The Best Food to Pair with Chianti – A Match Made in Heaven

A well-known Italian wine, Chianti has become increasingly popular outside its native region. The most popular wine in the world is Chianti, a ruby-colored wine that originates from Tuscany, Italy.

With its bold flavor, rich aroma, and spicy finish, it’s no surprise that it’s a top choice for foodies who want to take their dining experience to the next level. 

However, just like any other wine, picking the right food to pair with it makes a huge difference. So, what is the best food to pair with chianti?

In this blog, we’ll be discussing the best food to pair with Chianti to help you enjoy it to the fullest.

Best Food to Pair with Chianti

1. Grilled Meats

Chianti is the perfect match for grilled meats like steak, lamb, or pork. The wine’s complex flavors and high tannins cut through the richness of the meat, making for a delicious combination. 

grilled meat

If you’re grilling this summer, make sure to add a bottle of Chianti to your shopping list.

2. Tomato-Based Dishes

Another food pairing that works wonders with Chianti is tomato-based dishes. Think lasagna, pizza, or spaghetti bolognese. 

The wine’s acidity complements the tomato’s sweetness, making the dish more flavorful. Plus, the tannins in Chianti help balance the acidity of the tomato, creating a well-rounded pairing.

3. Hard Cheeses

If you’re a cheese lover, try pairing Chianti with hard cheeses like Parmesan, Asiago, or Pecorino Romano. 

The wine’s bold flavors complement the sharpness of the cheese, and the high tannins cut through the cheese’s fattiness, making the combination smooth and delicious.

4. Mushrooms

If you’re a vegetarian or looking for a meatless dish to pair with Chianti, try mushroom-based dishes. 

Mushroom Risotto

The earthy flavors of mushrooms pair well with Chianti’s fruity notes, creating a savory combination. Whether you’re having a mushroom risotto or mushroom pizza, Chianti is sure to be a crowd-pleaser.

5. Chocolate

We couldn’t talk about food pairings without mentioning a sweet pairing. Chianti pairs perfectly with chocolate, specifically dark chocolate. 

The wine’s fruitiness cuts through the bitterness of the chocolate, creating a sweet and savory pairing.

6. Traditional Tuscan dishes

Chianti is a traditional Tuscan wine, and it pairs well with its classic dishes such as ribolita and wild boar ragù. 

The wine’s bold flavor and high acidity cut through the heaviness of these rustic dishes, while its earthy and herbal notes balance out the bold and savory tones in the food.

7. Lasagna Bolognese

Lasagna Bolognese is a classic Italian dish made with layers of pasta, béchamel sauce and ground beef. It’s hearty enough to stand up to the boldness of Chianti.

Discover More: What to serve with Lasagna for Christmas Dinner

8. Grilled Eggplant Parmesan

Eggplant Parmesan

The sweetness of grilled eggplant is balanced by the savory parmesan cheese and tomato sauce in this classic dish. Enjoy them together with a glass of chianti for a perfect pairing.

9. Beef Braciole

This traditional Italian meat dish features thin slices of beef rolled up with breadcrumbs, garlic, parsley, Parmigiano cheese and pine nuts before being braised in tomato sauce. (recipe)

The slight sweetness from the tomato pairs perfectly with the chianti’s tartness.

10. Ossobuco alla Milanese

Ossobuco is an Italian veal shank dish cooked in white wine, broth and vegetables until it’s fall-off-the-bone tender. Serve it alongside a glass of robust Chianti for an unbeatable flavor combination.

11. Penne alla Vodka

Penne alla Vodka

Another classic Italian pasta dish featuring penne pasta tossed in a creamy vodka sauce made from tomatoes and vodka; its richness pairs nicely with the acidic notes of chianti.

12. Fettuccine Alfredo

Fettuccine Alfredo is an indulgent pasta dish featuring butter, Parmigiano cheese and cream; it needs something as bold as chianti to stand up to its bold flavors and round out the meal nicely.

13. Stuffed Zucchini Boats

Zucchini boats filled with sausage, ricotta cheese, pesto, marinara sauce and mozzarella cheese make for a delicious vegetarian entrée when paired with Chianti’s fruity notes.

Explore More: What to Serve with Sausage Stuffed Zucchini

14. Tuscan Pork Loin Roast

A pork loin roast seasoned with rosemary and garlic makes for an excellent main course when accompanied by a glass of Chianti.

15. Baked Chicken Thighs

Chicken thighs seasoned simply and baked are elevated when served alongside tart yet sweet Chianti.

16. Risotto al Funghi

Porcini mushrooms add an earthy flavor to this creamy risotto; serve it alongside chianti for added depth of flavor.

17. Veal Marsala

Pan-seared veal cutlets simmered in marsala wine create an aromatic sauce that pairs beautifully with Chianti’s dry finish.

18. Thin Crust Pizza

Thin crust pizza topped with fresh ingredients such as pesto or truffle oil can be enhanced by sipping on some chianti during dinner.

21. Caprese Salad

Caprese Salad

Caprese Salad is a simple salad featuring ripe tomatoes layered between slices of mozzarella cheese drizzled in olive oil; enjoy it alongside your favorite bottle of Chianti for a light yet flavorful pairing.

22. Minestrone Soup

Minestrone Soup is a hearty vegetable soup that gets a flavor boost when you pair it with your favorite bottle of Chianti – its acidity helps cut through all the richness in this soup!

23. Spaghetti Carbonara

Spaghetti Carbonara is a traditional Roman pasta dish that features bacon bits sautéed in olive oil before being mixed into al dente spaghetti noodles alongside eggs and grated Parmesan cheese; its salty flavors are balanced well by chain crispness. 

Find Out More: Best Vegetables Must Serve with Carbonara to Enhance the taste

24. Roasted Vegetables

Roasted Vegetables

Roasted vegetables like zucchini or peppers can be transformed into something special when served up beside Chiantis boldness! 

25. Shrimp Scampi

Shrimp scampi, which features succulent shrimp sautéed in garlic butter, can become even more flavorful when enjoyed alongside chianti’s versatility. 

26. Spinach Cannelloni

Spinach cannelloni stuffed shells loaded up with ricotta cheese, spinach, nutmeg, and mozzarella cheese pair incredibly well with chianti’s fruitiness! 

27. Eggplant Rollatini

Eggplant rollitini stuffed endive rolled up with ricotta, mozzarella, parmesan cheeses, herbs & tomato get complemented wonderfully by the tannins found within chianti! 

28. Prosciutto Wrapped Melon

The sweetness from cantaloupe or honeydew melon paired with the saltiness from prosciutto wrapped around them creates harmony when enjoyed wit tarty & fruity notes that come from great quality chianti!

Wrap Up

Chianti’s bold flavor, spicy finish, and rich aroma make it a top choice for wine enthusiasts, but choosing the right food to pair with it creates an unforgettable dining experience. 

From pasta with tomato-based sauce to traditional Tuscan dishes, the wine pairs perfectly with a range of dishes, elevating their flavors to new heights. 

Whether you’re grilling red meat, indulging in cheese platters, or enjoying mushroom-based dishes, serving Chianti is an experience worth having.

So, pour yourself a glass, cook up your favorite dish, and enjoy the ultimate dining experience.


What flavor doesn’t go well with chianti?

Chianti is a dry, full-bodied red wine that pairs best with savory dishes. Generally speaking, sweet flavors don’t pair well with chianti. Therefore, dessert wines would not be an ideal flavor to accompany this type of wine. 

Additionally, bitter flavors such as dark chocolate or coffee may also clash with the taste of chianti. 

Other fruits and strong herbs could potentially overpower the delicate flavors of chianti, so it’s best to opt for milder accompaniments like soft cheese and nuts when serving this type of wine. 

Ultimately, choosing foods and other drinks that won’t overwhelm or compete with the flavor profile of chianti is key to finding successful pairings.

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