Skinny Fettuccine Alfredo
A rich and creamy lightened up alfredo sauce that’s so easy to make, and it tastes just as good as the original!
Fettuccine alfredo is one of favorite kind of comfort foods. It was always my go-to dish as a kid each time we went out to an Italian restaurant, particularly Olive Garden. But as I’m getting older and my metabolism has come to a screeching halt, it’s been getting a little bit difficult to stomach this. Fortunately, I’ve found a “skinny” version that’s a little lighter on your tummy, and it tastes just as creamy and comforting as the original!
With a couple of lightened up options, you’ll have this comforting fettuccine on your dinner table in less than 30 minutes. It’s a super easy sauce that comes together simply by stirring until the cheese has melted. While that’s happening, you can go ahead and boil up the pasta, and when your sauce is ready, you can just throw that in and you’re all set. Now how easy was that? Just be sure to have some self-control around this because you’ll want to eat the entire pan!
Skinny Fettuccine Alfredo
- 8 ounces fettuccine
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
- 1 ¼ cups 2% milk, or more, as needed
- 2 tablespoons heavy cream
- ¼ teaspoon garlic powder
- 2 ounces Neufchatel cheese, cubed
- ¼ cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
- Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
- 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley leaves
- In a large pot of boiling salted water, cook pasta according to package instructions; drain well.
- Melt butter in a saucepan over medium heat. Whisk in flour until lightly browned, about 1 minute. Gradually whisk in milk, and cook, whisking constantly, until incorporated, about 1-2 minutes. Stir in heavy cream and garlic powder until slightly thickened, about 1 minute.
- Stir in cheeses until melted, about 1-2 minutes. If the mixture is too thick, add more milk as needed; season with salt and pepper, to taste.
- Stir in pasta and gently toss to combine.
- Serve immediately, garnished with parsley, if desired.
Did you make this recipe?
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This is the only Alfredo sauce recipe we make. We use it with all types of pasta and serve it with a Caesar salad for the perfect meal.
So easy and so much better than what we get out of a jar. Added vegetables and chicken sausage to make a complete meal
This is damn delish! Our go to..
I have never tried a recipe from this site that I did not love and this is no exception. I had some shredded chicken I needed to use and pasta is always my first choice for most everything. As I read the recipe, I thought, well, I don’t have 2% milk and I don’t have cream, but I do have whole milk – I’ll use that. Turned out I only had one cup of whole milk. I ended up using chicken broth for the rest of the milk and the cream (about 1/2 cup). I used cream cheese instead of Neufchatel. Even with all these substitutions, this dish was still rich an creamy! Great taste and mouth feel! Thank you! I will definitely be making this dish again and again.
so quick, easy, and delish! thank you
Love this recipe. This is my go to Alfredo recipe. So quick and easy no need to buy store bought sauce again!
This is by far my favorite skinny version of alfredo. The whole family loves it! Sometimes I’ll add some pesto and chicken to it. So good!
Delicious! This recipe is simple to make and tastes divine. I omitted the heavy cream and it turned out just fine. I am adding this recipe to my recipe box!
My son helped me make this earlier. We cooked chicken pieces with spinach and mushrooms first, before we actually got to the pasta recipe. My son was very pleased with the results. We used mozzarella and Parmesan cheese instead. Very tasty!
Omg! This is damn delicious. I am 12 years of age and started cooking at a young age and this is a very simple meal to make. This is perfect for anyone of anyone age for people who love veggies try adding broccoli, cauliflower or asparagus. This is a good meal for dinner parties or a quick meal to make before extra-curricular activities. With leftovers, add broccoli( or a vegetable) , grated parmesan (optional) and a meat, spice or both (optional) and place in a casserole dish and bake in the oven at 350 degrees farenheit until the the top is browned.
Can I make the sauce ahead of time and gently warm it up later?
Yes, of course, but you may need to thin it out a little bit. Hope that helps, Sherry!
This is one of my husband and son favorite dish. Thanks for sharing.
Made this tonight, so yummy!! Used only 1% milk, no heavy cream. Added minced garlic and red pepper flakes. Added a medium sized bag of frozen broccoli that I blanched in the noodle water and added frozen chicken strips directly to the sauce then poured the chicken broccoli Alfredo sauce over the noodles, omgosh so amazing!! Thanks Chung-ah for another damn delicious recipe!!!
I love that you added broccoli! 🙂
Omg wow! That looks so delicious, still yet to try Alfredo but this really makes me want to try it (:
Just made this, and it was perfecto! I had been making a homemade full-fat alfredo sauce, and even though I liked it, I just didn’t like that guilty feeling that came afterwards. With this quick and easy lighter recipe, my guilt factor came tumbling down. Also, I used half and half instead of the milk and heavy cream and switched out the parsley for Italian seasoning. Yum-E!
LOVE this recipe! I make it at least once every couple of weeks!
This. Was. Amazing.
Just made it for dinner. I doubled the recipe and fed 8 people.
This recipe is easy and damn delicious! Made it for dinner tonight
I, too, love alfredo but felt a little guilty whenever I’d make it. I have always used an Olive Garden recipe from food.com and the sauce alone is about 600 cals per serving! I made this as listed – only subbing nonfat milk for the 2% – and my very picky husband was none the wiser. On top of the great taste, I used MyFitnesspal and came up with only 181 cals per serving (for the sauce only). Amazing that I can save all those calories without sacrificing the taste – thank you!
Really delicious, great recipe! I didn’t want to buy cream for just this, so I used all milk (mine was whole milk), and it was wonderful. I nearly doubled the sauce and cooked a full pound of broccoli with the noodles, for a good bit of vegetables. I may toss a little rotisserie chicken in next time, too. This is a great sauce, with none of the preservatives and suspicious flavoring agents in pre-made, jarred sauces.
I used this recipe and added Montamoré cheese (Sartori from Wisconsin) because, who can’t have enough cheese?! It was to die for. Thanks for this delicious recipe!
Does the sauce freeze well? If iI wanted to make some ahead of time and freeze it, that’d be awesome!
Unfortunately, I cannot answer this with certainty as I have never tried freezing this myself – there were no leftovers left to freeze! Please use your best judgment for freezing and reheating.
I never comment on these things but I found your recipe on pinterest and just made it for the second time last night. We love it! The first time I threw some chicken and steamed broccoli in there and it was our main course. Last night I made it as a side dish to steaks and veggies. So simple and so delicious! Thank you!
Made this tonight; this is so TOTALLY going in my ‘must make again’ binder. Never thought of using cream cheese to help thicken! The only other recipe that I have ever made that tasted as good called for equal parts butter/parmesan/heavy cream – a heart attack waiting to happen. Love. This!
I meant so good, darn spell check.
This recipe was delightful, my family loved it! I added more parmasean than lo fat cream cheese, used 2% milk, nutmeg, sautéed mushroom, garlic, chicken and chopped spinach. And for the kicker added red pepper flakes for a little spice. Skinny has never tasted do good …..thanks for the recipe.
I just made this. It is SO good! I didn’t use the heavy cream, but it was still amazing. Thanks for this recipe!
Just made this for lunch and it was very tasty! I didn’t have cream so used half and half, and used a garlic clove sauted in the butter instead of garlic powder. Thanks for sharing this yummy recipe!
Had this bookmarked and finally made it tonight. Kids and adults looooved it. Really good. Will make again. I doubled the pasta and drizzled the sauce on top and there was definitely enough. Added red pepper flakes. Thank you!
Do you think almond milk would be a fine substitute for 2% milk? I’m going to try to make this tonight with zucchini noodles 🙂
You can certainly substitute almond milk but I cannot speak for how much this will change the overall taste/texture of the dish as further recipe testing is needed.
I cannot thank you enough for this scrumptious recipe. I cooked this today, and with much trepidation because I didn’t really think that it was possible to have “skinny” alfredo sauce without sacrificing taste, but, wow, am I glad to be wrong. It was beyond damn delicious – my husband kept asking for seconds and my son was impressed by my culinary magic 🙂 Thank you for sharing the recipe. The only thing that I did differently was to add 2 tbsp of sundried tomato pesto paste to give it a nice color. I’m going to freeze the leftover sauce for another day.
The sundried tomato pesto paste sounds amazing! I will definitely have to try that next time.
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This recipe was amazing! I added chicken and some sauteed zucchini.
I was wondering if you ever tried to freeze the sauce? I would love to be able to make a big batch and freeze it ahead of time.
I actually have not tried freezing it – there were no leftovers to freeze! If you ever give it a try, please let me know how it turns out.
I see that this recipe yields 4 servings, but just wondering how many people it realistically feeds. It doesn’t seem like much sauce compared to other alfredo recipes. I’m cooking for 6 people (3 very big guys!) so I’m planning on doubling it. Will that be enough?
It really depends on how much they eat and what you serve this with (side dishes, appetizers, etc.). If you are serving this with other dishes, doubling the recipe should be just fine.
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Will shredded Parmesan cheese work just as well as grated…?
Yes, shredded should work just fine.
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Made this for dinner tonight~very tasty and quick. I used all 2% milk and a grating of nutmeg, it was very creamy. One would never think it was a skinny version.
This is now my go-to recipe for Alfredo! Does not taste “skinny”, no one could tell the difference. Thanks!!
Just made this for dinner. Did not feel like I was have a skinny version of Alfredo. Very good! Will look forward to making this with zucchini noodles. Thanks for the recipe 🙂
My husband and I made this sauce with zucchini noodles tonight. SO GOOD.
I used lactose free milk and low fat cheeses because of my diet restrictions, it was very good. Finally I was able to enjoy fettuccine again. Super good
Use Dreamfield pasta to really keep the carb count down. Looking forward to making this – my husband is diabetic and loves Alfredo but has had to give it up. This sounds amazing.
OMG! Made this last night. So delicious! Thank you For sharing#
Tried this and it was good, but tastes more like a cream cheese sauce than Alfredo.
Bev, if this is too creamy cheese-y to taste, you can decrease the amount of cream cheese and increase the amount of Parmesan cheese.
I’ve made this dish for my daughters a few times now, and they absolutely love it! I can’t try it because I’m vegan, but they keep asking for it, so I keep making it! I use all 1% milk, and the sauce comes out perfect every time. So quick and easy – thank you so much for sharing this recipe!
Hi – I’m a new vegan. Wouldn’t u sweetened coconut milk work and vegan cream cheese? Maybe a dash of nutritional yeast at the end?
Unfortunately, without further recipe testing, I cannot answer with certainty. As always, please use your best judgment regarding substitutions and modifications.
Thank you for sharing this!!
I made for lunch today and it was unbelievably delicious.
I’m adding this to our menu rotation.
I love Fettuccine Alfredo, and can’t wait to try your recipe, which looks completely delicious!
Ohh yeah! One of my fav pasta dishes… 🙂 Looks amazing!
This looks wonderful! I’m going to try this tonight. I was very happy when I had a few questions about some of the ingredients and all my questions were answered in the comments. So glad I stumbled over your site!
This was really good. I just wish the calories were listed.
Jessie, unfortunately, as I am not a registered dietician, I am not comfortable sharing nutritional information of my recipes. Please use online resources to obtain such information.
Oops, this link… http://foodgurly.com/2014/02/24/skinny-fettuccine-alfredo/ Hehe… xo
Made this tonight for dinner. It was fabulous! Thanks for a great recipe! I blogged about it! This post will be live Monday!! https://damndelicious.net/2014/01/24/skinny-fettuccine-alfredo/
Do you have nutrition facts for this? Thank you!
Meg, unfortunately, as I am not a registered dietician, I am not comfortable sharing nutritional information of my recipes. Please use online resources to obtain such information.
This has to be one of the best responses I’ve seen to a question like this. Especially considering that the information varies by brand and amounts you use.
I tried this recipe, and it was fabulous! I left out the cream because I forgot it at the grocery store–still great!
I’ve never used or eaten Neufchatel cheese (that I know of) so not sure what it taste like. Will it alter the taste if I omit it? This looks delicious by the way.
Annette, Neufchâtel is cream cheese with 1/3 less fat. I do not recommend omitting as this is a crucial ingredient in this dish. If you cannot find Neufchâtel, feel free to substitute cream cheese.
Will do, can’t wait to try it. Thanks.
Neufchatel tastes just as good as full fat cream cheese. I never buy full fat anymore. I can’t justify the fat and calories in it when the Neufchatel tastes just as good. 🙂
I agree, I have been using Neufchatel for as long as I can remember. I was first introduced to it by my father because it was less expensive than regular cream cheese. I never noticed the difference, and make most dips requiring cream cheese (such as spinach artichoke) with this. I am looking forward to this Alfredo!
I’ll be making this with some zucchini noodles. Sounds delish!
Who doesn’t love cheese!? mmm
Great idea !
Oh my goodness! I made this tonight for dinner and it was so good! The only thing I omitted was the heavy cream (I didn’t have any on hand) and it turned out just fine. I want to try this using skim milk next time to see how it turns out. I tossed some steamed broccoli in with the pasta and it was just perfect. Thanks for such a yummy, simple, and much healthier recipe for Fettuccine Alfredo. 🙂
Alfredo pasta is our family favorite! But never tried the skinny version! would love to try this !!
Love love fettuccine alfredo 🙂 so excited to try this skinny version
Yes please to a skinny alfredo!
And now I know what to make for dinner :0)
I use all skim milk vs heavy cream. The sauce comes out just as thick. Also, plate your pasta then add the sauce. I find if you add the noodles to the sauce it gets dry as the noodles absorb it. My fiance loves it 🙂
Seriously gorgeous pic! Can’t wait to give this one a try Chung-Ah. I am always trying ways to lighten up Alfredo and this way is definitely worth a try! Still looks just as creamy and delicious as the original. 🙂 Pinning to my Healthy Meals in 30 Minutes board! 🙂
This look amazing! I have a question though. Do you know if I could substitute fat free milk for the 2% out would that ruin how creamy the dish is? Thanks for posting!
Jessie, fat free milk would work fine as a substitute.
Yessss! This looks heavenly!
Oh yum! This one is going on the menu this week for sure!
This looks like a perfect compromise for my weight loss goal and love for creamy, cheesy pasta! Makes me hungry… beautiful!
This looks absolutely amazing!! I never have fettuccine alfredo because of all that cream and cheese…I just can’t justify it, but this I HAVE to try! Pinned 🙂
This looks incredible!
Just want to say that I love all the recipes you post! They all look so delicious! Out of all the food bloggers I follow, I have to say that I save more recipes from you than any other blogger 🙂
That means so much – thank you! 🙂
omgosh I am soooo hungry just looking at these pictures!
Looks soo delish I must make this low fat version !! Thank you , you are awesome!
Yum. My daughter is a fettucine alfredo fan. I’m going to make some of this for her!
Light and delicious! Can’t wait to give it a try 🙂
I make mine even lighter and use all skim milk vs heavy cream. Still comes out with a nice thick sauce. Also, dont add the noodles to the sauce.. it absorbs the sauce and gets dry. Plate your pasta and top with sauce. My fiance loves it.
Always finish pasta in the sauce. Save pasta water and add it if it gets dry.
Look at those gorgeous noodles! This looks so good, Chung-Ah – I can’t wait to try it. Thank you for sharing the recipe!