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This easy chicken fettuccine Alfredo recipe has the most dreamy parmesan garlic cream sauce that perfectly coats the pasta. Golden pan-fried garlic chicken takes this dish to the next level!
Why you’ll love it
You’ve been loving my Shrimp Alfredo, so I figured it was time to make a chicken version! The recipe is very similar because why fix what ain’t broken. 😉 Here I include easy instructions for how to cook chicken for fettuccine Alfredo. Tender, juicy sliced chicken. Oh yeah.
Alfredo sauce is simply a mix of cream, butter, and parmesan cheese, but I also add cream cheese to it, and it’s a game changer. It helps thicken the sauce and adds a delicious bit of tanginess to it. I also add plenty of garlic… obviously. This will be your go-to version!
What you’ll need
- Chicken breasts – slice them in half lengthwise to cook them faster and keep them tender
- Garlic powder – seasoning the chicken with salt & pepper and garlic powder infuses flavor
- Flour – coating the chicken in flour makes it less likely to stick to the pan and gives it a nice golden coating and delicious crust
- Olive oil and butter – for pan frying
- Fettuccine – the classic pasta choice
- Cream cheese – for added texture and tangy taste. Some would say it doesn’t belong in Alfredo sauce, but I respectfully disagree!
- Heavy cream – it’s rich, delicious, and much less likely to curdle than other options
- Chicken broth – more savory flavor!
- Garlic – for even more garlicky taste
- Parmesan – it’s not Alfredo sauce without it
The cream cheese really needs to be soft to make this recipe go much smoother, so I recommend taking it out of the fridge 30+ minutes prior to starting the recipe or microwaving it in 20-30 second intervals until it’s very soft and pliable.
How to make chicken fettuccine Alfredo
This is an overview with step-by-step photos. Full ingredients & instructions are in the recipe card below.
Cook the fettuccine until al dente. Prep the chicken, sprinkle the cutlets with salt & pepper and garlic powder, then coat in flour. Pan-fry it in the oil and some of the butter until it’s cooked through. Transfer it to a plate. Add the remaining butter, the cream cheese, cream, chicken broth, and garlic to the pan.
Stir until the sauce is smooth, and let the sauce thicken up. Meanwhile, slice the chicken into strips. Stir the parmesan into the sauce, and let it bubble for a minute. If it isn’t thick enough, cook it for a few more minutes. If it ends up too thick, add a splash of the hot pasta water to it. Season with salt & pepper, toss with the drained fettuccine, and top with the chicken.
Tools for this recipe
Check out Natasha’s favorite kitchen essentials, gadgets, and cookware!
- Chicken can easily go from underdone to overdone in recipes like this. I recommend using an instant read thermometer to take the guesswork out of it. Chicken is safe to eat at 165F (keep in mind its temperature will keep rising a few degrees after you stop cooking it).
- I always like to suggest grating your own parmesan cheese. It tastes much better, and the pre-grated stuff doesn’t melt into the sauce as well. I love this cheese grater. I always keep a wedge of parm in my fridge.
Substitutions and variations
- You could also use rotisserie or Cooked Chicken if that’s easier for you.
- If you don’t have fettuccine, use what you have on hand. I prefer a longer pasta.
- I don’t recommend substituting the cream for something else. The sauce may not thicken properly and may curdle. Alfredo sauce is notorious for curdling if you use milk, so use any substitutions at your own risk. This is definitely a treat meal, and a delicious one at that! This tastes like something you’d get at the Olive Garden or Cheesecake Factory.
What to serve with chicken Alfredo
- Serve this pasta with a slice of fresh crusty bread, or go all out with my Extra Cheesy Garlic Bread.
- A salad is a great pairing. I recommend my Homemade Olive Garden Dressing, or try my popular 10-Minute Caesar Dressing (no blender needed) and Garlic Croutons for a Caesar salad. For something lighter, try my Super Simple Parmesan Arugula Salad.
Leftovers and storage
- Store any leftovers in the fridge for 3-4 days in a covered container.
- This pasta is definitely best fresh. It’s not ideal for reheating, but reheat slowly in a saucepan over a low heat so that it doesn’t separate. Add a splash more cream if desired.
- I don’t recommend freezing leftover fettuccine Alfredo since the texture will change.
I hope you will love this chicken Alfredo as much as I do! If you made it, leave a star rating and review below, or tag me #saltandlavender on Instagram so I can see your creations.
Chicken Fettuccine Alfredo
- 2 chicken breasts cut in half lengthwise
- 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
- Salt & pepper to taste
- Flour for dredging
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 3 tablespoons butter divided
- 8 ounces uncooked fettuccine
- 4 ounces cream cheese (I used 1/2 block of Philly) softened
- 1 cup heavy/whipping cream
- 1/4 cup chicken broth
- 2 large cloves garlic minced
- 1 cup freshly grated parmesan cheese
- Take the cream cheese out of the fridge to soften up at least 30 minutes (or longer) prior to starting the recipe, or microwave it for 20-30 seconds. Grate the parmesan cheese. I prep other ingredients while I'm going along.
- Boil a large, salted pot of water for the fettuccine. Cook it al dente according to package directions.
- Meanwhile, cut the chicken breasts in half lengthwise so you have 4 thinner cutlets. Sprinkle them with the garlic powder and salt & pepper on both sides. Coat them in flour.
- In a deep skillet over medium-high heat, add the olive oil and 1 tablespoon of the butter. When the pan is hot, cook the chicken for 5 minutes/side or until golden and cooked through. Take the pan off the heat, and remove the chicken to a plate and set it aside.
- Wipe out the skillet/give it a quick rinse if there's a lot of extra grease (no need to wash it unless you really want to). Add in the remaining 2 tablespoons of butter, the cream cheese, cream, chicken broth, and garlic. Return the pan to the burner over medium heat. Once the butter has melted and the pan has heated up, use your spoon to help the cream cheese melt into the sauce. This will take a couple of minutes.
- When the cream cheese has been incorporated into the sauce, let it gently bubble for 5 minutes until the sauce has reduced somewhat. You can give it the occasional stir. Slice the chicken into bite-size strips while it's cooking.
- Stir the parmesan into the sauce. Let it cook for about a minute. The sauce should be thick enough by now, but if you want to reduce it further, let it cook for a little longer. If at any point the sauce gets too thick, simply add a splash of the hot pasta water to it. Give it a taste and season with salt & pepper as needed.
- Drain the fettuccine and add it to the skillet and toss with the sauce. Dish it up with the chicken on top (or mix it in) and grate on more parmesan cheese as desired.
- I do not recommend subbing the heavy cream for anything. Alfredo sauce can easily separate if you’re making it with milk or something with a lower fat content. This is definitely a treat meal.
Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.
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