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What To Serve With Pesto Chicken – 15 Tasty Side Dishes

If you’re wondering what to serve with your pesto chicken, you’ve come to the right place.

In this article, I list 15 of the most popular side dishes for pesto chicken.

In a rush? Here’s the short answer.

The best dishes to serve with pesto chicken are rice pilaf, Italian salad, sauteed spinach, and aglio e olio pasta. Try zucchini noodles, mashed cauliflower, or roasted asparagus for more veggie options. You can also serve garlic crack bread, couscous salad, or smashed potatoes.

Ready? Let’s jump right in.

Greek lemon rice pilaf 

A serving of rice pilaf is the perfect starchy dish to complete your pesto chicken meal. 

An essential step in this recipe is toasting the rice and orzo in butter – don’t skip it.

It gives them a rich, nutty flavor that contrasts nicely with the acidic lemon. 

Greek lemon rice pilaf and pesto chicken is one interesting twist on chicken and rice!

Smashed potatoes

Smashed potatoes are an easy way of getting crispy roasties.

It’s great fun smashing them, and it means that there’s loads of nooks and crannies for the seasoning (sea salt in this recipe) to fall into – so they’re extra tasty.

Take advantage of your pesto chicken sauce and drizzle it over these crispy smashed potatoes as a finishing touch.

Italian salad


This Italian salad is my go-to fresh and healthy side for pesto chicken. 

It’s easy to put together, but it’s not boring.

Along with the classic romaine lettuce, the salad features red onions, black olives, and the star ingredient… some tangy pepperoncini (use jalapeno peppers if you can’t find pepperoncini).

It’s the perfect option for a hot summer evening.

Sauteed spinach 


Need something quick and healthy?

Try this garlic sauteed spinach

You only need 5 ingredients (two of which are salt and pepper!), and a maximum of 15 minutes to get this dish on the table.

You can chuck some other veggies into the pan too if you fancy. I like spinach and mushrooms together.

Zucchini noodles

Craving pasta, but don’t want all the carbs?

Satisfy your cravings with these zucchini noodles instead. 

They’re usually made with a spiralizer, but a julienne peeler or your trusty knife will do in a pinch. 

Once the noodles are covered with a delivery creamy, pesto sauce and have some chicken mixed in – you won’t even notice it’s not real pasta!

Mashed cauliflower

Mashed potatoes are a superb side dish but try mashed cauliflower instead for a slightly lighter option.

This recipe calls for roasting the chopped cauliflower instead of just steaming or boiling them. This simple trick makes a massive difference to the final texture and flavor of the mash.

Boiled cauliflower mash can be watery and bland.

Want to give this a try? Check out Every Last Bite’s best cauliflower mash recipe.

French bread rolls 

Making bread in the comfort of your own kitchen doesn’t have to be intimidating.

These easy bread rolls are reminiscent of your crusty French baguettes – soft and fluffy on the inside with a golden-brown chewy crust. 

Which means they’re perfect for mopping up your pesto chicken’s flavorful sauce. 

Want to have a go?

Dinner Then Dessert has a fantastic crusty French bread rolls recipe you can use to get started.

Garlic roasted asparagus

Whip up a batch of roasted asparagus when you want a simple, hands-off side dish. 

Once you’ve seasoned the asparagus, your oven does the rest of the work. 

This recipe uses lemon and garlic for flavor, but you can also add things like parmesan, balsamic vinegar, or even some chili flakes for a kick of heat. 

Jump into spring with some pesto chicken and a serving of garlic roasted asparagus.

Pasta aglio e olio

It’s a no-brainer to serve your pesto chicken with a pasta dish.

And aglio e olio is perfect.

It’s made with simple store cupboard ingredients, so there’ll be no need for a trip to the shops.

And once the pesto sauce mixes with the garlicky, slightly spicy sauce on the pasta, every bite will be delicious.

And the best part? 

It’ll only take 15 minutes to get this pasta aglio e olio to your dining table. 

Broccoli cheese casserole

This broccoli cheese casserole is indulgent, but it’s also guaranteed to be a crowd pleaser.

It uses three different kinds of cheese (yes three!) and is baked into crispy perfection.

The slightly burnt bits of broccoli sticking out the top are my absolute fave.

And everyone will be fighting over a corner piece. 

This creamy broccoli cheese casserole with your chicken will be comfort food heaven.

Avocado corn couscous salad

This couscous salad is an excellent side dish if you want something light, but are avoiding big bowls of lettuce.

This dish is brimming with fresh produce like corn, tomatoes, cucumbers, and avocado. 

And everything is tied together with a mustard-y based dressing that helps balance all the different flavors.

This vibrant avocado corn couscous salad will look amazing alongside your equally colorful pesto chicken.

Garlic mushrooms with sun-dried tomatoes

Make your pesto chicken shine with a side of these garlic mushrooms. 

Your regular cremini mushrooms are given a massive flavor upgrade by sauteing them with garlic and sun-dried tomatoes.

Earthy mushrooms paired with sweet-but-tart tomatoes, mixed with a zesty pesto sauce… what more could you want?

Try out this dish with Eat Well 101’s easy-to-follow recipe.

Quinoa and zucchini fritters

These quinoa and zucchini fritters are a fun and tasty way to get some vegetables on the plate.

But my favorite thing about them is the cheese. 

The recipe uses parmesan, but if you want them to be gooier you can also use cheddar or mozzarella. 

Dip the fritters straight into your pesto chicken sauce!

Get the recipe here.

Cheese and garlic crack bread

Serving a crowd?

Grab some sourdough bread and make a fun cheese and garlic crack bread.

Each guest can pull their own buttery, cheesy piece of bread from the loaf and watch as the cheese stretches on for miles.

There’ll be plenty of laughter!

Use good quality bread for your cheese and garlic crack bread – it’s worth it.

Snap pea salad

Pesto chicken is already a bright main dish.

So let’s keep it bright with a fresh snap pea salad.

This snap pea salad is slightly sweet but also has enough sharp citrusy notes from the lemon vinaigrette to cut through the rich pesto. 

Check out this 15-minute recipe from the minimalist baker.

Psst… it also works well with other green veggies like green beans, broccoli, or asparagus.

The best side dishes to serve with pesto chicken

  • Greek lemon rice pilaf
  • Smashed potatoes
  • Italian salad
  • Sauteed spinach
  • Zucchini noodles
  • Mashed cauliflower
  • French bread rolls
  • Garlic roasted asparagus
  • Pasta aglio e olio
  • Broccoli cheese casserole
  • Avocado corn couscous salad
  • Garlic mushrooms with sun-dried tomatoes
  • Quinoa and zucchini fritters
  • Cheese and garlic crack bread
  • Snap pea salad

What To Serve With Pesto Chicken

In this short recipe, I show you exactly what to serve with your pesto chicken.
5 from 1 vote
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Course: Side Dish
Cuisine: Italian
Keyword: pesto chicken side dishes, what to serve with pesto chicken
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 15 minutes
Servings: 1 person
Calories: 207kcal


  • 1 portion pesto chicken


  • Prepare your pesto chicken according to your favorite recipe.
  • In the meantime, choose one of the following sides to serve alongside it.
  • Side dishes include: greek lemon rice pilaf, smashed potatoes, Italian salad, sauteed spinach, zucchini noodles, mashed cauliflower, french bread rolls, garlic roasted asparagus, pasta aglio e olio, broccoli cheese casserole, avocado corn couscous salad, garlic mushrooms with sun-dried tomatoes, quinoa and zucchini fritters, cheese and garlic crack bread, and snap pea salad.
  • Serve immediately and enjoy!


Serving: 100g | Calories: 207kcal

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