Put down the store bought sauce and grab the 6 ingredients needed for this homemade Healthy Alfredo Sauce instead! This lightened-up version replaces heavy cream with almond milk but is just as smooth, creamy, and delicious as the classic.
Are you craving a creamy, cheesy bowl of fettuccine alfredo? You can feel great about swapping the heavy cream-based alfredo sauce with this Healthy Alfredo Sauce instead. Its blend of parmesan cheese, white cheddar cheese, and almond milk turns into a rich cream sauce with a fraction of the fat and calories as the classic.
This luscious almond milk-based alfredo sauce is perfect for a lightened-up shrimp alfredo, chicken alfredo pizza, and your favorite pasta dishes. The best part? It’s easy to make from scratch in just 5 minutes and tastes way better than any jar of sauce from the store!
- Almond milk replaces heavy cream to cut back on the calories and fat.
- Alfredo sauce with almond milk is just as creamy, cheesy, and rich as alfredo sauce with cream.
- This incredibly easy cream sauce is made in just 5 minutes on the stove.
- Butter and cornstarch - To thicken your alfredo sauce, you’ll mix cornstarch into melted butter to make a roux. The cornstarch can typically be replaced with arrowroot starch, tapioca starch, or all purpose flour.
- Almond milk - This dairy free milk is the key to making the sauce light and healthy. If you have an aversion to nuts, use a different neutral-tasting, unsweetened dairy free milk, like oat milk. Regular milk also works.
- Parmesan and white cheddar cheese - A block of REAL Parmigiano Reggiano and freshly grated white cheddar are best here. If you don’t love white cheddar or can’t find it, use all freshly grated parmesan instead. Don’t use pre-shredded cheese because its anti-caking agents prevent it from melting as well as the real stuff.
- Garlic powder - A little bit of garlic powder goes a long way, but feel free to add more if you love the flavor.
Step 1: Make the roux. Start by melting the butter in a saucepan over medium heat. Add the cornstarch and whisk for 1 minute.
Step 2: Stir in the milk. Pour in the almond milk, stir, and cook until the edges begin to bubble.
Step 3: Melt the cheeses. Next, add the parmesan and stir until melted. Sprinkle the white cheddar cheese over top and stir until it’s almost melted.
Step 4: Season the sauce. Sprinkle the garlic powder over the top so it doesn’t clump. Continue stirring until the cheeses are fully melted. Season with salt and pepper.
Step 5: Stir until smooth. Continue stirring the sauce until it’s smooth, then take the pan off of the heat. Enjoy your homemade healthy alfredo sauce on your favorite dishes immediately or store it for later!
Expert tips and FAQs
- I highly recommend ONLY using freshly grated cheese in this healthy alfredo sauce recipe. It melts beautifully and provides the signature richness that every alfredo sauce needs. Pre-shredded cheese doesn’t melt down as nicely.
- Be sure to SPRINKLE the garlic powder into the sauce rather than dumping it in all at once. Otherwise, it may clump up.
How do you use healthy alfredo sauce?
Treating yourself to a hearty bowl of creamy chicken alfredo with a fraction of the calories is a no-brainer here. If you want to get a little more creative, use any of these ideas when serving your homemade alfredo sauce:
- Fettuccine alfredo with blackened shrimp - Toss fresh fettuccine or linguine noodles in the alfredo sauce and top it with blackened seasoned cooked shrimp.
- Skinny alfredo zoodles - Replace the pesto with alfredo sauce in my kale pesto zoodles. Alternatively, you could add a dollop of kale pesto to the alfredo sauce for creamy pesto zoodles.
- Healthy white pizza - Top cauliflower crust with light alfredo sauce and lots of garlic or make a delicious chicken alfredo pizza instead.
- Creamy pasta bake - Replace the marinara sauce in this vegan pasta bake to make a creamy version. You can also use it to make mac and cheese!
What can I use if I don’t have parmesan?
Bon Appetit recommends replacing parmesan cheese with Pecorino, Piave, or Grana Padano. All three are Italian cheeses that taste almost as sharp and salty as a traditional parmesan. Whichever replacement you use, be sure to taste it first so you can adjust the amount and avoid overwhelming the sauce.
Can I make this healthy alfredo sauce dairy free or vegan?
I don’t see why not. Start by making the cornstarch roux with a plant-based fat like vegan butter or a quality cooking oil. For the cheese, use your favorite vegan parmesan and vegan cheddar.
Refrigerator: Pour your alfredo sauce into a jar or glass container and let it cool completely before storing it in the fridge for 4 to 5 days.
Freezer: You can also keep your sauce in the freezer for up to 3 months. Let it thaw in the fridge before using.
Reheating: Reheat the sauce in a saucepan over medium heat. It does thicken in the fridge but you can add a splash of almond milk to help thin it out as it reheats.
More healthy sauces
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Healthy Alfredo Sauce
- 2 tablespoon butter
- 2 tablespoon cornstarch or sub all purpose flour
- 1 ½ cups almond milk
- ¼ cup parmesan cheese shredded
- ¼ cup white cheddar cheese shredded
- ¾ teaspoon garlic powder
- ¾ teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon black pepper plus more to taste
- Melt the butter in a medium saucepan over medium heat.
- Once melted, add the cornstarch and stir continuously for 1 minute. Then, pour in the milk and bring to a low boil -- just until the edges start to bubble. Next, add the parmesan cheese and stir until it's melted, then add the white cheddar cheese and stir until it's melted (make sure the sauce isn't TOO hot -- you may need to turn the heat to low).
- Gently sprinkle the garlic powder on top and whisk until it's dissolved. Last, stir in the salt and pepper. Continue stirring for 1-2 minutes while the sauce is at a low boil, which will allow the sauce to thicken and ensure the cheese is fully melted. Pour the sauce into a glass jar and enjoy!
Used whole milk, arrowroot flour, and a fresh garlic glove. Toddler & husband approved! Easy enough for a weeknight dinner!
YUM -- definitely trying it this way next time! I'm so glad the whole fam approved 🙂