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What to Serve with Tortellini? 14 Tasty Side Dishes

If you’ve ever stared down a package of tortellini and wondered what to serve with it, you are definitely not alone.

Paired properly, this versatile ring-shaped pasta can be the star of your meal – but figuring out what side dishes to choose can often feel perplexing.

Whether you’re serving tortellini as an appetizer, main dish, or even dessert (yes—you read that correctly), this guide has something for everyone: 14 recipes and ideas guaranteed to perfectly complement our favorite ring-shaped mushroomy goodness!

Read on for delicious inspiration that will have your guests clamoring for seconds.

What to Serve with Tortellini? 14 Tasty Side Dishes

1. Tomato Basil Soup

Tomato basil soup is a classic for a reason – it’s delicious, comforting, and easy to make.

This soup is packed with flavor thanks to the tomatoes, garlic, and fresh basil.

The addition of cream gives the soup a rich and creamy texture that is absolutely irresistible.

This soup is best served hot with a grilled cheese sandwich or some crusty bread.

For an extra special touch, garnish each bowl with some freshly grated Parmesan cheese and a drizzle of olive oil.

If you’re looking to elevate this dish, try roasting the tomatoes before adding them to the soup.

This will give the soup an even deeper flavor that is absolutely amazing.

You can also add in some other vegetables like carrots or celery for added nutrition and flavor.

2. Alfredo Sauce

A classic creamy pasta sauce, Alfredo is made with butter, cream, and Parmesan cheese.

While it’s delicious as is, there are a few ways you can elevate this dish and make it even more amazing.

First, let’s talk about taste.

Alfredo sauce is rich and creamy, with a slightly nutty flavor from the Parmesan cheese.

The sauce should be smooth and velvety, with no lumps.

If your sauce is too thick, you can thin it out with a little bit of milk.

Now let’s talk about texture.

When done right, Alfredo sauce should have a silky smooth texture.

If your sauce is too runny, you can thicken it up by cooking it for a little longer or adding some grated Parmesan cheese.

  • Add some garlic: A minced clove or two of garlic will add depth of flavor to your sauce. Just be sure not to overcook the garlic, or it will become bitter.
  • Use fresh herbs: A little bit of chopped parsley or basil added at the end will brighten up the flavors of your sauce.
  • Stir in some cooked vegetables: Adding in some sautéed mushrooms, spinach, or sun-dried tomatoes will give your Alfredo an extra boost of flavor and nutrition.

3. Pesto Sauce

One of the best things about pesto sauce is that it is so versatile.

You can use it as a dipping sauce, a spread, or even a marinade.

And because it is so packed with flavor, a little goes a long way.

Pesto sauce is traditionally made with basil, olive oil, Parmesan cheese, pine nuts, and garlic.

But nowadays, you can find all sorts of variations of pesto sauce, made with different herbs and even different nuts.

But no matter what ingredients you use, the key to making a good pesto sauce is to get the right balance of flavors.

The best way to do this is to start by tasting as you go.

Add a little bit of this and a little bit of that until you are happy with the flavor.

The same goes for the texture.

If you want your pesto sauce to be more on the thick side, then add less liquid.

If you want it to be more on the runny side, then add more liquid.

And finally, don’t be afraid to experiment.

Pesto sauce is one of those dishes where you can really let your creativity shine through.

4. Carbonara Sauce

Carbonara sauce is a delicious, creamy sauce that is perfect for pasta dishes.

The sauce is made with eggs, cheese, and bacon, which give it a rich flavor.

The sauce can also be made with pancetta or ham.

The taste of carbonara sauce is rich and savory.

The texture of the sauce is thick and creamy.

The sauce is best when it is made with fresh ingredients.

There are several ways to elevate the dish.

One way is to add vegetables to the pasta dish.

Another way is to use high-quality cheese and bacon.

5. Bolognese Sauce

Bolognese sauce is a classic Italian dish that is usually made with ground beef, tomatoes, and a variety of herbs.

The sauce is typically served with pasta, but it can also be used as a topping for pizzas or as a filling for lasagna.

Bolognese sauce is known for its rich, meaty flavor and thick, hearty texture.

The key to making a good Bolognese sauce is to cook the meat slowly over low heat so that it breaks down and becomes very tender.

This process gives the sauce its deep, complex flavor.

There are a few things you can do to elevate your Bolognese sauce and make it even more delicious.

One way is to add some pancetta or bacon to the sauce.

This will add another layer of flavor to the dish.

Another way is to use higher quality beef.

If you use ground chuck or ground round, the sauce will be even more flavorful.

Finally, you can add a splash of red wine to the sauce while it’s cooking.

This will give it an extra depth of flavor that is really amazing.

6. Garlic Bread

There’s nothing quite like the taste of garlic bread, fresh out of the oven.

The combination of garlic, butter, and bread is simple but oh so delicious.

And it’s the perfect side dish to a bowl of steaming hot pasta or soup.

The key to great garlic bread is the quality of the ingredients.

Use good quality bread, preferably a sourdough or artisan loaf.

The butter should be unsalted, and the garlic should be fresh.

If you can, use a Mortar and Pestle to crush the garlic cloves into a paste.

This will really elevate the flavor of the dish.

To make garlic bread, simply spread the garlic paste (or minced garlic) on top of slices of bread, and then toast in a preheated oven until golden brown and crispy.

7. Caesar Salad

A classic Caesar salad is a delicious and easy way to elevate any meal.

This dish is traditionally made with Romaine lettuce, croutons, Parmesan cheese, and a creamy dressing.

The combination of crisp lettuce, crunchy croutons, and rich dressing make for a salad that is both flavorful and satisfying.

There are a few things you can do to take your Caesar salad to the next level.

First, try using a mix of different lettuce for more flavor and texture.

Arugula or spinach are both great options.

Second, add in some fresh fruit like grapes or berries for sweetness and color.

Third, use homemade croutons for an extra crispy and flavorful bite.

And finally, don’t be afraid to experiment with the dressing.

Add in some smoked paprika or cayenne pepper for a little heat, or swap out the Parmesan cheese for another type of sharp cheese.

8. Caprese Salad

Caprese salad is a classic Italian dish that typically consists of fresh mozzarella, tomatoes, and basil.

This dish is very simple, but the combination of flavors is incredibly delicious.

The key to a good Caprese salad is using high-quality ingredients.

The mozzarella should be nice and creamy, the tomatoes should be ripe and juicy, and the basil should be fresh.

This dish is all about the contrast of flavors and textures.

The smooth mozzarella pairs perfectly with the juicy tomatoes, and the fresh basil adds a nice touch of flavor.

I like to add a bit of balsamic vinegar to my Caprese salad to elevate the flavors even further.

9. Garlic Shrimp

If you’re looking for a delicious and easy seafood dish, look no further than garlic shrimp.

This dish is packed with flavor and only takes a few minutes to cook.

Plus, it’s healthy and relatively low in calories.

The key to making this dish taste great is to use fresh, quality ingredients.

I recommend using wild-caught shrimp that has been peeled and deveined.

You’ll also want to use fresh garlic cloves (not the pre-minced stuff in a jar).

And finally, be sure to use extra virgin olive oil for the best flavor.

In terms of texture, you’ll want to cook the shrimp until they are just barely done.

They should be pink and slightly opaque in the center.

If they are overcooked, they will be tough and rubbery.

So err on the side of undercooking them rather than overcooking them.

There are a few things you can do to elevate this dish and make it even more special.

First, you could add some chopped fresh herbs like parsley or basil.

Another idea is to serve the shrimp over a bed of wilted spinach or other leafy greens.

Finally, if you’re feeling really fancy, you could garnish the dish with a lemon wedge or two.

10. Chicken Parmesan

Chicken parmesan is a classic Italian dish that consists of breaded chicken covered in tomato sauce and cheese.

It’s a simple dish, but it’s packed with flavor.

The chicken is usually fried, but you can also bake it.

And the best part about chicken parmesan is that it’s pretty versatile – you can serve it with just about anything.

As far as taste and texture go, chicken parmesan is pretty rich.

The combination of breading, tomato sauce, and cheese can be a bit too much for some people.

But if you’re looking for a dish that’s packed with flavor, then chicken parmesan is definitely for you.

If you want to elevate your chicken parmesan, there are a few things you can do.

First, try using high-quality ingredients.

This will make a big difference in the overall taste of the dish.

Second, don’t be afraid to experiment with different toppings and sides.

You can really get creative with this dish and make it your own.

11. Meatballs

Meatballs are a classic dish that can be enjoyed in a variety of ways.

They can be simple or complex, small or large, cooked in one pot or many.

But regardless of how they’re made, meatballs are always flavorful and satisfying.

The key to a great meatball is the combination of ground meat and spices.

The best recipes will use a mix of ground beef, pork, and veal for the ultimate flavor and texture.

To elevate the dish, try adding some chopped herbs or grated cheese to the mixture.

For an even heartier meal, serve meatballs over creamy polenta or hearty pasta.

12. Sausage

Sausage is a great addition to any dish – it’s flavorful, filling, and can be made with a variety of different meats.

But what makes sausage so great? Is it the taste? The texture? Let’s take a closer look at what makes sausage such a delicious ingredient.

The taste of sausage comes from the combination of fat, salt, and spices.

Fat provides flavor and helps to keep the sausage moist, while salt enhances all of the other flavors.

The spices used in sausage vary depending on the type of sausage being made, but some common spices include pepper, sage, and fennel.

There are endless ways to enjoy sausage.

It can be grilled, fried, baked, or even eaten raw.

And no matter how you choose to cook it, there are always ways to elevate the dish.

Here are a few tips:

  • Add sausage to your favorite pasta dish for an extra boost of flavor.
  • Get creative with your seasonings – try adding some smoked paprika or cayenne pepper for a spicy kick.
  • Pair sausage with sweet fruits like apples or pears for a unique flavor combination.

13. Roasted Vegetables

One of the best things about roasted vegetables is that they can be customized to suit any taste.

Whether you like them sweet or savory, there’s a way to roast them that will suit your palate.

And because they’re so versatile, they make a great side dish for just about any meal.

When it comes to taste and texture, roasted vegetables are hard to beat.

They’re slightly crispy on the outside and nice and soft on the inside.

The roasting process also brings out their natural sweetness, making them even more delicious.

If you want to elevate your roasted vegetables even further, there are a few things you can do.

First, try roasting them with some fresh herbs.

Rosemary, thyme, and oregano all work well with roasted veggies.

You can also add a bit of crumbled cheese on top for extra flavor.

Finally, consider drizzling them with a simple balsamic vinegar glaze before serving.

14. Pumpkin Ravioli with Sage Butter Sauce

If you’re looking for a delicious and unique twist on traditional ravioli, then you’ve got to try pumpkin ravioli with sage butter sauce.

This dish is absolutely bursting with flavor and the perfect mix of sweet and savory.

The ravioli itself is made with a pumpkin puree filling, and the sage butter sauce is the perfect finishing touch.

As far as taste and texture go, this dish is definitely a winner.

The pumpkin ravioli is nice and tender, and the sage butter sauce is rich and creamy.

It’s the perfect meal for a cozy night.

There are a few things you can do to elevate this dish even further.

First, try using homemade ravioli dough if you can.

It makes a big difference.

Second, don’t be afraid to experiment with different types of cheese in the filling.

A sharp cheddar would be amazing in this dish.

And finally, if you’re feeling extra adventurous, try adding some chopped bacon to the sage butter sauce.

It’ll take this dish over the top.


There you have it, 14 of the best side dishes to serve with tortellini.

I hope this blog post has given you some inspiration on what to make for your next meal.

If you have any questions or comments, please leave them below.

And don’t forget to share this post with your friends and family.

What to Serve with Tortellini? 14 Tasty Side Dishes

5 from 1 vote
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Course Sides
Servings 4 Servings


  • 1. Tomato Basil Soup
  • 2. Alfredo Sauce
  • 3. Pesto Sauce
  • 4. Carbonara Sauce
  • 5. Bolognese Sauce
  • 6. Garlic Bread
  • 7. Caesar Salad
  • 8. Caprese Salad
  • 9. Garlic Shrimp
  • 10. Chicken Parmesan
  • 11. Meatballs
  • 12. Sausage
  • 13. Roasted Vegetables
  • 14. Pumpkin Ravioli with Sage Butter Sauce


  • Select your favorite sides from the list above.
  • Prepare the side dish according to the recipe instructions.
  • If you’re short on time, some of these can be made ahead of time and reheated before serving.
  • Serve and enjoy!
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