orecchiette pasta with alfredo sauce.
Kid's favorites, Pasta

Orecchiette with creamy Alfredo sauce


This family favorite is rich, creamy and cheesy. Your kids will love orecchiette pasta with homemade creamy Alfredo sauce. It’s restaurant quality pasta at home.

orecchiette pasta with alfredo sauce.
Orecchiette pasta means “little ears”

My oh my…this is a family favorite and one kids get excited about. This homemade creamy Alfredo sauce is super easy to make. It’s rich, creamy, cheesy and delicious. My kids love their Alfredo sauce with orecchiette pasta. However, if you want to use another type of pasta such as fettuccine or linguine you most certainly can.

Orecchiette pasta with Alfredo sauce and sauteed mushrooms

Orecchiette literally translates to “little ears.” Its small cup-like shape, grasps the sauce nicely. My family was introduced to orecchiette pasta in Puglia (Apulia).

A collage of photos from the Puglia area of Italy.
Scenes from Puglia, Italy

Puglia is in the “heel” of Italy’s boot. This beautiful area of Southern Italy is known for gorgeous beaches, sparkling blue water, quaint towns and Trulli houses. And while orecchiette pasta is more traditionally served with a tomato-based sauce, I’ve decided to change traditions up a bit today.

A collage of photos, pasta, cheese and little boy helping make the sauce.
Kids can help make this simple pasta dish

Taking time for family and sharing a meal together is very important. My kids enjoy making this meal with me. They each have a role to play in measuring the ingredients or stirring the sauce. I think adding the Parmesan cheese is their favorite part. This Alfredo sauce will pair nicely with a variety of pastas. Use your favorite if you cannot find orecchiette. And because this sauce is very rich, it’s considered a special treat.

Orecchiette pasta with Alfredo sauce on a plate.

Tips for this recipe:

  • If you find the sauce is becoming too thick too fast, add a little pasta water to thin it out. Add a small amount at a time.
  • Use garlic sparingly, otherwise it will be overpowering. Garlic should be cooked on medium until it sizzles. If it turns brown (too hot, too fast), it will spoil the dish. At this point, the flavor turns bitter. So, it must be watched carefully.
  • Always finalize the cooking of pasta in the sauce. This infuses the pasta with additional flavor.

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Essential items for this recipe:

Orecchiette pasta
Heavy Whipping Cream
Cheese grater
Large skillet

I think your family will love this pasta dish. Leave me a comment below about your experience with it.

Orecchiette with creamy Alfredo sauce

Recipe by Michelle BarsnessCourse: Kid’s favorites, PastaCuisine: AmericanDifficulty: Easy


Prep time


Cooking time



This family favorite is rich, creamy and cheesy. Your kids will love orecchiette pasta with homemade creamy Alfredo sauce.


  • 1 box pasta (nearly cooked through al dente)

  • 2 tbsp butter

  • 1 tbsp olive oil

  • 1/2 medium-sized garlic clove (crushed and finely minced)

  • 2 cups heavy cream (or half and half)

  • 1 cup Parmesan cheese (finely grated)

  • 1/4 tsp white pepper

  • 1 tbsp fresh Italian parsley (minced, if desired)


  • Cook the pasta according to the package instructions shy of about 3 minutes cooking time. In the meantime, prepare the sauce.
  • In a large skillet, heat the butter and the olive oil over medium-high heat. Add the minced garlic and cook until it begins to soften.
  • Add the cream, cheese and pepper. Simmer and stir for a couple minutes until it begins to thicken.
  • Add the cooked al dente pasta to the sauce and continue to simmer for two minutes.
  • Sprinkle with the Italian parsley if desired and any additional Parmesan cheese. Serve immediately.


  • Recipe courtesy of https://northwestspoon.com For more great recipes, join our email mailing list.
  • Essentials: Orecchiette pasta Heavy Whipping Cream Cheese grater Large skillet
  • Variations: Add 1/4 cup of frozen peas and 1/2 – 3/4 cup cooked chicken to the sauce as it simmers. Use different pastas: Fettuccine or Penne suggested.


  1. What kiddo doesn’t love a classic pasta with Alfredo right??!! Great recipe to let the kids get involved!

  2. I love alfredo but haven’t made it in forever. Those nights making it with my mom were awesome; we should totally do it again.

    • Michelle Barsness

      Hi Laura, Thank you for stopping by. It’s all about making memories isn’t it? šŸ™‚ This recipe is a keeper.

  3. Your sous chef is far too cute! Love alfredo too

    • Michelle Barsness

      Hi Sarah, Thank you for stopping by. Oh yes, he’s my super cutie-pie sous chef. I’m enjoying teaching him a thing or two in the kitchen.

  4. Mmmmm…..I’m way overdue to make pasta with Alfredo sauce! Always a hit around here!

    • Michelle Barsness

      Thank you for stopping by Liz. This recipe is a classic. What can I say!? It’s yummy in your tummy. šŸ™‚

  5. So nice to have little helpers in the kitchen!

    • Michelle Barsness

      Thank you for stopping by Cindy. Yes, he’s my little helper. And I hope he learns to love to cook too.

  6. This Alfredo sauce is easy to make and tastes great. I can’t believe I used to buy Alfredo sauce. Love it because I know the ingredients I’m using.

  7. I’m never happy with alfredo sauces from restaurants, I’ll have to try making it at home! That way I can adjust the seasoning.

  8. 5 stars
    Mmm, this just popped up in my inbox and I’m drooling

    • Michelle Barsness

      Thanks Emily! My kids can’t get enough of this sauce. šŸ™‚ I only make it on cheat days or treat days.

  9. 5 stars
    This is a great recipe. I usually have all ingredients and it works for me.

  10. Thank you for this great recipe! I’ve tried different Alfredo recipes but I like your recipe the best. My little picky eaters and the whole family love it! :-). I also added some cooked broccoli on some homemade orecchiette.

    • Hi Veronique, I’m so glad you’re family enjoys this Alfredo. It’s the best sauce isn’t it!? Adding broccoli is a great idea. Adding cooked chicken breast pieces is something we love to do also. And I also make this with Fettucine at times as well. Thank you for your comment.


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