Sixstoreys Logo

26 Best Side Dishes to Serve with Scallops [2024 Dinner Wins]

By: Shivani Choudhary
Updated On: February 19, 2024

Diving into a plate of perfectly seared scallops is one of life’s great culinary pleasures. These tender, delicate, and sweet morsels of the sea stand on their own as a centerpiece of any meal. But what could possibly make them even better? Companionship! When paired with the right side dish, scallops shift from fantastic to phenomenal in a heartbeat. That’s why I’ve lovingly compiled this list of the best side dishes to serve with scallops.

These palate-pleasers range from the familiar to the fancy and ensure that each bite is a beautiful harmony of flavors. After all, why should the main dish get all the glory? Surrounded by the right cast of sidekick dishes, every scallop dinner is destined to be memorable. Ready to find out more? Let’s dive right in!

Also Read: What Does Scallop Taste Like?

Best Vegetable Side Dishes to Serve with Scallops in 2024

When you pair scallops with the right vegetable accompaniments, you truly let nature do the talking. The sweet and delicate flavor of scallops is beautifully complemented by the earthiness of vegetables, making your meal not just delicious but incredibly balanced and healthy. Let’s explore some of the best vegetable sides that make scallops sing.

1. Green Beans Almondine

Green Beans Almondine - Best Side Dish to Serve with Scallops in 2024

The crunch of green beans and the nuttiness of almonds make this a fabulous pairing with the soft texture and delicate flavor of scallops. Green Beans Almondine brings a decadent French twist to an often overlooked vegetable. The dish is slightly crisp and deliciously buttery with the added textural appeal of sliced almonds. It’s a simple yet elegant choice that can instantly elevate your meal.

To make this dish perfect every time, ensure that your green beans are cooked just until they’re brightly colored and tender-crisp. The final sprinkle of toasted almonds and a squeeze of lemon juice adds the perfect crunch and tanginess that highlights the sweetness of the scallops.

2. Garlic Broccolini

Garlic Broccolini - Best Side Dish to Serve with Scallops in 2024

Garlic Broccolini is a favorite side dish for many due to its delicate flavor and high nutritional content. When sautéed with a bit of garlic, it becomes an ideal match for scallops. Lightly sautéed in olive oil, the broccolini takes on a sweet, slightly smoky flavor that pairs particularly well with the subtle, sweet taste of scallops. The touch of garlic adds a pungent flavor that perfectly balances the sweetness around the plate. Very little is needed to prepare this dish, yet the impact it provides is enormous.

3. Sautéed Brussels Sprouts

Sautéed Brussels Sprouts - Best Side Dish to Serve with Scallops in 2024

These aren’t your grandmother’s Brussels Sprouts: these are tender, flavorful, and perfectly seared to create a delightful side dish. The outer layer’s caramelization leads to a sweet and slightly crispy exterior, while the inside remains perfectly tender and juicy. The Brussels sprouts’ slight bitterness is a great counterbalance to the sweet, delicate flavor of scallops. Plus, you can easily jazz up this dish with a splash of balsamic vinegar or a sprinkle of Parmesan cheese – the choice is yours!

4. Creamed Spinach

Creamed Spinach - Best Side Dish to Serve with Scallops in 2024

Creamed Spinach is a classic side that matches wonderfully with scallops. This creamy, flavorful dish can provide a mouthful of luxury with each bite. It’s the perfect side to balance out the rich, sweet, and tender scallops. With its creamy texture and savory flavor, creamed spinach brings a pleasantly contrasting texture to your plate. A sprinkle of nutmeg or a little garlic can add depth to the spinach’s flavor, rounding off the creaminess and making it a more complex side dish to pair with your scallops.

5. Roasted Broccoli

Roasted Broccoli - Best Side Dish to Serve with Scallops in 2024

Roasting broccoli transforms this common vegetable into something truly outstanding. The high heat of roasting caramelizes the natural sugars in the broccoli, giving it a touch of sweetness that beautifully complements the scallops. Depending on your preference, it can be roasted to a crisp or just until it’s tender with a bit of bite.

Either way, the contrast of flavors and textures alongside the scallops creates a pleasurable eating experience. Plus, a drizzle of lemon juice or a dash of crushed red pepper flakes can add a bright or fiery kick, making each bite even more exciting.

6. Air Fryer Green Beans

Air Fryer Green Beans - Best Side Dish to Serve with Scallops in 2024

Crisp, tender, and full of flavor, Air Fryer Green Beans are an easy and quick side to pair with your scallops. The air fryer gives the green beans a lovely charred taste and a satisfyingly crunchy texture. Using the air fryer also retains the beans’ nutrients making this side dish not just delicious but also a healthy choice. A simple splash of lemon juice or a sprinkle of your favorite seasoning can easily heighten this dish’s flavor, making it a delightful side dish that will let your scallops shine.

Infused Flavor Side Dishes to Amplify Your Scallops in 2024

Just like a symphony that needs each note to harmonize perfectly, a great meal begs for an amalgamation of flavors. When we carefully select side dishes with bold, infused flavors, our scallops go from good to gourmet. Here are five infused flavor side dishes that will undoubtedly augment the delicate taste of your scallops.

1. Parmesan Crusted Carrots

Parmesan Crusted Carrots - Best Side Dish to Serve with Scallops in 2024

We’re kicking off our list with the underdog of dinner sides. Coated in a breadcrust mixture loaded with parmesan, these carrots promise a warming, earthy note to balance your scallop dishes. The hint of sweetness from the carrots dances beautifully with the salty crunch of the crust, creating a pleasing contrast to the sweetness of scallops. Plus, the vibrant orange hue adds a visually appealing touch to your plate.

2. Air Fryer Cauliflower

Air Fryer Cauliflower - Best Side Dish to Serve with Scallops in 2024

Anyone who’s eaten cauliflower knows that this vegetable’s bland reputation is underserved. When treated with care and placed in the hot spot of an air fryer, cauliflower transforms from mild to mighty. The high heat caramelizes the florets, deepening and amplifying their natural flavor. Serving air-fried cauliflower with scallops provides a crisp, smoky side that assures no flavor goes uninspired.

3. Sautéed Oyster Mushroom

Sautéed Oyster Mushroom - Best Side Dish to Serve with Scallops in 2024

Mushrooms, especially oyster ones, are like sponges for flavors. A quick sauté in a dash of butter and garlic infuses them with rich, umami-packed flavors. This earthy side dish enhances the scallops’ natural sweetness and texture. And for all you health-conscious eaters, this side is as nutritional as it is flavorful.

4. Brown Sugar Bacon Brussels Sprouts

Brown Sugar Bacon Brussels Sprouts - Best Side Dish to Serve with Scallops in 2024

Ah, Brussels sprouts, the vegetable we all dreaded as kids. Little did we know, we were doomed by poor cooking methods, not by the vegetables themselves. When kissed by the heat and tossed in brown sugar and crispy bacon pieces, Brussels sprouts turn into a delicacy. The additional sweetness complements scallops impeccably, while bacon bits add a savory note and a delightful crunch.

5. Garlicky Parmesan Sweet Potatoes

Garlicky Parmesan Sweet Potatoes - Best Side Dish to Serve with Scallops in 2024

Last on our list, but certainly not least, are garlicky parmesan sweet potatoes. This dish strikes a fine balance of sweet, salty, and umami flavor profiles. The sweet potatoes’ soft texture pairs fantastically with the crunchiness of the parmesan cheese and the kick of garlic brings a welcoming amount of heat. Serving these alongside scallops creates a meal where each bite is equally compelling and addictive.

Also Read: Best Sides For Brisket

Best Starchy Sides for a Hearty Scallops Dinner in 2024

While scallops can be light, there is an undeniable elegance in pairing them with a hearty, starchy dish. If you prefer your dinner to be on the robust side, these options are sure to satisfy your cravings.

1. Dauphinoise Potatoes

Dauphinoise Potatoes - Best Side Dish to Serve with Scallops in 2024

Straight from French cuisine, Dauphinoise Potatoes are a luxurious twist on the traditional potato side dish. The potatoes are thinly sliced and baked in a bath of cream and garlic, resulting in a rich, velvety side that melts in your mouth. The creaminess of this dish makes a comforting pair with the buttery texture of the scallops.

2. Mushroom Rice Pilaf

Mushroom Rice Pilaf - Best Side Dish to Serve with Scallops in 2024

As both a grain and a starchy vegetable, rice naturally beats the heartiness drum. This mushroom rice pilaf, with its earthy undertones and aromatic spices, makes a wholehearted case for a perfect scallop companion. The mushrooms lend depth to the rice while the pilaf style guarantees that every grain is a burst of flavor.

3. Butternut Squash Risotto

Butternut Squash Risotto - Best Side Dish to Serve with Scallops in 2024

What is more warming and satisfying than a bowl of creamy, velvety risotto? Especially when it’s loaded with the sweetness of butternut squash. The alluring contrast of sweet squash against savory risotto will aid in amplifying the delicate, sweet nature of scallops.

4. Lemon Butter Melting Potatoes

Lemon Butter Melting Potatoes - Best Side Dish to Serve with Scallops in 2024

Potatoes again, you may ask? These, dear reader, are no ordinary potatoes. They are melting potatoes, a side dish so delectably rich it will make your heart sing with joy. The zing of lemon and the richness of butter elevates these spuds to a heavenly level. The perfect addition to your scallop meal.

5. One-Pot Orzo with Peas and Parmesan

One-Pot Orzo with Peas and Parmesan - Best Side Dish to Serve with Scallops in 2024

This robust one-pot dish brings together orzo, a rice-shaped pasta, with sweet peas and pungent parmesan. The resulting side is a creamy, hearty companion that adds substantial flavor without overpowering the scallops. Each ingredient in this dish performs a small wonder, creating a glorious symphony of satisfying flavors. This side sums up the power of simplicity and its ability to create hearty, comforting food.

Best Creamy Side Dishes for Scallops in 2024

Scallops are incredibly versatile and can pair effortlessly with a variety of creamy sides. These sides provide a rich and indulgent contrast to the naturally sweet and mild flavor of scallops. Whether you’re a fan of traditional creamed spinach, are intrigued by the smoothness of easy sautéed spinach, or get excited by the thought of cheesy skillet Domino potatoes – there’s a creamy side dish just waiting to make your scallops dining experience even more exquisite.

1. Creamed Corn

Creamed Corn - Best Side Dish to Serve with Scallops in 2024

The mellow and milky creaminess of this side dish pairs wonderfully with the sweet and pleasing texture of scallops. Creamed corn is a classic choice, offering a different texture and flavor profile that perfectly contrasts and complements delicious scallops. This creamy, slightly crunchy and deliciously sweet corn assists in bringing out the best in your scallops. Whether for a weeknight dinner or a weekend soiree, creamed corn is an unconquerable ally for scallops.

2. Easy Sautéed Spinach

Easy Sautéed Spinach - Best Side Dish to Serve with Scallops in 2024

Spinach might have a reputation for being healthy, but boy, when sautéed with splashes of cream, it gets transformed into a decadent and flavorful side dish. The easiness lies not just in its preparation, but also in how easily it complements scallops. Sautéed spinach is hearty in its earthiness and when dressed with cream and herbs, it brings the much-loved comfort food feel to your scallop serving. The vibrant emerald green also adds a pop of color that makes your plate look as spectacular as it tastes.

3. Cheesy Skillet Domino Potatoes

Cheesy Skillet Domino Potatoes - Best Side Dish to Serve with Scallops in 2024

Unlike regular potato dishes, these cheesy skillet Domino potatoes are a revelation. Thinly sliced potatoes baked with a good dose of cheese in a skillet, it’s essentially au gratin potatoes, with an edge up. The crispy top layer gives way to buttery, cheesy potatoes, making it a dream pairing for subtly sweet scallops. Rich in flavor and satisfyingly creamy, this side dish stands its own beside sumptuously seared scallops.

Fresh and Zesty Salad Sides to Balance Out Scallops in 2024

Uniformly, salads perform a significant palliative function when paired as side dishes for delicious scallops. The crisp, acidic note of fresh greens and citrusy dressings create a meal that is well-rounded, healthy, and flavorful, adding a refreshing contrast to the rich scallops.

1. Avocado-Corn Salad

Avocado-Corn Salad - Best Side Dish to Serve with Scallops in 2024

When it comes to zesty salads, avocado-corn salad claims a high spot. Sweet corn, creamy avocado, and a pinch of cilantro tossed in a light lime vinaigrette make a powerhouse side dish. Crunchy, creamy, zesty and colorfully vibrant, this salad elevates indulgent scallop dishes by adding a delightful contrast in texture and a spark of freshness.

2. Kale Caesar Salad

- Best Side Dish to Serve with Scallops in 2024

A Kale Caesar salad is no simple salad, it’s a refreshing, flavorful side dish that is perfect for balance your scallop dishes. The heartiness of kale tossed in a tangy Caesar dressing provides a bright note to offset the sweet, delicate flavors of scallop. The crispy croutons add a sneaky crunch, making it a multi-dimensional side dish that supports and enhances your scallop centerpiece.

3. Arugula & Fennel Salad with Lemon Vinaigrette

Arugula & Fennel Salad with Lemon Vinaigrette - Best Side Dish to Serve with Scallops in 2024

Arugula and fennel, a pairing made in culinary heaven, make an excellent base for a refreshing, palate-cleansing salad. Tossed in a homemade lemon vinaigrette, this salad provides a distinct peppery flavor fused with a slightly sweet crunch of fennel. In conjunction with the buttery-soft scallops, the salad’s crispness and the dressing’s acidity balance the meal. This side dish not only pleases the palate, but it wins aesthetically too, making your plate an elegant showcase of alluring foods.

Unique and Unconventional Side Dishes for Scallops in 2024

When it comes to pairing scallops with sides, there’s no harm in sticking to the classics. But variety is, after all, the spice of life! So why not journey off the beaten path and venture into the world of unique and unconventional side dishes that will invigorate your meals and intrigue your guests? To help you take a walk on the culinary wild side, we’ve curated an extraordinary list of sides that are not just incredibly tasty, but also quite different from your everyday choices.

1. Roasted Mixed Mushroom and Garlic Farrotto

Roasted Mixed Mushroom and Garlic Farrotto - Best Side Dish to Serve with Scallops in 2024

Your dinners will be anything but ordinary with this side dish! Farrotto, a play on traditional risotto, uses farro, an ancient grain with a deliciously chewy texture and nutty flavor. Roasted mixed mushrooms and garlic add an earthy depth that pairs beautifully with the sweet, delicate flavor of scallops. To prepare, start by roasting your favorite mushrooms with fresh garlic cloves and a touch of olive oil in the oven for 20 minutes. Meanwhile, cook the farro in a pot of boiling salted water until tender. Finish by stirring the roasted mushrooms and garlic into the cooked farro and seasoning with salt, pepper, and a sprinkle of freshly grated parmesan.

2. Baked Barley Risotto with Spinach and Sun-Dried Tomatoes

Baked Barley Risotto with Spinach and Sun-Dried Tomatoes - Best Side Dish to Serve with Scallops in 2024

Adding sun-dried tomatoes and spinach to a hearty barley risotto gives a bright and refreshing contrast to the creamy scallops. Barley provides the chewy heft in this baked risotto and serves as a great carriage for the intense flavors of sun-dried tomatoes and spinach. Coupled with scallops, this side dish is an adventure for your taste buds.

Prepare it by slowly cooking barley in a mixture of vegetable broth and white wine. Once the barley is almost cooked, add chopped sun-dried tomatoes and spinach. Allow the mixture to absorb all the liquid, and then give it a good stir before transferring to a baking dish. Mix in some parmesan and mozzarella for a cheesy delight, and then bake until golden brown.

3. Fondant Potatoes

Fondant Potatoes - Best Side Dish to Serve with Scallops in 2024

If you’re looking to really push the boat out, bring on the Fondant Potatoes. These crispy, golden beauties are cooked in a mixture of butter and broth, creating a deliciously smooth and sumptuous inside, while keeping the outside crispy – a perfect contrast to the soft, delicate scallops.

Start by cutting potatoes into barrel-like shapes, sear them in a hot pan with some fresh butter and garlic. Then, transfer them into an oven with some good quality broth and let the oven work its magic. The end result is a potato that’s crisp on the outside, but melts in the mouth like a fine fondant.

4. Spanakopita Kale Salad

Spanakopita Kale Salad - Best Side Dish to Serve with Scallops in 2024

Light, tangy, and packed with flavor, a Spanakopita Kale Salad is an unconventional yet fantastic companion to scallops. The base of the salad is chopped kale, tossed with a dressing made of lemon juice, olive oil, and garlic. Fresh herbs like dill and parsley add brightness, while a crumble of feta cheese adds a creamy contrast. To bring in the “Spanakopita” element, mix in toasted chopped walnuts and serve it with some warmed Greek feta in puff pastry on top. It’s tangy, salty, and crunchy, and provides a refreshing contrast to the rich, sweet scallops.

Also Read: Best Side Dishes to Serve With Crab Cakes


With this array of the best side dishes to serve with scallops, you’re now equipped to turn any ordinary dinner into an exquisite dining experience. From indulgent, creamy sides to light, refreshing salads, this list has something to satisfy every palate. The key takeaway is that a well-paired side dish can enhance your main course, creating a balanced and delightful meal that will impress your guests and satisfy your taste buds.

So, don’t hesitate to experiment and mix and match these options depending on the occasion and your personal preference. Always remember, with the addition of love and the right ingredients, every meal can be gourmet.

Food Lover and Storyteller 🍽️✨ With a fork in one hand and a pen in the other, Shivani brings her culinary adventures to life through evocative words and tantalizing tastes. Her love for food knows no bounds, and she's on a mission to share the magic of flavors with fellow enthusiasts.
Related Articles from the same category:
This is a blog for Travellers & Travel Lovers
Copyright 2023 - All Rights Reserved.