If you’re looking for the perfect side dish to complement your mac and cheese, you’ve come to the right place. In this article, I list five of the most popular side dishes that pair perfectly with mac and cheese.
In a rush? Here’s the short answer:
The best side dishes to serve with mac and cheese are bacon-roasted Brussels sprouts or garlic asparagus. Some good center-piece options are chicken parmesan or fish tacos. For something different, try pork chops with applesauce or Mexican quinoa bowls.
Ready? Let’s jump right in.
Bacon Roasted Brussels Sprouts
You can never go wrong with bacon-roasted Brussels sprouts when serving mac and cheese. This recipe will show you how easy it is to make them in your kitchen without fancy tools or ingredients!
This dish only takes 20 minutes to prepare; it uses basic pantry staples such as olive oil, salt, pepper, garlic powder, nutmeg (optional), everyday shallots, and bacon! And if you don’t have any on hand, try substituting smoked salmon for an even more flavorful result!
Asparagus is nutritious and adds a light and fresh flavor to balance the creaminess of mac and cheese. This garlic asparagus dish helps give vegetables more character—you won’t be disappointed!
This recipe requires minimal prep work; all you need are some stalks of fresh asparagus spears (not frozen), butter, and some seasonings like minced garlic, salt, pepper, and lemon zest (optional). You can also use dried herbs such as oregano or thyme instead of fresh ones for an even quicker prep time!
Say goodbye to basic oven-baked chicken breasts when serving macaroni and cheese–hello, chicken parmesan! This Italian classic is full of flavor that perfectly complements cheesy macaroni pasta and tomato sauce while still being simple enough to make at home.
This delicious dish uses pounded thin chicken breasts, allowing it to cook quickly—it only takes half an hour from start to finish.
All you need is some breadcrumbs mixed with Parmesan cheese and eggs beaten lightly in another bowl to create the ‘coat’ around the outside before frying until golden brown – what could be easier?!
If you want something heavier than plain old baked fish but still light enough for a weeknight dinner, these fish tacos might be just what you need besides your creamy macaroni gratin.
Soft tacos made from corn tortillas wrap around beer batter fried cod nuggets for a diner-style experience without leaving your kitchen.
Don’t forget about adding crunchy toppings like lettuce or cabbage topped up with freshly prepared salsa verde (or store-bought!), too – yum!
Pork Chops & Applesauce
Who would have thought pork chops paired so well with creamy sauces like those used in mac & cheese? When cooked correctly, they become tender while retaining their savory flavor, which makes them incredibly delicious here – plus, they’re one less convenience food put into your body which is always a bonus, right??
Don’t forget to make some homemade applesauce, too, because it adds a delicate sweetness that marries wonderfully well against the sharp cheddar in many variations of everyone’s favorite childhood mealtime staple.
Mexican Quinoa Bowls
Are you looking for something filling yet healthy?
Then look no further than these tasty Mexican quinoa bowls made using protein-rich quinoa cooked in vegetable broth seasoned with spices like chili powder & cumin, then tossed together diced tomatoes, sweet corn & black beans until combined nicely before being served alongside ceramic ramekins filled with ooey gooey steaming hot bubbly cheesy pasta dishes…YUMMY!!
Green Beans Sauteed in Olive Oil
Green beans are a classic side dish that goes well with most dinners. Try cooking them with olive oil and garlic to make this easy meal even better.
This will add flavor to your side dish that pairs perfectly with mac and cheese. All it takes is about 10 minutes of cook time, and you’ll have delicious green beans ready to enjoy!
Roasted Brussels Sprouts Salad
For a light, yet flavorful side dish perfect for any night of the week, try making roasted Brussels sprouts salad. The combination of salty bacon bits and sweet dates makes this dish stand out from all the rest.
The roasted Brussels sprouts also provide a nice crunchy texture that pairs perfectly with creamy mac and cheese. Serve it up warm or cold—either way is delicious!
Steamed Broccoli Florets
Broccoli can be a great side dish when appropriately cooked — plus, it adds an extra hit of nutritious veggies into your meal as well! Try steaming up some broccoli florets until they’re bright green, then serve them on the side alongside your mac and cheese.
If you’d like, you can also dress them with some butter or olive oil before serving. Either way, they’re sure to be a crowd-pleaser!
Garlic-Parmesan Roasted Asparagus
If you want something full of flavor without being too heavy, garlic-parmesan roasted asparagus is the way to go.
It’s quick (roast for 15 minutes!), packs tons of garlicky parmesan goodness thanks to two different types of cheese — shredded parmesan and grated Parmigiano Reggiano — plus its low carb, so everyone can enjoy it without worrying about their waistlines afterward!
Tomato & Cucumber Salad
For something straightforward yet still tasty enough to serve alongside your macaroni & cheese, try making a tomato & cucumber salad dressed simply in olive oil & vinegar with maybe some herbs like oregano or basil if you’d like.
The acidity from the tomatoes & cucumber cut through the heaviness of the macaroni while adding some vibrant color& crunch into the mix too!