Cheesy and rich, this old-fashioned Alfredo Sauce recipe is a classic that is always requested. I love Olive Garden but this Alfredo sauce from scratch is way better. I am hooked! From start to finish, dinner is done in 20 minutes. This creamy Alfredo pasta dinner is simple enough for a weekday meal but fancy enough for date night or entertaining. Once you make this rich and creamy Alfredo, you will want to serve it with everything!
THE BEST Homemade Alfredo Sauce
Alfredo is a very simple cream pasta sauce made with simple ingredients in a medium saucepan: butter, cream, and grated Parmesan cheese. This is the BEST Alfredo Sauce! It is filling and packed with garlic parmesan flavor. You can add chicken, rotisserie chicken, meatballs, shrimp, or any protein desired. My kids like to eat it plain with noodles or ravioli. This dinner is easy to make and perfect with your favorite pasta or any pasta you have on hand.
Our recipe has three kinds of cheese, yes that’s right, a THREE cheese Alfredo. It’s just perfect in my book. The recipe starts by melting one stick of butter. You’ll whisk in garlic and gently let the butter and garlic cook. This makes your entire kitchen smell delicious inevitably drawing anybody home to the kitchen to ask what you’re making.
Now that your home smells amazing and everyone’s stomach is starting to growl, you’ll add heavy cream to the garlic butter mixture. The cream thickens up the base of the sauce and prevents you from needing to add additional flour. Stir over medium-low heat until it begins to gently bubble. Keep a close eye on the simmer because butter, milk, and cheese can burn easily!
Three Cheese Alfredo Sauce Recipe
What three cheeses will you add to this Olive Garden copycat Alfredo sauce? The typical cheeses are parmesan and cream cheese. Kick it up a notch with this recipe by adding mozzarella cheese! It’s delicious, melts well, and fits in perfectly with any pasta dish. Add all of the cheeses to the butter and garlic cream mixture. Continue to heat it over medium to low heat until all the cheese is melted.
You can add any pasta to this Alfredo sauce! I like penne and fettuccini, but don’t feel limited to just those pasta choices. Mix it up and have fun! Add chicken and broccoli to change up the recipe from time to time. This same base can be used for Carbonara as well. I cooked 3/4 of a traditional 1-pound box of penne pasta while making the Alfredo. Once the pasta is done, pour the drained pasta directly into the sauce. If you prefer less creamy pasta, consider adding the entire 1-pound box of cooked pasta.
Alfredo sauce continues to thicken upon standing, and thickens, even more, when it’s added to pasta. Add salt and pepper to taste before serving. Alfredo makes delicious leftovers too. It’s always best to freeze sauce by itself and boil fresh pasta before serving. If the sauce is too thick when reheated, add a splash of milk or chicken broth to thin it out. This also makes a delicious dip for asparagus or drizzle for spinach (we love adding extra fiber for nutrition!). Love white pizza? This alfredo makes a phenomenal pizza sauce too! Add garlic cloves and red pepper flakes in addition to any desired protein to make an alfredo pizza or ziti.
Making Alfredo Sauce Ahead of Time:
Alfredo sauce is a convenient make-ahead and freezable sauce.
It can be stored in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.
It can also be frozen and is best if used within 1-2 months.
More Easy Dinner Ideas by Smart School House:
Whether it’s chicken Alfredo or fettuccine Alfredo, the Alfredo sauce has always had my heart. Enjoy!
How to Make Alfredo Sauce
- medium pot
- wooden spoon or mixing spoon
- ¾ of a 1 pound box of penne pasta, or any pasta you prefer. You can add the entire box of pasta if desired.
- ½ cup butter
- 4 oz cream cheese
- 2 cups heavy whipping cream
- 1 Tablespoon minced garlic
- ½ cup shredded parmesan cheese
- ½ cup shredded mozzarella cheese
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon pepper (to taste)
- Optional: chopped parsley to garnish
- In one pot, boil the pasta according to the directions on the box (about 10-12 minutes)
- In a separate pot, melt the stick of butter over medium-to low heat
- Add garlic to the melted butter and cook for 2 minutes
- Mix in heavy cream
- Stir in room-temperature cream cheese
- Continue to cook over medium-low heat until the creamy mixture gently bubbles (not boiling!)
- Add in the parmesan mozzarella cheeses
- Add salt and pepper to taste
- Stir regularly until the cheeses are melted
- Stir in drained/cooked pasta to the Alfredo sauce and enjoy! Sprinkle with chopped parsley (optional)