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What to Serve with Stuffed Shells: 23 Best Side Dishes

My family and I can’t resist stuffed shells. It’s one of those dinners that is so delicious and yet so quick and easy to prepare.

So let’s face it: We’re going to be making this meal pretty often.

What to Serve with Stuffed Shells

That said, it’s important to make sure that you have a tasty side dish with all those delicious stuffed shells.

Here are 23 of the best side dishes to serve with stuffed shells.

What to Serve with Stuffed Shells: 23 Side Dishes

Any of these 23 side dishes will work great to accompany the stuffed pasta shells.

Related Post: 34 Best Manicotti Recipes

And any one of them will pair nicely with just about any other main dish, too.

Here are 23 side dishes that go great with stuffed shells:

1. Green Beans

green beans

I can’t remember a meal in my entire life that doesn’t include a side of green beans.

Okay, I’m kidding…

Related: what to do with canned green beans

But seriously, green beans go great with just about any meal. They’re easy to prepare and they add a nice bit of color to the table.

Also, these tasty veggies go great with stuffed shells.

2. Broccoli Alfredo

Broccoli Alfredo

Now, I know what you’re thinking: Alfredo sauce? On broccoli?

Yes, that’s right. Broccoli and alfredo sauce taste great together, and there’s a really good reason for that.

The cheese in the Alfredo sauce actually makes the broccoli taste less bitter.

Plus, the sauce itself has a really nice flavor of its own.

3. Garlic Bread

garlic bread

Italians love to serve garlic bread with their pasta, and for good reason.

This tasty side dish is quick and easy to prepare, but it really amps up the flavor of your stuffed shells.

4. Steamed Rice

Steamed Rice

Rice is a classic side dish for an Italian entrée—especially if you’re serving spaghetti and meatballs.

Again, adding a starch to your meal is an easy way to bump up the flavor of your entree.

5. Roasted Asparagus

Roasted Asparagus

Okay, so this is a bit of an unconventional side dish… But roasted asparagus tastes great with stuffed shells.

And it’s quick and easy to prepare, too.

6. Bruschetta


Bruschetta is an Italian toast with a tomato topping.

See Also: 11 Best Tomatoes for Bruschetta

It’s really tasty and easy to prepare: You just toast some bread, add the tomatoes and basil, and then drizzle it with olive oil and balsamic vinegar.

7. Roasted Root Vegetables

Roasted Root Vegetables

Adding roasted root vegetables to your pasta dish is a great way to experiment with new flavors in your cooking.

And these veggies are really easy to prepare… All you need is some carrots, potatoes, onions, and squash.

8. Baked Potatoes

Baked Potatoes

You can’t go wrong with baked potatoes as a side dish for stuffed shells.

Just bake the potatoes in the oven, puncture them with a fork, and then add your favorite toppings.

9. Garlic Knots

Garlic Knots

Mmm, garlic knots! These tasty breadsticks are really easy to prepare at home.

All you gotta do is separate the bread dough into sections, twist them in rope form, and then bake them in the oven with some butter.

Garlic knots go great with just about any Italian meal, and they’re really delicious dipped in marinara sauce.

10. Dinner Rolls

Dinner Rolls

Okay, so bread and pasta might seem like a weird combination… But don’t knock it until you try it!

Freshly baked dinner rolls go great with just about anything on the table. As an added bonus, homemade rolls taste much better than the store-bought kind.

11. Roasted Broccoli

Roasted Broccoli

Yes, you read that correctly: You can roast broccoli!  And it tastes delicious too.  Broccoli is a really versatile vegetable, and roasting isn’t its only application.

Here are some other things you can do with broccoli:

  1. Stir fry broccoli with other veggies.
  2. Saute broccoli with olive oil and garlic.
  3. Steam broccoli until it’s tender.
  4. Add chopped, steamed broccoli to soups or salads.

And yes, you can roast broccoli too!  All you need to do is cut the florets off the stem and coat them in olive oil, salt and pepper.  Then roast them at 400 degrees for about 25 minutes.

Once you try this side dish along with your stuffed shells, you’ll never go back to regular broccoli again.

12. Zucchini Fries

Zucchini Fries

Okay, so maybe you’ve heard of zucchini fries already.  But have you tried them?

This snack is really easy to make, but it’s also tasty and nutritious.

All you need are some zucchinis, an egg, almond meal or bread crumbs, salt, pepper and oregano—and maybe some marinara sauce on the side!

13. Ravioli


Did anyone say ravioli? Yes!

You can buy ravioli at the store, or you can make it yourself.  Either way, it’s delicious!

Your stuffed shells will be extra tasty if you serve them with homemade ravioli.  If you want to make your own pasta dough, you can do that too!

14. Salad


I know, I know. Greens and pasta might not seem like the most complementary combination.

But trust me on this one: A salad goes great with stuffed shells.

And yes, it’s a complete meal.  You can make a really tasty salad with a variety of leafy greens, fresh vegetables and toppings.

And you know what they say: An apple a day keeps the doctor away.

So if you serve your stuffed shells with an apple salad, you’re really doing yourself (and your waistline) a favor!

15. Garlic Mashed Potatoes

Garlic Mashed Potatoes

Garlic has a lot of great health benefits and it’s really tasty too!

All you gotta do is add some garlic, salt and pepper to your mashed potatoes.

They’ll taste great with stuffed shells!

16. Macaroni and Cheese

Macaroni and Cheese

Yes, even macaroni and cheese can go great with stuffed shells!

All you need to do is add some shredded cheddar or mozzarella to your macaroni noodles.  And you’re good to go!

17. Mashed Cauliflower

Mashed Cauliflower

It’s not just potatoes that you can mash… You can also mash up some cauliflower!

Cauliflower is a great alternative to potatoes, especially if you want to cut down on carbs.  So if you’re looking for a side dish that’s tasty and good for you, look no further than mashed cauliflower.

18. Prosciutto-Wrapped Asparagus

Prosciutto-Wrapped Asparagus

If you’ve never tried wrapping asparagus in prosciutto, you’re really missing out!

All you gotta do is blanch some asparagus spears, wrap them in prosciutto, and then roast them at 400 degrees for about 5 minutes.

Your stuffed shells will taste even better with this side!

19. Pea Pesto on Toasted Baguette

Pea Pesto on Toasted Baguette

One of the reasons why I tend to stuff my shells with ricotta is because it goes great with pesto.  And when I say pesto, I’m not talking about the green stuff that you put on pasta.

This version is made with peas and it goes great on bread!  Just toast some baguette slices, spread some pesto on them, and then top them with the pea pesto.

20. Cheese and Cauliflower Breadsticks

Cheese and Cauliflower Breadsticks

Anybody who has ever been to an Italian restaurant knows about breadsticks–and they’re pretty much what you’re going to get with this recipe.

All you have to do is combine some cheese, cauliflower rice and egg whites in a bowl.  Then throw it in the oven for about 30 minutes at 400 degrees.

And there you have it.  Your stuffed shells will taste even better when you serve them alongside cheesy, cauliflower breadsticks!

21. Stuffed Tomatoes

Stuffed Tomatoes

More veggies?  Yes, you heard that right!

I bet you’ve never tried stuffing a tomato before.  But if you have a bunch of big beefsteak tomatoes, you should definitely give it a shot.

Just scoop out the insides of your tomato with a spoon or ice-cream scooper and then stuff it with a mixture of breadcrumbs, Parmesan cheese, basil and olive oil.

Then bake it for about 30 minutes at 350 degrees.

And that’s it!  You don’t even have to serve stuffed shells with your stuffed tomatoes.  These tasty treats are good on their own!

22. Cucumber Salad

Cucumber Salad

Although cucumber doesn’t pack much of a flavor punch, it’s great at soaking up all the flavors of a dish.  And if you serve your stuffed shells with this side dish, you won’t need any sauce or dressing.

All you have to do is slice up some cucumbers and onions and then top them with olive oil, salt and pepper.

23. Whole Roasted Carrots

Roasted Carrots

And lastly, you can serve roasted carrots with your stuffed shells.  These are really tasty because they’re sweet, savory and crunchy–and they go great with ricotta cheese if that’s your thing.

Just wash the carrots, season them with salt and pepper, and then roast them for about 45 minutes at 400 degrees.  Now eat them however you want!

Why Consider Serving A Side Dish For Stuffed Shells?

Why Consider Serving A Side Dish For Stuffed Shells

Stuffed shell dishes can be delicious when paired with the right side dishes.

The filling is often quite delicious on its own, so having something complementary to pair it with can make the experience even better.

As for what those complementary side dishes should be, there are many different options available.

For example, you could opt for a creamy pasta dish like Alfredo.

Or try a side of crispy fried chicken if you want something that will stand out from the crowd.

However, regardless of which dish you choose to complement your stuffed shells, it’s worth making sure that it doesn’t overwhelm the shell.

This means keeping the dishes simple, tasty, and healthy.

Therefore, instead of having a dish that tastes like you spent the entire day in the kitchen, make sure that you keep things simple and healthy.


So there you have it, folks! 23 different side dishes that will go great with your stuffed shells!

Now you might be wondering:  What side dish do I choose?

Well, the answer is easy!  It depends on your personal taste preferences.

For instance, if you’re tired of serving broccoli with dinner, go for the roasted asparagus!

If you want to try something new, go for the cucumber salad!  It’s amazing.

Regardless of what you choose, it’s sure to be delicious and nutritious!


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Stuffed Shells Side Dishes

23 Stuffed Shells Side Dishes

You should consider serving a side dish with your stuffed shells because it can elevate the experience from good to great.
Stuffed shell dishes are usually pretty tasty on their own, but when paired with the right side dish, they become even better.
When choosing a side dish to serve with your stuffed shells, it's best to keep things simple and healthy.
The side dish should complement the stuffed shells without over-powering it.
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 15 minutes
Course Side Dish
Cuisine Italian
Servings 4 people
Calories 365 kcal


  • Green Beans
  • Broccoli Alfredo
  • Garlic Bread
  • Steamed Rice
  • Roasted Asparagus
  • Bruschetta
  • Roasted Root Vegetables
  • Baked Potatoes
  • Garlic Knots
  • Dinner Rolls
  • Roasted Broccoli
  • Zucchini Fries
  • Ravioli
  • Salad
  • Garlic Mashed Potatoes
  • Macaroni and Cheese
  • Mashed Cauliflower
  • Prosciutto-Wrapped Asparagus
  • Pea Pesto on Toasted Baguette
  • Cheese and Cauliflower Breadsticks
  • Stuffed Tomatoes
  • Cucumber Salad
  • Whole Roasted Carrots


  • Choose any of these delicious side dishes for your pasta dinner!
  • Prepare the ingredients according to the recipe instructions.
  • Be ready to serve in no time!
Keyword Stuffed Shells Side Dishes, what to serve with Stuffed Shells
CEO at Happy Muncher | | Website | + posts

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.

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