Fettuccine al Burro

Fettuccine al Burro
Fettuccine al Burro Header

Fettuccine al Burro is an amazing and simple Italian dish. If you haven’t tried the Italian version of Fettuccine Alfredo, it’s a must and what a world of difference. This dish by itself made the original way with just Butter & Cheese is just Absolutely Astounding! We’re going back to the roots of the Original Fettuccine Alfredo and once you taste this, you’re going to want this every so often. It’s so good!

What is Fettuccine Al Burro

Fettuccine describes the type of Pasta and “al Burro” in Italian means “with Butter”. It’s an Italian Alfredo dish made up of three ingredients consisting of Pasta, Butter & Parmigiano Reggiano.

Who Created Fettuccine al Burro

The original creator is Roman Chef Alfredo di Lelio. He made Alfredo Fettuccine popular and called it Fettuccine all’Alfredo. Although it goes by many names including Fettuccine al Burro, Pasta al Burro, Fettuccine Alfredo and a few other names. You can check out all the history and more information at their website Il Vero Alfredo where his Family members still run the restaurant to this day.

Fettuccine al Burro Ingredients

Fettuccine al Burro ingredients are Fresh or Dried Fettuccine Pasta, Butter & Parmigiano Reggiano Cheese with a bit of Salted Pasta Water.


Use real Butter at room temp. Don’t exchange this with Margarine.

Gay Lea Butter


Parmigiano Reggiano

Parmigiano Reggiano is a grana. A hard, granular cheese named after the producing areas of Parma & Reggio Emilia in Emilia Romagna, Italy. It is widely described by connoisseurs as the king of cheese.

It has a complex fruity/nutty taste with a slightly gritty texture. There are strict criteria each wheel must meet early in the aging process when the cheese is still soft and creamy to merit the official seal and be placed in storage for aging. Made from unpasteurized cow’s milk.

Freshly Grated Parmigiano Reggiano 100 g

Parmigiano Reggiano

Fettuccine al Burro Ratios

The key thing to keep in mind is that Alfredo Sauce is based on equal amounts of Butter & Cheese, That’s it. The base is always Butter & Cheese at a ratio of 1:1. How much for how much Pasta I don’t know. But I find the below ratios to be most ideal when recreating this dish at home.

The ratio between the Butter & Parmesan Cheese does vary in quite a few recipes. A good starting point is in equal amounts by weight, about 100 g each of Butter & Cheese for two portions (200 g of Pasta) or 50 g for each portion (100 g of Pasta).

A good way to remember this is however much Pasta you are using, the Butter & Cheese is half that amount. So using 400 g of Pasta to feed 4, you will need 200 g of both Butter & Cheese or thereabouts.



Real Butter in equal amounts to the Parmigiano Reggiano by weight.

Parmigiano Reggiano

Parmigiano Reggiano

Finely shredded Parmigiano Reggiano in equal amounts to the Butter by weight.


Authentically made with Fresh Fettuccine. Boiled for 3 minutes, or until Al Dente.

Dried Fettuccine is common for at home recipes. There are some who say the Dried Pasta holds up better when tossing. However, I believe Fresh Pasta would carry over more starch and whether that has an effect on thickening the Sauce more or if it is unnoticeable I am not sure. I will have to test out both methods to compare and see.

Fettuccine Al Burro for two

Fettuccine Al Burro

For 200 g of Fettuccine boiled in 16 Cups of Water and 2 Tbl of Sea Salt.

  • 100 g Butter & finely shredded Parmigiano Reggiano, each
  • Pasta Water as needed
  • Optional is Black or White Pepper to taste

How much Pasta

Use 100 g of Pasta for each serving. For the Alfredo Sauce, about 50 g each of Butter & Cheese along with some Pasta water is pretty good for a single serving or 100 g of Pasta.

Weighing 200 g Long Pasta

Weighing Long Pasta

Place a tall glass on a scale and zero off. Then place the long Pasta in to weigh. Set the glass aside to add to the Pot once the water is boiling.

Pasta Water

Fill a pot up with 16 Cups of Water and 2 Tbl of Sea Salt. Use more or less salt. The 2 Tbl is pretty bang on. With a nice seasoning in the Pasta itself. Which is not too overpowering for the Sauce the Pasta will be added too.

There is a big difference between boiling Pasta in water or salted water in just the noodles themselves. Let alone in the overall dish the Pasta may be used in. Some will salt the water until it taste like Seawater. This in my opinion is way too much. You should be aiming for a Salt level that can adequately season the Pasta, but not so overpowering that any sauce you add the Pasta too just becomes too salty.

The Pasta water is also used to adjust the consistency of the overall sauce. If it was just Butter & Cheese, it would solidify even more so into a huge clump. With the Pasta Water, it thins out the Butter or Sauce. While it will still solidify when cooled, not nearly as much if just using Butter & Cheese. It also contributes the Salt to the overall dish. Adjust the amounts so that the Sauce is Thick, Smooth & Creamy, adhering to the Pasta.

Plate of Fettuccine Al Burro

Fettuccine Al Burro


Place your serving Plates or Bowls into the Microwave for 2 minutes before serving. This ensures they are warm and helps keep the sauce from solidifying.

Alfredo Creaming Technique

The original technique is to place room temperature Butter in a warmed bowl or wide plate until the butter is melted with some Pasta Water. Then add the cooked Pasta carrying over some Pasta Water with Cheese sprinkled on top. The Pasta is tossed to thicken the Sauce.

It’s this tossing of the Pasta that will cause the Sauce to thicken and go Creamy. Add more Pasta Water if needed and optionally some Black or White Pepper to taste. The starches both in the Pasta Water and on the Pasta is what gives that final thickening of a Creamy Smooth Sauce. Which is why it is so important to keep tossing the Pasta.

Hot Bowl of Fettuccine Al Burro

Warm Bowl

A bowl is placed over the pot of boiling pasta during the last minute to melt the butter and warm the bowl. Pasta water added with the Pasta and tossed. Cheese sprinkled on top and the Pasta tossed until a sauce is formed.

Others place the Butter in a large skillet or pan and melt it over medium heat, then shut the heat off. But keep the pan on the burner for the residual heat. Add a small amount of Pasta Water to whisk in with the Butter and add the Pasta straight from the Pot, carrying over some Pasta Water. Then add the finely grated Cheese to toss until the Sauce is created. Adding more Pasta water if needed.

Fettuccine Al Burro

Residual Heat

This is done on the burner with the heat shut off and only the residual heat to cream everything.

Either way is fine. The end objective is to toss the Pasta in Butter & Cheese with a bit of Pasta water so that a Creamy Sauce can be created and thickened by the starches in the Pasta & Water with the emulsification of all components.

Fettuccine Al Burro Pin

Fettuccine Al Burro

The Original Authentic Fettuccine Alfredo made simply with Fettuccine Pasta, Butter & Parmigiano Reggiano Cheese at a ratio of 2:1:1 of Fettuccine, Butter & Parmigiano Reggiano or thereabouts. It's an Italian created dish with Astounding Flavors.
Prep Time10 minutes
Cook Time12 minutes
Servings: 2 portions


  • 1 Stockpot
  • 1 Large Steel Bowl to toss everything
  • 1 Oven mitten to hold the bowl while over the pot of boiling Pasta
  • 1 Digital Scale
  • 1 Fine Cheese Grater
  • 1 Bowl for the Cheese
  • 1 Pair of Tongs


  • 200 g Fettuccine
  • 16 C Water
  • 2 Tbl Sea Salt
  • 100 g Butter
  • 100 g Parmigiano Reggiano - finely shredded into a bowl
  • To Taste Black or White Pepper - optional


  • Bring 16 Cup of water and 2 Tbl of Sea Salt to a boil in a stockpot.
    While that is coming to a boil. Weigh out your Fettuccine in a tall glass, Butter in the large bowl where everything will be combined and finely shredded Parmigiano Reggiano in another bowl and set aside until needed.
  • Place the Fettuccine in the Pot of Boiling Water and Boil until Al Dente. When one minute remains, place the bowl with the Butter in it above the pot of boiling Pasta to melt the Butter and heat the bowl up.
  • When the Pasta is done, scoop out 1/4 C of the Pasta Water and mix it with the Butter. With a pair of tongs, pick up all the Pasta and place into the bowl. Toss the Pasta around to get it coated with the Butter mixture.
    Add all the Cheese and constantly toss the Pasta around with the tongs, picking up any pieces of Cheese around the bowl. Keep tossing until the Sauce thickens.
    It's this tossing of the Pasta that will cause the Sauce to thicken and go Creamy. Add more Pasta Water if needed and optionally some Black or White Pepper to taste.
  • Plate & Serve right away. Optionally, on a plate that has been microwaved for 2 minutes to keep the Pasta warm.
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Italian
Keywords: Fettuccine Al Burro, Fettuccine Alfredo, Fettuccine all’Alfredo, Italian Alfredo, Italian Fettuccine Alfredo, Pasta Recipes, Roman Alfredo
Author: JAH
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