Make the Perfect Christmas Fettuccine Through These Tips

During the holiday season, many people enjoy indulging in traditional dishes as part of their celebrations.

One of the most popular dishes is fettuccine, but how did this Italian dish become a Christmas tradition, and how to cook this dish perfectly?

Let’s explore the history behind this beloved holiday staple. 


Is Fettuccine a Christmas Thing?

It is not known precisely when fettuccine became a Christmas tradition, but it is believed that it started in Italy during the late 19th century or early 20th century.

Italians would often serve fettuccine as part of their Christmas Eve dinner, traditionally eaten after attending Midnight Mass on December 24th.

fettuccine alfredo served in a plate with fork

This tradition has since spread to other countries around the globe and has become an integral part of many people’s holiday celebrations. 

Is there a Difference Between Pasta and Fettuccine?

Yes! Although both pasta and fettuccine are made from durum wheat flour, the two dishes differ in their shape and cooking methods.

Pasta is usually cut into long thin strands which can be cooked quickly and easily.

Fettuccine, on the other hand, is flat and wide with a slightly thicker consistency than normal pasta.

It requires a longer cooking time and is usually served with heavier sauces such as Bolognese or Alfredo sauce.

Can You Use Fettuccine for Spaghetti?

Yes, you can use fettuccine as a substitution for spaghetti in many dishes. The two dishes have similar textures and cook times, so they are interchangeable.

However, since fettuccine is slightly wider than spaghetti, it might take longer to cook. Additionally, because of its wider shape, it may need more sauce than spaghetti.

Overall, it is safe to use fettuccine as a substitution for spaghetti, just keep in mind that it might require some slight adjustments.

Is Fettuccine Real Italian?

Yes, fettuccine is a very popular dish in Italy and has been eaten for centuries. It is believed to have originated in Rome during the late 19th century or early 20th century and has since become a staple of Italian cuisine.

The traditional method for making fettuccine involves rolling out the dough into flat sheets before cutting it into long, thin strips. This method is still used in Italian homes and restaurants today.

Fettuccine has become a much-loved part of Christmas celebrations in many countries around the world, thanks to its roots in Italian cuisine.

Is Alfredo and Fettuccine the Same?

No, Alfredo and Fettuccine are not the same dishes. While they both use durum wheat flour as their main ingredient, the two dishes have very different textures and flavors.

Fettuccine is a type of pasta that has been cut into long flat strips, while Alfredo is a creamy sauce made with butter, Parmesan cheese, and cream. The two are usually served together as a classic Italian dish.

The combination of Alfredo sauce and Fettuccine is often seen as a delicacy in many parts of the world and is a popular Christmas dish in Italy.

In conclusion, fettuccine has been an integral part of Christmas celebrations in many parts of the world for centuries. Its roots in Italian cuisine make it a unique and tasty addition to any holiday meal.

Whether you’re serving up a traditional Italian feast or looking for something new to add to your holiday menu, fettuccine is sure to please everyone!

What Is a Traditional Christmas Eve Dinner?

Whether you choose to partake in a full feast or go for more simple fare, there are some staples that almost every one includes in their annual tradition.

Common dishes include roast turkey or ham, mashed potatoes, stuffing, cranberry sauce, vegetables like green beans and carrots, pudding or pie for dessert, and perhaps even something sweet like cookies or cake as well!

Depending on where you live and your family’s traditions, additional main courses may also be included such as lasagna or baked ziti.  

The traditional Christmas Eve dinner dates back hundreds of years and has roots in many cultures.

In Italy, it was known as La Vigilia di Natale and was considered a 24-hour fast before celebrating Mass on Christmas Day.

While most people no longer partake in the full 24-hour fast, many still opt for lighter fare on this special night.

The tradition of eating lighter meals such as fish on Christmas eve can also be traced to German and Polish cultures where meat was prohibited from being consumed on December 24th. 

What Ingredients Are in Fettuccine Alfredo?

The base of fettuccine Alfredo consists of two simple ingredients: fettuccine noodles and butter.

The noodles are tossed with butter to create a rich and creamy sauce that coats each noodle perfectly.

Cheese is added to the mix to give the sauce its signature flavor. Parmesan cheese is usually used for maximum flavor, though you can also use other types of hard cheese like Asiago or Romano. 

In addition to its base ingredients, there are several other ingredients that can be added to enhance the flavor of fettuccine Alfredo.

Garlic adds a robust aroma and depth of flavor, while cream can be used to create an ultra-rich sauce.

Parsley adds a touch of freshness and color, while mushrooms provide an earthy flavor profile.

Other additions such as bacon or spinach can also be included if desired. 

What Can I Add to My Fettuccine Alfredo to Make it Tastier?

We’ll share five delicious ways to spice up your favorite pasta dish. 

1. Add Some Greens:

A handful of fresh spinach or kale can do wonders for any plate of fettuccine Alfredo. The greens will add an extra layer of flavor as well as a pop of color that will make the dish look even more appetizing.

Simply wilt the greens in a pan with some olive oil and garlic before adding them to the cooked pasta. 

2. Throw in Some Protein:

If you want to make your fettuccine Alfredo a bit heartier, try adding some shredded chicken, cooked shrimp, or crumbled bacon.

These proteins will not only add flavor but can help fill you up faster and keep you feeling full longer. 

3. Get Creative With Spices:

Adding spices such as nutmeg, oregano, or parsley can really elevate the flavor of your fettuccine Alfredo without overpowering it.

You can also try using flavored oils such as garlic-infused olive oil or truffle-infused oil for an added boost of flavor. 

4. Add Some Heat:

Nothing brings out the flavors in food like a little bit of heat!

To give your fettuccine Alfredo an extra kick, try adding crushed red pepper flakes or slivers of jalapeno peppers when cooking the pasta sauce on the stovetop.

Be sure not to go overboard – too much heat can take over the entire dish! 

5. Finish With Fresh Herbs and Cheese:

Sprinkling fresh herbs such as basil or thyme over your finished plate of fettuccine Alfredo will lend an earthy flavor that complements the creamy sauce perfectly.

A sprinkle of freshly grated Parmesan cheese is also a great way to finish off this classic dish in style!  

What Sauce Goes With Fettuccine?

Let’s explore some pairing options to find out! 

1. Alfredo Sauce:

Alfredo sauce is one of the most popular sauces to serve over fettuccine noodles.

This creamy white sauce is made from butter, cream, parmesan cheese, and garlic—ingredients you likely already have in your kitchen.

This rich and savory sauce pairs perfectly with the delicate texture of the fettuccine noodles for an unforgettable dish. 

2. Marinara Sauce:

Marinara sauce is another great option for topping your fettuccine noodles.

This classic tomato-based sauce has herbs like oregano, basil, and thyme that provide it with a unique flavor. Marinara is perfect for when you’re looking for a lighter option but still want plenty of flavors.

Pair it with some red pepper flakes or extra parmesan cheese if you’re feeling adventurous! 

3. Pesto Sauce: 

Pesto is a flavorful green sauce made from fresh basil leaves combined with olive oil, garlic, pine nuts, and parmesan cheese.

While pesto can be used as a spread or dip on its own, it also makes an excellent addition to any fettuccine dish.

The bright green color helps to liven up the plate while the subtle hints of garlic add depth to the overall flavor profile.

What Do You Eat Fettuccine With?

Fettuccine is a great pasta dish that pairs well with a variety of sides.

Some popular options include roasted vegetables, steamed broccoli, grilled chicken or shrimp, and even a simple side salad.

Whatever your preference may be, you can find something to complement the classic flavors of fettuccine noodles.

Soup is another great option for pairing with fettuccine. Pairing a creamy soup such as tomato bisque or broccoli cheddar with your noodles is an easy and delicious way to round out the meal.

If you’re looking for something a bit heartier, try adding a bowl of chili or minestrone soup to your plate.

What Is the Main Course for an Italian Christmas Eve Dinner?

The main course for an Italian Christmas Eve dinner is typically something seafood-based. Popular options include baked cod or salmon, mussels in marinara sauce, grilled calamari, and shrimp scampi.

If you’re looking to serve a more traditional Italian dish as the main course of your Christmas Eve dinner, try making a classic lasagna or fettuccine Alfredo.

These dishes are easy to make and can be enjoyed by everyone. They also pair well with sides such as garlic bread, roasted vegetables, and a side salad.

No matter what you decide to serve for the main course of your Italian Christmas Eve dinner, your guests are sure to enjoy it!


Fettuccine is a classic Italian pasta dish that can be enjoyed on its own or with a variety of sauces for added flavor. Alfredo, marinara, and pesto are some popular choices for topping this delicious dish.

Whether you choose to add some protein or get creative with spices, there are plenty of ways to improve this classic Italian dish without sacrificing its signature creaminess and comforting appeal.

From its humble beginnings in Rome centuries ago to its popularity today, fettuccine has certainly come a long way.

Whether you’re celebrating Christmas with family or just looking for a delicious meal to enjoy any time of year, consider adding this classic Italian dish to your menu – it’s sure to be a hit!

Amazon and the Amazon logo are trademarks of, Inc, or its affiliates.

Kapnos Taverna Author - Small
About the author

Natalie is a food enthusiast who spends all of her time trying out new recipes, testing out new appliances, and making her kitchen as awesome as possible. She is a professional writer and blogs here about her love of food & kitchen.

Leave a Comment