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What To Serve With Penne Alla Vodka – 33 BEST Sides

If you’re wondering what to serve with your penne alla vodka, you’ve come to the right place.

In this article, I list 33 of the most popular side dishes for penne alla vodka.

In a rush? Here’s the short answer.

The best dishes to serve with penne alla vodka are rosemary olive oil bread, pan-seared scallops, grilled Tuscan steak, veggie balls, and chicken Milanese. You can also serve garlic parmesan brussels sprouts, spicy roasted pork loin, tempeh bacon, roasted zucchini salad, and baked asparagus fries.

Ready? Let’s jump right in.

No-knead rosemary olive oil bread

A slice of this rosemary olive oil bread is the perfect accompaniment for penne alla vodka. 

It features a chewy golden crust and a soft, fluffy crumb that’s excellent for mopping up your creamy vodka sauce. 

And the best part? It doesn’t require kneading – just mix your ingredients and leave your dough to rest before baking.

Why we love this recipe: it’ll make your kitchen smell amazing. 

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Tempeh bacon 

Tempeh bacon is a fabulous accompaniment for your vegan penne alla vodka. 

This popular meat substitute made of soybeans is cut into slices and then seasoned with soy sauce, maple syrup, apple cider vinegar, and liquid smoke. 

The mixture infuses your tempeh with a delicious smoky, sweet, and umami flavor that works wonders with your robust vodka sauce. 

Why we love this recipe: it won’t taste exactly like bacon, but even non-vegans will enjoy this substitute. 

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Pan-seared lemon garlic butter scallops

Whipping up a pasta dinner for your significant other? 

Complete the meal with a serving of these seared scallops.

These morsels boast crisp and caramelized crusts and an oh-so-tender interior.

This recipe goes the extra mile with a drizzle of lemon garlic butter pan sauce, bringing a zesty bite to contrast your tomato-based pasta.

Why we love this recipe: it instantly makes any dish restaurant-quality. 

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Kale Caesar salad (butter lettuce salad with parm vinaigrette)

I love a classic Caesar, but this version is a game-changer. 

Instead of a lemony, anchovy dressing, this version has a creamy, garlicky dressing with a tangy bite that pairs superbly with your penne alla vodka. 

This dressing is also used to massage the kale, making the leaves tender and flavorful. 

Add some crunchy croutons and salty parm to complete this delicious side salad. 

Why we love this recipe: it’s anchovy-free. 

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Grilled Tuscan steak

In the mood for something fancy and indulgent? You can’t go wrong with this grilled Tuscan steak. 

With this recipe, the steaks are rubbed with a herb, lemon, and olive oil marinade.

They’re then left to rest for at least 12 hours, infusing them with a bright, zesty flavor.

Enjoy these show-stopping steaks with a fresh pot of penne alla vodka for the ultimate Tuscan feast.

Why we love this recipe: it’s highly detailed and shares various tips and tricks for the perfect grilled Tuscan-inspired steak. 

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Air fryer garlic parmesan brussels sprouts

Make your penne alla vodka meal healthier with a serving of these crispy sprouts. 

With an air fryer, you get deliciously crisp and tender brussels sprouts in just 15 minutes!

These sprouts are great with salt and pepper, but a dusting of parmesan cheese adds a tasty, salty, nutty flavor. 

Why we love this recipe: each serving only has 155 calories.

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Crispy baked asparagus fries

If you’ve never tried asparagus fries, you’re missing out – big time!

A double coating of the panko and parmesan mixture gives your asparagus spears a golden, crispy crust.

These spears are fabulous with lemon aioli (recipe included), but I usually treat them like breadsticks and dip them in the pasta’s vodka cream sauce instead.

Why we love this recipe: you get that satisfying crunch without the grease and guilt of frying.

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Chicken Milanese

Go full Italian and pair your penne alla vodka with a platter of chicken Milanese.

Reminiscent of schnitzel and katsu, this dish involves coating your thin meat cutlet with seasoned bread crumbs and then frying, giving you a gorgeous golden crust. 

Pssst… this recipe uses onion and garlic powder for the breadcrumbs, but you can use any spice or herbs you’d like.

Why we love this recipe: it’s great even for busy work nights.

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Roasted zucchini salad

Penne alla vodka is a carb-loaded dish, so a pure veggie side like this zucchini salad is an excellent idea.

Roasting the zucchini enhances its mild sweetness, giving you those delightful charred spots. 

But what makes this dish unique is its refreshingly zesty lemon-parmesan dressing.

It’s excellent at cutting through the rich, bold flavors of your penne alla vodka.

Why we love this recipe: a serving only adds 105 calories to your meal.

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Mushroom, quinoa, and red pepper veggie balls

Whether you’re a vegetarian or just want more nutrition in your meals, these veggie balls have your back. 

They’re satisfyingly crisp on the outside, with tender, creamy insides that are simply irresistible. 

And the best part? These veggie morsels are baked, making them even healthier!

Pro-tip: mix these veggie balls with your pasta so they get coated with its irresistible vodka sauce.

Why we love this recipe: it’s a clever way to add more veggies to your meal. 

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Spicy roasted pork loin

With this roasted pork loin, you don’t have to break the bank for a show-stopping main dish.

An entire pork loin is slathered with a sriracha-garlic sauce and then left to marinate for at least 2 hours before roasting.

The result? Juicy, fork-tender pork with a spicy note that goes nicely with your rich penne alla vodka.

Why we love this recipe: it instantly elevates any meal. 

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What To Serve With Penne Alla Vodka

In this short recipe, I show you exactly what to serve with your penne alla vodka.
5 from 1 vote
Print Pin Rate
Course: Side Dish
Cuisine: Italian
Keyword: penne alla vodka side dishes, what to serve with penne alla vodka
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 25 minutes
Servings: 1 person
Calories: 160kcal


  • 1 portion penne alla vodka


  • Prepare your penne alla vodka according to your favorite recipe.
  • In the meantime, choose one of the following sides to serve alongside it.
  • Side dishes include: no-knead rosemary olive oil bread, tempeh bacon, pan-seared lemon garlic butter scallops, kale caesar salad (butter lettuce salad with parm vinaigrette), grilled Tuscan steak, air fryer garlic parmesan brussels sprouts, crispy baked asparagus fries, chicken Milanese, roasted zucchini salad, mushroom, quinoa, and red pepper veggie balls, and a spicy roasted pork loin.
  • Serve immediately and enjoy!


Serving: 100g | Calories: 160kcal

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