An Italian-inspired meal is often centered around a big plate of pasta or a piece of meat. Pasta is arguably one of the world's best culinary inventions (uh hello, we wrote an entire issue on it), but if you're in the mood for something not-so-heavy, some of our best salads feature many of the same Italian ingredients. It doesn't get more refreshing than a classic caprese: a simple salad of high-quality tomatoes, burrata, basil, olive oil and balsamic. Or if you're looking to stick with hearty starches, one of our favorite side dishes is risotto, which is much easier to make than its reputation suggests. Whether you're looking for a vegetable to accompany your pasta or a starchy side for your main course, our best Italian side dish recipes have something for everyone.