A Dollop Of Mayo Adds Extra Creaminess To Alfredo Sauce

Mayonnaise is the creamy heavy hitter you need to make an awesome Alfredo-ish sauce. At its most basic, mayo is just an emulsified mix of oil, eggs, and a little bit of lemon juice or vinegar. Separately, those ingredients could easily be the base of a creamy pasta, so why not use a bit of this dependable condiment as a shortcut to lusciousness?

You can use either an Americanized fettuccine Alfredo recipe that uses cream or half-and-half, or something more traditional. The original Italian dish requires vigorously whisking pasta water, Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese, and butter into an emulsion, similar to cacio e pepe. It is a study in delicate and simple flavors, and fettuccine Alfredo purists would likely prefer you keep the mayo far away. However, there's no denying that the combination of those ingredients would be delicious with a creamy mayo hit. We won't tell if you don't!

The trick with incorporating mayonnaise in either version is to add it at the end, and keep the heat low. You essentially just want to warm it through. If you heat mayo for too long, or bring it up to temperature rapidly, it will likely split. To avoid this, prepare your Alfredo sauce as you normally would, remove the pan from the heat, and whisk in a dollop of mayo before tossing in your noodles. You can always thin the sauce with a little pasta water if needed, and a generous final shower of parmesan cheese is a must.

More creative ways to use mayo in comforting dishes

Mayonnaise can actually be used in a variety of noodle dishes to enhance the richness. To make super creamy ramen noodles, put some mayo in the bottom of your serving bowl. After making your favorite pack of instant ramen, slowly stream in the warm broth while stirring constantly. You can elevate this dish with an egg yolk, raw garlic, sliced scallions, gochujang paste, or a big spoonful of DIY chili crisp. Another delectable option is Pinoy spaghetti — an essential dish for Christmas dinner in the Philippines, and other celebratory meals. For creamy versions, mayo adds a lovely flavor and texture to a sweet and savory tomato sauce loaded with ground beef, sliced hot dogs, and sauteed veggies.

Look to mayo to add creaminess to more than just noodles. Add a spoonful to mashed potatoes, sweet potato puree, or the filling for twice-baked spuds. Casseroles are another great use for this condiment. Tuna noodle, baked mac and cheese, and chicken Divan are all instantly upgraded with a dollop of mayo in the mix.