Authentic Italian Fettuccine Alfredo

This Roman version of Alfredo is simpler, easier and lighter than the Americanized version, but still has all the rich, cheesy deliciousness you crave.

This Roman version of Alfredo is simpler, easier and lighter than the Americanized version, but still has all the rich, cheesy deliciousness you crave.

Guess what? What you’ve known and loved as fettuccine Alfredo might not be “real” fettuccini Alfredo. That thick creamy sauce that we dip into at Olive Garden and other Italian restaurants (like this Alfredo recipe here) isn’t the original. Instead, the original recipe, which was invented in Rome by a man named, of course, Alfredo, uses only pasta, butter, and Parmesan cheese. No milk, no cream, no garlic, no nutmeg and no flour to thicken it all. (If you’re interested in learning more about Alfredo and how his dish became so famous, check out this article from Saveur magazine.)

Perhaps even better than the teeny number of ingredients is the fact that there’s no sauce to “make.” Similar to pasta carbonara, all you do is toss the ingredients with hot, just-drained pasta and a little pasta cooking water. The butter and cheese melt and, voila! You’ve quickly made a simple, silky sauce that’s super flavorful.

Note that it’s best to use freshly finely grated or shredded cheese here. The finer the cheese, the easier it’ll melt, the smoother your sauce. Some will tell you it’s also important to use fresh pasta, but I say use whatever you like best.

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And as they say in Rome, mangia!

Christine :)

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Authentic Italian Fettuccine Alfredo


  • Author: Allie McDonald
  • Prep Time: 10
  • Cook Time: 10
  • Total Time: 20 minutes
  • Yield: 4

Description

This Roman version of Alfredo is simpler, easier and lighter than the Americanized version, but still has all the rich, cheesy deliciousness you crave.


Ingredients

  • 6 Tbsp. unsalted butter, cut into 10 to 12 slices
  • 3 oz. finely grated or shredded Parmesan cheese (about 1 1/3 c. if freshly grated), plus more for serving
  • 1/4-3/4 tsp. salt
  • 12 oz. uncooked fettuccine (or 1 lb. fresh fettuccine)

Instructions

  1. In a large bowl, combine the butter, cheese and 1/4 teaspoon of the salt.
  2. Cook the fettuccine according to package directions. Drain, reserving 1 cup of the pasta cooking water, then immediately add the drained hot pasta to the bowl with the butter mixture.
  3. Add 1/4 cup of the pasta cooking water and toss vigorously until the butter is melted and a creamy sauce forms, adding more water as desired. Add more salt to taste.
  4. Serve with additional cheese on the side.
This Roman version of Authentic Fettuccini Alfredo is simpler and lighter than the Americanized version, but still has all the rich, cheesy deliciousness you crave. Make it for a homemade dinner with guests on pasta night. #italian #authentic #authenticitalian #pasta #dinner #homemade

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