What To Serve With Pizza?

Pizza is one of the most popular dishes around the world partly because of its versatility and ease of preparation. However, serving pizza alone does not always make for a complete and satisfying meal. 

Many people enjoy pairing their pizza with additional items to complement the flavors and provide nutritional balance. Therefore, the question of what to serve with pizza is an important one. 

This blog post will explore some tasty options that go well with various types of pizza. From salads to drinks to tasty sides, we will discuss ideas to consider serving alongside slices or whole pies to fully satisfy hungry diners.

Overview Of Pizza

Pizza, a culinary delight that originated in Italy, has gained immense popularity worldwide. This savory dish is traditionally round, topped with tomato sauce, cheese, and a variety of other ingredients such as meats, vegetables, or fruits, baked at a high temperature.

It’s renowned for its versatility with countless variants inspired by different cultures, fitting into an array of dietary preferences.

Whether it’s a quick snack, a meal with friends, or comfort food, pizza has secured its place in the global gastronomy scene.

What To Serve With Pizza?

Eating just pizza is maybe boring, isn’t it? Even eating just pizza is really fun; however, if you add some other sides to serve with, your pizza meal will be more delicious. 

Here are some suggestions for pizza side dishes to help increase the flavor and variety of your meal.

Vegetable Sides

1. Roasted Vegetables: A medley of oven-roasted veggies, such as bell peppers, zucchinis, and carrots, seasoned with your favorite herbs, make a healthy and flavorful side dish. They not only add a burst of color to your meal but also a contrasting texture to your pizza.

2. Steamed Broccoli: Lightly steamed broccoli, seasoned with a pinch of salt and pepper, is an excellent choice if you’re looking for a low-calorie side dish. Its mild flavor and crunch provide a nice balance to the richness of the pizza.

3. Grilled Asparagus: Tender yet crisp grilled asparagus can be a delightful accompaniment to pizza. A simple drizzle of olive oil, garlic, and a squeeze of lemon juice can elevate this side dish’s flavor profile.

4. Garlic Roasted Mushrooms: Juicy, garlic-roasted mushrooms are a perfect side dish. Their umami flavor complements pizza wonderfully and, if you’re a mushroom lover, you might even want to toss a few onto your pizza slice!


5. Caprese Salad: This classic Italian salad with ripe tomatoes, fresh mozzarella, basil, and a drizzle of balsamic glaze is a refreshing counterpart to any pizza. The juicy tomatoes and creamy mozzarella are a taste of Italy in every bite.

6. Caesar Salad: Crisp romaine lettuce, crunchy croutons, and a tangy Caesar dressing can cleanse the palate between slices of pizza. You might even sprinkle a bit of Parmesan on top for an extra cheesy touch.

7. Greek Salad: If you’re craving something tangy and flavorful, a Greek salad filled with cucumbers, feta cheese, olives, tomatoes, and a tangy vinaigrette could be a great choice. Its robust flavors can stand up well to a hearty pizza.

8. Arugula Salad: An arugula salad, perhaps with some cherry tomatoes, parmesan shavings, and a lemon vinaigrette, offers a peppery crunch that contrasts nicely with pizza’s rich and cheesy goodness. Plus, it’s a great way to sneak in some leafy greens!

Finger Foods

9. Garlic Bread: Nothing pairs with pizza quite as well as garlic bread. The warm, crispy exterior and soft, garlic-butter-infused interior complement the pizza’s flavors perfectly. It’s great for dipping in extra sauce, too!

10. Mozzarella Sticks: If you have a soft spot for cheese, then mozzarella sticks could be the ideal side for you. These deep-fried or oven-baked cheese delights, served with marinara dip, double down on the cheesy goodness that characterizes a great pizza.

11. Chicken Wings: For those who enjoy a meatier side dish, chicken wings are a fantastic choice. Whether you prefer them spicy, tangy, or sweet, wings add a different texture and protein punch to your pizza meal.

12. Bruschetta: A lighter alternative, bruschetta consists of grilled bread rubbed with garlic and topped with diced tomatoes, fresh basil, and sometimes mozzarella. The fresh and vibrant flavors of bruschetta provide a refreshing counterpoint to a rich and hearty pizza.

Dips and Sauces

13. Marinara Sauce: A classic Italian tomato-based sauce, marinara can be served alongside your pizza as a dipping sauce. It’s particularly enjoyable with cheesy pizza crusts or breadsticks.

14. Ranch Dressing: With its creamy texture and tangy flavor, ranch dressing makes for a delightful dip. It’s especially well-suited to spicy or meaty pizzas, as it can provide a cooling counterpoint to the heat.

15. Pesto Sauce: Pesto, a sauce made from basil, garlic, pine nuts, parmesan, and olive oil, is an aromatic option for those seeking something different. Dip your pizza in some pesto for a fresh, herbal kick that elevates your pizza experience.

16. Buffalo Sauce: For those who enjoy a bit of heat, buffalo sauce brings a spicy, tangy twist to your meal. It pairs exceptionally well with chicken-topped pizzas or chicken wings, but feel free to experiment!

Sides For Common Pizza Styles

Besides some of the most common sides suitable to serve with pizza, we also mention some of the most popular side dish recommendations that complement each pizza type well.

Cheese Pizza

Cheese pizza, with its simple yet delicious combination of crust, sauce, and cheese, pairs well with a variety of sides. Here are some suggestions:

1. Garlic Knots: Soft dough knots brushed with garlic butter can take your cheese pizza to the next level.

2. Breadsticks: These long and thin breadsticks with their crispy exterior and soft interior are a classic side dish for any pizza.

3. Caesar Salad: With its tangy dressing and crunchy croutons, Caesar salad offers a nice contrast to the rich cheese flavor of your pizza.

Pepperoni Pizza

Pepperoni pizza, with its spicy kick and savory flavors, can be complemented by the following sides:

4. Jalapeno Poppers: If you’re a fan of spicy food, try pairing your pepperoni pizza with some jalapeno poppers filled with cream cheese.

5. Mac and Cheese Bites: These small bites of mac and cheese, often coated in breadcrumbs for crunch, can make for a fun and tasty side dish to enjoy with your pizza.

6. French Fries: For those who crave something salty, a side of crispy French fries could be the perfect match for your pepperoni pizza.

Mushroom Pizza

Mushroom pizza, with its earthy and umami flavors, lends itself well to the following sides:

7. Garlic Roasted Mushrooms: If you just can’t get enough of mushrooms, try doubling down by serving some garlic-roasted mushrooms as a side dish.

8. Spinach Salad: A fresh spinach salad with some sliced mushrooms and a tangy vinaigrette can provide a refreshing and light option for a mushroom pizza.

9. Cheese Plate: For a more elegant affair, consider pairing your mushroom pizza with a cheese plate featuring some creamy and mild cheeses like brie or goat cheese. The combination of flavors is sure to be a hit.

Sausage Pizza

Sausage pizza, with its hearty and savory flavors, can be complemented by the following sides:

10. Garlic Bread: The classic side dish for pizza also pairs well with sausage pizza. Its crispy exterior and garlic-infused interior are a match made in heaven.

11. Potato Wedges: For something a bit heartier, consider serving some potato wedges alongside your sausage pizza. These can be topped with cheese, bacon, or other toppings for added flavor.

12. Italian Wedding Soup: If you’re looking to add some greens to your meal, try a warm and comforting bowl of Italian wedding soup on the side. Its robust flavors complement the sausage in your pizza nicely.

How Do Sides Enhance The Pizza Eating Experience?

After knowing what to serve with pizza,  you may be wondering why sides are even necessary. After all, pizza is already a delicious and complete meal on its own. However, adding sides to your pizza experience can provide several benefits.

Firstly, sides can provide a contrasting flavor or texture to the pizza, enhancing your overall dining pleasure. For instance, the crisp freshness of a salad or the creamy richness of a dip can elevate the taste of the pizza.

Secondly, sides can help cater to different dietary requirements or preferences. Say, a vegetarian friend can enjoy some bruschetta and salad while others tuck into their pepperoni pizza.

Lastly, sides add variety to your meal, offering something different to taste and making the meal more exciting. So next time you’re planning a pizza night, consider adding a few side dishes to the menu.

Whether you’re eating alone, with friends, or throwing a party, the right combination of pizza and sides can make for a delightful culinary experience.

What Factors Should Be Considered When Choosing Sides?

So, are there any factors you need to consider when deciding on slides served with pizza? Actually, your pizza meal will become more delicious and wonderful when you pay attention to the factors mentioned below:

1. Flavor Pairings: Think about the flavors in your chosen pizza and how the side dish could complement or contrast them effectively. For example, if you have a spicy pizza, a cooling dip like ranch dressing or tzatziki sauce would be a great pairing

2. Textures: Consider the texture of your pizza and choose sides that will provide a different mouthfeel. For instance, a soft and chewy pizza crust would pair well with something crispy like garlic knots or French fries.

3. Dietary Restrictions: Be mindful of any dietary restrictions or preferences among your guests, and make sure there are options for everyone to enjoy.

4. Variety: Don’t be afraid to mix it up and offer a variety of sides to cater to different tastes and preferences. This can make for a more enjoyable dining experience for everyone.

5. Seasonal Ingredients: Consider using seasonal ingredients in your side dishes to add freshness and variety to the meal. For example, summer salads with fresh berries or fall soups with roasted vegetables can be excellent accompaniments to your pizza.

What Beverages Pair Well With Different Types Of Pizzas?

To discover what to serve with pizza, we mention not only side foods but also drinks.

If you’re enjoying a rich, cheesy pizza, consider a classic Italian soda or a refreshing beer. The carbonation can help cut through the richness and cleanse your palate.

For spicier pizzas like pepperoni or jalapeno, a sweet iced tea or a fruity cocktail can provide a satisfying counterbalance to the heat.

Wine lovers aren’t left out either – a robust red wine such as a Merlot or Cabernet Sauvignon pairs well with meaty pizzas, while a crisp white wine like Chardonnay or Pinot Grigio complements seafood or vegetarian pizzas.

Finally, don’t forget about non-alcoholic options like fresh lemonade or a chilled fruit smoothie, which could add a refreshing twist to your pizza meal. Remember, the best pairing is one that you personally enjoy!


In conclusion, when it comes to deciding what to serve with pizza, the choices are many and varied. 

From crispy garlic bread to delectable dips to comforting soups, the sides can enhance the pizza-eating experience and cater to a range of dietary preferences and palates. It’s all about finding the right balance of flavors, textures, and ingredients that complement your pizza. 

So whether you’re hosting a pizza party or simply enjoying a quiet dinner at home, remember to include a few side dishes and beverages to make your meal even more enjoyable.

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