Rich, creamy, buttery, and straight-up irresistible – who can say no to a luxurious plate of fettuccine Alfredo? Not us, that’s for sure.
So, now we know what’s for dinner. But dinner was never made from a single dish alone.
We need sides. We need accompaniments.
It’s time to turn our attention to the question of what to serve with fettuccine Alfredo.
So many options!
Alfredo sauce has a rich and satisfying mouthfeel that just screams for brighter and lighter flavors and contrasting textures.
Crisp vegetables and crunchy textures like bread, and smoky flavors from the grill or roasting pan are all great places to start.
We’re practically overflowing with ideas, so let’s get started, shall we?
1. Grilled Shrimp
When it comes to what goes with Alfredo, grilled shellfish is a longtime favorite. And despite its diminutive size, shrimp is still the king of shellfish.
Shrimp’s sweet flavor and snappy texture – with hints of smoke from the grill – balance out the Alfredo’s creaminess in an amazing way.
Spice that shrimp up with Cajun seasoning or simple salt, pepper, olive oil and a little basil. Whichever way you go, you’ll have no regrets pairing your Alfredo with this wonder of the sea.
2. Grilled or Blackened Chicken
Grilled to perfection or spicy and blackened in your cast iron pan, either way, there’s no arguing with the killer contrasts of sliced chicken resting atop a bed of creamy Alfredo pasta.
Of course, this raises another important question: What to serve with chicken Alfredo?
The answer is often really similar to choosing sides for the classic dish. Almost any of the following choices will work beautifully. So, read on, my friend. Read on.
3 . Garlic Bread
For starters, an herby garlic bread is one of our favorite Chicken Alfredo sides.
That buttery crunch. Those herbs. That bite of garlic.
It all plays perfectly off the velvety sauce and smokey chicken.
All those contrasts. The textures. The flavors. And the bread’s amazing ability to sop up that delectable sauce. Classic combinations are classic combinations for a reason.
Speaking of crunchy bread, why stop at a simple garlic bread when a cutting board full of bruschetta offers so many other flavors?
Pile that grilled bread high with roasted vegetables, a tapenade, sliced meats, or just charred tomatoes, herbs and a drizzle of balsamic vinegar. You just entered side dish heaven.
So many possibilities. Use your imagination and just think fresh and light with a bit of acidity.
Your fettuccine Alfredo will thank you.
5. Seasoned Broccoli
And since we mentioned “fresh and light” don’t forget the veggies when choosing what to serve with fettuccine Alfredo.
The mild, slightly bitter flavor and crisp texture off broccoli balances the meal beautifully. We lean into the deep flavors that a light roasting or grilling in olive oil can bring to broccoli florets.
But simple steamed broccoli can be just as nice.
Alfredo is a forgiving mistress, especially when there’s broccoli involved.
6. Green Salad
Don’t let all those carnivores fool you, a simple tossed salad might seem like an afterthought or an empty obligation. But it is, and always has been, so much more than that.
The humble side salad brightens the palate and awakens the senses, especially when served with a thick and rich Alfredo sauce.
The lightness of spring greens with a few slices of tomato and onions, all misted in a gentle lemon vinaigrette is the perfect foil to that creamy, parmesan pasta. Your Alfredo will beg for more.
7. Grilled Asparagus
With its distinct, vegetal taste asparagus responds beautifully to roasting and grilling. Add a little squeeze of lemon and a few grinds of fresh black pepper, and you just stumbled upon fettuccine Alfredo’s long-lost love.
The romance is undeniable.
Actually, this is where the phrase “they go together like asparagus and Alfredo” comes from. You’ve never heard that one? Hmmm. Maybe that’s just us.
8. Kale Salad
Once again, keeping things simple and letting fresh ingredients shine is one of the best ways to complement all that comforting Alfredo savoriness.
Leafy, curly kale massaged with lemon juice, olive oil, and salt transforms into a tender, soft green salad.
And finished with a little freshly shredded parmesan or a handful of toasted pine nuts, it pairs magically with Alfredo. The mild acidity and cuts through the richness like a charm.
9. Herbed Tomato Salad
The juicy sweetness and bright acidity of an herby tomato salad brings a bowl of parmesan coated noodles alive.
And like the Alfredo itself, it comes together quickly, so you can spend more time reveling in all the flavor, instead of sitting around craving it.
Deborah over at Taste and Tell has a great recipe.
10. Green Beans
Quick and simple without skimping on flavor is what green beans are all about.
Toss them in a sauté pan with a little olive oil, salt, and red pepper flakes, or roast them with slivered shallots. Or steam them until just crisp tender and finish with a fresh basil pesto.
Whatever preparation you choose, the sweet, mild crunch of green beans is just the thing to round out that creamy Alfredo pasta.
Another incredibly versatile vegetable that brings out the best in fettuccine Alfredo is spinach.
Sauteed spinach works fine, but even better would be a simple spinach salad topped with a warm vinaigrette and crispy, crumbled bacon.
The saltiness of bacon and the brightness from the dressing both accentuate and balance out the richness of the parmesan and butter sauce.
It just goes to show you, it only takes a few notes to make a symphony.
12. Roasted Sugar Snap Peas
Oh, that sweetness and the delightful crunchy “snap”.
“Sugar snap” really is the perfect description for these unassuming bundles of flavor.
And when you roast these peas gently with a touch of seasoning and a drizzle of oil, that snappy sweetness – with a kiss of charred smokiness – will magnify the rich goodness of your Alfredo sauce in the just the right way.
You can take this combo to the bank.
13. Antipasti Bites
Sometimes just a small bite – or two – is the perfect amount.
And these morsels are slightly salty and meaty but still fresh and herby – such a great contrast to cleanse your palette between forkfuls of fettuccine.
Corey over at Family Fresh Meals has the perfect recipe to complement the classic Italian pasta dish.
14. Mixed Vegetable Sauté
As you might have discerned by now, Alfredo sauce opens its arms to the freshness of a variety of vegetables. So, why not give it a whole variety of vegetables to wrap those loving arms around?
That’s right, pull out that sauté pan and mix up a medley of veggies.
Broccolini, carrots, onions, zucchini slices, and tomatoes are a great start, but don’t be afraid to use your imagination. Alfredo has a big heart.
15. Arugula Salad with Shaved Parm
When pairing side dishes with fettuccine Alfredo, it’s a good idea to avoid too much cheese. Cheese plays such a prominent role in Alfredo that it can be overkill to feature it in your side too.
But used judiciously in a lighter dish it can build the perfect bridge between contrasting flavors.
Enter a delightfully peppery arugula salad topped with a little bit of freshly shaved parmesan. Your bowl of pasta just transformed into an elegant and complete dinner. Enjoy!
What to serve with Fettuccine Alfredo
- Grilled Shrimp
- Blackened Chicken
- Garlic Bread
- Roasted Sugar Snap Peas
- Antipasti Bites
- Grilled Asparagus
- Kale Salad
- Tomato Salad
- Green Beans
- Green Salad
- Vegetable Sauté
- Arugula Salad
- Choose your desired Fettuccine Alfredo side dish recipe.
- Gather and organize needed ingredients.
- Create a tasty Fettuccine Alfredo side to complete your meal!