I’ve been in love with fettuccine alfredo since forever. The rich and perfectly smooth parmesan sauce and thick noodles are enough to make anyone swoon. I consider this recipe my number one signature dish. This is the one I make when I really want to impress my guests. This recipe took about 10 years to perfect. Not to say that I screwed it up for 10 years but I never really wrote the recipe down and often played around with the ingredients until I hit that ultimate sweet spot. Over 10 years, you learn a lot about what works and what doesn’t. Fettuccine alfredo is one of those dishes you just don’t play around with. You follow the instructions and you never veer off the path, period! Deviations always lead to disaster. It’s a cooking recipe that feels more like baking honestly. But it’s so worth it when you get it right! And that’s why I’m here, to lead you down the path of pasta righteousness. Here’s what you have to know in order to make the best damn fettuccine alfredo on earth!
Often a great sauce starts with a roux. For those of you that don’t know what that it, it’s simply butter, flour, and what ever base liquid the sauce calls for. The problem with an alfredo made from roux is that the flour dampens the rich cheesy flavor. You may worry about thickness but trust me, the cheese is all you need.
Use real ingredients!
No substitutions ever! I’ve tried it with fake butter, half and half cream, milk, even powdered parmesan (gross!) Don’t ever do it. The sauce will curdle or just be wrong. You will cry and lament. Trust me I’ve been there. It has to be whipping cream (heavy or regular is ok) real butter, and real cheese! I couldn’t be more serious. If you find yourself lacking an ingredient and not wanting to go back out to the store, don’t make it with a substitution, save it for another night!
Cream cheese is key!
It’s really helps bind the parmesan to the liquid and make it ultra creamy. This is the secret ingredient that takes it right over the top and into heavenly decadence.
Whisk like you’ve never whisked before!
Once you add the cheeses, gently and continuously whisk until they are completely melted. Never walk away, never pause until it’s done. I always make sure my wine glass is reachable for this part because I know I’m not leaving the pot for at least the next 5-7 minutes.
Not quite done. Done.
There you have it. My secrets to making the most amazing pasta dish ever! Ramp it up even more with some grilled chicken and sauteed mushrooms. Check out the notes below for instructions. I hope you enjoy!
Check out these other great Italian Dishes!
- 1 lb fettuccine noodles
- 2 cloves minced garlic
- 1/2 stick unsalted butter
- 1 pint whipping cream (heavy or regular)
- 4 oz cream cheese
- 6 oz shredded parmesan or 3 cheese blend (romano, asagio, and parmesan)
- 2 tbsp dried Italian herbs
- 1 tsp garlic salt
- 1 tsp pepper
- Cook fettuccine noodles according to package directions
- In a large sauce pan on medium heat, add garlic and melt butter.
- Pour in whipping cream and bring to a simmer.
- Add 1/2 shredded cheese and all the cream cheese into liquid and whisk consistently until the cheese is fully integrated.
- You'll know because your whisk won't have any cheese hanging off it.
- Add the other 1/2 of the shredded cheese and whisk consistently until the cheese is, again fully integrated.
- Turn heat down to low and let it sit for 10 mins to thicken. Stir occasionally.
- Add garlic salt and pepper to taste.
- Pasta: Traditionally, it's fettuccine. I prefer linguine myself but really any pasta you can eat with a fork is good.
- Chicken: Boneless skinless chicken breast goes great with this dish. How I prepare it is fairly simple: Sprinkle with Italian herb seasonings, pepper, and garlic salt. Grill it on your BBQ or George Foreman grill. Chop it up! Done!
- I also really like simply boiling, shredding, and mixing the chicken in with the pasta. Super yum!
- Mushrooms: Sautéed mushrooms are also an outstanding topping for this dish. Simply slice your mushrooms, put them in a skillet with olive oil, balsamic vinegar, diced garlic, and Italian herb seasoning. Sauté over medium heat. Drain or pat down with paper towels.