Recipe Review

Here’s Why I Won’t Be Making Taste of Home’s Fettuccine Alfredo Again

published Feb 16, 2022
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Credit: Photo: Joe Lingeman; Food Styling: Jesse Szewczyk

Whenever I make a recipe from Taste of Home, there’s usually a twist involved. Case in point? Their fettuccine Alfredo recipe that combines butter, heavy cream, two types of cheese, and an egg yolk to make an extra-creamy sauce. Carbonara, another Italian pasta, uses egg yolks and pasta water to create a shiny sauce, so I thought the addition in Alfredo would yield the same effect. That said, is it really necessary to use all those ingredients? The joy of Alfredo is how simple it is, and I wondered if this recipe was overly fussy or if it delivered results as good as the reviews said. 

Get the recipe: Taste of Home’s Homemade Fettuccine Alfredo

Credit: Photo: Joe Lingeman; Food Styling: Jesse Szewczyk

How to Make Taste of Home’s Fettuccine Alfredo

You’ll start by bringing a large pot of salted water to a boil over high heat. Once the water begins to boil, add the fettuccine and cook according to package instructions. Drain the fettuccine in a colander.

Meanwhile, make the sauce. Add the butter to a medium skillet and melt over medium-low heat. Stir in the heavy cream, 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese, Romano cheese, egg yolk, salt, and nutmeg and cook, stirring often, until a digital thermometer reaches 160˚F. Add the fettuccine and parsley to the sauce and toss to combine.

Credit: Photo: Joe Lingeman; Food Styling: Jesse Szewczyk

My Honest Review of Taste of Home’s Fettuccine Alfredo

As a recipe developer, I’m sensitive to extremely harsh recipe critiques. I know the feeling of working so hard to create a recipe that people love only to have someone make it with little success. But I have to be honest, I’m really not sure what happened here. Taste of Home’s recipe is short (just one paragraph!) so there’s little room for error, but I have to assume something must have happened between the recipe getting developed and being uploaded to the site.

The recipe calls for a mere 4 ounces of pasta, but the sauce starts with 1 cup of heavy cream, meaning that the pasta was positively drowning in sauce. The proportions just felt totally off. Not only that, but the flavor of the sauce was just straight-up cream. I felt like there wasn’t enough cheese to add that savory umami flavor Alfredo is known for, and a dash of pepper and nutmeg didn’t come through in the sauce at all. I was intrigued about the addition of the egg yolk, and while it did give the Alfredo a pretty deep yellow color, it didn’t make a difference in the texture of the sauce. I don’t plan on making this recipe again, but if you try it and have better success, please let me know where I went wrong.

If You’re Making Taste of Home’s Fettuccine Alfredo, a Few Tips

  1. Adjust the proportions: The most glaring issue with this recipe is that there’s no way 4 ounces of pasta can soak up all that sauce. I’d recommend doubling, or even tripling, the amount of pasta you use to have a more balanced dish.
  2. Season liberally: If you’re going to up the pasta, which you should, also consider using more salt than the recipe calls for. One-eighth teaspoon is hardly enough to make a difference in the flavor of the dish. 
  3. Don’t leave the stove: The recipe calls for cooking the Alfredo over medium-low heat until a thermometer reaches 160˚F, but doesn’t include timing. If you don’t have a thermometer, and even if you do, keep in mind this happens quickly — in my case, about 3 minutes.

Rating: 5/10