Copycat Olive Garden Chicken Fettuccine Alfredo


If you asked me what my favorite restaurant is, I’d tell you Olive Garden and that I absolutely adore a plate of Chicken Fettuccine Alfredo served up. What I don’t love is the cost that eating out, especially at Olive Garden costs. So what is a frugal person to do? Make it at home of course! This copycat Olive Garden Chicken Fettuccine Alfredo recipe is perfect for those of us who love the taste, but hate the cost! This copycat Olive Garden recipe is one of my favorite recipes that uses heavy cream. My second favorite would be an altered version of my thick & cream white chicken chili recipe that I make.

Olive Garden fans rejoice! This copycat Olive Garden Chicken Fettuccine Alfredo recipe is so close to the real thing you'll think you left home! The secret is in the sauce which tastes even better than the real thing!

 

There is something comforting about a plate of pasta with moist chicken chunks and a creamy, decadent Alfredo sauce. Seriously comforting and oh my…so very, very good! This is one of my favorite dishes to make (okay besides my banana nut muffins recipe because that’s my absolute favorite…today) and you would be surprised at how easy it actually is to do! The secret is really in the sauce. It is so close to the original recipe that you truly won’t believe that it is copycat Olive Garden recipe and not the real thing! Actually my family thinks it tastes better than Olive Garden! I know…blasphemy, right? It’ll be okay. Try my sauce and it’ll all be okay.

Copycat Olive Garden Chicken Fettuccine Alfredo

This recipe depends on the sauce but fortunately for all of us, this copycat Olive Garden sauce is actually really easy to make, even if it can seem like it’s very hard. The reason for that is that the cream will scorch very easily so it can make it seem harder than it is. Don’t let that fool you into thinking that you can’t make it though. You absolutely, 100% can make it and it will taste awesome when you do! Also a word on the Parmesan cheese. Use fresh. Don’t use the stuff in the shaker can. Yes, the shaker can is easier but the taste won’t be any easier on your taste buds. Finally, before you head off to the kitchen, keep in mind that I’m not kidding when I say that this sauce can scorch very easily. To keep that from happening, you’ll want to be working on the next step as one is being finished. You’ll understand exactly what I mean when you take a look at the directions below!

You Will Need:

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  • 2-3 chicken breast, bone and skin removed
  • 1/2 to 1 lb fettuccine noodles, cooked
  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 2 tablespoons cream cheese
  • 1 pint heavy cream
  • 1-2 teaspoons garlic powder + more to taste if you want
  • a few springs of fresh parsley, chopped
  • salt and pepper, enough to taste
  • 2/3 – 3/4 cup fresh Parmesan cheese, grated

 

To start, cook the chicken breasts by wrapping each one in aluminum foil and sealing the edges tight (to form an envelope) and baking on a cookie sheet at 25 minutes or so or until they’re done. Cooking your chicken this way keeps the chicken’s natural juices in so that you end up with a piece of chicken that is moist and flavorful with very little effort. I cook mine this way anytime that I need shredded or chunked chicken. You don’t need any seasonings when you cook it this way, but it isn’t going to hurt if you do season it a bit to your preference. Once your chicken is fully cooked, cut into chunks of whatever size your family prefers.

While the chicken is cooking, start your pasta water boiling in a heavy bottomed pot and cook according to the directions on the package. I always add a drop or two of olive oil to the water while it’s boiling. Not sure if it actually does help keep it from sticking, but I do it anyway.

Copycat Olive Garden Chicken Fettuccine Alfredo Recipe

As you boil the pasta, melt the butter for the sauce in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Nothing higher and nothing lower. Don’t use margarine in this. Margarine is the devil and well? Almost quite literally plastic. Your taste buds and your health will thank you for using the real stuff. Salted or unsalted is your preference, but if I use salted, then I tend to not use any other salt in the recipe so it doesn’t overwhelm.

When your butter is melted, add the 2 tablespoons of cream cheese and whisk it around the pan until it’s all creamy and melts too. You’ll want to pretty much whisk constantly so that it doesn’t burn. Once it’s fully melted, slowly whisk in the heavy cream. Don’t substitute milk. Don’t substitute half and half. You must use real heavy cream. I do make a good quality heavy cream substitute sometimes, but I’ve never used it in this recipe. If you try to, do so at your own risk and don’t yell at me if it doesn’t turn out.  If you need a good, quality whisk, I can’t recommend THIS one high enough. It’s the one I use and fantastic!

Add in the garlic powder, parsley and a pinch or three of salt & pepper if you’re using it and keep whisking. Whisk gently here folks. We’re not stirring per se’…we’re whisking and there is a difference.

Bring to a simmer and let simmer for 25 minutes. If you need to reduce your heat, do so. You don’t want it getting to a full rolling boil. This will burn VERY quickly if you let it (and take it from experience…it actually smells REALLY badly when it does.)  Whisk often. I’ll tell you the truth. I whisk it almost constantly. I don’t walk away, I stand there and watch my sauce take shape…it’s the smell that draws me in..lol. In any case, you want a low simmer on it constantly.

Remove from heat and quickly stir in the grated cheese. You can stir here. Stirring is okay and widely accepted at this stage.

TASTE before serving. Taste a small bite to see if your seasonings are okay. If not, adjust as needed. Put the spoon down…I said taste, not eat the whole pan. (You probably could with this stuff). Once you’ve adjusted your seasonings, you’re ready to eat!

Plate the fettuccine noodles first then top the noodles with a generous serving of chicken breast. Then, ladle your copycat Olive Garden Alfredo sauce over the top. Garnish with a bit of Parmesan cheese and serve hot!

Okay, just a couple of other things:

Your sauce may be thin when you get done. That is okay. It WILL thicken up a bit as it cools. As I said earlier, the sauce in this can burn very quickly. That is the main reason that I do not walk away when it is on the stove. Pay attention or your whole house will smell like scorched milk. Romano cheese can be substituted for Parmesan cheese with no issues and you can garnish with a tiny bit of mozzarella as well if you prefer. If you want to add something else to it, try adding mushrooms, substituting the chicken for shrimp or using a vegetable based pasta.

Looking for more tasty recipes? Check these out!

Copycat Olive Garden Chicken Fettuccine Alfredo
 
Author:
Ingredients
  • 2-3 chicken breast, bone and skin removed
  • ½ to 1 lb fettuccine noodles, cooked
  • ½ cup butter
  • 2 tablespoons cream cheese
  • 1 pint heavy cream
  • 1-2 teaspoons garlic powder + more to taste if you want
  • a few springs of fresh parsley, chopped
  • salt and pepper, enough to taste
  • ⅔ - ¾ cup fresh Parmesan cheese, grated
Instructions
  1. To start, cook the chicken breasts by wrapping each one in foil and sealing the edges tight (to form an envelope) and baking on a cookie sheet at 25 minutes or so or until they're done. Cooking your chicken this way keeps the chickens natural juices in so that you end up with a piece of chicken that is moist and flavorful with very little effort. I cook mine this way anytime that I need shredded or chunked chicken. You don't need any seasonings when you cook it this way, but it isn't going to hurt if you do season it a bit to your preference. Once your chicken is fully cooked, cut into chunks of whatever size your family prefers.
  2. While the chicken is cooking, start your pasta and cook according to the directions on the package.
  3. As you boil the pasta, melt the butter for the sauce in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Nothing higher and nothing lower.
  4. When your butter is melted, add the 2 tablespoons of cream cheese and whisk it around the pan until it's all creamy and melts too. You'll want to pretty much whisk constantly so that it doesn't burn. Once it's fully melted, slowly whisk in the heavy cream. Don't substitute milk. Don't substitute half and half. You must use real heavy cream.
  5. Add in the garlic powder, parsley and a pinch or three of salt & pepper if you're using it and keep whisking. Whisk gently.
  6. Bring to a simmer and let simmer for 25 minutes. If you need to reduce your heat, do so. You don't want it getting to a full rolling boil. This will burn VERY quickly if you let it Whisk often.
  7. Remove from heat and quickly stir in the grated cheese.
  8. TASTE before serving. Taste a small bite to see if your seasonings are okay. If not, adjust as needed. Once you've adjusted your seasonings, you're ready to eat! Serve the fettuccine noodles
  9. Plate the fettuccine noodles first then top the noodles with a generous serving of chicken breast. Ladle the copycat Olive Garden Alfredo sauce over the top. Garnish with a bit of Parmesan cheese and serve hot!

 

 

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Stacy Barr
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Stacy Barr

Stacy Barr is the face and brain behind the frugal living and lifestyle blog Six Dollar Family. A true gypsy soul, her newest blog, Unsettled Hearts, chronicles the journey of her family to become full-time travelers. By the age of 30, Stacy had overcome an alcohol addiction, a drug addiction, divorce, survived domestic violence and had built a life for herself and her daughter after spending 10 months in a homeless shelter. Her book, also called Six Dollar Family, has sold more than 7,000 copies since its release.

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Comments

  1. what do you preheat the oven to? please and thank you 🙂

  2. What’s the best way you’ve found to reheat this dish?

    • In the microwave covered with a damp paper towel to keep it from drying out. Otherwise, add a tiny bit of water to it and warm on low. The water you add will help the sauce come back to its originally consistency, just be careful not to add too much. 🙂

  3. Omg!!!!! Thank you for this recipe! This is my first time making it & it is delicious! For sure I making this again. Olive Garden who?! LOL!

  4. How many people does this recipe sever? I have a family of 4, in which all eats adult size servings. Should I double the recipe to be safe?

    • Amy, we are a family of 3 and usually only get 1 adult sized serving each so I would suggest doubling just to be safe. At least for the first time you make it anyhow.

  5. Stacey Hedrick says:

    your directions are very thorough. thank you very much

  6. This was phenomenal. my picky daughter asked me to make it everyday😂😂. Took a little elbow power with a watchful eye as I took you heed to warning in regards to it scortching but it was all worth. Saved in my “Successful Recipes” book.

  7. Question, can this sauce be prepared the night before and stored in the fridge overnight.. Have you ever tried that?

    • Stacy Barr says:

      Hi Tamara, I wouldn’t unless you’re going to have time to stand over it and warm it slowly on the stove. It tends to separate when cooled then re-heated unless it’s done very slowly.

  8. We have tried many different alfredo recipes. We really liked this one, and oddly enough, it seemed “lighter” than most, despite the cream. 🙂 We like to bake our leftovers. We simply mix the leftover pasta and sauce, and add extras, if desired — like cooked broccoli or mushrooms. Place in individual au gratin dishes, cover, and refrigerate. When you are ready to eat them, just uncover and bake at 350 degrees for 20 minutes or so….until hot and bubbly around the edges. For another option, you can top with grated cheese and/or panko crumbs. Good to have on hand for quick lunches or suppers, especially for just one or two people.

  9. lindsey says:

    I just finished cleaning the kitchen after this amazing meal. The sauce was delicious and perfect. My sauce did get a little too thick at the end, but I added a little half and half to get it to a better consistency. Really amazing recipe, though!

  10. Shelley says:

    My Girl Scouts are going to try this at camp this weekend!

  11. I made your recipe for chicken fettuccine last night. I trippled the recipe to feed about 16 teen aged girls. They absolutely loved it. I made it exactly like you wrote the recipe, I had no problems and it turned out fantastic. Thanks for the great recipe.

  12. I followed your recipe and instructions and let tell you, Olive Garden should hire me! It came out perfect! Thank you!

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