Learn how to make a creamy chicken fettuccine alfredo recipe. Perfect for pasta, cheese lovers! A deliciously easy dinner idea that will have you coming back for more.
This easy Chicken Alfredo Recipe is the perfect weeknight meal and one the entire family will love.
Best of all, it comes together in just 30 minutes!
This easy chicken alfredo recipe is comfort food at its best. Fettucine pasta is tossed in a homemade alfredo sauce and topped with perfectly tender chicken. This classic family favorite is perfect for busy days and sure to please any picky eater.
Why We Love This Recipe
EASE - This recipe is a great midweek meal that serves big flavor without much effort. We love easy recipes with big flavor that don't take hours of prep. This recipe checks all those boxes.
LEFTOVERS - It's a great way to use up leftover chicken. You can even use rotisserie chicken. Plus, this recipe holds up well overnight, and you can serve any leftover the next day.
RESTAURANT QUALITY FOOD AT HOME - You don't need to plan a trip to Olive Garden to enjoy amazing classic Chicken Alfredo Pasta. Homemade meals are really so much better.
You know what goes into each recipe and can make adjustments to suit your own needs. It's easy to swap traditional fettuccine with your favorite gluten-free pasta.
For the complete, printable list of ingredients, please use the recipe card below.
This recipe consists of three primary ingredients: pasta, chicken, and a cream sauce.
PASTA - I like fettuccini pasta best with this recipe. But if you don't have any on hand, you can substitute. Both long kinds of pasta like spaghetti or short pasta like penne pasta work really well, too. My husband actually likes this dish best with angel hair pasta.
CREAM - You can choose to use just heavy cream. Doing this will result in the most creamy sauce. But if you want to easily slice off some calories, you can do as I do and use a combination of whole milk and heavy whipping cream.
TIP: If you're looking to reduce some calories, you can substitute the whole milk with chicken broth.
CHEESE - This recipe is all about cheese. My favorite combination these days is to use equal amounts of Parmesan cheese and Pecorino Romano cheese. To get the best flavor, make sure to use freshly grated cheese. Any regular household grater will do. If you have this one, use the fines side to do all your grating.
GARLIC - For this recipe, we are going to use a combination of fresh garlic and garlic powder. The garlic powder is for seasoning the chicken and we'll use fresh, minced garlic for the alfredo sauce.
Variations and Additions
One of the things I love about easy pasta recipes is that they tend to be quite forgiving. Unlike in baking, you have a little more room to play.
Shrimp - If you want a break for chicken, sauteed shrimp. Who could say not to Shrimp Alfredo? And if you want the best of all worlds go for Chicken and Shrimp Alfredo (this used to be a popular special in one of the restaurants I managed).
Gluten-Free Pasta - If you or someone in your family is staying off gluten, you can substitute traditional fettuccine with gluten-free pasta.
Cheese: You can definitely experiment with different cheeses. Instead of using Parmesan Reggiano cheese, you can also try Pecorino Romano. Pecorino is a bit saltier and a bit more pungent. If you're using that instead of Reggiano instead of Parmesan, you will want to adjust seasoning and reduce the amount of salt.
As always I highly recommend using freshly grated parmesan cheese and freshly grated Mozzarella. You'll avoid unwanted fillers and the cheese will melt much better.
Did you know that Parmesan is made with cow's milk and Pecorino Romano with sheep's milk?
How To Make the Best Chicken Alfredo Recipe
STEP 1 - The Pasta
- Cook pasta in a large pot al dente according to package instructions. Before draining, reserve one cup of pasta water. Drain, cover, and set the cooked fettuccine aside.
STEP 2 - The Chicken
- Season the chicken breast with garlic powder, salt, and pepper. In a large skillet, heat olive oil over medium-high heat. Once hot, add 1 tablespoon of butter. Reduce to medium heat and add the seasoned chicken breast.
- Cook for 6-8 minutes on each side. (Internal temperature should be 165º Fahreneheit.) Once golden brown and fully cooked, remove the chicken from the skillet. Cover with aluminum foil to keep warm.
STEP 3 - The Sauce
- Using the same skillet, melt the remaining three tablespoons butter, and cook the garlic over medium heat until fragrant - about 30 seconds to 1 minute.
- Whisk in whole milk and heavy cream and bring to a gentle simmer, stirring frequently. Reduce heat and add parmesan cheese and mozzarella cheese. Whisk until fully combined. If desired, season with more salt and black pepper. -- If the sauce is too thick, you can add some of the reserved pasta water to the creamy sauce.
Do you want an egg-based cream sauce? Be sure to check out my other Alfredo Sauce recipe.
STEP 4 - The Assembly.
- Slice the chicken into ¼-inch strips.
- Remove the skillet from the heat and toss cooked pasta into the creamy Alfredo sauce. Plate and top the pasta with the grilled chicken slices. Sprinkle with chopped parmesan.
Dos and Don'ts
Do reserve some of the pasta water. I like to reserve one cup, but I don't expect to use everything. This is an easy way to
Don't overcook the pasta. Use the package instructions for guidance. You'll want to cook the pasta al dente. If the instructions offer a range of cooking times, chooses the lowest.
When pasta is cooked al dente, it simply means there should still be a hint of firmness. It should be fully cooked and tender on the outside but have a bite on the inside.
Do use fresh and powdered garlic for this recipe. But I promise it won't be overpowering.
Store and Keep
You can safely keep Chicken Alfredo in the fridge for 3 days; for best results, use an airtight container like this one.
Cooked chicken lasts for about 3-4 days in the fridge. And cream sauces can last for up to 7 days.
I hope this helps if you want to store things separately. However, personally, I try to use up any leftovers on or before day 3.
More Easy Dinner Recipe Ideas
- Shrimp Carbonara - deliciously decadent pasta dinner
- Lasagna Roll Ups - a fun twist on classic lasagna
- Baked Feta Pasta - this easy, viral TikTok recipe is now part of our dinner rotation
- Hungarian Goulash - melt-in-your mouth beef served over egg noodles
- Chicken Parmesan - another restaurant classic you can easily make at home
- 12 ounces fettuccine
- 2 large chicken breast skinless, boneless, 1-1 ¼ pounds
- Salt and pepper preferably kosher salt and cracked pepper
- ¼ cup olive oil extra virgin
- 2 tablespoons butter unsalted, divided
- 3-4 cloves garlic minced
- 1 cup heavy cream
- 1 cup milk
- 1 ½ cup Parmesan grated
- 1 ½ cup Mozzarella grated
- 1 parsley optional for garnish
- Cook pasta according to package directions. Reserve 1 cup pasta water. Drain and set aside.
- Season chicken with salt and pepper..
- Heat olive oil in a large skillet. Once hot, add one tablespoon of butter. Cook chicken is golden-brown and fully cooked; about 6-8 minutes per side (depending on the thickness of your chicken breast).*
- Transfer cooked chicken onto a plate and cover with aluminum foil to keep warm.
- Add the remaining butter to the skillet. Once melted add garlic and stir until fragrant. Add milk and cream and bring to a simmer.
- Whisk in Parmesan and Mozzarella cheeses. Stir until the cheeses have melted and the sauce becomes thick and creamy. If your sauce looks a little too thick, add some of the reserved pasta water. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
- Remove the sauce from heat and add in the cooked fettuccine. Use a set of tongues to combine the pasta with the sauce. Make sure the pasta is well coated.
- Slice chicken breast and add to the pasta. Garnish with parsley, serve and enjoy.