I Leave You With...Simple Alfredo Sauce, Four Ways

When we booked our vacation back in July, I felt like the day would never come. Now it's here! It's tomorrow, tomorrow, I love ya, tomorrow. But before then, here's a doozy of an Italian post I've been planning for a while! Enjoy, and I'll see you back here at the end of the month!

You know that scary saying "bad things come in three's"? That superstition might apply to some aspects of life, but not all. In my opinion, some of the best things come in three's: Caprese (mozzarella, tomato, basil). Pizza (bread, tomato sauce, cheese). Amigos. Donald Duck's nephews - Huey, Dewey and Louie. And the best Alfredo sauce you'll ever have (heavy cream, butter, cheese).

Superstition? Or strong modern belief?

Alfredo sauce holds a rather large space in my heart (sorry Brian) because the simplicity of the dish is what got me into trying more Italian foods, and just branching out of my food comfort zone in general.

Ironically, eating too much Alfredo will likely stop my that section of my heart which it holds; maybe even the entire organ. I mean, those ingredients? Heavy cream, butter, cheese...amazing, but dangerous.

Oh well, living life on the wild high-calorie side is fun. I usually make and/or eat this dish maybe three times a year; but since I wanted to share it, I've had it several times within the last few weeks! So today I'm glad my ticker is still ticking, and I can share my base recipe for the best Alfredo sauce ever, including three different variations of it: Cajun Cream, Pesto Cream, and Lemon Cream.

First, melt two tablespoons of butter to a large skillet with high sides over medium heat.

Add 1-2 cups of heavy whipping cream, depending on how many you're serving, and heat, stirring frequently – don’t cook too fast.

The key to good Alfredo sauce is to use finely grated Pecorino Romano or Parmigiano Reggiano cheese. Both are delicious, and if they're finely grated by your own hand, the easier they melt into the cream.

Stir until blended, and add your choice of cajun seasoning, pesto sauce, or lemon zest/juice directly into the pan. Taste as you go, adding more as needed.

I like to have the pasta already cooked and then add it directly into the sauce. Even coverage is key!

We make the cajun Alfredo by adding cajun seasonings and red pepper flakes into the sauce. Then, its mixed with whole wheat fusilli (spiral) or fresh fettuccine pasta, broccoli, and cajun-seasoned chicken breast. Chop the raw chicken breast into chunks and sauté in olive oil with salt, pepper, and more cajun seasoning until cooked through.

I love lemon cream sauce over ravioli. Squeeze in the juice of one lemon and a teaspoon of the zest of the lemon to give your Alfredo sauce some tang. As a general rule, when making ravioli with a cream sauce, try not to get plain cheese ravioli - its best to mix up the flavors a bit. We paired it with a shrimp scampi ravioli! Crab, mushroom, or lobster filling would be delicious, too.

And for the pesto cream sauce, we used lobster ravioli. This would also be delicious over cavatappi pasta with some cherry tomatoes and arugula! Or with a spinach and ricotta ravioli.

Be still, my arterial-malfunctioning heart.

Alfredo Sauce

  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1½ - 2 cups heavy whipping cream
  • 1 - 1½ cups grated Pecorino Romano cheese (or grated Parmigiano Reggiano)
  • Pinch of salt
  • Ground pepper to taste
  • Cooked fresh pasta (ravioli, fettuccine, fusilli)

1. Add butter and heavy whipping cream to a large skillet with high sides and bring to a slow boil over medium heat, stirring frequently – don’t cook too fast. 

2. Once it boils, add the Pecorino Romano cheese and lower heat.  Use a whisk to continue stirring and break up any cheese clumps. Stir in a pinch salt and ground pepper.

3. Add cooked chicken, shrimp, pesto sauce, cajun seasoning, and/or lemon zest/juice to the sauce to taste, as desired.

4. Add cooked fresh pasta of choice into pan and stir. Divvy onto plates. Top with fresh parsley, ground pepper and more Pecorino Romano cheese if desired.


1. For Cajun Alfredo Sauce, add 2 tablespoons cajun seasoning and 2 tablespoons Mrs. Dash Extra Spicy Seasoning.  Great with chicken, shrimp, or scallops!

2. For Lemon Cream Sauce recipe, add juice of 2 lemons.

3. For Pesto Alfredo Sauce, add 2-3 tablespoons pesto sauce.