Fettuccine Alfredo (Fettuccine al Triplo Burro)

Fettuccine Alfredo (Fettuccine al Triplo Burro)
Fettuccine Alfredo (Fettuccine al Triplo Burro)

When it comes to Fettuccine Alfredo (Fettuccine al Triplo Burro) one ingredient separates the dish as it’s prepared in the United States versus Italy; viz., cream.  The original dish was created (or popularized) by Alfredo di Lelio when he supposedly tried to cook something satisfying for his pregnant wife.  Alfredo created a sauce of butter and grated Parmigiano-Reggiano and the dish was enjoyed by both his wife,and later, the many patrons of his Roman restaurant on Via della Scrofa during the 1930’s.  The American version of the dish includes heavy cream which is often omitted in traditional Fettuccine al Triplo Burro.

Our version holds true to the classic and includes a generous amount of freshly cracked black pepper. Variations of Fettuccine Alfredo are abundant, but we suggest you try the simple (and cream free) version first and then decide if the additional ingredients are necessary.

Fettucine Alfredo (Fettucine al Triplo Burro)
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Serves: 4-6
  • Freshly cracked black pepper and Kosher salt
  • 1 pound of fettuccine
  • 1 cup of grated Parmigiano-Reggiano
  • 1 stick of unsalted butter (buy the best butter you can afford)
  1. Cook the fettuccine and add 2 tablespoons of the pasta water to a large pan. Add the grated cheese and butter and melt down the mixture. Add freshly cracked black pepper and salt. Add the pasta and mix well. Just prior to serving grated more cheese over the pasta, as well as a but more black pepper, if desired.


  1. I have made this version often, I sometimes use spinach fettucine. I for years always used cream though. But as I get older the cream is too heavy.

  2. Technically this method would just be al burro and not al triplo burro, as the al doppio and triplo (doubling the pre-fettuccine butter quantity c/w al doppio) burro versions involved adding butter to the pan both before and after the fettuccine was added. To make this al triplo burro and not just al burro, add some of the butter (about a third) at the finish along with the cheese. Whether this makes any discernible difference in the taste I can’t say, but if you want to be truly authentic…!!!

    • Hello Dr. K.

      The question of “al triplo burro” was a confusing one for me. When doing research, I came across the original Fettuccine Alfredo recipe as published in the La Cucina: The Regional Cooking of Italy from the Italian Academy of Cuisine (one of the finest sources of Italian recipes in print). The recipe (including process), as made at the restaurant of Alfredo, is adapted in our post almost 1:1 (minus the homemade pasta ingredients). And the recipe is indeed referenced as “Fettuccine al Triplo Burro”

      I don’t think adding the butter quantities before and after the pasta or at the same time makes any difference to the end product. I think the idea of “doppio” or “triplo” is just an indicator of the amount of butter.

      My two cents!

  3. Love the version sans cream. It’s still rich, but light at the same time. Happy New Year Vince!

  4. Alfredo e Ines Di Lelio


    With reference of your article we
    have the pleasure to tell you the history of our grandfather Alfredo Di Lelio,
    creator of this recipe in the world known.

    Alfredo di Lelio opened the restaurant “Alfredo” in a street
    in the center of Rome
    nel 1914, after leaving his first restaurant run by his mother Angelina in
    Piazza Rosa (Piazza disappeared in 1910
    following the construction of the Galleria Colonna / Sordi). In this local
    spread the fame, first to Rome
    and then in the world, of “fettuccine all’Alfredo”. In 1943, during
    the war, Di Lelio gave the local to his collaborators.

    In 1950 Alfredo Di Lelio decided to
    reopen with his son Armando his restaurant in Piazza Augusto Imperatore n.30
    “Il Vero Alfredo” (“Alfredo di Roma”), which is now managed by
    his nephews Alfredo and Ines, with the famous “gold cutlery””
    (fork and spoon gold) donated in 1927 by two well-known American actors Mary
    Pickford and Douglas Fairbanks (in
    gratitude for the hospitality).

    See also the site of “Il
    Vero Alfredo” (“Alfredo di Roma”) http://www.alfredo-roma.it/).

    We must clarify that other
    restaurants “Alfredo” in Rome
    do not belong to the family tradition of “Il Vero Alfredo”.

    We inform that the restaurant “Il Vero Alfredo” is in the Registry of “Historic Shops of
    Excellence” of Rome

    Best regards
    Alfredo e Ines Di Lelio

  5. I made this last week and put it on homemade egg noodles. It was a huge hit! My brother declared it to be the best Alfredo sauce, bar none, that he had ever eaten in his whole life!

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