Ravioli is Italy’s ultimate gift to humanity. There’s nothing quite like it. It’s made up of al dente pasta squares that literally ooze out rich and flavorful filling when you cut through them.
And as if that isn’t spectacular enough, the pasta is also coated in a perfect broth or sauce and sprinkled with lots of nutty cheese.
While I think this dish is perfection in a bowl, there are several ways to enhance your ravioli dining experience even further. Serve your ravioli with one or more of these side dishes, and you’re guaranteed to have a meal that you’ll never forget.
From grilled veggies to the perfect loaf of bread, here are eight of the most fantastic dishes to serve with ravioli. Bon appetit!
1. Italian Bread
I mean, you’re already serving an Italian entrée, so might as well go Italian all the way, right?
What ravioli needs is soft spongy bread to soak up all that beautiful sauce. You can always head to your local bakery to get a loaf of Focaccia or Ciabatta.
But if you’re looking for a bit of adventure, you can make your own own Italian bread! All you need is flour, sugar, salt, and active dry yeast.
2. Cipollini Onions
These Italian veggies literally mean “little onions,” but these tiny guys are bursting with big flavors. Cippolini onions are the smaller, flatter, and paler versions of regular onions. They’re also sweeter, making them a wonderful candidate for roasting.
Cipollini onions become incredibly caramelized and tender when roasted in balsamic vinegar or sauteed in butter. They won’t give off any of that strong, pungent flavor that their American cousins usually have.
And, when paired with ravioli, you get a harmony of sweet and savory flavors that your tastebuds will surely enjoy.
3. Broccoli Rabe
Also known as rapini, this vegetable is a lot like broccoli but is edible all the way – from its stems to its leaves to its buds.
It tastes especially fantastic with butternut squash ravioli. So if that’s what you’re making, you better have some broccoli rabe ready!
Butternut squash ravioli has subtle and sweet flavors, so you’ll want to pair it with something bold and savory. And a nice serving of broccoli rabe with roasted peppers and tomatoes, coated in a romesco sauce fits the bill perfectly.
If you’re making some drool-worthy lobster ravioli, then you have to pair it with polenta. Lobster longs for the company of corn, so serve this creamy and buttery cornmeal dish with your ravioli. You won’t regret it!
5. Asparagus Wrapped In Prosciutto
Sometimes what this rich and al dente pasta needs is something crispy and savory. Perfectly steamed asparagus is already delicious, but wrap them in smoky prosciutto and you’ve got a rich, savory combo. Serve this crunchy and flavorful dish with your ravioli for a well-rounded meal.
6. Oven-Roasted Vegetables
Oven-roasted vegetables may be simple, but they give such rustic and sweet flavors that go so well with ravioli, especially ones with thinner broths and sauces.
If you’re making ravioli with light basil or tomato sauce, or a veggie or chicken stock, serve them with a side of beautifully roasted vegetables.
The best candidates for roasting are root crops. Think carrots, sweet potatoes, beets, turnips, and parsnips.
Roasting these veggies bring out their natural sweetness, so it’s really the best way to cook them. Plus, it’s a breeze to make. Just coat them in olive oil, salt, and pepper, and oven roast them for 15 to 20 minutes. You’ll know they’re done when you see some charred bits.
Here’s an extra tip: be sure to slice your vegetables in uniform sizes. This will ensure that they cook evenly, so you won’t be left with undercooked or overcooked pieces.
And don’t overcrowd the baking sheet. Give each piece a bit of space, otherwise, they will steam, not roast.
7. Frico Chips With Zucchini
To say that frico chips are irresistible is an understatement. If you’re not familiar with this snack, it’s blocks of Parmesan cheese that’s fried or toasted to perfection.
This snack is already delightfully addictive, but you know what makes them even more scrumptious? Infusing them with zucchini!
Combine these bite-size snacks with ravioli and you’ve got a perfect combo. You really can never go wrong when combining soft and crunchy textures. Plus, cheese and pasta always make an excellent pair.
8. Garlic Bread
I know I’ve already mentioned bread, but what can I say? Bread really goes well with ravioli – it’s a match made in heaven!
So, apart from some Italian bread, some good old-fashioned garlic bread works wonderfully with ravioli as well. You can never go wrong with pasta plus butter, garlic, and cheese. No matter what your sauce and filling are, these three elements will complement them well.
Plus, it’s incredibly easy to prepare. Pop it in the oven and it’ll ready in minutes.