The history of Alfredo sauce has celebrity roots dating back to the days of silent film.
It all started in Rome in 1914, when the owner of the restaurant Via della Scrofa, Alfredo di Lelio, was desperate to find a cure for his wife Ines’ pregnancy nausea. In an effort to keep her meal simple and comforting, he tossed together hot pasta with Parmesan cheese and butter.
It did the trick! Ines found the dish so appealing that it soon appeared on the restaurant menu as the “fatte in case,” or house-made pasta.
A few years later, in 1920, Hollywood superstar couple Mary Pickford and Douglas Fairbanks stopped by Alfredo’s restaurant and ordered the pasta of the day — which happened to be the humble sauce of butter and Parmesan.
They were such fans that they collected the recipe and brought it home to California, where Italian restaurants started serving it to their hungry patrons.
Today, fettuccine Alfredo is such a classic dish that it’s hard to imagine the world without it. Pasta is, of course, the natural pairing for the creamy sauce, but there are so many other ways to incorporate Alfredo into your recipes.
Alternate Alfredo uses
Whether you’ve got a jar that needs using up or just want to try a different spin on the usual pasta, consider putting your Alfredo to any of these novel uses.
8 Alfredo uses that think outside the pasta box
1. Dressing: Swapping out ingredients like heavy cream or sour cream for Alfredo sauce adds extra flavor and creaminess to salad dressings.
2. Marinade: Use Alfredo sauce as a marinade for your next pork loin, beef roast, or whole chicken. It not only adds flavor, but also keeps the protein tender and moist as it roasts.
3. Dip: Alfredo dip is perfect for pretzels, vegetables, and crackers. Add a splash of wine and heat it up for a fondue party.
4. Meatloaf and meatballs: For creamy texture and cheesy flavor in these meaty dishes, replace half of the tomato sauce with Alfredo.
5. Pizza: Pizza was born to meet Alfredo sauce. Replace some or all of your pizza sauce with Alfredo. The result: instant extra cheesiness and a silky bed of flavor for your other toppings.
6. Vegetable roast: Hearty vegetables like cauliflower, parsnips, potatoes, and carrots are ideal counterparts for Alfredo sauce. Slather them in it before roasting.
7. Fish and vegetable sauce: Alfredo sauce keeps fish or veggies simple yet elegant. Try drizzling it over crispy roasted fish or roasted or poached vegetables.
8. Casseroles: Forget messing with multiple dairy ingredients. Alfredo sauce checks all the creamy boxes in a casserole. It’s a guaranteed win at your next potluck.
Pasta-less Alfredo recipes
Alfredo ideas are are well and good, you may say, but I need recipes! Never fear, we’ve got you. Check out these eight step-by-step recipes that turn a jar of sauce into tasty dinners, appetizers, and sides — with nary a noodle in sight.
Sure, chicken is the usual protein of choice with Alfredo, but beef goes surprisingly well with creamy sauce too. (If you’ve ever had Swedish meatballs, you can attest.) These meatball subs slather a DIY Alfredo atop meatballs in a toasted sub, then finish things off with a basil pesto.
Swap out the buttercream in this recipe for Alfredo sauce for a hit of cheese and voluptuous dose of velvety texture.
With its fresh note of dill and parsley and its flash of heat from the cayenne pepper, it may become your go-to for salads and vegetable dipping.
Since Alfredo and pasta are a match made in heaven, it follows that the sauce amplifies rice as well, as in these decadent rice balls. Using the air fryer means these arancini require no oil for cooking.
Whole roasted cauliflower delivers in texture, flavor, and health benefits. Instead of using 1 cup of grated cheddar, use 1/2 cup and replace the other half with Alfredo sauce. It’ll add creaminess and flavor as it seeps deeply into the florets, hitting every nook and cranny.
Grilled chicken is the perfect counterpart for Alfredo sauce. In this recipe, replace the heavy cream with Alfredo for extra silkiness and a cheese flavor note that marries well with the brightness of the lemon.
Add more pizzazz to a classic casserole at your next potluck by swapping out the heavy cream for Alfredo sauce. Here, a cracker topping adds an irresistible crunch, while onions and garlic provide piquant contrast to the trio of cheeses.
This white pizza calls for homemade Alfredo sauce, but nobody will be the wiser if you use the jarred stuff for a shortcut. Do so and you’ll get dinner on the table in under 30 minutes — an amazingly savory, cheesy dinner, at that.
Hellooooo, comfort food! Your fave chicken pot pie goes on a flavor adventure with the addition of Alfredo sauce and a biscuit topping. And hey, there’s broccoli, carrots, and onions, too, so this stick-to-your ribs meal isn’t without nutritional value.