21 Best Side Dishes to Serve with Minestrone Soup: Perfect Pairings

A steaming bowl of hearty minestrone soup is a perfect comfort food during chilly days. This one-pot dish is loaded with vegetables, beans, pasta, and tomato-based broth, making it a complete meal in itself. 

But today, we’re discussing the best side dishes to serve with minestrone soup that will complement the dish and make it even more enjoyable. So, what to serve with minestrone soup?

As a pro chef and experienced cook, I have experimented with several side dishes and found the best ones that pair perfectly with minestrone soup.

Whether you’re hosting a dinner party, having a family gathering, or simply in the mood for a cozy evening, these complementary side dishes will surely impress your guests and leave everyone satisfied. 

Table of Contents

What is minestrone soup? What does minestrone soup taste like?

Minestrone soup is a thick Italian soup that is made with vegetables, typically tomatoes, beans and pasta or rice. It also usually contains herbs like basil, garlic, parsley and oregano for flavor. 

minestrone soup

Minestrone soup often has a hearty tomato-based broth that adds depth of flavor to the mix of vegetables in the soup. 

The end result is a warm and comforting bowl of comfort food that tastes creamy, flavorful and slightly sweet due to the slow-cooked vegetable medley it contains.

Best Sides to serve with minestrone soup

1. Garlic Bread

The classic and timeless garlic bread is the perfect pairing for any soup, especially minestrone soup. 

Garlic Bread

The extra bit of crunchiness and buttery flavor will entice your taste buds and complement the savory soup to perfection.

2. Grilled Cheese Sandwich

Another classic and popular option, the grilled cheese sandwich adds a cheesy and crispy element to your dish. 

Grilled Cheese Sandwiches

Choose your favorite bread and cheese, and enjoy the gooey goodness that ties in with the tomato-based minestrone soup.

Discover More: Best Side Dishes to Elevate Your Egg Salad Sandwich

3. Bruschetta

A light and refreshing side dish, bruschetta is an excellent accompaniment to a hearty soup. The fresh tomatoes, garlic, basil and olive oil blend beautifully with the flavors of the soup.

4. Caesar Salad

Caesar Salad

A nice and healthy salad is always a great side dish option. The tanginess of the Caesar dressing pairs perfectly with the hearty soup.

5. Antipasto Platter

For a more substantial side dish, an antipasto platter does the trick. With a selection of deli meats, cheeses, olives, and vegetables, this Italian-style appetizer platter is both filling and flavorful.

6. Focaccia Bread

A delicious and fluffy bread that perfectly complements the soup, focaccia is airy and incredibly flavorful. 

Focaccia Bread

The bread’s crispy crust and soft interior are heavenly when dipped in the soup.

Explore More: Hearty Soups Perfectly Paired with Focaccia Bread

7. Caprese Salad

Another refreshing salad option, the Caprese salad, brings a mix of fresh tomatoes, mozzarella, and basil with a delicious balsamic glaze. The perfect light and summer addition to a wintery dish.

8. Parmesan Crisps

An easy, low-carb, and crispy addition to the soup, parmesan crisps are crunchy, cheesy, and flavorful. You can have them as a snack, an appetizer or a side dish.

9. Roasted Vegetables

A great side dish that incorporates more vegetables into your meal, roasted vegetables are tasty and healthy. 

Roasted Vegetables

Season your favorite veggies with olive oil, salt, pepper, and herbs, and toss them into the oven until crispy and voila!

10. Meatball Sub

Take your soup to the next level by pairing it with a delicious meatball sub. 

The soft bread, the melted cheese and juicy meatballs add an extra layer of hearty goodness that just makes you feel warm inside.

11. Crostini

A crunchy option, crostini is a sliced bread baked or fried until crispy, then topped with your choice of spread, cheese, or garnish. The perfect option for a winter gathering or just a cozy night in. (Recipe)

12. Pesto pasta

A delicious and classic side dish that goes well with most Italian dishes, pesto pasta, is light, herbaceous, and summery all year round.

Find Out More: The Perfect Side Dishes to Accompany Pesto Pasta

13. Cheesy Polenta

An excellent pairing with a hearty soup like minestrone, cheesy polenta is creamy and cheesy and adds an extra layer of texture and flavor.

14. Cornbread

Corn bread

A sweet and tangy addition to the soup, cornbread is fluffy, buttery, and oh-so-delicious. You can top it off with honey or serve it with butter.

15. Charcuterie Board

An indulgent and splendid addition to any meal, a well-crafted charcuterie board

Gourmet cheeses, cured meats, fruits, and nuts make for a satisfying side dish that complements the soup and elevates the dining experience.

16. Mixed green salad

A fresh and crunchy salad is an excellent way to refresh your palate while enjoying the hearty minestrone soup. 

Toss some mixed greens with cherry tomatoes, cucumber, carrots, and feta cheese, and drizzle some balsamic dressing on top.

17. Roasted potatoes

Roasted Potatoes 

Roasted potatoes are a personal favorite of mine when serving minestrone soup. Toss some baby potatoes in olive oil, garlic, and Italian seasoning, and roast until crispy and golden.

18. Garlic knots

Garlic knots are small bread rolls that are tied in a knot and brushed with garlic butter. It is a delicious and easy side dish to serve with the soup.

19. Roasted beet salad

A roasted beet salad with arugula, goat cheese, and walnuts is a perfect side dish to serve with minestrone soup. The earthy flavors of the salad are a great match to the soup.

20. Garlic sautéed spinach

Sautéed spinach with garlic and olive oil is an easy side dish that can be made in minutes. The garlicky flavor pairs well with the tomato-based broth.

21. Caprese skewers

Caprese skewers

Caprese skewers with cherry tomatoes, mozzarella cheese, and basil leaves are a fresh and simple side dish. The vibrant colors of the skewers match the colorful veggies in the soup.

dessert to go with minestrone soup

1. Tiramisu

A classic Italian dessert, this layered sponge cake is soaked in coffee and rum or Marsala wine before being topped with whipped cream and cocoa powder. 

It pairs wonderfully with the savory flavor of minestrone soup.

2. Panna Cotta

This creamy Italian dessert is perfect for accompanying a hearty bowl of soup. 

Panna Cotta

It’s made from a combination of sweet cream, milk, and sugar that is then set in a mold and served chilled with raspberry sauce or other toppings of your choice.

3. Affogato

If you prefer something more indulgent after dinner, an affogato (Italian for ‘drowned’) is made by pouring espresso over a scoop of ice cream. 

The bitter notes of the espresso contrast perfectly with the sweetness of the ice cream – delicious!

4. Cannoli

These crisp yet chewy shells filled with sweetened ricotta cheese make for an ideal ending to any meal, especially one featuring minestrone soup! 


The combination of crunchy pastry contrasting with creamy ricotta filling can’t be beaten.

Learn More: The Perfect Side Dish To Serve With Cannoli Dip

5. Fruit Salad

For those looking for something lighter after their soup course, a simple fruit salad can be just the ticket – it’s healthy and refreshing! 

Choose your favorite fruits, such as apples, oranges, strawberries, and bananas; add some nuts or granola, then drizzle it all with honey for extra sweetness.

What sandwich goes with minestrone soup

1. Italian Ciabatta Sandwich

classic Italian sandwich that pairs perfectly with a warm bowl of minestrone soup. 

Topped with various meats, cheeses, and vegetables like peppers and onions, this hearty sandwich soaks up the rich flavors of the soup while providing a perfect crunchy texture.

2. Tuscan-Style Panini

Tuscan-Style Panini is a traditional sandwich made with pressed focaccia-style bread and stuffed with layers of Italian cured meats, cheeses, and hearty vegetables like tomatoes and artichokes. (Recipe)

The savory flavor profile perfectly complements the robust tomato-based broth of minestrone soup without being too heavy or overwhelming.

3. Grilled Cheese Sandwich

A classic favorite for many people, grilled cheese sandwiches offer a delicious combination of gooey melted cheese mixed with crunchy toasted bread that pairs fantastically with minestrone soup. 

Add some extra flavor by topping the sandwich off with slices of tomato or fresh herbs like basil or oregano for an even richer taste experience.

4. Pita Pocket Sandwich

Pita pockets are a great option for those looking for something light but still satisfying to pair with their minestrone soup. 

Pita Pocket Sandwich

Fill the pocket with fresh ingredients such as lettuce, tomatoes, cucumbers, olives, feta cheese, and creamy hummus for a flavorful, healthy meal that won’t bog you down after dinner time.

5. Caprese Sandwich

Combining sweet sliced tomatoes and smooth mozzarella cheese in between two slices of crispy sourdough bread may sound simple, but it packs an incredible flavor punch! 

The bright acidity from the tomatoes cuts through the richness of the soup while the creamy cheese balances out all the savory elements making both components shine in their own unique way!

toppings for minestrone soup

1. Parmesan Cheese

Sprinkling a few shavings of Parmesan cheese on top of your minestrone soup adds a delightful nutty flavor to the dish.

2. Basil Leaves

Adding fresh, chopped basil leaves to your soup gives it an herbal and sweet taste. Plus, it provides a nice contrast to other savory ingredients in the soup.

3. Croutons

Whole-grain croutons give your soup a crunchy texture and also add some more flavor and texture depth to the dish.

4. Olive Oil

Olive Oil

Drizzling some extra-virgin olive oil on top of your minestrone adds a hint of fruity and peppery notes that will enhance the overall flavor of the dish.

5. Tomatoes

Chopped cherry tomatoes sprinkled over the top of the soup not only look beautiful but also provide an acidic tanginess that pairs perfectly with the other flavors in Minestrone.

6. Sausage

Adding small amounts of cooked sausage to your minestrone provides more savory flavor as well as added protein for a fuller meal experience.

7. Arugula

Wilted arugula on top of minestrone soup adds bright color and a slightly spicy kick that helps balance out all the other ingredients in the dish.

8. Bacon Bits

Bacon Bits

Toasted bacon bits provide a salty, smoky flavor that enhances any meal, especially soups like minestrone!

9. Garlic Cloves

Roasted garlic cloves add depth to your bowl of minestrone and are also very healthy for you too!

10. Spinach Leaves

Fresh spinach leaves blended into your broth or sprinkled on top give your soup a boost in nutrition as well as an earthy flavor that will leave you wanting more!

what kind of salad to serve with minestrone soup

1. Garden Salad

A classic garden salad is the perfect accompaniment to minestrone soup. This simple salad is made with fresh vegetables such as tomatoes, cucumbers, onions and lettuce. 

It can be dressed with a vinaigrette or a creamy dressing for extra flavor. Adding some croutons or cheese gives it an extra crunchy texture.

2. Mediterranean Salad

This colorful salad is loaded with flavor and nutrition, making it an ideal partner for minestrone soup. 

Start with a bed of greens such as romaine or iceberg lettuce and top it with olives, artichoke hearts, feta cheese, halved cherry tomatoes and diced red onion. Dress the salad lightly with olive oil and lemon juice for a light but flavorful taste.

3. Greek Salad

Greek salads are traditionally served alongside hearty soups like minestrone because they provide balance to the heavier meal without being overbearing in flavor or texture. 

Greek Salad 

Start by combining crisp romaine lettuce, cucumbers, bell peppers, red onions and Kalamata olives together in a bowl, then add feta cheese cubes and capers for an extra kick of flavor

Serve the salad topped with oregano sprinkled on top for added zing.

4. Taco Salad

This fun twist on a traditional Mexican-style taco pairs perfectly with minestrone soup to make your dinner more interesting! 

Start by layering refried beans onto a bed of shredded iceberg lettuce, then top it off with grated cheese, diced tomatoes, black olives and jalapeno slices for added spiciness. 

Serve the taco salad chilled or at room temperature alongside your minestrone soup for a delicious combination!

5. Apple Walnut Salad

Apples offer sweetness that contrasts nicely with savory soups like Minestrone, so why not try this unique apple walnut salad? 

Simply combine cubed apples (such as Granny Smiths) in a bowl along with chopped walnuts, dried cranberries and crumbled feta cheese, then dress it lightly with maple syrup and balsamic vinegar for an elegant touch of sweetness that will spark up your meal!

6. Pear & Blue Cheese Salad

For those looking to add more gourmet flair to their dinner table, this pear & blue cheese salad is just what you need! 

Start by combining mixed greens in a bowl, then adding sliced pears (or any other fruit you prefer!), crumbled blue cheese and slivered almonds before topping it off with a light raspberry vinaigrette dressing—the perfect complement to any soup like minestrone!

7. Caprese Salad

Caprese Salad is an Italian-inspired salad that offers great color contrast that will make your meal look even more appetizing when served alongside minestrone soup! 

Caprese Salad

Slice up fresh tomatoes into thick wedges, then layer them onto a plate alongside mozzarella slices – sprinkle freshly chopped basil over the top before drizzling some olive oil & balsamic vinegar over everything – delicious!

Explore More: Complementary Dishes to Serve with Caprese Salad

What are the best flavors to go with minestrone soup?

Minestrone soup is a flavorful Italian dish that pairs well with many different flavors. Garlic, thyme, bay leaves, and oregano are all common spices used in minestrone soup. Onions, carrots, celery, and tomatoes are also often added to the pot for a healthy dose of vegetables.

For even deeper flavor, consider adding a splash of red wine or white wine vinegar to the mix. 

A pinch of smoked paprika or cumin can bring out the earthy tones in the vegetables and broth. For an added hint of sweetness, top off your soup with a sprinkle of fresh parsley or basil.

Cheese is also a great accompaniment to minestrone soup — try Parmesan shaved over the top for some salty creaminess. 

Crispy bacon bits are another delicious addition that adds just the right amount of smokiness and crunch. Adding croutons on top adds texture and crunch to this otherwise-smooth soup. 

If you’re feeling adventurous, try stirring in a scoop of pesto for an extra layer of flavor complexity. 

For those who like things spicy, add a dash of red pepper flakes — it’s sure to kick up the heat!

minestrone soup

How do you jazz up minestrone soup?

You can jazz up minestrone soup by adding extra vegetables such as carrots, celery, zucchini and mushrooms. 

To add more flavor, try adding garlic and herbs like oregano or basil. For a protein boost, add cooked beans or lentils. 

You can also top your soup with parmesan cheese for some added richness. Finally, for a little crunchy texture, serve it over croutons or crispy bacon bits!

How do you display minestrone soup on a platter?

Minestrone soup can be displayed on a platter in a few different ways. One way is to ladle the soup into individual bowls and place the bowls on the platter. This allows each person to have their own bowl of minestrone soup. 

Alternatively, you may choose to pour the minestrone soup into an elegant tureen and place the tureen on the platter surrounded by small dishes or bread. 

Either way, garnishing with freshly chopped parsley or grated Parmesan cheese can add a pop of color and flavor to your presentation. 

Lastly, you may also consider serving freshly cooked pasta alongside the minestrone soup to make it a complete meal – this would make for an even more impressive display!

Wrap Up on what to serve with minestrone soup.

Minestrone soup is a delicious and hearty dish that stands well on its own. But, serving a complementary side dish can elevate the flavors and take the meal to the next level. 

From garlic bread to caprese skewers, there are numerous sides that pair perfectly with minestrone soup. 

These side dishes that we’ve listed will surely impress your guests and satiate their appetite. 

So, the next time you cook minestrone soup, consider serving one of these sides, and you’ll have a complete and satisfying meal.


How much minestrone soup per person?

Typically, when serving minestrone soup, it is recommended to allot about one cup of soup per person. 

This should provide enough to fill a bowl and leave room for other dishes that may be served alongside the soup. 

Additionally, minestrone soup is often quite hearty and can be quite filling on its own, so one cup can be plenty. 

If you are serving a large group or want leftovers, it may be wise to plan for 1.5 cups per person.

What meat to serve with minestrone soup?

Minestrone soup is a classic Italian dish that pairs perfectly with a variety of meats. 

For a light and flavorful option, grilled chicken or turkey are great options to serve alongside this soup. 

Alternatively, if you’re looking for something more hearty, try adding some pork sausage or stewed beef chunks into the soup while it’s cooking. The smoky flavor of bacon also pairs nicely with the flavors in minestrone soup. 

If you’re aiming for something a bit different, try making lamb meatballs and dropping them into the soup before serving. 

What bread to serve with minestrone soup?

When it comes to pairings for minestrone soup, crusty Italian bread is perhaps the most classic and well-loved choice. 

This hearty bread complements the robust flavors of the soup with its crunchy texture and savory flavor. 

A dollop of butter or a drizzle of olive oil can make it even tastier. Sourdough bread is another excellent option, as its tanginess works well with the acidic taste of tomato in the soup. 

Focaccia – an Italian flatbread – also goes great with minestrone, particularly when topped with rosemary and sea salt, for a unique and delicious combination of flavors!

What wine to serve with minestrone soup?

When serving a classic minestrone soup, it is best to complement the flavors of the soup by pairing it with a light-bodied and low-tannin red wine. 

Wines like Pinot Noir, Sangiovese, Chianti, or Barbera will provide a nice contrast to the savory tomato base of the soup.

For those who prefer white wine, an unoaked Chardonnay or Sauvignon Blanc would be ideal for pairing. These white wines tend to have more bright citrus and herbal notes that will bring out the flavors of garlic and vegetables in the dish. 

For something a bit lighter in body, a dry Rose would also go nicely with minestrone soup.

Be sure to avoid strongly tannic wines like Cabernet Sauvignon when serving minestrone, as they can overpower the delicate flavors of the soup. Enjoy your meal!

What cuisine is associated with minestrone soup?

Minestrone soup is a classic Italian dish. It is traditionally made with a variety of vegetables, such as carrots, celery, tomatoes, and onions, and can include beans, pasta or rice. 

The soup often also contains herbs and spices like basil, oregano, bay leaves and garlic. 

Minestrone can be served with a sprinkle of Parmesan cheese or a drizzle of olive oil. 

This hearty vegetable-based soup has been enjoyed in Italy for centuries and is now widely popular around the world.

what to serve with minestrone soup for lunch

Minestrone soup is a hearty and comforting Italian soup that is made with vegetables, beans, and pasta. As such, it can stand as a full meal on its own, served with some crusty bread or garlic toast. 

You could also serve it alongside grilled sausages, roasted chicken, or pan-seared fish for a more substantial lunch. 

For added flavor, try topping the soup with freshly grated Parmesan cheese or drizzling some good-quality olive oil over the top. 

If you’re looking for something sweet to round out the meal, consider making quick focaccia rolls, fresh fruit salad, or a light citrus sorbet.

what to serve with minestrone soup for dinner

Minestrone soup is a hearty and flavorful meal that can be served with a variety of accompaniments. 

For an Italian-inspired dinner, try serving the soup with a side dish of crusty bread or garlic toast. 

A light green salad with fresh vegetables like tomatoes, cucumbers, onions, and peppers makes for a great accompaniment to the meal. 

If you’d like to add a bit of protein to your dinner, grilled shrimp or chicken make delicious additions. 

To finish off the meal, serve some freshly grated Parmesan cheese over the top of the soup. This simple yet flavorful dinner will be sure to satisfy everyone’s appetite!

Leave a Comment