What to Serve with Chicken Parmesan [11 Best Side Dishes]

Easy chicken parmesan serving ideas, from classic Caesar salad to Italian pea pasta, and homemade croutons to cauliflower salad. Discover what to serve with chicken parmesan today.

chicken parmigiana

The combination of savory fried chicken, hearty marinara, and melty cheese makes chicken parmesan one of the all-time classic Italian-American meals. Fans of this dish might not think there is anything that can make it better, but there are several side dishes that expertly complement its complex taste.

Any of the following chicken parmesan side dishes can become an instant hit when served alongside the breaded chicken breast classic.

Classic Caesar Salad

Classic Caesar Salad

The rich combination of garlic, oil, and anchovy give any Caesar salad a uniquely aromatic presentation that has captivated chefs and diners alike for generations. When served with chicken parmesan, the union of tastes is one of a kind.

Making the dressing only takes a few minutes and a handful of ingredients. Combining it with the chopped lettuce and some croutons creates the perfect canvas for a bit of fried chicken.

Garlic Bread

Garlic Bread with Cheese and Herbs on a Wooden Board

Many fans of chicken parmesan choose to make a meal out of the entree by itself. Nevertheless, any hearty marinara can always benefit from a thick slice of garlic bread.

Fortunately, this is a very simple side to prepare even for those who opt to bake their own loaf of bread. Toasting slices topped with garlic and butter under a broiler is a common method, whereas others prefer to wrap it in foil and bake it in the oven for a few minutes.

Romaine Lettuce

Romaine Lettuce in a wooden Board

If a full salad seems a bit too heavy to serve with chicken parmesan, perhaps it would be a better idea to pare the side down to one crucial ingredient.

Romaine lettuce grows on a sturdy stalk and stands up well when paired with hot dishes. Therefore, a few leaves can create a delightful accompaniment that won’t overshadow the flavor of the main dish.

Veggie Noodles

Veggie Noodles in a Serving  Bowl

While many people choose to serve chicken parmesan over a plate of spaghetti or other traditional pasta, substituting vegetables can make the meal a bit healthier while providing a new range of flavors to a traditional dish.

Any home cook should be able to master this side with just a bit of practice. Use a spiralizer or mandoline slicer to create a preferred shape before boiling the zucchini, carrots, or cucumber to the perfect consistency.

Broccoli Florets

Broccoli Florets

When looking for a side dish that will complement chicken parmesan without adding too many competing flavors, broccoli might be the right choice.

There are several ways to prepare this versatile veggie, such as steaming them for a few minutes and adding oil, garlic, and salt. The main objective is to cut a larger head of broccoli into the tender and inviting florets that almost everyone enjoys eating.

Wild Rice

Wild Rice with mushroom

Rice comes in many forms and can take on a wide array of flavors. When served with chicken parmesan, one of the most inviting varieties is wild rice.

Since it comes with a shell attached, some people are a bit intimidated by the thought of cooking wild rice. In reality, however, it is simple to boil a pot on the stove and leave it to simmer until the grains crack and reveal the tender inside of each grain.

Homemade Croutons

Homemade Croutons

Some people might associate croutons with ordinary bread that has been left to dry, but there are many ways to make this humble topping stand on its own as a worthy side to chicken parmesan.

All it takes to create this crunchy delight is a few slices of bread cut into cubes and topped with some oil or butter and spices. It is helpful to use bread that is a day or two past its freshness peak and a quick bake in the oven is enough to create a crispy and delectable addition to any chicken parmesan dish.

Cauliflower Salad

Cauliflower Salad in a White Serving Platter

Not every salad needs to include lettuce as its base. In fact, a fresh cauliflower salad can be the right choice to share a plate with chicken parmesan.

A bit of yogurt or mayo combined with red onion, mustard, and a splash of citrus can add all the best flavors to this interesting and complementary side dish. Toss in some bacon and cheese to the cooked and cooled cauliflower and this salad is ready to serve.

Hearty Pea Pasta

Hearty Pea Pasta

The Italian flavors of a garlic infused pea pasta can bring out the exquisite flavors of chicken parmesan in just about any situation. Even picky eaters who don’t think they like peas will likely find something to love about this flavorful side dish.

Creating homemade pasta dough doesn’t have to be an intimidating process and requires only some flour, egg, and salt. After boiling the pasta to tender perfection, toss in the peas and garlic sauce to create a complex and robust option to serve alongside any plate of chicken parmesan.

Cilantro Lemon Quinoa Salad

Cilantro Lemon Quinoa Salad

While quinoa has become a staple on dinner tables around the world in recent years, there are some ways to prepare this grain that might deliver some surprising and delicious results. Combining the fresh, crisp flavor of lemon and cilantro, for example, can offer a compelling addition to a chicken parmesan meal.

Adding some broth and a mix of fresh vegetables such as tomato and avocado contribute to the rich and robust aroma. Top it all off with a splash of lemon, some herbs and spices, and a bit of honey for a sweet layer is all it takes to create a complete dish. 

Roasted Brussels Sprouts

Roasted Brussels Sprouts with Bacon

While this side sometimes gets a bad rap from people who have had boring, mushy boiled sprouts, preparing them a different way makes them into a delicious addition to chicken parmesan.

Arranging the washed and trimmed Brussels sprouts onto a pan is a simple first step. From there, just top with some oil and salt, cook at a high temperature in the oven, and place them on a plate to create a complete and enjoyable dining experience.

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