Tagliatelle pasta with pesto

Side Dishes For Pesto Pasta (With Recipe Ideas)

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If you are inviting friends or family over to your house, deciding what should be on the menu is the main ordeal. The main course is the most important meal, but the side dishes are just as crucial. If you choose to make pasta for dinner, then a simple dish on the side will go perfectly with it. So, what side dishes for pesto pasta can you make to compliment your pesto pasta? 

There are innumerable side dishes that will go well with pesto pasta. However, you must keep in mind that the dish should be light, as pesto pasta itself is a heavy meal. You can make a side salad with pesto or a simple tomato and bacon salad. These will not make you too full while complementing your taste buds. A side of only sautéed mushrooms will also be good.

The skill of creating a delightful menu is in choosing side dishes which convert the meal into a feast that is balanced well and appeals to all five senses. However, there are some factors that you need to consider before deciding on your side dish for your pesto pasta. This article will talk about these factors as well as about the drinks that go well with this main dish.

What To Consider When Picking A Side Dish For Pesto Pasta

The most vital thing to remember is that you must ‘construct’ the menu from the ground up. The main course serves as the basis, while the remainder of the dinner adds the final touches that elevate the dish from mediocre to magnificent. Thus, there are some factors that you need to consider before you decide on which side dish you want to present with your pesto pasta.

Balance The Heaviness Of The Dish

It is difficult to balance the weight of dishes. The dinner either becomes very heavy to digest or too light that you have to resort to some other dish to fill your appetite. 

Even if the separate components of a dish are great in their own right, the total must be appetizing and gratifying. Pesto pasta is a substantial, saucy meal so you can pair it with milder sides, or try to make your pesto pasta a bit lighter. Then you can add at least one satisfying, rich side meal.

Balance The Taste

While choosing to make pesto pasta might be beneficial, it is still necessary that you balance all the flavors, otherwise, all the hard work you did will be in vain. Consider serving a side dish with a seasoned vinaigrette or dressing of lemon that contains a pleasing sour flavor that will not conflict with the pasta. 

Salads that have a sharp undertone, such as olives, complement pasta meals that are creamy, such as pesto pasta beautifully. If your pasta meal is salty, then you can put a side meal that is refreshing and sweet. It can contain components like cucumber and ripe tomatoes and cucumber can be a good choice.

Compare Textures

The appeal of your taste buds is an important aspect of meal preparation, according to cooks who are professional. Various textures pique your attention and make eating a pleasurable and interesting experience. 

You can even serve a mild side dish of lamb, vegetables, and mashed potatoes by cooking it lightly. It can sound like a heavy meal, but if you serve it in small quantities, it will go well with pesto pasta. 

See If It Is Easy To Prepare

Simplicity is the best. Try not to choose side dishes that need more time and effort. You need to have some free time to attend to the guests if you are throwing a party. You cannot spend all your time in the kitchen!

Not only is it crucial that you are physically present while attending them, but mentally as well. You cannot focus on it if you keep thinking about whether your small side meals are burning in the oven or not. Moreover, pesto pasta is heavy, so going for simple dishes will not only be easy to make but keep you feeling light after dinner as well.

Best Side Dishes To Serve With Pesto Pasta

If you want, you can choose any dish that is simple and light as your side for pesto pasta. Although you need to know which flavors will go well with this pasta, as not every flavor will complement it well. Below is the list of some of the side dishes that will go well with pesto pasta. 

Sautéed Mushrooms 

Sautéed Mushrooms

You can create this simple dish by lightly frying some mushrooms in butter with chopped cloves of garlic. You can also use garlic seasoning instead. 

When you cook these garlicky mushrooms, they discharge a fair amount of liquid. The fluids vaporize due to keeping them near high flames. This makes them brown and also helps acquire the taste.

Pea And Mint Pesto On Grilled Baguette

You can make this dish by toasting slices of baguette and then topping them with a handmade pesto prepared with green peas, basil, and mint. 

The pesto is great eaten with toast and as your main dish is pesto pasta, there will be no shock of new flavors. 

Garlic Breadsticks

Making garlic breadsticks is very simple and you can easily make your own at home. If you want to make it from scratch, then you can just brush the pizza dough with butter and put chopped garlic on top.

Then you can cut the dough into pieces, twist it however you like, and bake. If you do not want that much trouble, then you can just put garlic and butter on top of ready-made bread and cut it. 

Crab Artichokes On Toast With Cheese

A sumptuous topping of parmesan and mozzarella cheeses, chunks of fresh crab meat, and artichokes are called for on these delicious toasts. 

You can make this mixture of crab the day before you plan to have dinner. You can compile everything on the toast right before serving it. This side dish will bring a great fusion of flavors in your mouth with the pesto pasta. 

Pesto Caesar Salad 

If you are a pesto fanatic like me, you can’t really get enough of pesto. So, why not have a pesto caesar salad with your pesto pasta. 

It’s super easy to make as well. But, make caesar salad and add some store-bought pesto to the mix. The greens will also balance out the heaviness of the pasta. You will love it. 

Roasted Potatoes

I’m saving my favorite for last. This is not really scientific nor a piece of culinary advice. Just a personal one. I love roasted potatoes with everything. And that includes pesto pasta. 

The crispiness and fried sweetness of the potatoes can go with basically any main course out there in my opinion. So, smear some olive oil on some potatoes, season it, and put it in the oven until they crisp up. It’s that simple. 

Drinks To Serve With Pesto Pasta

You can either drink any cocktail with this dish or even soft drinks. However, wine goes best with pesto pasta. You can pair pesto pasta with a simple Sauvignon Blanc. This is a white wine and due to the mild flavors in this pasta, this wine will be a good combination. 

Apart from this, there are also other wines that go just as well with this meal.

Both white and red wines have various unique flavors, and so you can choose either of them with a pasta meal. Other than that, many other beverages can also uplift your pesto pasta. If you combine sparkling water with lemon, it will augment the gentle and fresh flavors of the pesto pasta. 

You can also combine it with a Paloma cocktail. Grapefruit has a refined sharpness that pairs well with nutty tastes. 

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