You Did It! You Found the Best Alfredo Sauce Recipe Ever.
Making alfredo sauce from scratch—particularly if it’s the best alfredo sauce ever, which this one absolutely is—is sure to make even total kitchen newbies feel like domestic queens (or kings)! Serving up a big bowlful of creamy, cheesy, garlicky fettuccine—each and every twirly noodle coated gloriously in rich, silky alfredo sauce—to the people you love is an act of pure devotion. And sitting down together, side-by-side, hungry and ready, quietly digging into those brimming, steamy, parsley-dusted bowls of homemade fettuccine alfredo? What could be more convivial, more body-and-soul soothing than that? Not a gosh darn thing.
Everything You’ve Always Wanted To Know About Alfredo Sauce (but Were Too Busy Eating To Ask)
Friends, you have a lot of questions about alfredo sauce. And that’s fair enough! Most of us have eaten our share of alfredo sauce—usually in restaurants, or maybe (if you’re lucky) you grew up eating alfredo sauce at home. But, you may not know much about the origins of fettuccine alfredo. What is alfredo called in Italy, you ask yourself? And relatedly, what’s in an authentic alfredo sauce recipe? Alfredo vs carbonara: they’re both creamy, heady, delicious pasta recipes. What’s the difference between them? Lucky for you, our passion for alfredo sauce runs true and deep—in other words, you’ve got alfredo sauce questions and we’ve got alfredo sauce answers! So, the true ‘authentic’ Italian alfredo sauce—yes, it originated in Italy—is composed of just Parmesan cheese and butter, and is made creamy by the addition of starchy pasta cooking water. Authenticity is all well and good, but most of us in America grew up eating fettuccine alfredo made with heavy cream and at least a little garlic, and you know what? Not only does using heavy cream in your alfredo sauce guarantee a nice and creamy sauce, it’s also easier to make—the Italian version has a shorter ingredients list, but is hard to perfect. And as for the alfredo vs. carbonara question? Well, they’re both deliciously creamy, devilishly rich pasta sauces, but they’re quite different! Carbonara has guanciale (or pancetta or bacon), egg and lots of Parmesan cheese, whereas alfredo sauce is more simple—just a creamy, sometimes garlicky, Parmesan-y sauce.
Cream, Cream and More Cream (Plus Cheese): Homemade Alfredo Sauce Ingredients 101
Now that you’re basically an expert in all things alfredo, you’ll know by simply skimming our alfredo sauce ingredients list that our alfredo recipe is more American-style than authentically Italian. And yet, it yields the hands-down best bowl of fettuccine alfredo you can find on either side of the Atlantic! Authentic or no, it’s exactly what we crave when we’re hankering for alfredo and we know you’re going to love it, too. Pick your favorite pasta—fettuccine noodles are the classic choice—and get cooking! Here’s everything you’ll need to make the best alfredo sauce recipe ever:
Parmesan cheese (use the real stuff—Parmigiano-Reggiano. It’ll melt into the alfredo sauce in just the right way. The stuff in the green can will make for a grainy sauce.)
How to Make Alfredo Sauce
While you might think of this as a restaurant dish, it’s actually really easy to make alfredo sauce from scratch at home! There’s nothing healthy or light about it, but alfredo is quick and easy and it’s always such a treat. You can use any long pasta you love (or happen to have on hand) but fettuccine is the classic choice, and our favorite. If you can, grab fresh fettuccine to really make this alfredo sauce sing. Here’s how to make homemade Alfredo sauce:
Melt the butter in a big saucepan.
When the butter begins to simmer, add garlic, garlic powder, nutmeg, salt and pepper.
After a minute, pour in the cream. Bring it to a gentle simmer (not a boil!).
Stir in the Parmesan.
Simmer the alfredo sauce on low heat for about five minutes, until it’s thick and creamy.
You did it! You made alfredo sauce from scratch! Toss in your favorite (cooked) pasta—you can cook the pasta while you’re making the sauce—and serve.
Can I Freeze It? How Long Do Leftovers Last?
We have never heard of leftover fettuccine alfredo, but if that’s a possibility in your home you can definitely store any leftover pasta in the fridge in an airtight container for up to five days. Reheat it slowly over low heat for the best results. Honestly, though, homemade alfredo sauce is best enjoyed immediately, and (sadly) it doesn’t freeze well.