We all know the feeling of staring into an open fridge, trying to will a meal into existence.
You rummage around, pulling out half-eaten condiments and that one wilted green onion from two weeks ago.
Suddenly, inspiration strikes: you can have baked beans for dinner.
But what goes with baked beans?
Never fear, we’ve got you covered with 14 delicious side dishes that will elevate your baked beans to new heights.
Whether you’re looking for something light and fresh or rich and savory, there’s sure to be a dish on this list that will tickle your taste buds.
And who knows? Once you’ve found the perfect pairing, baked beans might just become your new go-to meal.
What to Serve with Baked Beans? Try These 14 Sides
1. Grilled Corn Salad
Grilled corn salad is the perfect summer dish – it’s light, fresh, and can be easily elevated to make a delicious meal.
The key to a great grilled corn salad is to use fresh corn that has been properly cooked.
Corn that is overcooked will be mushy and lack flavor, while undercooked corn will be tough and difficult to eat.
The best way to cook corn for a grilled salad is to grill it on medium-high heat until it is slightly charred.
This gives the corn a nice smoky flavor that pairs well with the other ingredients in the salad.
Once the corn is cooked, you can add any other vegetables or fruits that you like.
Grilled onions, tomatoes, and avocado all make great additions to this dish.
To give the salad some more flavor, you can also add a dressing or sauce of your choice.
A simple vinaigrette or balsamic glaze are both excellent options.
You can also top the salad with crumbled feta or goat cheese for an extra bit of richness.
2. Cucumber Tomato Avocado Salad
This Cucumber Tomato Avocado Salad is the perfect side dish for a summer BBQ.
It’s full of fresh flavors, and the creamy avocado dressing ties everything together.
The salad has a great mix of taste and texture, with the sweetness of the tomatoes, the creaminess of the avocado, and the crunch of the cucumbers.
I like to add a little bit of chopped red onion for some extra flavor and crunch.
To elevate this dish, I would recommend adding some grilled chicken or shrimp.
The protein will make it a more filling meal, and the smoky flavor from the grill will complement the freshness of the salad.
3. Broccoli Salad
If you’re looking for a delicious and healthy side dish to serve with your baked beans, look no further than broccoli salad.
This dish is packed with flavor and nutrients, and it’s easy to make.
The key to making a great broccoli salad is to choose the right ingredients.
The best broccoli salads have a mix of textures and flavors, so be sure to include some crunchy elements like nuts or seeds, as well as something salty like cheese or bacon.
And of course, don’t forget the dressing.
A creamy or tangy dressing will really bring the flavors of the salad together.
- Add some fruit: diced apples or grapes are a great way to add sweetness and color to the salad.
- Try using a different type of cheese: cheddar, goat cheese, or even blue cheese would all be delicious in this salad.
- Make it more substantial by adding cooked chicken or shrimp.
- Use massaged kale instead of broccoli for a healthier option.
4. Kale Salad
Kale salad is a great way to get your greens in, and it can be a very tasty and satisfying dish when done right.
The key to a good kale salad is to massage the kale so that it breaks down and becomes more tender.
This will make it easier to eat and also help to bring out the flavor of the kale.
Another important tip is to use a strong dressing that will coat the kale leaves and give them some flavor.
A simple vinaigrette or even just olive oil and lemon juice can work well.
Finally, top your salad with some roasted nuts or seeds for a little crunch.
Kale salad can be a great side dish or even a main course, depending on how you make it.
If you want to make it more of a meal, add in some protein, like grilled chicken or tofu.
You could also add in some grains like quinoa or farro.
And don’t forget the toppings.
Nuts, seeds, cheese, dried fruit, and avocado all make great additions to kale salad.
5. Quinoa Salad
A quinoa salad is a delicious and healthy dish that can be enjoyed all year round.
The quinoa is cooked in water or broth and then cooled, before being mixed with other ingredients such as vegetables, fruits, nuts, and herbs.
The salad can be served cold or warm, depending on your preference.
The texture of quinoa is slightly chewy and the flavor is nutty and earthy.
To elevate the dish, you can add different combinations of ingredients to create different flavors.
For example, adding roasted almonds, dried cranberries, and goat cheese will give the salad a sweet and tangy flavor.
Or, you can add grilled chicken, avocado, and black beans for a more filling and hearty salad.
6. Roasted Sweet Potatoes
Looking for a delicious side dish to go with your baked beans? Roasted sweet potatoes are the perfect option.
Sweet potatoes are naturally sweet, so they pair well with the savory flavor of baked beans.
They also have a creamy texture that contrasts nicely with the crunchy texture of roasted beans.
To take your roasted sweet potatoes to the next level, try roasting them with some fresh herbs like rosemary or thyme.
You can also add a little bit of spice by tossing them with some chili powder before roasting.
For an extra touch of sweetness, drizzle them with honey or maple syrup before serving.
7. Fried Plantains
Fried plantains are a delicious and easy side dish that can be made in just a few minutes.
Plantains are a type of banana that is cooked before it is eaten.
Fried plantains have a soft, creamy texture with a slightly sweet taste.
There are a few things you can do to elevate this dish.
First, try serving it with a dipping sauce such as sour cream or salsa.
You can also top it with shredded cheese or chopped green onions.
If you want to make it more of a meal, you can add some protein, such as chicken, shrimp, or pork.
Fried plantains are best served hot and fresh out of the pan.
However, they can also be made ahead of time and reheated in the oven or microwave.
8. Machaca Con Huevos
Machaca con huevos is a Mexican dish typically made with shredded beef, eggs, and vegetables.
It’s a hearty and filling meal that is perfect for any time of day.
The beef is usually slow-cooked until it is tender and then shredded, making it very flavorful.
The eggs are usually scrambled and added to the mix, along with some chopped onions and peppers.
The taste of machaca con huevos is savory and filling, with a slight kick from the onions and peppers.
The texture of the dish is moist and rich, due to the slow-cooked beef.
There are many ways to elevate this dish and make it even more delicious.
One way is to add some freshly grated cheese on top.
Another way is to serve it with some warm tortillas on the side.
And finally, if you want a bit of a crunch, you can add some chopped-up crispy bacon or chorizo on top.
9. Carne Asada
Carne Asada is a delicious and hearty dish that is perfect for any occasion.
The taste and texture of the meat are unparalleled, and the dish can be easily elevated with a few simple tips.
When it comes to the taste of Carne Asada, there is nothing quite like it.
The flavorful and juicy meat is cooked to perfection, making it one of the most sought-after dishes among foodies.
The texture of the meat is also incredibly tender, making it an easy favorite for anyone who tries it.
If you’re looking to elevate your Carne Asada dish, there are a few simple tips that can make all the difference.
First, be sure to use high-quality ingredients.
The better the quality of the meat and other ingredients, the better the dish will taste.
Second, don’t be afraid to experiment with different seasonings and spices.
A little bit of creativity can go a long way in elevating the flavor of your Carne Asada.
Finally, cook the meat over high heat to get that perfect sear on the outside while keeping the inside nice and juicy.
10. Chicken Tinga
Chicken Tinga is a dish that originates from Mexico.
It is made with shredded chicken that is cooked in a sauce made of tomatoes, onions, and chipotle peppers.
The dish is usually served with tortillas, rice, and beans.
The taste of Chicken Tinga is slightly spicy and very flavorful.
The chicken is tender and moist, and the sauce is thick and rich.
The dish can be made as mild or as spicy as you like, depending on the type of peppers used.
There are several ways to elevate this dish and make it even more special.
One way is to use fresh, homemade tortillas instead of store-bought ones.
Another way is to add some freshly chopped cilantro to the dish before serving.
Lastly, you could serve the Chicken Tinga with a side of refried beans or black beans.
11. Cochinita Pibil
Cochinita Pibil is a traditional dish from the Yucatan Peninsula of Mexico that is typically made with pork.
The pork is marinated in a spice blend that includes achiote and then slow-cooked until it is fall-apart tender.
This dish has a deep, rich flavor that is well-balanced by the acidity of the orange juice and vinegar in the marinade.
The texture of the pork is also extremely tender and juicy.
There are a few ways that you can elevate this dish and make it even more special.
One way is to serve it with fresh, handmade tortillas.
Another way is to top it with pickled red onions and cilantro.
Or, you could serve it with a side of black beans.
12. Red Posole
Red posole is a delicious, hearty dish that is perfect for colder weather.
The dish is made with pork, hominy, and red chiles, and it has a rich, savory flavor.
The texture of the dish is also unique and satisfying – the hominy provides a bit of chewiness, while the pork is tender and juicy.
There are a few things you can do to elevate your red posole and make it even more delicious.
First, be sure to use high-quality ingredients.
The better the pork and chiles you use, the better your dish will be.
Second, take the time to slow cook the dish so that all of the flavors have a chance to meld together.
And finally, don’t be afraid to experiment with different garnishes – cilantro, lime juice, and diced avocado are all great options.
13. Albondigas Soup
Albondigas soup is a delicious, hearty dish that is perfect for cold winter nights.
The soup is made with beef and pork meatballs, vegetables, and a flavorful broth.
The meatballs are tender and the vegetables are cooked to perfection.
This soup is sure to warm you up and fill you up.
One of the best things about albondigas soup is the variety of textures and flavors.
The beef and pork meatballs are tender and juicy, while the vegetables are soft and delicate.
The broth is rich and flavorful, with just the right amount of spice.
This soup is truly a comfort food that will leave you feeling satisfied.
There are a few tips that can help you elevate this dish.
First, be sure to use quality ingredients.
The better the beef and pork, the better the flavor of the soup will be.
Second, don’t be afraid to experiment with different herbs and spices.
Adding a bit of cumin or chili powder can really give the soup a kick.
Finally, make sure the vegetables are properly cooked.
They should be soft but not mushy.
14. Beef Barbacoa
Beef barbacoa is a Mexican dish that’s typically made with slow-cooked beef.
The beef is usually seasoned with a blend of chili peppers, cumin, and other spices, and it often has a smoky flavor from being cooked over an open fire.
Barbacoa is often served with tortillas, rice, or beans, and it can be used as a filling for tacos or burritos.
One of the best things about beef barbacoa is its rich, complex flavor.
The beef is succulent and fork-tender, and the spice blend gives it a nice heat that’s balanced out by the sweetness of the peppers.
The smoky flavor from the cooking process also adds another layer of depth to the dish.
If you’re looking for ways to elevate your beef barbacoa, there are a few things you can do.
Try using different types of meat such as pork shoulder or lamb.
You can also add more vegetables to the mix, such as corn or diced potatoes.
Finally, don’t be afraid to experiment with the spice blend to find a combination that you love.
In conclusion, there are a variety of delicious side dishes that go great with baked beans.
Give these sides a try at your next cookout or family gathering.
And if you’re looking for more recipe inspiration, be sure to explore our other blog posts for more great ideas.
- 1. Grilled Corn Salad
- 2. Cucumber Tomato Avocado Salad
- 3. Broccoli Salad
- 4. Kale Salad
- 5. Quinoa Salad
- 6. Roasted Sweet Potatoes
- 7. Fried Plantains
- 8. Machaca Con Huevos
- 9. Carne Asada
- 10. Chicken Tinga
- 11. Cochinita Pibil
- 12. Red Posole
- 13. Albondigas Soup
- 14. Beef Barbacoa
- Select your favorite sides from the list above.
- Prepare the side dish according to the recipe instructions.
- If you're short on time, some of these can be made ahead of time and reheated before serving.
- Serve and enjoy!