Roasted Cauliflower Fettucine Alfredo


My latest craving is roasted cauliflower, so I’ve been adding it to everything. I even topped my white pizza with it a few days ago (it was so good!). It actually makes cauliflower worth eating. To me, it’s always just been one of those veggies that doesn’t seem to have much to offer, especially when it comes to flavor. But, when you drizzle it with olive oil and roast it, incredible things happen. It slightly caramelizes and even sweetens a bit. It tastes almost entirely different than it did before going into the oven. So if you don’t like cauliflower, roasting it might just change your opinion on that.

Roasted Cauliflower Fettuccine Alfredo {a healthier and lighter alternative} | Cooking Classy

This fettucine alfredo is loaded with roasted cauliflower. It takes the place of cream, and most of the butter, in a traditional fettuccine alfredo recipe. With that said, this is much healthier than it’s full fat alternative and in my opinion it tastes just as good. I actually like it even more because I don’t feel like I gained five pounds from eating it. Those full fat versions are good but they don’t leave me feeling so great after I eat them. Besides, I always have to save room and calories for dessert :).

If you are going to make an alfredo and leave out all of the cream, then you are seriously going to have to find ways to make up for it (cream is one of my favorite foods after all), which is why I chose to roast the cauliflower and garlic and brown the only two tablespoons of butter it contains. The roasting and browning makes this sauce worthy of competing with the flavor of a full fat alfredo. I have the feeling you’re going to love it! I know I do. Enjoy!


Roasted Cauliflower Fettuccine Alfredo {a healthier and lighter alternative} | Cooking Classy

Roasted Cauliflower Fettuccine Alfredo {a healthier and lighter alternative} | Cooking Classy


Roasted Cauliflower Fettuccine Alfredo

Yield: 6 servings


  • 1 (2 lb) head of cauliflower, cored and diced into florets
  • 4 - 6 cloves garlic , skins left on
  • 1 1/2 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 Tbsp butter
  • 1 3/4 cup low-fat milk
  • 2 oz Neufchatel cheese , softened (aka low fat cream cheese)
  • 1 oz finely grated Parmesan cheese (1/4 cup slightly packed), plus more for topping if desired
  • fresh parsley , for serving (optional)
  • 14 oz . fettuccine or linguine noodles


  1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Place cauliflower and garlic on a baking sheet, drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle lightly with salt and pepper, then toss to evenly coat and spread into an even layer. Bake in preheated oven 25 - 30 minutes until golden.
  2. Meanwhile, boil pasta according to directions listed on package and reserve and set aside 1/2 cup of the pasta water before draining pasta.
  3. Remove skins from roasted garlic then add to a blender along with roasted cauliflower and milk. Process mixture until well pureed (leave a small opening on lid to allow hot air to escape). Brown butter in a medium saucepan over medium heat, then carefully add pureed cauliflower mixture to browned butter in saucepan and stir to combined. Reduce heat slightly, add in Neufchatel cheese, Parmesan cheese and season with salt and pepper to taste. Heat mixture until warmed through, adding in reserved pasta water 1 Tbsp at a time to thin sauce to desired consistency. Return pasta to pot (without water) and toss with sauce (again adding in additional water to thin as desired). Serve warm, garnished with additional Parmesan and fresh parsley if desired.
  4. Recipe Source: Cooking Classy


  • Jocelyn (Grandbaby Cakes): This looks incredible! Gosh what a gorgeous fettucine. October 8, 2013 at 7:53pm Reply

    • Jaclyn: Thanks Jocelyn :)! October 14, 2013 at 7:55pm Reply

  • Meghan: How many servings does this make? October 9, 2013 at 12:43am Reply

  • Elisa @ Insalata di Sillabe: This is such a great alternative to the traditional alfredo recipe! I’m totally like you and have never liked cauliflower that much, but you convinced me to give it a go with this pasta dish!
    I really hope roasting the cauliflower will give it more flavor!

    xo, Elisa October 9, 2013 at 5:59am Reply

  • Tiffany: We just had your roasted cauliflower cheddar soup two days ago, and it was every bit as good as you said. Thank you so much for that recipe. I’m putting the ingredients for this alfredo on my shopping list today. October 9, 2013 at 11:04am Reply

    • Jaclyn: I’m so glad you liked the soup Tiffany, I hope you love this pasta too! October 19, 2013 at 7:44pm Reply

  • Michelle: This sounds really good. I need to try this. This is also one of those recipes you don’t let the hubby and kids know there is cauliflower in there. ;) It is a good way to get that veggie in them, that is for sure! October 9, 2013 at 1:08pm Reply

  • Rachel @ Bakerita: Ok, I NEED to try this! I haven’t had fettuchine alfredo in so long because I can’t justify how bad it is for me, but with cauliflower? I’m all about it! Definitely going to be making this soon. October 9, 2013 at 1:17pm Reply

  • Katrina @ Warm Vanilla Sugar: I looooooove this cauliflower sauce!! YUM! October 9, 2013 at 1:36pm Reply

  • Laura @ Lauras Baking Talent: Love finding new ways to mix up Italian fettuccine night. If you are into cauliflower right now you should check out the soup I’m positng tomorrow :) October 9, 2013 at 6:59pm Reply

  • Rebecca @ Dorm Room Baker: Aside from dessert recipes, pasta recipes are my second favorite. Especially when they look as good as this one. I’d love to try and make it, but I feel like a lot of my nitpicky taste testers will be hesitant if I tell them about the cauliflower haha. October 9, 2013 at 9:34pm Reply

  • Janet: This sounds really good! Could you please post the nutritional information? I’m also wondering why you brown the butter? Thanks! October 23, 2013 at 12:23pm Reply

    • Jaclyn: Sorry I don’t have the nutritional info but you can find it on sites like And I browned the butter to add more flavor. Browned butter is like my favorite food ever :). October 28, 2013 at 6:24am Reply

  • Elizabeth: Really Tasty! My oldest son isn’t a big fan of cauliflower but he had two servings of this! Great way to incorporate it into a meal :) October 31, 2013 at 9:38am Reply

    • Jaclyn: So glad you were able to get your son to eat his veggies :). Thanks for your comment! November 7, 2013 at 6:57am Reply

  • Meagan: This is really amazing. We loved it. Too bad my kiddo still doesn’t like pasta! :) January 27, 2014 at 5:44pm Reply

    • Jaclyn: I’m so happy to hear you loved this fettucine Meagan! I know the feeling of having a picky eater, that’s how my 2 year old is starting to be, it’s rough :). January 27, 2014 at 9:21pm Reply

  • Melinda: This looks like terrific, and healthy. Just what I am looking for!
    I was wondering if I could make the sauce one day, and keep it inthe frig, and just make the pasta the next day and reheat with the sauce? I really don’t have the time to roast for 30 min when I get home from work.
    Please keep making lots of healthy recipes! Thanks for your awesome website! February 16, 2014 at 5:35pm Reply

    • Jaclyn: I think that should work fine. It reheats better than a traditional alfredo sauce since it isn’t so fatty. I’m so glad you’ve enjoyed my site :)! February 16, 2014 at 6:25pm Reply

  • Trish: This sauce is great! I made extra so that the next night I could use it as pizza sauce. I topped it with roasted broccolini and left over rosemary chicken and mozzarella. It was RIDICULOUSLY good. March 7, 2014 at 12:38am Reply

    • Jaclyn: I’ve been wanting to make a roasted broccoli or cauliflower pizza forever! I love your idea to add rosemary chicken too. Sounds amazing!! March 7, 2014 at 11:08am Reply

  • Shayla B.: After making your Grilled Ginger Sesame Chopped Salad yesterday and this tonight I decided I better subscribe to receive your posts in my inbox because we loved BOTH recipes! Absolutely delicious! Thank you for sharing. October 22, 2014 at 5:43pm Reply

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