Fettuccini Alfredo (One Pot Pasta)

Fettuccini Alfredo (One Pot Pasta)

This fettuccini alfredo recipe is a creamy one-pot pasta made from just a couple ingredients including butter, cream, garlic, parmesan, white pepper, salt, and pasta.

If you’re a fan of alfredo and like easy pasta recipes, this is the recipe for you. As a bonus, you can easily make it in the instant pot, and it is a lot less fat compared to other fettuccini alfredo recipes. I can remember the first time I learned how to make fettuccini alfredo from scratch. I was a freshman in a culinary arts program and it was one of the first recipes that we learned how to make. Part of that lesson was for us to figure out how to make a fettuccini alfredo that was a lower-fat version than the standard American-style creamy alfredo pasta. This recipe reminds me a lot of that lesson because this would have been the perfect way to make it.

Is Alfredo Pasta Healthy?

You see, a typical creamy alfredo sauce is very heavy with butter and cream. As an example, in the past, I would sometimes make a copycat Olive Garden fettuccini alfredo sauce recipe which calls for a whole stick of butter and two cups of heavy cream for just twelve ounces of pasta. Using that much butter and cream for one meal is incredibly unhealthy, even split between two people. This recipe only calls for about a quarter of that, but it still has just as much flavor.

So, is fettuccini alfredo pasta healthy? The answer to that question is that it’s definitely not healthy, but you can make it less unhealthy so that you can enjoy it more often with less guilt. You can also add in other fun and healthy things like vegetables or a protein choice to make it a more balanced meal.

What Are Some Other Fun Add-Ins?

  • Broccoli
  • A Protein
  • Diced Tomatoes
  • Cajun Seasoning
  • Fresh Herbs
  • Hot Sauce
  • Bac’n Bits

What Is An Alfredo Sauce Made Of?

Alfredo sauce is a very simple sauce to make at home. You’ll find that butter, cream, parmesan cheese, and salt are the main ingredients used to make the sauce for alfredo. Other optional add-ins like garlic, spices, or herbs are also sometimes used.

Which Is Better, Grated or Shredded Parmesan Cheese?

The best parmesan to use is in the form of a wedge and grating it yourself. This is because store-bought pre-grated cheese contains fillers like vegetable cellulose that don’t melt and can leave you with a gritty sauce.

Steps To Making One-Pot Fettuccini Alfredo

  • Melt butter in a pan and saute garlic.
  • Add water, salt, and pasta — cooking with a lid until the noodles are done.
  • Add cream, white pepper, and cheese then stir until the cheese melts into the sauce. Garnish with parsley and more cheese.
  • That’s it! Easy.

Why Is Some Parmesan Not Vegetarian?

This has to do with the enzymes that are used to make the cheese. When cheese is made, rennet is typically used to separate the cheese curds from the whey. Rennet used for this purpose comes in two forms, animal enzymes or microbial enzymes. Unfortunately, authentic Italian Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese is required to use animal-derived rennet, so vegetarians are left with other parmesan cheeses made elsewhere that use microbial enzymes. One such vegetarian parmesan cheese is made by BelGioioso.

Can I Use Black Pepper Instead Of White Pepper?

You can use black pepper instead of white pepper. The reverse is also true that you can use white pepper in recipes instead of black pepper. They are very similar spices, but white pepper is often used because it visually blends better with the sauce. As for their differences in flavor, I would describe white pepper as having a more mild but deep pepper flavor whereas black pepper has a more sharp pepper flavor.

My general rule of thumb is to use white pepper for white foods, and black pepper for anything else. Though, one exception to this rule is for cacio e pepe, which is a classic Italian pasta dish that is similar to fettuccini alfredo but is largely just cheese, butter, and black pepper with noodles.


How Do You Stop Noodles From Sticking?

Fettuccini pasta noodles are long and flat. Since they are long and flat, they have more of a flat surface for other noodles to stick to. This is why it is common for them to stick together. One way to prevent them from sticking together is to stir the noodles more often at the beginning of the boiling process. The best tool to use for this would be a pointed wooden spoon like those in this set. This is because a pointed wooden spoon has smooth edges with a pointed corner that’s great for breaking noodles apart, whereas a metal spoon has thin sharp sides that will scratch the pasta and release more sticky starch.

If you’re making this fettuccini alfredo in the instant pot, you don’t have the luxury of stirring your noodles. To prevent noodles from sticking in the instant pot, break them in half and place them loosely in the pot giving them a quick stir to coat them in the butter and water and fully submerge them under the water before closing the lid. Once they’re done cooking, just give them a nice rough stir with a wooden spoon after you open the lid. Doing that should loosen any remaining noodles that may have stuck together while cooking under pressure.

How Much Does It Cost To Make?

At the time of this writing, spices and herbs aside, it can cost approximately $2.65 in ingredients to make this one-pot fettuccini alfredo pasta. Of course, this may vary by region, but it’s really just to show you how much cheaper it can be to make delicious food at home rather than ordering delivery or getting take-out. Since there are two to four servings in this recipe, that’s about $.66 to $1.32 per serving.

Eight ounces of fettuccini pasta$.79
Half a cup of cream$.74
One ounce of parmesan$.64
Two tablespoons butter$.28
A few cloves of garlic$.20

These were priced using Great Value brand products, except for the cheese which was priced with BelGioioso parmesan.

One-Pot Pasta Recipes

While I am the type that enjoys making homemade pasta from scratch, these one-pot pasta recipes are such a great way to reclaim your time in the kitchen, especially if you’re feeling lazy and don’t want to clean up so many dishes. If you like this recipe for one-pot fettuccini alfredo, you might also like my other one-pot pasta recipes. I’ve recently shared my favorite one-pot spaghetti, one-pot(ish) mac and cheese, and my one-pot penne alla vodka recipe.

Pressure Cooker Pasta Chart

To make al dente pasta in a pressure cooker like the Instant Pot or Ninja Foodi, you will want to cook the pasta at high pressure for just the right length of time. For best results, find the lowest boil time on the box and divide that number in half, then subtract two minutes. If it’s an odd number, just round it down, or you can just use my handy chart below.

How Long To Cook Pasta In A Pressure Cooker

Box’s Lowest Boil TimePressure Cooker Time
6-7 minutesHigh for 1 minute
8-9 minutesHigh for 2 minutes
10-11 minutesHigh for 3 minutes
12-13 minutesHigh for 4 minutes

To find the box’s lowest boil time, look for the section on the pasta box that says something like “For al dente noodles, boil 10-12 minutes.” For that example, you’ll use 10 minutes to find your time on the chart, then cook your noodles using high pressure for 3 minutes. For all times on the chart, do a manual pressure release by turning the pressure release valve when the time is up. Make sure to follow the strongest safety precautions and allow all excess pressure to release completely before opening.

At A Minimum, You’ll Need:

At least a 10″ non-stick pan or a medium-sized non-stick pot with a lid, OR a multi-function pressure cooker like an Instant Pot or Ninja Foodi to cook the pasta in.

A set of measuring spoons and cups to measure out ingredients. This is a set of nice stainless steel measuring spoons and cups that will last you forever. The printed measurements on these won’t wear off over time either like most cheaper sets because the measurements are actually engraved.

A nice wooden mixing spoon or other utensils for stirring the fettuccini pasta.

Not Required, But It’s Nice To Have:

A garlic press for quickly mincing fresh cloves of garlic. This is the one I use. It’s easy to clean with a quick rinse under the faucet, can fit a few small cloves at a time, and it’s made from durable stainless steel. If you love garlic, you really have to get yourself one of these because once you start using fresh garlic you will never go back to that stuff in a jar.

How To Make Fettuccini Alfredo

You should always start every recipe by gathering your ingredients. This is called “mise en place,” which is a French culinary phrase for having everything in its place and ready for when you start to cook. If you don’t have your ingredients ready, you end up running around the kitchen wild trying to measure or chop ingredients before your recipe burns. If you have everything ready, you can add ingredients as you need them because they’re already prepared.

A photo collage showing the steps to melting butter and sauteing garlic for fettuccini alfredo.

The first step for this recipe is to melt your butter in a pan and add garlic, cooking until it’s no longer raw. This happens pretty quickly, usually in just a minute or two on medium-low heat, but can be much less if your pan is really hot. Proceed to the next step before the garlic browns.

A photo collage showing the steps to cooking the noodles for fettuccini alfredo.

The next step is to add the water, salt, and fettuccini pasta. Break the pasta in half if your pan isn’t wide enough for the pasta to sit horizontally, fully submerged in the water. Then give the pasta a quick stir to loosen them up.

It breaks my heart to tell you to break them, but the pasta needs to be completely underwater to cook.


For Stovetop:

Simmer on medium, covered with a lid, for the length of time that the package suggests or until the pasta is cooked to your preference. Stir occasionally, but more often in the first few minutes so the noodles don’t stick together.

For Pressure Cooker, Instant Pot, Or Ninja Foodi:

Close the lid and cook on high pressure for the time suggested in the table further up this page. Once the time is up, do a manual pressure release by turning the pressure release valve and waiting until the pressure has fully escaped before opening the lid. Switch to the Saute mode on your multi-function pressure cooker.

Note: If the noodles aren’t soft enough to your liking and most of the water is absorbed, just add an extra quarter cup of water and continue cooking until they are.

A photo collage showing the steps on how to make fettuccini alfredo pasta in one pot.

Once the pasta is finished cooking to your liking, pour in the cream, white pepper, and parmesan cheese. Stir the noodles until the cheese has melted in and the sauce has thickened.


Garnish with some fresh chopped parsley, then serve and enjoy!


Video – How To Make Fettuccini Alfredo

Fettuccini Alfredo (One Pot Pasta)

Makes 2-4 servings


  • 2 1/3 cups water, plus more if needed
  • 8 oz fettuccini pasta
  • 2 tbsp unsalted butter
  • 2-3 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 3/4 tsp salt, or to taste
  • 1/4 tsp white pepper
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • 1/4 cup freshly grated parmesan cheese, plus more for garnish
  • 1/2 Tbsp chopped parsley, for garnish



In a pan over medium-low heat, melt the butter and add the garlic, cooking until the garlic is no longer raw; about 2 minutes.


Add the water and salt, giving it a stir to dissolve the salt into the water.


Raise the heat to high and bring the water to a boil, then reduce the heat to medium. Add the fettuccini pasta, breaking them in half if necessary to be fully submerged under the water and giving them a stir to loosen and coat. Cover with a lid and cook according to package instructions until the pasta is done to your liking, lifting the lid occasionally to stir the noodles to prevent them from sticking together, especially in the first few minutes.

Note: If the noodles aren’t soft enough to your liking and most of the water is absorbed, just add an extra quarter cup of water and continue cooking until they are.


Add the fettuccini pasta, breaking the noodles in half if necessary to be fully submerged underwater, and give them a light stir so they’re not all stacked in a pile. Close the lid and cook using high pressure for the length of time recommended for your pasta according to the table higher up on this page. When the time is up, do a manual pressure release by turning the pressure release valve and waiting until the pressure has fully escaped before opening. Then, open the lid and switch to saute mode using medium to medium-high heat, giving the pasta a nice rough stir to loosen any noodles that may have stuck together.


Add the cream, white pepper, and parmesan cheese. Stir until the cheese is melted and the liquid has thickened into a nice creamy alfredo sauce.


Garnish with parsley and more cheese, then serve and enjoy.

If you enjoyed this recipe it would mean a great deal to me, and be the biggest compliment, if you shared the link with your friends or social groups. It really helps me out so much when you do.


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