Italian Dinner Party Menu

Italian Dinner Party Menu

Italian Dinner Party Menu

Are you planning a dinner party? One of our favorite themed dinner parties we call a Taste of Italy and it is one of our favorite nights. Below is an Italian dinner party menu that is sure to impress your guests. We hope that this Italian Dinner Party Menu post inspires you.

Italian Dinner Party Menu

Italian Dinner Party Menu Aperol Spritz

Aperol Spritz

Aperitivo [Welcome Drinks]

  • Aperol Spritz: This classic Italian cocktail is made with Aperol, prosecco, and club soda. It's light, refreshing, and perfect for starting the evening.
  • Sparkling Italian wine: Consider a Franciacorta.
  • Prosecco with fresh berries: A simple and elegant option for those who prefer something sparkling.
  • Selection of Italian wines: Offer both red and white varietals to pair with different courses.
  • Sangria with fresh fruit: Use red or white wine or sparkling wine. 
  • Non-alcoholic option: Sparkling water with fresh fruit and herbs.
Italian Dinner Party Menu Antipasto


Antipasti {Appetizer]

  • Bruschetta: Bruschetta is a simple but delicious dish made with toasted bread, olive oil, garlic, and tomatoes. You can also add other toppings, such as mozzarella cheese, prosciutto, or basil.
  • Bruschetta Bar: Set up an assortment of toppings like chopped tomatoes, basil, garlic, Caprese salad, roasted peppers, and tapenade for guests to customize their bruschetta on toasted bread.
  • Grilled Artichokes with Lemon Dill Aioli: Tender artichoke hearts are a delicious and unique starter.
  • Prosciutto e Melon with Burrata: A classic Italian appetizer that is both simple, elegant, and always a crowd-pleaser. It's made with thinly sliced prosciutto and sweet melon.
  • Stuffed Cherry Peppers with Ricotta and Herbs: A light and flavorful bite-sized appetizer.
  • Caprese SaladThis salad is made with fresh mozzarella cheese, tomatoes, and basil. It's a classic Italian dish that is both refreshing and flavorful.
  • Grilled Vegetables: Grilled vegetables are a healthy and flavorful way to start your meal. You can grill any type of vegetable that you like, such as eggplant, zucchini, peppers, and onions.
  • Marinated olives and artichoke hearts: A classic Italian staple.
  • Fritti: Fried vegetables like zucchini, eggplant, and arancini (rice balls).
  • Vegetarian options: Marinated grilled vegetables, stuffed peppers, pan-fried polenta with herbs.
  • Selection of cured meats and cheeses: Prosciutto, salami, mortadella, mozzarella, pecorino, gorgonzola.
Italian Dinner Party Menu risotto rice with fungi

Risotto Funghi

Primo [First Course]

  • Pasta: Choose a classic like spaghetti pomodoro (tomato sauce), Cacio e pepe (cheese and pepper), or carbonara. For a twist, try lasagna, risotto, or gnocchi.
  • Soup: Minestrone or lentil soup are hearty and warming options.
  • Vegetarian option: Pasta with pesto, vegetable ragu, or ricotta and spinach filling.
  • Pasta Primavera: This pasta dish is made with fresh vegetables, such as peas, asparagus, and carrots. It's a light and flavorful dish that is perfect for a spring or summer meal.
  • Risotto: Risotto is a creamy Italian rice dish that can be made with a variety of ingredients, such as mushrooms, seafood, or vegetables.
  • Lasagna: A classic Italian dish that is always a crowd-pleaser. You can make lasagna from scratch, or use a store-bought version.
  • Gnocchi: Gnocchi are small, potato dumplings that can be served in a variety of sauces. They are a hearty and comforting dish that is perfect for a winter meal.
  • Cacio e Pepe: A simple yet delicious pasta dish made with pecorino romano cheese and black pepper.
  • Pappardelle with Ragu Bolognese: A rich and satisfying meat sauce paired with wide, flat noodles. Offer vegetarian options like lentil Bolognese or a creamy Alfredo sauce.
  • Risotto with Butternut Squash and Sage: A seasonal and flavorful risotto dish perfect for colder months.
  • Ravioli filled with ricotta and spinach in a Pomodoro sauce: A classic and light pasta option.
  • Gnocchi with Gorgonzola and walnuts: Creamy and decadent gnocchi tossed in a flavorful sauce.
Italian Dinner Party Menu osso buco veal shank


Secondo [Main Course]

  • Meat: Chicken piccata, Ossobuco (braised veal shanks), roasted lamb chops, or Bistecca alla Fiorentina (thick-cut grilled steak).
  • Fish: Baked cod with lemon and herbs, pan-seared scallops, or salmon with fennel and orange.
  • Vegetarian option: Vegetable lasagna, eggplant parmesan, or portobello mushroom steaks.
  • Chicken Piccata: Thinly sliced chicken breasts pounded thin, dredged in flour, and sauteed in a lemon-butter sauce. A light and flavorful main course that is perfect for a spring menu.
  • Chicken SaltimboccaThis dish is made with chicken breasts that are wrapped in prosciutto and sage. It is then pan-fried until cooked through.
  • Branzino al Limone: This dish is made with sea bass that is baked with lemon and herbs. It is a light and flavorful dish that is perfect for a summer meal.
  • Saltimbocca alla Romana: Veal scaloppine topped with prosciutto and sage, cooked in white wine and butter.
  • Ossobuco: Ossobuco is a braised veal shank dish that is typically served with saffron risotto. It is a rich and flavorful dish that is perfect for a special occasion.
  • Pollo al Mattone: Brick-pressed chicken is simple yet incredibly flavorful.
  • Eggplant Parmesan: A vegetarian option loved by meat-eaters and vegetarians alike.

Italian Main Course for Dinner Party

Italian Dinner Party Menu Eggplant Parmesan

Eggplant Parmesan

Contorno [Side Dish]

  • Roasted Vegetables: Roasted vegetables are a healthy and flavorful side dish that is perfect for any meal. You can roast any type of vegetable that you like, such as broccoli, cauliflower, carrots, and potatoes.
  • Roasted Asparagus: Simple and delicious, roasted asparagus is a perfect side dish for any Italian meal.
  • Roasted Broccoli with Garlic and Parmesan: Simple and healthy, but oh-so-good.
  • Sautéed Green Beans with Garlic and Almonds: Another light and flavorful side.
  • Roasted Brussels Sprouts with Balsamic Glaze: A delicious and slightly sweet option.
  • Grilled Polenta: Grilled polenta is a creamy and flavorful side dish that is perfect for pairing with meat dishes.
  • Garlic Bread: No Italian meal is complete without garlic bread! Serve it warm and crusty for your guests to enjoy.
Italian Dinner Party Menu Grilled polenta

Grilled Polenta

Insalata [Salad]

  • Arugula Salad: Shaved Parmesan cheese and balsamic vinegar dressing. You can dress it with olive oil, balsamic vinegar lemon juice, and salt and pepper. A simple and refreshing salad that's perfect for cleansing the palate after the main course.
  • Insalata Mista: A simple green salad with a vinaigrette dressing.
  • Green salad: A simple green salad is a refreshing accompaniment to any main course. You can dress the salad with a simple vinaigrette or a more complex dressing.
  • Insalata Caprese: A classic Italian salad with tomatoes, mozzarella, and basil.
Italian Dinner Party Menu Insalata Caprese

Insalata Caprese

Dolce [Dessert]

  • Tiramisu: Tiramisu is a classic Italian dessert that is made with ladyfingers, coffee, mascarpone cheese, and cocoa powder. It is a rich and decadent dessert that is sure to please your guests.
  • Panna Cotta: Panna cotta is a light and creamy Italian dessert that is made with cream, milk, sugar, and gelatin. It is a refreshing dessert that is perfect for any time of year.
  • Gelato or Sorbetto: Gelato is a type of Italian ice cream that is denser and richer than traditional ice cream. It is a delicious and refreshing dessert that is perfect for a hot summer day. Sorbetto is a frozen blend of fruit, water, and sugar, (sometimes wine or liquor) and it's one of the oldest and most traditional ways of making dessert.
  • Chocolate Truffles: Homemade or store-bought, these decadent bites are always a hit.
tiramisu on a brown plate in a cafe a piece of cake


Formaggi e Frutta [Cheese and Fruit]

  • Selection of Italian cheeses: Offer a variety of hard and soft cheeses like Parmigiano Reggiano, Gorgonzola, and Pecorino Romano.
  • Seasonal fruits: Fresh grapes, figs, pears, or berries are perfect accompaniments.
Italian Dinner Party Menu Formaggi e Frutta

Formaggi e Frutta

Digestivo [After Dinner Drink]

  • Limoncello: Limoncello is a lemon liqueur that is typically served after dinner. It is a sweet and refreshing way to end your meal.
  • Grappa: Grappa is a grape brandy that is typically served after dinner. A brandy made from grape skins and seeds. It is a strong and flavorful drink that is perfect for those who enjoy a good digestif.
  • Sambuca: An anise-flavored liqueur.
  • Amaretto: An almond-flavored liqueur that is sweet and smooth.
  • Bailey's Irish Cream: Perfect sipping drink for those wanting something chocolatey.
Italian Dinner Party Menu Limoncello


Caffe [Coffee]

A strong, concentrated coffee is the perfect way to end the evening.

Italian Dinner Party Menu Espresso



  • When planning your menu, consider the season and your guests' dietary restrictions.
  • Choose dishes that are seasonal and fresh.
  • Offer smaller portions of multiple courses instead of one large one.
  • Don't be afraid to experiment with different flavors and ingredients, but be sure to choose dishes that you are confident making.
  • Set the mood with Italian music and decorations.
  • Serve the courses in the traditional Italian order: aperitivo, antipasti, primo, secondo, contorno, dolce, digestivo, and caffè.
  • Most importantly, relax and enjoy your time with your guests!

Italian Dinner Party Menu

Dinner Party Themes

Italian Dinner Party Menu

You can mix and match courses, choose different dishes, and adjust the menu to your liking. This is just a suggestion, of course, and you can adjust the menu to fit your preferences and dietary restrictions. We hope that this Italian Dinner Party Menu post inspires you.

Easy Appetizers for Italian Dinner Party

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