An indulgent dinner is what your body craves after a long day (or year!), but comfort and flavor sometimes go hand in hand with spending hours in the kitchen. Thankfully, Giada De Laurentiis reimagines classic dishes with simple shortcuts that make preparing Italian food easier for home cooks. One example is the chef's recipe for creamy baked fettuccine, which she recently shared on social media.
Giada refers to this meal as her "spin on mac and cheese," and we're always down for a fresh take on this comfort food staple. "It's creamy, rich, cheesy and absolutely delicious," she writes on her website. "It's one of those dishes that can feel very elegant, while being so easy to prepare."
And when the chef says "easy to prepare," she's not exaggerating. There are only five ingredients that go into this dish, and the prep work only takes 15 minutes to complete. So make sure that you have a nice bottle of Italian wine on hand (if you drink!), because your oven is about to do all of the hard work for you.
Another feature of this dish that makes it so versatile is that swaps and substitutions are a breeze. Asiago cheese plays a starring role here, but you can replace it with another aged cheese or more parmesan. This recipe also calls for creme fraiche, but you can use the sour cream that's already on hand in your fridge.
Mix all five ingredients together in a large bowl, along with reserved pasta water and salt and pepper. Next, transfer your mixture to a buttered baking dish, and sprinkle extra cheese on top before transferring to the oven. To simply things even more, you can prep this dish ahead of time for a ready-made dinner that just needs to be popped inside the oven.
Once again, Giada has all of our dinner problems solved in a flash! The only thing that could make this meal better would be finishing it with a slice of her easy-to-make lemon poppyseed cake. Full recipe here.
For more of our favorite recipes from Giada, check out:
- Giada De Laurentiis' one-pan chicken Marsala is a quick and delicious weeknight meal
- Giada De Laurentiis' healthier chocolate chip banana bread doesn't sacrifice on flavor
- Giada De Laurentiis' slow cooker Italian wedding soup transforms cold weeknights into warm affairs
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