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What to Serve with Mussels and Pasta: 10 Best Sides

Mussels and Pasta is a simple dish that works great when you’re having a dinner party with friends and family.

What to Serve with Mussels and Pasta

With its tangy, garlicky broth that melts into the pasta and clams to create a rich and flavorful meal, Mussels and Pasta is my go-to dish if I’m in the mood for something light, but still filling.

The other great thing about Mussels and Pasta is that you really don’t need to serve anything else with it.

But if you feel like it, there are many different side dishes which pair very nicely with this relatively inexpensive, yet oh-so delicious meal.

Here are some tasty side dishes that also work well with your delicious plate of Mussels and Pasta.

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What to Serve with Mussels and Pasta: 10 Best Sides

Mussels and Pasta Side Dishes

If you are looking for side dishes to serve with mussels and pasta, you want something that is going to complement the mussels and work with your pasta.

You want to serve something that is filling, but not too filling and something that will go well with the flavors of your main dish.

Here are a few ideas for side dishes you can serve with mussels and pasta.

1. Garlic Bread

Garlic bread is a classic, delicious side dish that goes great with all types of Italian dishes, including mussels and pasta.

All you need to make garlic bread are two loaves of crusty French bread, butter, fresh parsley, garlic powder, and parmesan cheese.

Cut the loaves in half long-ways and mix together the butter, parsley, garlic powder, and parmesan cheese. Spread the mixture over the bread and grill for 5 minutes or until crispy.

2. Salad

A salad is a great option as a side dish when serving mussels and pasta. It’s also one of the most popular side dishes to serve when having this particular meal.

Green salads are best, but if you like tuna or chicken salad, these can be options. You can add whatever you like to your salad or keep it simple and just use lettuce, tomatoes, mayonnaise and salt and pepper.

3. French Fries

French fries are an easy side dish to prepare. You can make them in the oven using frozen fries or fresh ones. If you have time, fresh fries are better because they taste better than frozen ones.

However, both are good so it’s up to you which one works best for you. Seasoning your fries with salt, pepper and garlic powder makes them even more tasty!

4. Corn on the Cob (Grilled is my favorite!)

Corn on the cob is a great side dish to serve with mussels and pasta.

The mussels and pasta are very light in flavor so you want to serve them with a side dish that has lots of flavor.

Corn on the cob is very sweet and juicy and it goes perfectly with mussels and pasta. I also like to serve cornbread along with this dish because it really adds a lot of flavor.

You can grill your corn on the cob or bake it in the oven. I usually just throw it in my grill for about 15 minutes while I am cooking the rest of my meal. It takes little time to prepare and is always delicious!

5. Grilled Zucchini

Grilled zucchini, especially if it’s finished with a little olive oil, lemon, and Parmesan cheese, is the perfect side for mussels and pasta.

It’s just light enough to balance the rich flavors of the mussels, but still has enough substance to stand up to the pasta.

6. Steamed Vegetables

Steamed vegetables are a simple way to add a healthy side dish to any meal.

Fresh or frozen, steaming cooks the vegetables quickly, while retaining the most nutrients.

If you have time and the inclination, you can even grow your own vegetables to steam.

7. Garlic Mashed Potatoes

If you’re making the mussels, you might as well make a batch of garlic mashed potatoes, too.

They go great with the mussels and pasta, and I happen to love them together.

8. Coleslaw

Coleslaw is a great side dish to serve with mussels. Create your own slaw, or buy a bag of shredded coleslaw mix to save time.

Either way, you’ll have a fresh and delicious side dish in less than 15 minutes.

You can make coleslaw as simple or as complicated as you’d like. I prefer to keep it simple and just use cabbage, carrots, lime juice, and cilantro.

But feel free to add other vegetables such as celery, bell peppers, jalapeno peppers, cucumber, or radishes.

You can also add a bit of shredded cheese or chopped nuts for flavor and texture.

9. Baked beans

Baked beans are a great side dish with mussels and pasta, because they’re a great side dish with anything.

The tiny beans are cooked in a sweet-and-tangy tomato sauce, which is thick enough to keep their shape perfectly. If you like your beans to be on the saucy side, just add a little more tomato sauce.

And if you can’t find cannellini or white kidney beans, you can also make this recipe using navy beans, which I think work well too.

10. Stuffed Peppers

Stuffed peppers are a perfect side dish to serve with mussels and pasta. They come in many different varieties and can be stuffed with any combination of rice, meat, cheese, vegetables, or grains.

For a delicious vegetarian option, try stuffing the peppers with a vegetable medley and a cheese blend.

Or if you’re in the mood for something heartier, fill them with ground beef or sausage.

4 Tips For Serving Side Dishes With Mussels and Pasta

Tips For Serving Side Dishes With Mussels and Pasta

1. Presentation

The first thing to consider when serving side dishes with mussels and pasta is presentation.

A side dish may be great, but if it is not presented well, it can easily become unappealing.

For example, if you are serving a hot dish of mussels and pasta on a hot summer day, it may be helpful to serve a cold side dish instead to help balance out the meal.

2. Keep It Simple

Side dishes with mussels and pasta don’t have to be complicated. In fact, I think it’s best to keep them simple so the flavors of the side dish don’t overpower that of the main course.

Creamy salads, roasted vegetables and simple seafood recipes are just what you need to make your meal complete.

Adding some fresh fruit or vegetables is a great idea if you want to serve side dishes with mussels and pasta. For example, this Grilled Zucchini Salad with Feta Cheese recipe is perfect for the warm weather; it’s light, healthy and delicious!

3. Pairing

Pairing your side dish with the main course is also important. You want to make sure the flavors from both components complement each other rather than compete for attention.

For example, if you are serving mussels and pasta in tomato sauce, you might want to avoid serving green beans or even asparagus as your side because they would clash with the tomato flavor of the sauce.

4. Portion Size

Don’t forget about portion size when serving sides for mussels and pasta! If your main course has large portions, then you don’t want your side dishes competing with them by being too filling or heavy either.

What to Serve with Mussels and Pasta

What to Serve with Mussels and Pasta: 10 Best Sides

Mussels are one of the easiest dishes you can cook. They're also very versatile and taste great with just about any pasta dish.
The trick is to make sure that you have a good side dish that's going to go well with your mussels and pasta.
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 15 minutes
Course Side Dish
Cuisine Italian
Servings 4 people
Calories 350 kcal


  • Garlic Bread
  • Salad
  • French Fries
  • Corn on the Cob
  • Grilled Zucchini
  • Steamed Vegetables
  • Garlic Mashed Potatoes
  • Coleslaw
  • Baked beans
  • Stuffed Peppers


  • Choose any of these easy sides to serve with your meal.
  • Prepare the ingredients according to the recipe.
  • Enjoy your meal in no time!
Keyword Mussels and Pasta Side Dishes, Mussels and Pasta Sides, What to Serve with Mussels and Pasta
Benjamin Happy Muncher

Hi, I'm Benjamin. I love cooking, long walks, and my girlfriend! Here you’ll find simple and delicious recipes that you can make in 30 minutes or less.