Healthy fettuccine alfredo with cauliflower sauce and peas - if you're craving pasta with a creamy sauce but want a skinny version of a regular alfredo, this is the recipe for you! Healthy alfredo sauce is made with cauliflower, shallots and garlic, with a small amount of cream and Parmesan cheese. A healthier alternative to a classic alfredo sauce. I combined this healthy cauliflower alfredo sauce with fettuccine and peas for a delicious weeknight dinner!
When I first saw the recipe for healthy fettuccine alfredo with cauliflower sauce by Pinch of Yum on Foodgawker, I immediately fell in love with the idea of making a perfectly healthy alternative to my favorite alfredo sauce. Plus, seeing this sauce immediately brought back the memories of a few years back, when I used to make "fake" mashed potatoes using cauliflower and how much I enjoyed it!
Making this healthy alfredo sauce has long been on my mind but what stopped me from making it was simple logistics: I would forget to buy cauliflower at the store! Finally, here we are - with several cauliflower florets in the refrigerator, I was ready to go!
I made several adjustments to the recipe to bring it closer to the true fettuccine alfredo:
1) I sauteed shallots and garlic in a little bit of butter which added a really nice subtle flavor.
2) I added ½ cup of Parmesan cheese to the sauce - you are, of course, free to add more if you like.
3) I added sweet peas which add a touch of sweetness and perfectly compliment just about any pasta dish. Sweet peas went perfectly with the creamy cauliflower sauce!
What can I say about the result of this endeavor? I simply love cauliflower in mashed form! With the addition of a little bit of heavy cream, Parmesan cheese, shallots, garlic, and sweet peas, this dish becomes a pure vegetarian heaven! I literally could not stop eating it. Right now, my head is full of many other variations I'd love to try with the cauliflower sauce in place of alfredo, but for now, please enjoy this healthy fettuccine alfredo with cauliflower sauce and peas.
Boil cauliflower for 30-40 minutes until soft.
Creamy cauliflower "alfredo" sauce:
Healthy Fettuccine Alfredo with Cauliflower Sauce and Peas
Cauliflower "Alfredo" Sauce
- 1 lb cauliflower (1 cauliflower head)
- 1 tablespoon butter
- 2 shallots , minced, or 2 tablespoons of minced onion
- 2 garlic cloves , minced
- ¼ cup heavy cream
- ½ cup Parmesan cheese , shredded
- ½ teaspoon salt or more, to taste
- ¼ teaspoon ground black pepper
- ¼ teaspoon nutmeg
Pasta and Peas
- 2 cups peas , fresh shelled or use frozen
- 8 oz fettuccine pasta
- 2 tablespoons fresh parsley , chopped, for garnish, optional
Make Cauliflower "Alfredo" Sauce
- Clean the cauliflower head from green leaves, and chop it into reasonably large but manageable pieces. Place it in the big sauce pan with water, bring to boil and boil for 30-40 minutes until cauliflower is really soft. Remove from heat and drain cauliflower from water. Do reserve some cooking water.
- Melt the butter in a medium saucepan over medium-high heat. Add minced shallot (or 2 tablespoons of minced regular onion) and minced garlic and saute until tender. Add heavy cream and Parmesan cheese and bring to a boil. Cook just for a minute, stirring, until cheese melts. Remove from the heat.
- In a food processor, combine cooked cauliflower with the creamy sauce. Process really well, until a very creamy sauce forms. Feel free to add more heavy cream or cooking water (using ¼ measuring cup) to thin the sauce if it is too thick. Transfer sauce into a large sauce pan and keep it warm on the stove top. Season with salt and pepper, and nutmeg, to taste.
Pasta and Peas
- Cook the peas in boiling water for about 5 minutes, or according to instructions if using frozen peas.
- Bring a large pot of water to boil and cook the fettuccine in boiling salted water until al dente. Drain.
- Combine some of the cauliflower sauce (do not use all, you might need only half of this sauce), cooked shelled peas, and pasta cooked al dente. Toss to combine thoroughly – over medium heat. Stir the sauce constantly. Garnish with parsley, if desired. Serve immediately. Season with salt and pepper, if needed.
The nutritional information on this website is only an estimate and is provided for convenience and as a courtesy only. The accuracy of the nutritional information for any recipe on this site is not guaranteed. It should not be used as a substitute for a professional nutritionist’s advice.
Made this for my husband and he thought it was wonderful.. he had thirds!!! as a wife of a picky eater this was a a small victory getting him to eat something healthy that I like too.. Thanks for the recipe
So glad you both liked it! I love this sauce so much, I have thirds, too. 🙂
Omg! Delish!! I just devoured this alfredo! My brother,8, (who hates vegetables) ate a cauliflower based sauce which he said tasted sooo yummy.. I always hated making alfredo until I came across this one... Thanks for sharing! It's definitely a keeper in my recipe book 😉
So glad you liked it! I love this recipe myself and it's got so much potential for more variations by adding various ingredients to dress it up! Thank you for stopping by and letting me know that it worked for you! 🙂
I don't get it. You are still using heavy cream and cheese, and you are boiling the cauliflower for so long which kills a lot, if not all of the nutrients. It might be a bit less calories than the original alfredo but really not healthy at all.
The recipe uses 1/4 cup (up to 1/2 cup) of heavy cream for 6 servings. That's 1/24 cup (1/12 cup) of heavy cream per serving. The recipe also uses 1/2 cup of Parmesan for the whole recipe, which is 1/12 cup of Parmesan per serving. As you see, simple math demonstrates how little of actual heavy cream and Parmesan goes into each serving, majority of food on the plate is cauliflower. And I don't even know the nutrients of cauliflower - nutritious value was not the objective of this recipe.
Kiersten @ Oh My Veggies
I love the taste of alfredo sauce, but I can only have a little bit before I start feeling sick--it's just way too rich! This version sounds much better. 🙂
what katie's baking
the photos of this are beautiful! and it sounds super tasty, too!
Hard to believe that this recipe could be made so healthy!
Healthy Alfredo sauce with cauliflower? This is brilliant!!! I really want to try this. Thank you for sharing this. 🙂
Kiran @ KiranTarun.com
Cauliflower is so so versatile these days 🙂
Sarah K. @ The Pajama Chef
i've made this recipe before...soooo good! lovely photos 🙂
I have made a similar recipe and love this so much! I saute the onions and garlic in evoo, then add the cauliflower and saute for a few minutes before adding chicken stock and simmering. Then I blend it, add a little pepper and almond milk and serve. I will for sure try adding peas next time!