Smoked Salmon Fettuccini Alfredo

4.67 from 6 votes

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Ultra creamy and indulgent, this creamy smoked salmon pasta is a quick and easy weeknight dinner.

A plate of creamy pasta with smoked salmon.


Why you’ll love this pasta:

Truth be told, this’s NOT a traditional Italian alfredo pasta. Authentic Alfredo sauce is a creamy sauce made of emulsified cheese and butter.

My creamy Alfredo sauce is basically a homemade version of store-bought jar of Alfredo sauce.

  • Creamy, thick and indulgent!
  • It comes together super quick. Gather the ingredients and it’ll be ready in less than 20 minutes!
  • Plus, it’s an instant favorite. Everyone loves it from the first bite!
A skillet of cooked fettuccini, chunks of smoked salmon and chopped fresh parsley over a bed of alfredo sauce.
Tossing pasta in Alfredo sauce with kitchen tongs in a skillet.

Ingredient Notes:

  • Cream cheeseWhipped cream cheese is the secret to the flavorful yet lighter sauce. Just make sure to grab original version, not a fruity one. Brick-style cream cheese makes the cause a bit too thick, in my opinion.
  • Parmesan cheese – I think parmesan cheese is the only connection to real Alfredo sauce. But it’s equally important to use high-quality Parmigiano-Reggiano, preferably grated fresh. It’s an essential ingredient and the main flavor component!!
  • Smoked salmon – Now, this pasta is delicious without it, but I just love the addition of smoky protein! I prefer hot-smoked salmon for this pasta. (Read the difference between cold and hot smoked salmon.)
  • Lemon juice – Don’t skip this step! A little bit of lemon juice offsets the richness, making it really balanced and flavorful!

How to make this recipe:

  1. Start cooking the pasta according package directions. Once you drop pasta into the boiling water, start making the sauce.
  2. In a large skillet, melt butter and add whipped cream cheese along with garlic and seasonings.
  3. Then pour in milk and heavy cream and bring it to a boil.
  4. Stir in parmesan cheese and cook until thickened.
  5. Add cooked pasta, smoked salmon, parsley and lemon juice. Toss to combine and enjoy!
Step by step collage of making alfredo pasta.


The sauce might seem runny at the beginning, but rest assured it’ll thicken rather quickly. Just keep a close eye on it once it comes to a boil. And don’t leave the stove to take a phone call, or something!

If the sauce is too thick, thin it out with some pasta cooking water.

Close-up shot of creamy fettuccini pasta with smoked salmon and fresh parsley.


Can I use chicken for this recipe?

You can absolutely substitute chicken for smoked salmon. I love adding leftover rotisserie chicken.

How to store leftover pasta:

Refrigerate leftover Alfredo pasta in an airtight container for up to 3 days.

How to reheat leftover Alfredo pasta:

To reheat, add about 2 tablespoons of milk and microwave for 1-2 minutes.

Got Instant Pot? Try this Instant Pot Chicken Alfredo Pasta next!

4.67 from 6 votes

Smoked Salmon Fettuccini Alfredo

Ultra creamy and indulgent, this creamy smoked salmon pasta is a quick and easy weeknight dinner. Reserve about a cup of pasta cooking water to thin out the sauce, if needed.
Total: 20 minutes
Servings: 6 servings


  • 8 oz (225 g) fettuccini
  • 3 tablespoons (40 g) unsalted butter
  • 4 oz (115 g) whipped cream cheese Note 1
  • 2 garlic cloves pressed
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1 cup (240 ml) milk Note 2
  • 1/2 cup (120 ml) heavy whipping cream
  • ½ cup (55 g) grated Parmesan cheese Note 3
  • 8 oz (225 g) smoked salmon flaked Note 4
  • 1-2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice Note 5


  • Cook the pasta according to package directions. Once cooked, reserve 1 cup of pasta cooking water and drain.
  • Meanwhile, melt butter in a large skillet over medium heat.
  • Stir in whipped cream cheese, garlic. Cook it for about 2 minutes, whisking occasionally. (Note: The mixture will look curdled and weird, but don't worry, it's totally normal.)
  • In 2-cup measuring cup, combine heavy whipping cream and milk and slowly stir into the cream cheese mixture, whisking constantly.
  • Bring the sauce to a boil, stirring occasionally.
  • Stir in parmesan cheese and continue to cook until desired thickness. (Keep in mind the sauce thickens rather quickly. If the sauce had thickened too much, thin it out with a bit of pasta cooking water.)
  • Add cooked pasta, smoked salmon, parsley and lemon juice. Toss everything until well combined. Serve immediately.

Tips & Notes

Note 1: I prefer whipped cream cheese over brick-style cream cheese because how light and airy it is. I used Philadelphia brand plain one in a tub.
Note 2: You can use either whole, 2% or even skim milk.
Note 3: Parmesan cheese is an essential ingredient and the main flavor component. Use high-quality Parmigiano-Reggiano, preferably grated fresh.
Note 4: This pasta is delicious without smoked salmon, but it’s extra special with it. I recommend hot-smoked salmon for this recipe. (Read the difference between cold and hot smoked salmon.
Note 5: Don’t skip lemon juice! It makes a huge difference as it offsets the richness, making the sauce well-balanced and flavorful!
Storing & reheating leftovers:
Refrigerate leftover pasta in an airtight container for up to 3 days. To reheat, add about 2 tablespoons of milk and microwave for 1-2 minutes.


Servings: 1 serving
Calories: 438kcal
Carbohydrates: 32g
Protein: 19g
Fat: 27g
Sugar: 4g
Sodium: 713mg
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Italian

This recipe was originally published on April 7th, 2016.

Hi, I’m Shinee!

Welcome! I’m so happy you’re here! I believe anyone can cook restaurant-quality food at home! And my goal is to help you to become a confident cook with my easy-to-follow recipes with lots of tips and step-by-step photos.

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    1. Did you add lemon juice? It’s a key ingredient for well rounded flavor. But thank you for your feedback, Lyle!

  1. 5 stars
    I slightly modified. I added shallots. Sautéed the shallots and garlic in butter and oil then added cream cheese. From that point I followed the recipe. Turned out excellent.

    1. I love the addition of shallots, Dave! I use it often for this recipe too, I should update the recipe. Thank you for your feedback!

  2. Quick, delicious and amazing to look at! A perfect dish! I just love Salmon in anything really but it’s extra special in a pasta dish. We host a fun link-party every week with a bit of a twist – the hosts make and feature the recipes linked up! We’d love for you to stop by and link up with us!

  3. I love smoked salmon and I LOVE alfredo.  It was my favorite food as a kid.  This recipe looks mouth watering-ly yummy!  I would love for you to stop by and link up at our new party where we make the features!  Thanks for sharing and hope to see you at the party!

  4. YUM!! quick weeknight meals are a must around here, and who could pass up that alfredo sauce 🙂 

  5. This is absolutely to die for! What a gorgeous dish filled with so many wonderful flavors.  Nothing beats homemade alfredo!  xo, Catherine