Reheating Fettuccine Alfredo or any cream sauce can turn into an oily mess without the right reheating methods. Here are 3 reheating methods to revive your once delicious creamy sauce.
Fettuccine Alfredo is creamy, delicious, and – filling! Which means that if you made a big batch of it or ordered it from a restaurant, you likely have some leftover pasta! While this is wonderful in itself, if you’ve ever reheated a cream sauce in the past, you already know that it never ever turns out to be as good as it was that first time you had it.
You go to reheat your leftover fettuccine alfredo, only to realize you’ve been left with an oily mess and dry pasta. It’s less than ideal really and your once delicious meal is no longer. What happened to your creamy alfredo sauce?
Well, when a cream sauce is reheated, unfortunately, the sauce separates. But there are ways around this and ways to regain that original creamy texture!
WHY DOES THIS HAPPEN
In fettuccine alfredo or any cream sauce for that matter, heavy cream is a major ingredient. And when it’s heated at high temperatures, the fat separates from the rest of the cream. The fat is the oil you see and that’s why your dish turns into a half oil, half cream mess when you reheat your pasta sauce in the microwave.
Luckily though, with a few techniques, your leftover fettuccine alfredo will be just as good as when you first had it!
METHODS USED TO REHEAT ALFREDO
The different methods used for reheating your leftover alfredo sauce that also prevents sauce separating are on the stove top, in the oven, or slowly in the microwave.
These three different ways prevent strong direct heat or high heat from separating the sauce (like zapping it in the microwave does). Each method works really well, but they do have some variation in the outcomes. There’s one, in particular, that’s my favorite.
Another similarity between all versions is that they all utilize adding cream or milk back to the leftovers to revive them. While controlling the heat is what helps the fat (oil) not separate from the sauce in the first place, adding cream to your leftovers is what helps to revive the dish. This leaves the pasta nice and creamy again and makes sure that it’s not dried out.
I’m going to get right to it here. I think this is the best method by far to heat your fettuccine alfredo up. It’s a simple, somewhat quick method that will give you better results than the other methods. I find that the cream separates less when I heat it on the stove and that makes my pasta less oily.
It is, however, the most hands-on way to reheat. That’s because as it’s heating in the pot, you’ll be stirring and adding cream as needed. You’ll also be keeping an eye to make sure that it doesn’t boil.
The way you’ll do it is by putting all your leftovers in a small saucepan, then heat it on medium-low heat. Then, add in a splash of milk or cream when it starts to heat up. Give it a good stir with a wooden spoon and increase to medium heat.
It will start to simmer, but don’t let it bubble any more than that. Stir frequently to prevent it from sticking to the pan. Add another splash of cream or milk as needed to keep it from drying out. You’ll notice it gets creamy, rather than oily. And if by chance it DOES look to be separating, lower your heat.
You can also reheat your fettuccine alfredo by using your oven. The oven method is a good way if you don’t mind waiting and also don’t want to be hands-on.
This approach won’t separate your sauce because it’s a gentle heating method. There’s two ways you can do this, one more intensive than the other.
For either method, place your leftovers in a baking dish. Then, stir in a little milk or cream to make sure the fettuccine noodles aren’t sticking to each other.
For the first approach, cover your baking dish with aluminum foil and bake at 350 for 30 minutes. For the second approach, you’re going to set your baking dish into a slightly larger baking dish with a little water. This uses a double boiler method that will utilize slow heating rather than zapping and drying out. Bake for the same amount of time and temperature.
You’ll be left with creamy leftover alfredo in the end without needing to do anything in between!
Last, but not least, the microwave method! I’m sure you’re thinking – What! This is how I got into this oily mess in the first place. You would be right that the microwave, although an easy method, heats the cream too quickly, causing it to separate.
But, if you need your alfredo leftovers asap, I hear you. Instead of just cooking it for 2-3 minutes straight in the microwave, you’ll instead take it out at one-minute intervals to stir and make sure it’s not overheating, separating, or drying out.
This is an effective method that’s also the quickest with pretty good results too.
First, add your leftovers to a bowl or microwave-safe container. Stir in about a tablespoon of milk or cream until it feels rehydrated. Then cover the container in some plastic wrap. This will help to steam the pasta, rather than drying it out.
Heat in the microwave for 2-3 minutes, stopping for one-minute intervals to stir. If it’s starting to dry out at all, add more cream.
And there you have it! Three great ways to reheat alfredo sauce that won’t leave your meal an oily mess. You’re now free to enjoy it just like you did the first time around with some fresh parmesan cheese, freshly minced parsley, and black pepper.
If you’re looking for an easy homemade alfredo sauce recipe, look no further than this lightened-up fettuccine alfredo recipe.
What to serve with your Fettuccine Alfredo?
Here are a few ideas on what to serve with your alfredo!
- Garlic Bread
- Chicken Cutlets
- Stuffed Mushrooms
Click to see the remaining 21 Side Dishes for Fettuccine Alfredo