How to reheat pasta alfredo?
September 4, 2006 6:17 PM   Subscribe

Is there a decent way to reheat pasta with alfredo sauce?

Every time I try to reheat pasta in alfredo sauce, it turns into an oily mess. I've tried the microwave. I've tried warming it slowly on the stove top. It never turns out remotely creamy. Does someone know a secret trick for doing this?
posted by thinman to Food & Drink (13 answers total)
Best answer: slowly on the stovetop, and add a little milk. it won't ever be exactly like it was fresh, but still tasty.
posted by spinturtle at 6:21 PM on September 4, 2006

I store the leftover pasta and leftover sauce separately. Reheat sauce eitger on low heat on stovetop or very carefully in the microwave. Reheat the pasta very briefly in hot water, just long enough to heat it w/o cooking it more.
posted by Robert Angelo at 6:55 PM on September 4, 2006

Seconding the above. Anything with cheese sauce or cream sauce, a little milk and slowly is the key. Also great for reheating mac&cheese, otherwise it gets dry when it's nuked.
posted by muscatlove at 6:56 PM on September 4, 2006

Alfredo sauce is made on the pasta, so I'm not sure how you'd reheat it separately? But to third others, I also find adding more cream / milk as I slowly heat and stir is the most effective method.
posted by jacquilynne at 7:04 PM on September 4, 2006

Adding a little milk is the key, as I was taught as a child by a favorite italian restaurateur who advised me on how to reheat the leftovers.
posted by blasdelf at 7:08 PM on September 4, 2006

Response by poster: Sure enough. Just tried it with added milk (...half and half, actually, because the use by 8/28 1% had separated into equal parts curd and evil), and it was much better than previous attempts. Thanks.
posted by thinman at 7:43 PM on September 4, 2006

You seem to have your solution, but I'll chime in anyway.

When I worked in a hotel kitchen (think fast, cheap, not like a proper restaurant really), we used to make sauces etc in bulk, freeze, then re-heat. Pasta was cooked in quantities to last a few days, and stored in a refridgerator in between.

Anyway, preamble aside, the way we used to re-heat pasta was as follows: heat a pot of water, dump pasta in to heat. Remove pasta.

Then put in a pan over the stove, and add the milk, whilst also heating the alfredo sauce. Then add the two together, and voila! Instant culinary magic...
posted by djgh at 8:25 PM on September 4, 2006

thinman, I think Buttermilk is the substance you are looking for. Even better results than mik for this purpose, and you don't need much!
posted by Aquaman at 9:34 PM on September 4, 2006

If you know you will be reheating this pasta, add a small amount of flour to the alfredo when you make it. It does detract from the taste but it makes the oil more stable. Add it like you would a roux, with the butter just after it melts. The reheat with milk is great advice, as you know.
posted by Foam Pants at 9:53 PM on September 4, 2006

I agree with the slow heating/adding milk method. I also have a recipe for alfredo sauce that uses cream cheese in addition to the standard ingredients, and it seems to reheat without much separation.
posted by thejanna at 6:35 AM on September 5, 2006

thejanna, is there any chance you'd post that recipe here?
posted by MrZero at 7:01 AM on September 5, 2006

I find buttermilk brings too much of its own flavor variable. But break it down: add both milk and a tbsp of softened butter.
posted by thinkpiece at 8:10 AM on September 5, 2006

Personally, I like Fettuccini Alfredo the next day all the more because you can pan fry it. Just heat some extra virgin olive oil in a pan and dump the congealed mass in whole, heating over relatively medium/medium high heat. Use a wooden spoon to start breaking it up as it heats, but let it sizzle on the bottom of the pan longer -- don't stir very often. In no time you get noodles with some sauce and delicious little crunchy brown bits.

Probably not technically alfredo "sauce" after this, but it sure is yummy.
posted by ontic at 6:29 PM on September 5, 2006

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