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29 Italian Side Dishes to Make Tonight

These must-try Italian side dishes are essential for when you want to bring a taste of Italy to your dinner table.

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Garlic BreadTaste of Home

Garlic Bread

Ever wonder how to make garlic bread? This homemade garlic bread is the answer! Minced fresh garlic is key to these flavor-packed crusty slices, which our big family would snap up before they even had a chance to cool. —Grace Yaskovic, Branchville, New Jersey

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Italian MushroomsTaste of Home

Italian Mushrooms

Only four ingredients create a rich and flavorful side dish that we love to eat with beef and mashed potatoes. —Kim Reichert, St. Paul, Minnesota

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Spinach-Parm CasseroleTaste of Home

Spinach-Parm Casserole

For those who ignore Popeye and won’t eat their spinach, I find that spinach with garlicky butter and Parmesan helps change their minds. —Judy Batson, Tampa, Florida

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Pumpkin Gnocchi in Sage ButterTaste of Home

Pumpkin Gnocchi in Sage Butter

For a delicious autumn spin on an Italian classic, try this hearty, seasonal gnocchi. Sage and garlic butter sauce complements the pumpkin wonderfully. —Donna Mosca Kahler, Jupiter, Florida

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Italian Sausage-Stuffed ZucchiniTaste of Home

Italian Sausage-Stuffed Zucchini

I've always had to be creative when getting my family to eat vegetables, so I decided to make stuffed zucchini using the pizza flavors that everyone loves. It worked! We like to include sausage for a main dish but it could be a meatless side dish, too. —Donna Marie Ryan, Topsfield, Massachusetts

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Italian Meatball BunsTaste of Home

Italian Meatball Buns

These soft little rolls come with a surprise inside—savory Italian meatballs. They're wonderful dipped in marinara sauce, making them fun for my grandkids and adults, too. I love how easy they are to put together. —Trina Linder-Mobley, Clover, South Carolina

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Italian Zucchini CasseroleTaste of Home

Italian Zucchini Casserole

Compliments crop up as fast as vines when folks sample this zucchini casserole. Even those who generally don't like zucchini find they enjoy it in this savory side dish. —Kimberly Speta, Kennedy, New York

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White Beans and SpinachTaste of Home

White Beans and Spinach

This skillet side is a variation of a recipe I received from my Italian mother. I've prepared spinach this way for years—because my children eat it happily! —Lucia Johnson, Massena, New York

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Pesto Pasta & PotatoesTaste of Home

Pesto Pasta & Potatoes

Although this healthy pasta dish is pretty simple to begin with, it's made even easier because you can throw the green beans and pasta into one big pot to cook. —Laura Flowers, Moscow, Idaho

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Linguine with Fresh TomatoesTaste of Home

Linguine with Fresh Tomatoes

This garlic and basil linguine is a perfect way to use up your late-summer tomato harvest. It makes a great light supper when paired with a salad, or you can make it heartier with some chopped chicken. —Susan Jones, Downers Grove, Illinois

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Best Ever Stuffed MushroomsTaste of Home

Best Ever Stuffed Mushrooms

At party time, I bring out a platter of my easy stuffed mushrooms. I like to make mine with reduced-fat sausage, but you can use regular for an indulgent treat. —Debby Beard, Eagle, Colorado

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Roasted Italian Green Beans & TomatoesTaste of Home

Roasted Italian Green Beans & Tomatoes

When you roast green beans and tomatoes, their flavors really shine through. The vibrant colors light up a table. What a perfect side dish for the holidays! —Brittany Allyn, Mesa, Arizona

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Two-Bean Tomato BakeTaste of Home

Two-Bean Tomato Bake

Parmesan cheese, basil and garlic spice up this mouthwatering medley of beans, mushrooms, onion and tomato. It's even more flavorful when you use your garden harvest. We love the crumb topping because it adds a fantastic crunch.—Dorothy Rieke, Julian, Nebraska

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Parmesan RisottoTaste of Home

Parmesan Risotto

Risotto is a creamy Italian rice dish. In this version, the rice is briefly sauteed, then slowly cooked in wine and seasonings. —Taste of Home Test Kitchen

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Cherry Tomato Mozzarella SauteTaste of Home

Cherry Tomato Mozzarella Saute

This side dish is full of flavor and so quick to put together. The cherry tomatoes and mozzarella are perfect alongside almost any main dish you can think of. —Summer Jones, Pleasant Grove, Utah

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Sun-Dried Tomato Scalloped PotatoesTaste of Home

Sun-Dried Tomato Scalloped Potatoes

My family was tired of my traditional scalloped potatoes. So when I came across this recipe featuring a pesto and sun-dried tomato sauce, I knew I had to try it. I'm so glad I did, and so is my family! —Jamie Milligan, Kimberley, British Columbia

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Italian Spaghetti SquashTaste of Home

Italian Spaghetti Squash

This is a unique and easy way to cook spaghetti squash. Be sure the squash is on the small or medium side so that it fits into the slow cooker after being cut in half. —Melissa Brooks, Sparta, Wisconsin

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Five-Cheese RigatoniTaste of Home

Five-Cheese Rigatoni

Who can resist cheesy pasta hot from the oven? This ooey-gooey rigatoni mac and cheese boasts a homemade white sauce. —Shirley Foltz, Dexter, Kansas

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Oven-Roasted TomatoesTaste of Home

Oven-Roasted Tomatoes

I love tomatoes, and these are healthy and versatile. You can use them in sandwiches or omelets, or to top broiled chicken. —Julie Gomez, Downey, California

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Sicilian Steamed LeeksTaste of Home

Sicilian Steamed Leeks

I love the challenge of developing recipes for my garden leeks, a delicious underused vegetable. This Italian-flavored dish is a family favorite. —Roxanne Chan, Albany, California

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Zucchini ParmesanTaste of Home

Zucchini Parmesan

You'll knock their socks off with this easy-to-prep side dish that's absolutely delicious. My favorite time to make it is when the zucchini is fresh out of the garden. —Sandi Guettler, Bay City, Michigan

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Roasted Balsamic Red PotatoesTaste of Home

Roasted Balsamic Red Potatoes

When I found a potato recipe that called for vinegar, I was intrigued. But without all the ingredients on hand, I had to improvise and gave it a whirl using Italian seasoning and balsamic vinegar. It turned out great! —Lisa M. Varner, El Paso, TX

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Tortellini Salad with Artichokes & Sweet PeppersTaste of Home

Tortellini Salad with Artichokes & Sweet Peppers

I’ve been making this for almost 10 years, and someone asks me for the recipe every time I bring it to a party. It’s really easy to make. It reminds me of summer cookouts with good friends. —Westyn Layne, Scranton, Pennsylvania

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Garden Orzo RisottoTaste of Home

Garden Orzo Risotto

No one will believe this rich, creamy dish was prepared in less than 30 minutes! I developed the recipe when my garden tomatoes, zucchini and basil were coming on strong. Using orzo instead of Arborio rice makes the risotto so much easier to prepare. —Cindy Beberman, Orland Park, Illinois

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Creamy Roasted Garlic & Spinach OrzoTaste of Home

Creamy Roasted Garlic & Spinach Orzo

This side dish brings instant comfort. I first made it without spinach, so my husband and daughter would like it. The next time, I added spinach for the extra health benefits. They still devoured it, so in my book, that's a win-win. —Dawn Moore, Warren, Pennsylvania

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Fried Mushrooms MarinaraTaste of Home

Fried Mushrooms Marinara

Offer this eye-appealing appetizer at your next party and get ready to hand out the recipe. I deep-fry breaded mushrooms before adding them to a bed of spaghetti sauce. —Barbara McCalley, Allison Park, Pennsylvania

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Cranberry Ricotta Gnocchi with Brown Butter SauceTaste of Home

Cranberry Ricotta Gnocchi with Brown Butter Sauce

How do you make gnocchi as light as air? Just work quickly, handling the dough as little as possible; puffy pasta pillows will result.—Sally Sibthorpe, Shelby Township, Michigan

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Butternut Squash Oven RisottoTaste of Home

Butternut Squash Oven Risotto

Squash and beer make my risotto different and delicious. Plus, cooking it in the oven cuts down on hands-on time making it. Win-win. —Katie Ferrier Gage, Houston, TX

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Broccoli Rabe with Tuscan CrumbsTaste of Home

Broccoli Rabe with Tuscan Crumbs

With seasoned bread crumbs, cheese and currants, our recipe specialists turn basic broccoli rabe into a more special side. Serve it with a variety of entrees. —Taste of Home Test Kitchen, Milwaukee, Wisconsin

Camille Berry
Part of the third generation in a family of restaurateurs, Camille was born with a passion for cooking and food. She embarked on a career in hospitality where she excelled as a sommelier and wine director. This hospitality experience has given her a wealth of first-hand knowledge about how to pair all manner of drinks with food—plus some serious kitchen skills. These days, she's hung up her wine key in favor of a pen and covers all aspects of food and drink.
Emily Racette Parulski
Emily Racette Parulski is a Senior Editor for Taste of Home, specializing in email newsletters. When she’s not writing about food, she’s baking something sweet to feed her chocolate obsession.

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