Light Fettuccine Alfredo


light fettucine alfredoSo we all know the holidays can be pretty unforgiving when it comes to diet friendliness. I know for me it’s easy to say, well the holidays come just once a year, so I deserve to celebrate and indulge a little. I’ve earned it. Personally, I think we should indulge a little during the holidays, it gives us more reason to look forward to them. I’m also a believer in balance when it comes to eating. I like my healthy foods and I love my indulgent foods. The healthy ones keep me, well healthy, and the indulgent ones keep me happy. Does that make me an emotional eater :)? I’m a woman what can I say? Anyway, I love love love Fettuccine Alfredo, but with it’s heavy packing of calories and fats I don’t like to make it more than once a month. Yet, I do want it more than that so I decided to create a healthier sister recipe, a more figure friendly Light Fettuccine Alfredo. No this is not a fat free recipe. I think it would be impossible to make a fat free version because that would require the use of absolutely no Parmesan cheese,  and we couldn’t considered that Fettuccine Alfredo now could we?

When creating this recipe, I decided I couldn’t omit the cream entirely. Rather, I replaced the majority of the cream used in your average Alfredo sauce with low-fat milk and just a few tablespoons of cream. I also reduced the amount of Parmesan compared to your average Alfredo sauce then added 1 tsp lemon juice to mimic the tang from the lack of additional Parmesan. The Neufchatel cheese was added to give the sauce a smooth, rich and creamy texture without upping the calorie and fat count significantly. Then to finish I garnished the coated pasta with fresh parsley to add some freshness and light sprinkling of Romano cheese to add one more layer of flavor (and I love the flavor pairing of Romano and Parmesan together so I couldn’t resist). The final calorie count of this dish is a fair and balanced 370 calories with 14 grams of fat which is so much less than it’s unhealthier competitor, yet it was seemingly just as creamy. Granted you may likely want more than 1 serving (I went with the serving size according to pasta serving size listed on the package) but even then, you are far better off than a full fat Alfredo. Enjoy!


Light Fettuccine Alfredo

5 from 1 vote

Yield: Serves 4

Cook Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 20 minutes
Calories: 370 kcal


  • 8 oz . fettuccine pasta , uncooked
  • 1 1/2 Tbsp butter
  • 1 1/2 Tbsp flour
  • 1 1/4 cups milk
  • 2 Tbsp heavy cream
  • 1 tsp lemon juice
  • 1/2 tsp salt , or to taste
  • 1/4 tsp garlic powder , to taste
  • 1 1/2 oz . freshly , finely shredded Parmesan cheese (1/4 cup + 2 Tbsp slightly packed)
  • 2 oz Neufchatel cheese (aka 1/3 less fat cream cheese), diced into cubes
  • freshly ground white or black pepper , to taste
  • chopped fresh parsley for garnish , optional
  • finely shredded Romano cheese or more Parmesan for serving , optional (not added to calorie count)


  1. Directions:
  2. Cook pasta according to directions listed on package. Meanwhile, in a medium saucepan melt butter over medium heat. Once fully melted mix in flour and cook, whisking constantly for 2 minutes. Gradually add in a little milk at time, whisking vigorously until smooth after each addition. Stir in cream, lemon juice, salt and garlic powder. While stirring constantly to prevent lumps from forming, cook sauce until mixture thickens and begins to gently bubble.
  3. Reduce heat to low, add in Parmesan cheese and Neufchatel cheese and stir until cheese has melted. Stir in a few tbsp pasta water to thin sauce if desired. Drain cooked pasta well (DO NOT rinse pasta with water or the pasta sauce wont stick) then pour drained pasta into sauce and toss to evenly coat. Serve immediately garnished with ground pepper, optional parsley and Romano cheese.
Nutrition Facts
Light Fettuccine Alfredo
Amount Per Serving
Calories 370 Calories from Fat 126
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 14g 22%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.


  • Chung-Ah | Damn Delicious: Oh my goodness – the blog redesign looks amazing! I love it!

    And this fettucine alfredo – YES PLEASE! This is all that I ordered when I went to olive garden YEARS ago – so glad I can make a lighter version at home! December 21, 2012 at 2:23pm Reply

    • Jaclyn: It’s just one of those comfort foods that’s so good right? Thank for the compliment too Chung-Ah! December 21, 2012 at 4:57pm Reply

  • Trish: Hi Jaclyn, I just wanted to tell you that the new site looks GREAT!!!!! I’ve been a fan of your site for awhile now. You always have good looking recipes that I want to try, and I find myself looking forward to your site not just for recipes, but just to see whats going on. I love the colors!! it is extremely pretty and again looks great! Congratulations on a job well done! I also want to wish you all a very MERRY CHRISTMAS!!!!! December 21, 2012 at 4:51pm Reply

    • Jaclyn: Thanks so much Trish you are so nice =)! Thank you for your sweet compliments! I hope you have a wonderful Christmas and a great New Year! December 23, 2012 at 10:06am Reply

  • Chloe: Wow, this sounds amazing! And I love that it’s light! Pinning! December 21, 2012 at 9:32pm Reply

  • Julie @ Table for Two: I must’ve missed the post about your redesign because I just clicked on this post in my reader and I thought I was on the wrong blog! I LOOOOVE it. It’s so simple and clean and gorgeous! I love the recipe card design! So glad you’re on WordPress now :)

    The pasta looks DELICIOUS and I love the perfectly twirled portion on the plate! How did you do it? I can’t ever get mine to look that good! December 22, 2012 at 6:59pm Reply

    • Jaclyn: Thanks Julie! I used tongs and did it layer by layer. :) December 24, 2012 at 3:39pm Reply

  • angela @ another bite please: alfredo is a fav in our house…and love how you kept a touch of the cream…it just seems like a must….perfect start for the new year healthier eating from the huge indulgence of Christmas treats! December 23, 2012 at 2:26pm Reply

  • Kristy @ Sweet Treats & More: Oh I need some lightening up in my life right now:) But I’m with you, I eat healthy to stay healthy and eat the naughty stuff to be happy!! December 23, 2012 at 2:26pm Reply

  • radhika25: Dear Jaclyn,

    I really love your blog and all your photographs. Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year! December 24, 2012 at 5:05am Reply

    • Jaclyn: Thanks so much! Happy Holidays to you too! December 24, 2012 at 3:27pm Reply

  • Talaia Amoura Whisenant: Yummm! I can’t wait to try this. December 24, 2012 at 10:12pm Reply

  • Theresa: This looks absolutely delicious! I love creamy sauces but I’m also disturbed by the amount of fat it contains so am also modifying recipes to use more milk than cream. Thanks for sharing this recipe! December 25, 2012 at 8:03pm Reply

  • Sunshine: Love the new site look! Thanks for the great recipe. December 26, 2012 at 8:07am Reply

    • Jaclyn: Thanks so much Sunshine! I hope you love the pasta! December 26, 2012 at 6:33pm Reply

  • Sandi X: Is just made this dish and it was the best fettucine alfredo both my partner and I have ever had!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!FANTASTIC, thank you December 28, 2012 at 8:29pm Reply

    • Jaclyn: Sandi – I’m so glad you hear you and your partner enjoyed this! You are very welcome and thank you for your comment =)! December 29, 2012 at 3:39pm Reply

  • Friday Favorites – Happy New Year! « Popsicles & Pinatas: […] Light Fettuccine Alfredo from Cooking Classy […] January 4, 2013 at 6:11pm Reply

  • Jon: I made this tonight and my fiance was quite impressed. I added a bit more lemon along with some sauteed shrimp, mushrooms, and squash to make it a bit more hearty. For a light version of alfredo, this recipe tastes really darn good. Normally healthy versions of traditional recipes aren’t satisfying, but that isn’t the case for this. February 19, 2013 at 12:57am Reply

    • Jaclyn: Jon – so glad you enjoyed this one too =). Thanks for your comment, the additions sound delicious! February 21, 2013 at 11:43am Reply

  • Celeste: What do you mean by heavy cream? February 27, 2013 at 4:47pm Reply

    • Jaclyn: If you live outside of the US and can’t find heavy cream a regular cream would also work fine. February 28, 2013 at 1:19am Reply

  • Tina: I love this recipe!! I tried another alfredo sauce recipe – it was good but not as good as this. I added sauteed shrimp and old bay. Amazing!! March 5, 2013 at 2:39pm Reply

    • Jaclyn: Tina – I’m so glad you enjoy this recipe, the shrimp and seasoning addition sounds delish. I also like to add a protein like grilled chicken sometimes. March 5, 2013 at 6:37pm Reply

  • Molly L.: This was WONDERFUL! Made it tonight and the only change I made was 6 oz of pasta and a bag of chopped broccoli (made 3 servings).

    I will definitely make this again- finally, a creamy, dreamy sauce that doesn’t break the health bank :D May 15, 2013 at 8:43pm Reply

    • Jaclyn: I’m so glad you liked this Molly! The broccoli addition sounds delicious! May 15, 2013 at 8:57pm Reply

  • Lindsay: Has anyone tried re-heating this? What’s the best method to keep the sauce creamy? July 2, 2013 at 2:22pm Reply

    • Jaclyn: I have, I thought it reheated a lot better than a regular alfredo sauce does it didn’t separate so much. July 2, 2013 at 5:26pm Reply

  • Michelle: I am looking forward to making this. Did you use regular milk (as noted in the ingredients list) or a lower fat milk as noted in your introductory paragraph? If a lower fat milk, what percentage? April 24, 2014 at 1:13pm Reply

    • Jaclyn: Sorry I should have listed that, I believe I used 2% but 1% or 2% should work just fine. I hope you love it! April 24, 2014 at 1:16pm Reply

  • Lighter Shrimp Fettuccine Alfredo – Creme De La Crumb: […] * adapted from Cooking Classy […] May 13, 2014 at 11:31am Reply

  • Stacy: Ohmygoodness. This was so so good!!!!! Going straight into my Favorite file. I added cooked peas for the win. August 20, 2016 at 2:51pm Reply

    • Jaclyn: Winning! Thanks Stacy! August 25, 2016 at 2:09pm Reply

  • Sherry M Mohr: Can this marvelous recipe be doubled? Thank you for another hit! July 31, 2017 at 9:55am Reply

  • Maria: Another amazing dish, and so easy to make!

    I added grilled chicken at the end, but otherwise I followed the recipe to a T!

    Best alfredo I’ve ever made! November 13, 2017 at 4:59pm Reply

    • Jaclyn: Thanks! My family loves it as well! November 14, 2017 at 11:18am Reply

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