Photo: Oxmoor House
Hands-on Time
21 Mins
Total Time
30 Mins
Serves 4 (serving size: about 1 cup)

Holy calcium! Heavy cream, Parmesan cheese, and butter create the regular calorie and fat-filled alfredo sauce. Here, we used olive oil instead of butter, nixed the cream in favor of a thickened milk-based sauce that uses flour and cream cheese to thicken it, leaving plenty of room for a cup of the good stuff—Parmigianno-Reggiano cheese.

We’ve revisited this recipe more than once and made subtle changes to fit into the current eating philosophy and this one always makes the transition smoothly. It’s a solid…and delicious recipe.


How to Make It

Melt butter in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Add garlic; cook 1 minute, stirring frequently. Stir in flour. Gradually add milk, stirring with a whisk. Cook 6 minutes or until mixture thickens, stirring constantly. Add 1 cup Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese, cream cheese, and salt, stirring with a whisk until cheeses melt. Toss sauce with hot pasta. Sprinkle with remaining 1/4 cup Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese and chopped parsley. Garnish with black pepper, if desired. Serve immediately.

Also appeared in: Cooking Light, May, 1994 ; Oxmoor House, None, 2013,Cooking Light Lighten Up, America!

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Ratings & Reviews

StacyDohle's Review

May 14, 2013
My family and I are pretty picky when it comes to Alfredo sauce. This time we all loved the flavor of the cheese mixed with the subtle flavor of all three types of mushrooms. Will be making it again soon for sure.

JanBeard's Review

February 27, 2014
This is delicious. Easier to put together and creamier than CL's Fettuccine Alfredo with Bacon that I have been making. I added 1/2 cup peas cooked in the boiling pasta water and 2 strips of bacon cooked crispy and chopped instead of the extra Parmesan cheese on top that this recipe calls for. Equals about the same calorie count. Be sure to save some of the pasta water to thin the sauce if needed. Served with CL's Asparagus with Tomato and Feta in the March 2014 issue. Makes a very satisfying meal.

ImaIma's Review

January 07, 2013
Yum - the whole family loves this. We cut back on some of the cheese and typically use rotini for the little ones.

KathrynNC's Review

June 10, 2013
I was extremely skeptical, but for a lighter version this was a pleasant surprise! I'm not sure I would eat it as a plain dish, but I used a smaller portion (about 1/2-2/3 of a cup) with a smaller portion of CL's Eggplant Parmesan which still made the whole meal only around 500 calories!

Whygal's Review

October 27, 2012
This is the recipe way back in 1994 that convinced me to subscribe to Cooking Light magazine!!! It is a staple in our house and I use the alfredo sauce as a base for other sauces/recipes. This sauce is easy to put together and is delicious!!!

very good

December 02, 2015
we've also started with the 1990s recipe ( ) but like minor changes in this version.  made to recipe without the salt.  if anything it's a bit too cheesy!    


September 07, 2016
This is better than most full-fat fettuccine recipes I've had. No joke. It's so rich and cream. The portion is a little on the small side, and since it's so good you really want more, but ultimately I was beyond impressed. It's also extremely easy to make. Two thumbs up! 

aflick87's Review

December 13, 2012