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Not Sure How To Serve Veggies With Dinner? Try These Easy & *Delicious* Veggie Sides


There is something about making a dinner with actual vegetable sides that feels so grown-up to me. While I grew up eating things like meatloaf, mashed potatoes, and green beans as a very normal dinner, my kids are having a very different kind of food experience — lots of bowls, sheet-pan meals, and entire dinners baked into one dish. And when I do try to serve them some veggies, I find myself stumped. What on earth makes a good vegetable side dish for dinner? How can we make veggies for dinner that are slightly more complex than just steaming a bag of broccoli, but don’t take a Thanksgiving-casserole level of work?

Luckily, vegetables are pretty versatile. So whether you have picky eaters who prefer their cauliflower coated in cheese or those who love the taste of Brussels sprouts and bacon, you can do a lot with your favorite veg. These vegetable sides are actually delicious, and most of them don’t take a lot of extra work. So if you’re serving pasta, some kind of chicken dish, or just want something extra to throw into the bowl you’re making, these vegetable sides are must-trys. They might even become the star of your family’s dinner plate.

1

Brussels Sprouts Gratin

I know there are tons of kids (and adults!) out there who don’t like Brussels sprouts, so perhaps this recipe for Brussels sprouts gratin would change their mind. With shallots, parmesan cheese, and gruyere cheese, this Yummly recipe would be an absolutely delicious side for any kind of pork or chicken dish. It is a little more labor-intensive than some other dishes, and includes both roasting the sprouts and then coating them with the cheese sauce and baking, but it’s 100% worth it.

2

Charred Broccoli

Look, there’s broccoli and then there’s broccoli, and this recipe is for the latter. This vegetable is super adaptable, so if you’re tired of just steaming another frozen bag of the stuff, try this recipe for charred broccoli. This is a great dinner side dish, especially with pasta.

3

Mashed Sweet Potatoes

Sweet potatoes deserve more than a yearly appearance at the Thanksgiving table. Take this classic root veggie and turn into these incredible mashed sweet potatoes for an easy, super-filling, and perfect veggie side for the whole family.

4

Roasted Sweet Potatoes & Onions

Another easy way to use sweet potatoes for dinner is to roast them up with some onions. This recipe is super quick and can go with everything from beef and chicken to roasts and pork. This is even great if you’re doing something like burgers or hot dogs for dinner.

5

Mushroom Rice Pilaf

Mushrooms get a bad rap, but I think this recipe for mushroom rice pilaf from A Spicy Perspective could change everything. With tons of herbs, buttery onions, and lots of fluffy rice, this is a delicious veggie side dish that translates beautifully into lunch leftovers.

6

Instant Pot Steamed Broccoli

OK, if you love broccoli but really don’t want to try anything new (or need an easy way to introduce it to your kids), try this recipe for steamed broccoli. It takes just two minutes in your Instant Pot, and then you can add butter, salt, parmesan, whatever you want.

7

Garlic Ranch Potatoes

I love a good potato side dish, and these garlic ranch potatoes featured on Yummly are next on my list to try. The roasting makes them just crunchy enough in all the right places, and the flavor is just so good. These are great for picky eaters who like french fries, but aren’t sure about much else, and they pair well with everything.

8

Roasted Broccoli Salad

Another broccoli recipe, I know, but hear me out: this is a roasted broccoli salad. From Pinch of Yum, this recipe includes bacon, shallots, cubes of toasted sourdough, and more delicious additions that give you the ultimate savory, stick-to-your-ribs veggie side dish of your dreams.

9

Parmesan Creamed Corn

I mean, don’t you just want to dive headfirst into the image of that vegetable side dish? This parmesan creamed corn from Gimme Some Oven is unreal. And you can use fresh, frozen, or even canned corn, so it’s a great choice no matter what your produce situation looks like right now.

10

Sesame Steamed Broccoli

One more broccoli shout-out because she’s the gift that keeps on giving. This recipe for sesame steamed broccoli has some great Asian flavors, but is also a mild enough taste if you’re having a dish that doesn’t include sesame or soy sauce.

11

Loaded Bacon Cheddar Mashed Potatoes

You know mashed potatoes, but do you know loaded bacon cheddar mashed potatoes? This recipe from Averie Cooks is so easy and is the ultimate comfort food. Pair it with a steak, pork, beef, literally whatever you want. Even chicken nuggets are extra elevated with this veggie dish.

12

Honey Glazed Carrots

Boiled carrots are fine, but why not try the orange veggie in this honey glazed carrots recipe from Mom on Timeout? They have just the right amount of sweetness while still keeping their irresistible crunch, and they go great with anything else you’re having for dinner.

13

Italian Chickpea Salad

I love the flavors of an Italian salad, and this recipe from Foodiecrush for an Italian chickpea salad is so good. While the flavors may be a bit much for picky eaters, this is super easy to throw together and goes so well with just about anything. It also makes for beautiful leftovers.

14

Tomato Salad

Want another super easy salad that doesn’t require tons of chopping? Whip up this tomato salad from Cookie and Kate. Using both regular tomatoes and cherry tomatoes, this is an incredibly versatile veggie dish and takes no time to pull together. Great for summer dinners.

15

Roasted Vegetables With Smashed Garlic

Roasted veggies don’t get enough love if you ask me, so I’m obsessed with this recipe for roasted vegetables with smashed garlic. It doesn’t get much easier than tossing everything together on a sheet pan, and the flavors are so good and kid-friendly.

16

Lemon Parmesan Green Beans

This is, hands down, the world’s easiest recipe for delicious green beans — and the most impressive. I’ve made this lemon parmesan green bean recipe many times, and it’s always a huge hit with anyone who tries a bite. It’s bright, it’s zesty, and it’s packed full of flavor. Serve these with literally anything.

17

Cheesy Creamed Spinach

I feel like every kid assumes spinach is going to be terrible, but this cheesy creamed spinach proves that the veggie can be delicious and a comfort food. From Table for Two, this recipe is so easy and so creamy. It also looks fancy enough for a holiday dinner, which is always a win.

18

Bacon Shallot Peas

Did you have any idea peas could be this jazzed up? From Yummly, this amazing recipe for bacon shallot peas is the ultimate, salty, savory side to whatever else you’re making for dinner. I could honestly eat a whole bowl of this with nothing else.

Dinner is hard enough to get together without worrying about what you’ll serve as a side dish, so hopefully this list of vegetable side dishes will inspire you.



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