What to Serve with Penne alla Vodka – 9 Yummy Dishes

When it comes to side dishes, my wife is a bit of a novice. In fact, she often relies on me to help her choose the right side dish to complement his meal. I, on the other hand, am an expert in this area. I know which side dishes will accentuate the main course perfectly and bring out all the flavors.

So recently, my wife and I were looking for a new way to enjoy our favorite pasta dish- Penne Alla Vodka. This slightly boozy pasta treat is a delicious dish that can be enjoyed with a variety of side dishes. Hence, we decided to mix things up by trying out some different sides.

Believe me, finding the perfect side dish is a big game changer, and if you’re looking for the perfect one to serve with your penne ala vodka, look no further! I’ve compiled a list of my favorite side dishes that are sure to please.

Each side dish has been carefully selected to complement the flavors in the pasta dish. We will also offer tips on how to best prepare each dish and give examples of recipes that you can use. Let’s get started!

What to Serve with Penne alla Vodka

  1. Quinoa With Roasted Vegetables
  2. Kale Caesar Salad
  3. Cauliflower Mac’ n’ Cheese
  4. Easy Spicy Garlic Green Beans
  5. Oven-Baked Parmesan Zucchini
  6. Bean Soup with Pesto
  7. Sauteed Spinach with Garlic
  8. Roasted Cauliflower Rice
  9. Quinoa With Roasted Vegetables

Kale Caesar Salad

First up on our list is the quintessential Kale Caesar salad. This dish is a classic for a reason- it’s delicious! The crisp lettuce, zesty dressing, and crunchy croutons are the perfect addition to any meal.

Likewise, this highly nutritious salad complements the flavors of the penne alla vodka. The acidity in the dressing helps to balance out the richness of the dish. Plus, the kale provides a nice contrast in texture.

And, the best part is it’s super easy to make!

Just chop up some kale, and romaine lettuce then add your favorite dressing, and voila! You’ve got a healthy and delicious side dish to serve alongside your penna alla vodka.

Cauliflower Mac’ n’ Cheese

This next side dish is for all the cheese lovers out there. Cauliflower mac ‘n’ cheese is a delicious and creamy alternative to traditional macaroni and cheese.

It’s also a great way to sneak in some extra veggies!

The cauliflower adds a lovely sweetness to the dish that is perfectly offset by the sharp cheddar cheese. This side dish is rich and decadent, making it the perfect pairing for our penne alla vodka.

Plus, it’s super easy to make! Simply cook the mac ‘n’ cheese as usual but use cauliflower in place of the pasta. I know it’s not actually a pasta dish, but trust me, it’s delicious and satisfying. This creamy, cheesy, comforting dish will make a great accompaniment to its pasta counterpart.

Easy Spicy Garlic Green Beans

Following the cheesy explosion, we have easy spicy garlic green beans. This dish is a flavorful and healthy addition to any meal. Plus it is a perfect pairing for our penne alla vodka because it brings out the natural sweetness of the tomatoes in the sauce.

The beans are crispy, flavorful, and have just the right amount of heat.

And, it’s so simple to make!

Though, I must note that the key to this dish is to not overcook the green beans. You want them to be tender but still have a little bite. Otherwise, they will end up being too mushy.

To avoid this, simply saute the green beans in a garlic and olive oil sauce until they are tender then season with crushed red pepper flakes. That’s it! This simple but delicious side dish is sure to please.

Oven-Baked Parmesan Zucchini

You know what they say, “the best offense is a good defense.” Well, in the kitchen, the best defense against overcooking your pasta is serving it with a delicious side dish.

My personal favorite?

Oven-baked Parmesan zucchini. Not only does it add a pop of color to your plate, but it’s another great way to sneak in some extra veggies. Plus, the cheesy goodness pairs perfectly with a creamy pasta dish like penne alla vodka.

So how do you make this delectable side dish?

First, preheat your oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit. Then, cut your zucchini into thin slices and toss with olive oil and Parmesan cheese. Spread the zucchini out on a baking sheet and bake for 15-20 minutes, or until golden brown.

Voila! You’ve got yourself a delicious and healthy side dish that will have your guests coming back for seconds.

Bean Soup with Pesto

Yum, yum, yum! I am so excited to share this recipe for bean soup with pesto with all of you. This delicious soup is the perfect side dish for penne alla vodka.

The pesto adds a nice touch of flavor to the soup and goes well with the penne alla vodka. Not only does it add a rustic Italian flavor to the dish, but it also helps to round out the meal and make it more filling.

In addition, preparation is a breeze! Just throw all of the ingredients in a pot and let it simmer for a few minutes.

I like to garnish my bean soup with pesto and with a little bit of Parmesan cheese then serve it alongside some crusty bread. Delicious! This bean soup with pesto is also great as a main course or as a starter soup.

So versatile! I hope you enjoy it as much as my family and I do.

Sauteed Spinach with Garlic

Next up is another awesome side dish and to be frank, you can never go wrong with a big ol’ side of sauteed spinach. And when you throw some garlic in there, you might as well just call it a day.

This stuff is delicious, and it goes so well with penne alla vodka. I mean, what doesn’t garlic make better?

But seriously, the reason this dish works so well as a side is because it’s light and fresh, but still has a little bit of heft to it. The pasta can be pretty heavy, so you need something that will cut through all that creaminess.

While the acidity of the tomato sauce does that to an extent, the spinach really takes it to the next level. Plus, it’s just so darn good for you.

So go ahead and pile it on, your body will thank you later.

Roasted Cauliflower Rice

Y’all, I’m here to tell you about the most delicious side dish you’ll ever eat in your life (or perhaps close to it). It’s called roasted cauliflower rice, and it goes perfectly with penne alla vodka.

I mean, what could be better than a creamy pasta dish paired with a light and fluffy side of cauliflower rice? And my favorite part is, how easy it is to make!

To prepare cauliflower rice, simply grate one head of cauliflower using a cheese grater or food processor then, add some olive oil, garlic, and salt to the mix. Afterward, roast on a baking sheet in the oven until they’re nice and crispy, about 15 minutes will do.

That’s it! I promise you’ll be hooked after just one bite.

You can also use this delicious side dish for chicken, fish, or vegetables.

Quinoa With Roasted Vegetables

Lastly, we have Quinoa With Roasted Vegetables and in my opinion, it is an excellent side dish for Penne alla Vodka. The quinoa provides a nutty flavor and a chewy texture, while the roasted vegetables add a touch of sweetness and a beautiful colorful presentation.

Did I mention it’s super healthy, and we can’t go wrong with that?

Now, let me tell you how to make this delicious side dish. First, you’ll need to gather up some quinoa, your favorite vegetables ( I like to use zucchini, yellow squash, red pepper, and eggplant), and a little olive oil. Preheat your oven to 400 degrees and start roasting those veggies.

While they’re roasting, cook your quinoa according to the package directions. Once everything is cooked, just mix it all together, and Buon appetito! You’ve got yourself a tasty and healthy side dish. Now go enjoy that Penne alla Vodka!

Additionally, this dish can also be enjoyed as a main course or as a vegetarian entrée.


What goes well with pasta?

There are many things that go well with pasta, but some of our favorites include breadsticks, garlic bread, a green salad, and roasted vegetables.

What is a good side dish for penne alla vodka?

Some good side dishes for penne alla vodka include sauteed spinach with garlic, roasted cauliflower rice, and quinoa with roasted vegetables.

What can I do with leftovers?

If you have any leftovers, they can be stored in an airtight container in the fridge for up to four days. reheat them until piping hot before serving. Enjoy!

What is a good side dish for pasta Alfredo?

A good side dish for pasta Alfredo is garlic bread. It helps soak up all that delicious sauce!

In Conclusion

These are just a few of our favorite side dishes to serve with penne alla vodka. We hope you found this guide helpful, and we encourage you to experiment with different recipes to find what you like best.

So whether you’re looking for something healthy, or something to satisfy your carb cravings, we hope you’ll give one of these dishes a try.

Thanks for reading!

What to Serve with Penne alla Vodka – 9 Yummy Dishes

Here are 9 tasty sides to complement your main dish.
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 25 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Course Main Course
Cuisine Italian
Servings 4
Calories 390 kcal


  • Quinoa With Roasted Vegetables
  • Kale Caesar Salad
  • Cauliflower Mac’ n’ Cheese
  • Easy Spicy Garlic Green Beans
  • Oven-Baked Parmesan Zucchini
  • Bean Soup with Pesto
  • Sauteed Spinach with Garlic
  • Roasted Cauliflower Rice
  • Quinoa With Roasted Vegetables


  • Choose your preferred side dish recipe to serve with Penne alla Vodka
  • Prepare the ingredients needed to complete the recipe
  • Prepare your side dish
  • Enjoy
Keyword Penne alla Vodka