Simple Sundays | Spaghetti with Mascarpone Alfredo Sauce and Sugar Snap Peas

Spaghetti with Mascarpone Alfredo Sauce |

I had an unwelcome visitor in my kitchen the other day. I noticed him as I stood by my stove, melting butter in a pan. He came uncomfortably close, a dark speck, fast and dangerously near. My spatula became my weapon, and I brandished it high, transforming into stealth ninja mode. How dare a fly enter my domain!

He landed, near one of the stove’s knobs, and I knew this was my moment.


One stroke and he was gone.

Spaghetti with Mascarpone Alfredo Sauce | | Fresh Peas

My inner Mr. Miyagi had emerged, and I was feeling oddly proud of my victory. No, there were no chopsticks, but I was happy to focus on my dinner again. A quick sanitation detail and I turned my attention to the butter that was fully melted on the stove.

It was dinner time and my cupboards were dreadfully bare. All that was left was a package of pasta, some leftover chicken and a gorgeous mess of fresh peas from the farmer’s market. The refrigerator offered a tub of mascarpone cheese and a wedge of Parmigiano-Reggiano. So I got to work on an alfredo sauce.

Spaghetti with Mascarpone Alfredo Sauce |

Spaghetti with Mascarpone Alfredo Sauce and Sugar Snap Peas was born out of necessity but a reminder of how some of the simplest things can be decadent and satisfying. I don’t indulge in creamy sauces that often, but this sauce, without the traditional heavy cream, was buttery and delicious, and perfect for a weeknight supper. As for any flies…well, they’ll have to find their own dinner.

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Spaghetti with Mascarpone Alfredo Sauce and Sugar Snap Peas

Yield: Serves 4.

Alfredo sauces are decadent treats for every once in a while. Instead of traditional heavy cream, this sauce features mascarpone and crème fraîche.


12 oz spaghetti
1 1/2 cups peas
4 tablespoons butter
3/4 cup mascarpone
1/4 crème fraîche
1 cup grated Parmigiano-Reggiano
shredded cooked chicken, optional

Kosher salt, to taste
Freshly ground black pepper, to taste


Bring a large pot of water to a rolling boil. Salt generously and cook the spaghetti according to the package directions until al dente. Retrieve the pasta and drain in a colander, reserving the salted water in the pot. Drop the peas into the pasta water and cook just a few moments until it is bright green and still with some bite. Reserve 1 1/2 cups of the pasta water and drain the peas.

As the pasta is finishing its cooking, melt the butter in a deep sided sauté pan over medium low heat. Stir in the mascarpone and crème fraîche and season to taste with salt and pepper. Once the sauce is creamy, add the spaghetti and peas and toss to coat. If adding shredded chicken, add it as well. Add the pasta water, 1/2 cup at a time, adding in increments until the desired consistency is reached. Stir in the Parmesan cheese.

Serve immediately.

Adapted from Fettucine Alfredo, Gourmet (October, 2008) and Mascarpone Cream Sauce,

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by Liren Baker on July 14, 2013

19 Responses to “Simple Sundays | Spaghetti with Mascarpone Alfredo Sauce and Sugar Snap Peas”

  1. Cynthia July 14, 2013 @ 11:12 am (#

    Oh my, this sounds divine! And it’s gorgeous, too.

    • Liren replied: — July 14th, 2013 @ 2:29 pm

      Thanks so much, Cynthia!

  2. Laura (Tutti Dolci) July 14, 2013 @ 1:08 pm (#

    I love mascarpone, this is pasta perfection!!

    • Liren replied: — July 14th, 2013 @ 2:29 pm

      Thanks, Laura! Mascarpone is so versatile, isn’t it?

  3. Jocelyn (Grandbaby Cakes) July 14, 2013 @ 2:56 pm (#

    This looks gorgeous! Those peas look incredible!

  4. Marcie July 14, 2013 @ 3:59 pm (#

    This dish looks amazing! Normally I don’t do too many cream based sauces because they’re so rich, but I love mascarpone and creme fraiche, plus you’ve freshened it up with those fabulous veggies. I would love this.

  5. Kiran @ July 14, 2013 @ 5:53 pm (#

    Divine and so delicious!! Love when simple, fresh ingredients makes for the best meals :)

    I chuckled so loudly while reading about the fly. It has to find it’s own dinner ;)

  6. Mindy July 14, 2013 @ 6:54 pm (#

    Some of the best meals I’ve ever eaten come out of scrounging through cupboards and the fridge when I haven’t been to the grocery store. I love the creativity of it. Simple ingredients become masterpieces.
    It’s funny you should mention Mr. Miyagi. My sister and BIL just got home from a visit with family in San Diego and my BIL’s BIL (that looks weird typed out) got video of himself catching a fly with chopsticks. He’s half Chinese and married to a Filipina, so I suppose it was inevitable. Ha.
    Have a good week!

  7. Sandra | Sandra's Easy Cooking July 14, 2013 @ 7:03 pm (#

    Funny how some dishes are born with what we have on hand. Your pasta look incredible and very delicious, Liren! I would love some right now to be honest :D

  8. Simone July 14, 2013 @ 10:34 pm (#

    I’m suddenly getting visions of you chasing that nasty fly with chopsticks… :) That spaghetti looks totally delicious! Love meals like that.

  9. Jennifer @ Delicieux July 15, 2013 @ 12:51 am (#

    Liren, this spaghetti looks absolutely fantastic! I especially like the sound of the mascarpone alfredo. I’ll have to try this!

  10. Pauline July 15, 2013 @ 1:45 am (#

    Any variation of pastas is good to me and this one seems both easy and delicious!!

  11. julianaloh @bilbaobab July 15, 2013 @ 8:50 am (#

    these photos are mouth watering!! LOVE alfredo and great idea with mascarpone instead of creme fraiche. Bon appetit! :)

  12. Eileen July 15, 2013 @ 10:21 am (#

    This kind of simple pasta is exactly what I want for dinner after a long day! So delicious & quick & soporific. :)

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  16. Raquel June 9, 2015 @ 9:12 am (#

    What an awesome “green” pasta, perfect for spring! 

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