Light & Easy Fettuccine Alfredo with Prosciutto

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Easy Fettuccine Alfredo with Prosciutto on a plate with fork scooping pasta.  It's a creamy but lighter recipe without the heavy cream or butter, but still delicious!

This is the dinner that dreams are made of.  Creamy and cheesy Fettuccine Alfredo with a hint of nuttiness and a delicious garlic backdrop.  Then it’s topped with salty Prosciutto ribbons that blend perfectly with the pasta.  The cool Prosciutto and the hot pasta is a perfect combination.  BUT, my friends, this is a HEALTHIER and LIGHTER version!  My Light and Easy Fettuccine Alfredo with Prosciutto is beyond belief!  It’s a quick dinner that the whole family will love. 

Easy Fettuccine Alfredo with Prosciutto on a plate with fork scooping pasta. It's a creamy but lighter recipe without the heavy cream or butter, but still delicious!

LIGHTER CAN BE AMAZING TASTING!

One of my favorite tricks with many recipes to get a creamy texture without the flour, butter, or heavy cream, is to use a cornstarch slurry.  Cornstarch is used in many Asian recipes to thicken sauces without changing the color the way a flour roux does.  Once it dissolves and cooks into the sauce, it is completely flavorless, leaving only the flavors from the sauce.

In this recipe, using cornstarch and 1% milk to replace the heavy cream, flour, and butter that is typically in Fettuccine Alfredo saves you 95 calories and 13.4g Fat (8.3g Saturated Fat)!   It also saves you 45mg cholesterol and gives you more calcium, vitamin d, and potassium by using milk vs. cream.

How to use cornstarch

It’s super easy to use because you don’t need to cook it prior to mixing it in the sauce.  Instead, you mix the cornstarch into a cold liquid to dissolve it and then add it to the sauce.  So if you want a clear sauce, mix it into water.  If you want a creamy sauce, mix it into milk (skim, 1-2%, or whole).  You can also mix it into heavy cream, coconut milk, cooled broth, or really any cold liquid.  Then whisk it into the hot sauce and continue to stir as it thickened.  It’s that simple!  And it gives the same creamy texture!  Here are some other recipes where I’ve used this technique!

Easy Fettuccine Alfredo with Prosciutto on a plate with fork scooping pasta. It's a creamy but lighter recipe without the heavy cream or butter, but still delicious!

Quick note!  This post contains affiliate links, which means I earn a commission (at no extra cost to you) if you purchase from them.  This commission is what helps me keep this blog afloat :).  But, I also share these links because I have used the products, genuinely love them, and want you to know exactly what I used. 

EQUIPMENT NEEDED

You need a large pot to cook the pasta in and then you can either use the same pot for the sauce or use a separate large skillet/frying pan for making Alfredo sauce and mixing in the pasta. I use my absolute favorite 12″ Ceramic Pan, which is great because food really does slide right off with minimal oil and I don’t have to worry about food sticking and burning.  It comes with a glass lid, which is perfect for watching your dinner cook!

Oh, and mincing garlic is made super easy with a Garlic Press.

PREP-AHEAD TO MAKE YOUR EASY FETTUCCINE ALFREDO

We are all extremely busy and making dinner during the week can be overwhelming. Here are the steps you prepare in the day(s) in advance and store in the fridge as your meal Kit… (See the recipe below for more details)

The truth is, this recipe is so incredibly easy, there really isn’t even much to prep ahead!  If you are really pressed for time; however, you could mince the garlic and slice the prosciutto into ribbons, as well as chop the parsley. 

Can I replace Prosciutto?

Prosciutto is sliced so thin, which makes it such a delicate addition to this where a little goes a long way.  If you either don’t like prosciutto or cannot find it, you could replace it with a thin-sliced roasted or smoked deli ham.  You could use bacon, but it will really change the flavor profile of this dish to more of a bacon flavor, which is great, just very different.  You also need to cook the bacon in the pan before making the sauce or cook it separately and then crumbling it over top.  

COOK YOUR EASY FETTUCCINE ALFREDO

In a large pot, boil the pasta until al dente. Remove 1 cup of the pasta water and then drain the pasta. Leave the pasta in the strainer until the sauce is ready.

While the pasta is cooking, make the cornstarch slurry by mixing the cornstarch into the cold milk.

Cornstarch and Milk slurry in cup for Light and Easy Fettuccine Alfredo with Prosciutto

Using the same pot that you used for the pasta, add the tsp of olive oil and the minced garlic. Stir and cook for just 1-2 minutes. Careful not to let it brown.  Add the reserved 1 cup of pasta water plus 1 bouillon cube or chicken/vegetable base. Heat to simmer and dissolve the bouillon. Whisk in the cornstarch slurry and continue to whisk while it heats through and starts to thicken (about 2-3 minutes).

Pouring milk into pan with whisk Light and Easy Fettuccine Alfredo with Prosciutto

Whisking sauce in pan for Light and Easy Fettuccine Alfredo with Prosciutto
Add salt and pepper and the pasta to the sauce and stir to combine. Turn off the heat and then mix in the parmesan cheese and Parsley. Finally, right before serving, add the Prosciutto slices on top.Adding cooked pasta to sauce in pan for Light and Easy Fettuccine Alfredo with Prosciutto

Adding prosciutto to pasta alfredo in pan for Light and Easy Fettuccine Alfredo with Prosciutto

Garnish with Parmesan and Parsley. Serve and enjoy!

What Veggie Side should go with this?

I would go with simple Roasted Carrots, Roasted Tomatoes, or a Mesclun Salad.

ENJOY!  😍 Carrie

Light and Easy Fettuccine Alfredo with Prosciutto

My Light and Easy Fettuccine Alfredo with Prosciutto is so creamy with a hint of nuttiness from the parmesan and a delicious garlic backdrop.  Topped with salty Prosciutto ribbons that blend perfectly with the pasta.  The cool Prosciutto and the hot pasta is a perfect combination.  BUT, my friends, this is a LIGHTER version without the heavy cream or butter!  It's a quick dinner that the whole family will love. #pastarecipes #familydinner #easydinners #lightdinners #familydinnerideas #fettuccinealfredo

Course Main Course, pasta
Cuisine Italian
Keyword alfredo, cream sauce, fettuccine, pasta, pasta sauce
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 25 minutes
Servings 4 servings
Calories 364 kcal
Author Carrie Tyler

Ingredients

  • 10 oz Fettuccine pasta
  • 1 tsp Extra Virgin Olive oil
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1 cup water (reserved from pasta water after it cooks!)
  • 1 cup 1% milk (you can also use skim, 2%, or whole)
  • 2 tbsp cornstarch
  • 1 Chicken bouillon cube or 1 tsp chicken base
  • 1 tsp Salt
  • 1 tsp Ground Black Pepper
  • 1/4 cup Parmesan Cheese grated
  • 1/4 cup Chopped Parsley
  • 4-6 oz Prosciutto
  • Optional Garnish: extra Parmesan and extra parsley

Instructions

  1. Boil a large pot of water for the pasta. Once the pasta water is boiling, add a splash of Olive Oil and a pinch of salt. Add the pasta and stir so that it all is immersed in the water and doesn't stick it itself. Boil the pasta until al dente. Reserve 1 cup of the pasta water to use in the sauce and then drain the pasta. Leave the pasta in the strainer until the sauce is ready.

  2. While the pasta is cooking, slice the prosciutto, mince the garlic and chop the parsley. Also make the cornstarch slurry by mixing the cornstarch into the cold milk.
  3. Using the same pot that you used for the pasta, add the tsp of olive oil and the minced garlic. Stir and cook for just 1-2 minutes. Careful not to let it brown.
  4. Add the reserved 1 cup of pasta water plus 1 bouillon cube or chicken/vegetable base. Heat to simmer and dissolve the bouillon. Whisk in the cornstarch slurry and continue to whisk while it heats through and starts to thicken (about 2-3 minutes).
    Pouring milk into pan with whisk Light and Easy Fettuccine Alfredo with Prosciutto
  5. Add salt and pepper plus the pasta to the sauce and stir to combine. Turn off the heat and then mix in the parmesan cheese and Parsley. Finally, right before serving, add the Prosciutto slices on top. Garnish with Parmesan and Parsley. Serve and enjoy!