for each cup of milk. Adjust the amount of chicken bullion to your own taste. More bullion means more chicken flavor but also means more salt so find your happy medium&mdashthe beauty of homemade is you can control these things.

You can also add herbs if you&rsquod like. Add the herbs to the butter and flour stage so that the oils in the butter activate the herbs&rsquo full flavor. Herbs that pair well with chicken are: thyme, marjoram, tarragon, cilantro, rosemary, sage, oregano, and garlic. If you want a blend of herbs but aren&rsquot sure what goes well together, you can opt for a ready-made spice-blend for poultry.

Use salted or unsalted butter

You can control the amount of salt you use in your white sauce. I typically start with salted butter since I like to add even more salt to season my white sauce. However, if you are on a low sodium diet or want to use a special salt like sea salt for a different flavor, then you can start with unsalted butter and add your own salt to taste. You can add salt at the end so that you can taste the sauce to see how much you need to add.

What can you serve with white sauce?

White sauce is great with a meat added in. Add chicken, ham, or sausage. Delicious! Serve with biscuits, and you&rsquore in business.

I often associate white gravy with breakfast foods. It can dress up a breakfast sandwich or top an otherwise dry egg casserole. However, it can also be enjoyed at dinner time too depending on what you&rsquore topping with it.

Here are a few of my favorite recipes that incorporate some variation of a white sauce:

Want more easy recipes?

This tutorial for how to make white sauce was featured on South Your Mouth!

Ham and White Bean Skillet

Beans and rice are a big deal in the south, always have been really. Back in the day, they were an important part of the dietary needs of the people, because families were large and relatively poor, so any kind of bean was an inexpensive, nutritious and filling dish.

Mostly our beans are slow cooked from dried beans, on the top of the stove, and that's really the way I still love them best to this day. Don't get me wrong. Electronic pressure cookers like the Instant Pot do an excellent job and makes a great pot of beans from dried, but slow-stewed still rules in my book. Fresh frozen sometimes fill in, and though faster, still take a little care to make.

Canned beans are an excellent solution for a time crunch because somebody else has already done the work for you! Unfortunately they can also be a bit high in sodium, but the solution is simple.

Nutritional Factoid: Did you know that while most canned beans are very high in sodium, draining and rinsing them gets rid of nearly half of the sodium level? And, just so you know, it also helps to reduce some of those gas-causing sugars too.

As to rice, long grain rules in the Deep South over all others and while I mostly cook with it, I also keep a box of "instant rice," or what is also known as minute rice, for skillet meals just like this. It just seems to work better for me and doesn't get that mushy texture that sometimes happens, but what exactly is instant rice anyway?

Simple. It's rice that has already been precooked. That's it y'all!

As always, full recipe text with measurements and instructions, as well as a printable document, are a little bit further down the page. Just swipe or scroll past the step-by-step pictures below.

Here's how to make my Ham and White Bean Skillet.

Heat the oil in a large lidded skillet (about 4.5 quart/11 inch) over medium-high heat. Add the ham and lightly brown.

Add the garlic, fresh parsley, Cajun seasoning, pepper and bay leaf. Bring to a boil.

Drain, rinse, and mash one can of the beans and stir in.

Add the remaining can of beans, green onion and rice.

Mix well, bring to a boil, cover and reduce heat to a medium low simmer.

Cook, covered, for about 8 to 10 minutes, or until liquid is absorbed and rice is tender.

Fluff with a fork, taste and adjust seasonings as needed serve immediately.

Ham and White Bean Skillet


  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin or light olive oil
  • 1/2 pound smoked ham, chopped
  • 1 cup chopped onion
  • 1/2 cup chopped sweet bell pepper, any color, or use a combination
  • 1/4 cup chopped celery
  • 1 tablespoon minced garlic
  • 1/2 tablespoon fresh parsley
  • 1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon Cajun seasoning (like Slap Ya Mama), or to taste
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly cracked black pepper, or to taste
  • 1 large bay leaf
  • 2 cups chicken stock or broth
  • 2 (15.5 ounce) cans of white beans, divided use, rinsed and drained
  • 1 green onion, sliced
  • 2 cups instant rice


  1. Heat the oil in a large lidded skillet (about 4.5 quart/11 inch) over medium-high heat. Add the ham and lightly brown.
  2. Add the onion, bell pepper, and celery cook and stir until vegetables are tender, about 5 minutes.
  3. Add the garlic, fresh parsley, Cajun seasoning, pepper and bay leaf.
  4. Add stock/broth.
  5. Drain, rinse, and mash one can of the beans and stir in.
  6. Add the remaining can of drained beans, green onion and rice.
  7. Mix well, bring to a boil, cover and reduce heat to a medium-low simmer.
  8. Cook, covered, for about 8 to 10 minutes, or until liquid is absorbed and rice is tender.
  9. Fluff with a fork, taste and adjust seasonings as needed serve immediately.


This recipe is a great, basic rice and beans dinner and versatile enough that I've successfully varied the meats, canned beans and seasonings to come up with other meals too. Use your imagination and make some swaps for variety.

Recommended Products:

Similar Recipes

Skillet Chili Mac

Sausage and Peppers Stew with Onions with Beans

Beef and Bean Burrito Skillet Dinner

Did you make this recipe?

As an Amazon Associate, Deep South Dish earns from qualifying purchases. See full disclosure for details.

Hey Y’all! Welcome to some good ole, down home southern cooking. Pull up a chair, grab some iced tea, and 'sit a bit' as we say down south. If this is your first time visiting Deep South Dish, you can sign up for FREE updates via EMAIL or RSS feed, or you can catch up with us on Facebook and Twitter too!

© Copyright 2008-2021 – Mary Foreman – Deep South Dish LLC - All Rights Reserved

Material Disclosure: This site is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Unless otherwise noted, you should assume that post links to the providers of goods and services mentioned, establish an affiliate relationship and/or other material connection and that I may be compensated when you purchase from the provider. You are never under any obligation to purchase anything when using my recipes and you should always perform due diligence before buying goods or services from anyone via the Internet or offline.

DISCLAIMER: This is a recipe site intended for entertainment. By using this site and these recipes you agree that you do so at your own risk, that you are completely responsible for any liability associated with the use of any recipes obtained from this site, and that you fully and completely release Mary Foreman and Deep South Dish LLC and all parties associated with either entity, from any liability whatsoever from your use of this site and these recipes.

ALL CONTENT PROTECTED UNDER THE DIGITAL MILLENNIUM COPYRIGHT ACT. CONTENT THEFT, EITHER PRINT OR ELECTRONIC, IS A FEDERAL OFFENSE. Recipes may be printed ONLY for personal use and may not be transmitted, distributed, reposted, or published elsewhere, in print or by any electronic means. Seek explicit permission before using any content on this site, including partial excerpts, all of which require attribution linking back to specific posts on this site. I have, and will continue to act, on all violations.

White sauce with ham and herbs recipe - Recipes


Following the basic recipes below, suggestions are given for a number of ways in which white sauce can be used. You will, no doubt, have many creative ideas of your own.

When looking for new ideas for weeknight meals, don't forget white sauce and the variations below, which can help transform leftovers into an entirely new dish - even better than the original!

The recipes below may be doubled.

Stir carefully to avoid lumps. If sauce becomes lumpy, use a stick blender or rotary beater to blend out lumps or else press through a sieve. Wondra flour may be used to great advantage since this flour does not have a tendency to lump.

White sauce may be flavored by adding 1 teaspoon of low sodium Soup Base or bouillon. Or make gravy by adding roast drippings and a few drops of soy sauce, Gravy Master or Kitchen Bouquet.

How to Make Creamy Garlic Pasta:

The cooking process of this creamy garlic pasta is pretty quick and easy. Here's how I make this pasta dish:

  • First, I cooked the pasta until al dente according to the product instructions.
  • Second, I cooked the sauce base. This process should take less than 10 minutes.
  • Third, I added the cooked pasta, parmesan cheese into the pan and stirred to combine. Then serve and enjoy.

You can keep leftover pasta in the fridge for 2-3 days or store in the freezer for 2-3 months.

I hope you'll enjoy this recipe. Don't forget to come back to review and share this recipe 🙂

How to make Scalloped Potatoes and Ham?

Preheat the oven:

Set your oven to 350F. Prepare a 9×13 casserole pan.

Make your creamy sauce:

  • First, start by cooking the onion in butter until soft. Then, add your herbs, garlic, and flour. Cook for a couple of minutes.
  • Next, slowly whisk in a little of the milk at a time. It may lumpy at the beginning, but keep whisking. It will smoothen out.
  • Stir in your seasonings, broth, and cream. Boil for a minute.

Layer the dish:

  • Slice your potatoes thinly and chop the ham.
  • Then, layer them with the sauce. Make sure the topmost layer is the sauce.
  • Bake.
  • For the last 15 minutes, top with cheddar.
  • Let the baked dish rest for at least 15 minutes.
  • Garnish with chopped parsley and serve.

Recipe variations and substitutions:

You can do so many delicious variations to this homemade dish:

  • Use thick-cut bacon instead of ham, or use both!
  • Also, feel free to throw in some baby spinach, bell peppers, fresh kale, or mushrooms to the white sauce.
  • Want it extra herby? Stir in some pesto into the cream mixture.
  • Create a sweet and savory version by using sweet potatoes. You can also half white and half sweet.
  • Experiment with cheese! I like this with some gouda, mozzarella, gruyere, pepper jack, or fontina. You can also sprinkle some crumbled feta, goat cheese, or diced brie in there. You can even try it with blue cheese!
  • In addition, mix some grated parmesan into the sauce for extra cheesiness.
  • Top with butter-toasted breadcrumbs or Italian breadcrumbs for a crunchier topping.
  • For a gluten-free version, replace the flour with the gluten-free variety.
  • Use Cajun seasoning, ranch seasoning, or other dried seasoning blends in the sauce.
  • For a little kick, add horseradish.

Best potatoes to use:

Any variety will do, but Russets and Yukon hold up really well to the sauce and baking even when sliced thin.

What to serve with Scalloped Potatoes and Ham?

You can actually serve it as a main because it&rsquos complete with starch and protein. It also goes well with a light salad and Roasted Asparagus.

As a side dish, it pairs perfectly with the Best Ever Grilled Chicken, Juicy Pork Loin, or Garlic Herb Butter Roasted Chicken. Serve it with some Homemade Lemonade to balance out the richness!

Can you freeze scalloped potatoes with ham?

Yes. I recommend leaving the dish a tiny bit undercooked before cooling and freezing. That way, the spuds won&rsquot break apart when you bake it again but become perfectly-cooked and tender.

Cooking Tips

  • Since the canned soups are full-flavored, you will need a little to no salt when using it for pasta sauce. I recommend seasoning your choice of meat first, for example, chicken or shrimp. Let the sauce simmer, taste before deciding to season with more salt.
  • Add pasta water a little at a time to loosen the sauce and balance the salt of the canned soup.
  • The sauce can become too thick as it cooks. Stir often to prevent it from sticking to the pan.

What kind of dried-herbs blend can I use for pasta sauce?

These mixtures of dried herbs perfect additions for any red or white pasta sauce.

  • Italian Seasoning
  • Herbes de Provence
  • Dried Parsley
  • Dried Basil
  • Anything that says pasta seasoning on the label.

Note that a little goes a long way&ndash 1 tsp dried herbs equals 1 tbsp fresh. So use sparingly.

Vegetable add-ins

You can add fresh or frozen broccoli or peas if available. Saute until partially cooked before adding the canned soup and milk. This also goes for fresh vegetables like asparagus and mushrooms.

If using shrimp (fresh or frozen)

Stir-fry in butter for 1 to 2 minutes until no longer pink. Remove from the pan and set aside. Add it back together with the pasta, after the sauce has simmered.

Can I make this without any meat (vegetarian)?

Yes, definitely! Add frozen or fresh vegetables to add some texture.

Meal planning with limited ingredients has definitely been challenging for most of us. And so I hope that this simple recipe that I prepared can help in its small little way.


For the ham:

Set the ham in a large heavy-duty roasting pan, with the bone standing straight up. Use a sharp knife to score the fat in a 1-inch diamond pattern, cutting only about 3/4 of the way through the fat.

Peel the zest from the lemon with a vegetable peeler, avoiding the white pith. In a largebowl, combine the zest, olive oil, rosemary, garlic, 1 tablespoon salt, 1 teaspoonpepper and honey. Rub this mixture all over the ham. Cover the pan tightly with foil and refrigerate 12 to 24 hours.

Position a rack in the oven so that the ham will sit as high as possible but still have at least 2 inches space above for air circulation. Preheat the oven to 350°F.

Take ham out of the refrigerator and let come to room temperature, at least 45 minutes. Pour the water and vinegar in the bottom of the roasting pan. Keep the ham covered with the foil and roast for 3 hours. Remove foil and add the honey to the bottom of the pan. Continue roasting, basting every 15 minutes or so, until the ham is well browned and an instant-read thermometer inserted in the center of the meat (without touching bone) registers 170°F (check in several places), 1 to 1½ hours more. If the ham or drippings begin to brown too much, cover loosely with foil to prevent burning.

Transfer the ham to a carving board to rest while you make the sauce.

For the sauce:

Pour the pan drippings into a bowl, let sit until the fat rises to the top, and then skim off the fat.

Return the skimmed drippings to the roasting pan and set the pan over medium heat. Whisk in the wine, scraping up any particles stuck to the pan's bottom. Whisk in the broth and 1/2 cup water and continue to boil until the liquid is reduced by one-third, about 2 minutes.

Meanwhile, use a fork to mash the butter with the flour in a small bowl or ramekin to create a thick paste. Whisk the cherries into the sauce, then add the butter paste in parts, whisking until the paste is fully dissolved and the sauce is simmering and thickened.

As an Amazon Associate and member of other affiliate programs, I earn from qualifying purchases.

Nutrition Information:


Serving Size:

Nutrition information isn’t always accurate.

Buy the Cookbook: Simply Scratch : 120 Wholesome Homemade Recipes Made Easy Now available on Amazon »
THANK YOU in advance for your support!

Watch the video: Creamy Garlic Mushroom Chicken Recipe. One Pan Chicken Recipe. Garlic Herb Mushroom Cream Sauce (January 2022).