What to Serve With Pesto Pasta: 20 Best Side Dishes

pesto pasta side dishes

Need to best side dish for your pesto pasta? If so, we are here to help.

Pesto pasta is an easy and healthy dish for people avoiding creamy and heavy pasta. Made with penne pasta, tomatoes, vegetable broth, spices, pesto, and parmesan cheese, this dish makes an ideal lunch or dinner because of its hearty ingredients.

pesto pasta side dishes

Looking for a quick answer?

The best side dishes to serve with pesto pasta are mushroom risotto, steamed vegetables, sauteed vegetables, tempeh, beef and broccoli, teriyaki salmon, eggplant parmesan, shrimp scampi, fried shrimp, cheese curds, arugula salad, bread rolls and white beans and bacon.

Now, let's get cooking!

20 Pesto Pasta Side Dishes

1. Mushroom Risotto

Mushroom Risotto

If you want to make a meal with pesto pasta, we recommend serving it with mushroom risotto. This dish is light, healthy, and quite flavorful. Besides, it is so easy to make that you can create your own plate within a few minutes.

To make a fantastic and delicious mushroom risotto, you need butter, rice, chopped onions, mushrooms, frozen peas, chicken broth, and some spices. Cook a treat and fill your stomach and heart with some deliciousness.

2. Beef and Broccoli

Instant Pot beef and broccoli easy pressure cooker dinners

Next, we have beef and broccoli to serve with pesto pasta. This dish is fulfilling and tastes divine when prepared after following all the steps mentioned. The beef is quite tender and soft and melts in your mouth easily.

Besides, the broccoli adds the perfect crunch to the entire dish. This is a perfect crowd-pleaser dish, so ensure you put all your effort into cooking it.

In fact, is the most popular recipe in Corrie Cooks, so you have to check it 🙂

3. Steamed Vegetables

Steamed VegetablesIf you are on a diet, we suggest you enjoy pasta with homemade steamed vegetables. You can steam any vegetable you like, but broccoli, cabbage, and zucchini make a great combination. In addition, you can also steam carrots, peas, and other green vegetables.

Season all your steamed vegetables with salt and pepper for taste.

4. Sauteed Vegetables

Sauteed VegeiesFor some people, steamed vegetables are too bland and boring. In that case, sauteed vegetables are the best alternative. They can be prepared quickly and have a high nutritional value.

Again, there is no restriction on the vegetables you should choose. You can fill your plate with sauteed peas, corn, broccoli, carrots, cabbage, and zucchini and serve it with your favorite creamy chicken pesto pasta.

5. Tempeh


Do you want to try something different with your pasta? We recommend making tempeh at home.

What is that? Tempeh is a vegan food, rich in many nutrients and proteins. It is made of soy, so make sure you aren't allergic.

Tempeh can be served as a side dish using the tagged recipe. You can get the store-bought tempeh and follow all the steps to make an excellent dish. Make it in good quantity so you can eat the food according to your hunger and appetite.

6. Teriyaki Salmon

Teriyaki salmon

This is a mouth-watering and drool-worthy recipe that you can prepare within ten minutes. Teriyaki fish has an excellent taste and is full of nutrients you can enjoy with your pasta.

There are no restrictions; you can use frozen or fresh fish for this recipe.

Also, if you don't like salmon, replace it with haddock or cod.

7. Eggplant Parmesan

Eggplant Parmesan

Pair your amazing pasta with this quick and delicious eggplant parmesan. You can make this dish within ten minutes using ingredients like eggplants, salt, marinara sauce, water, and parmesan cheese.

Follow the recipe to the tee to make a splendid and healthy dish. If you love cheese, you can increase its quantity on your eggplant.

8. Shrimp Scampi

Shrimp Scampi

We love this dish. It has our favorite shrimp in it, and it tastes divine. Also, you can have this dish with pesto pasta without any complaints.

Shrimp scampi is a wonderful recipe featuring shrimp, white wine, salt, pepper, garlic, parsley, butter, and lemon juice. It is safe to say that this wholesome dish can be enjoyed at any month of the day. You can have it for lunch or dinner, depending on when you plan to have your pasta.

9. Fried Shrimp

Fried Shrimp

Fried Shrimp is a favorite of both kids and adults. It features crispy shrimp with a drool-worthy tasty. When paired with your pasta, it helps elevate the texture and taste of your food.

Using your Instant pot, you can make this shrimp dish with just a few ingredients. Put the shrimp on a bed of your pasta and enjoy them together on every bite.

Also, if you prefer, add a creamy sauce to the mix.

10. Cheese Curds

Cheese CurdsCheese curds are cheesy, delicious, and pretty flavorful. They are soft on the inside and crispy on the outside. You can make a bucket of these and enjoy them with your pasta.

11. Arugula Salad

Arugula salad

This is a refreshing and light salad that tastes great with pesto pasta. It uses just a few ingredients, but the results are remarkably good.

With every spoonful, you get a nice blend of flavors from nutty almonds, cranberries, and parmesan. The dressing used for this salad tastes lightly sweet and tart.

This is a healthy salad with all the nutrients you require daily.

12. Bread Rolls

Bread rolls

Stuffed with potatoes, these bread rolls are amazing and worth having repeatedly. You can have them with your pasta and add a green chutney.

In the majority of cases, these bread rolls are deep fries. However, if you are conscious about your health, you can use an air fryer to cook them.

13. White Beans and Bacon

White beans with bacon

Elevate your food experience by making this fantastic recipe with your favorite pesto pasta. The dish is quite simple to make but is very rich and healthy. It is loaded with flavors and often enjoyed as a side dish.

14.  Butternut Squash Pizza

Butternut Squash Pizza

Pasta and pizza, what a combination! It is a treat that we all look forward to. Serve this amazing vegetarian pizza with your pesto pasta and enjoy the combination of various flavors and textures.

Butternut squash pizza is pretty healthy and is so easy to make. Also, since it uses few ingredients, the recipe falls under your budget.

15. Fried Calamari

Fried Calamari

You can also cook fried calamari and enjoy it with your homemade pasta. Follow the recipe to make tender calamari with a crisp exterior. It is a go-to recipe and is loved by kids and adults alike.

16. Caprese Salad

Caprese Salad

Do you want to make a quick salad with your pasta for your guests? In that case, make the Caprese salad featuring slices of mozzarella and tomatoes garnished with basil leaves.

For the dressing, drizzle some olive oil over your ingredients and sprinkle the given amount of salt and pepper.

17. Burrata

Burrata cheese

Burrata cheese is delicious, delicate, and soft. It is also creamy and goes great with pesto pasta.

You can make this cheese using the recipe shared. The recipe features sun-dried tomatoes, zesty olive oil, and fresh basil for the perfect taste.

18. Roasted Potatoes and Onions

Roasted Potatoes and onions

We love this dish for its simplicity and texture. It has a wonderful taste that blends well with your pasta. Follow the recipe to ace this dish and impress your family and friends with your cooking skills.

19. Russian Salad

Russian Salad

Russian salad is everyone's favorite because it features a mix of different vegetables and creamy dressing. We recommend making this salad and serving it with your pasta. The combination is one-of-a-kind and something that you will enjoy eating.

20. Grilled Chicken With Herbs

Grilled Chicken

Finally, try this amazing recipe of grilled chicken and serve it with your perfect pesto pasta. This combination doesn't go wrong ever and is often served in restaurants.

Final Words

Pesto pasta is a wonderful dish and worth every bite. It tastes delicious with many side dishes, including the ones mentioned in the article.

Try them all and share your feedback on which recipe proved amazing for you.

20 Side Dishes For Pesto Pasta

  1. Mushroom risotto
  2. Beef and Broccoli
  3. Steamed vegetables
  4. Sauteed vegetables
  5. Tempeh
  6. Teriyaki salmon
  7. Eggplant parmesan
  8. Shrimp scampi
  9. Fried shrimp
  10. Cheese curds
  11. Arugula salad
  12. Bread rolls
  13. White beans and bacon
  14. Butternut squash pizza
  15. Fried Calamari
  16. Caprese salad
  17. Burrata cheese
  18. Roasted onions and potatoes
  19. Russian salad
  20. Grilled Chicken with Herbs

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pesto pasta side dishes

What To Serve With Pesto Pasta

Discover the best dishes to serve with pesto pasta and take your meal to the next level. Find ideas like fried shrimp, beef and broccoli, cheese curds and much more.
4 from 4 votes
Print Pin Rate
Course: dinner, lunch, Side Dish
Cuisine: American
Keyword: chicken pesto pasta, pesto pasta
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 20 minutes
Servings: 2
Author: Corrie


  • 1 pesto pasta


  • Make a delicious plate of pesto pasta.
  • Make a side dish from the list above. You can eat pesto pasta with grilled chicken, sauteed vegetables, steamed vegetables, bread rolls, Russian salad, fried calamari, cheese curds, teriyaki salmon, tempeh, mushroom risotto, fried shrimp, shrimp scampi and beef and broccoli.
  • Serve and enjoy a wonderful meal 🙂
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