Fried chicken is a popular entrée for cookouts, barbeques, or even Sunday night dinner with the family. Whether you’re serving fried chicken to guests at a cookout or at a dinner table of hungry children, you’ll want to ensure you select the proper side dish for the occasion.
The crunchy, salty skin of the fried chicken and white meat flesh pairs well with specific side dishes, and thankfully, there are both savory and hearty and light and healthy options to choose from.
Read on to discover 17 tasty side dishes to serve with fried chicken.
17 Side Dishes to Serve with Fried Chicken
1. Mashed Potatoes
Mashed potatoes go with fried chicken like peanut butter goes with jelly. The starchiness of the potatoes coupled with the tender meat is just the contrast of textures you need.
Try melting butter or pouring gravy over your mashed potatoes, or add sour cream, bacon, and chives to enhance the flavor of your meal.
2. Buttermilk Biscuits
Buttermilk biscuits are a classic staple side dish of fried chicken. The soft flakiness of the biscuits is a nice contrast to the tenderness of the white chicken flesh.
Homemade buttermilk biscuits with a pat of butter or sopped up in gravy are just the savory side your fried chicken entrée needs.
3. Loaded Baked Potato
There’s nothing quite like a scrumptious loaded baked potato fresh out of the oven with all the right fixings to serve with your fried chicken.
Top your loaded baked potato with melted cheese, bacon bits, sour cream and green onions for a delectable side dish that will enhance the flavor of your entire meal.
4. Farmer’s Market Orzo Salad
Orzo pasta, red onions, cherry tomatoes, lemon vinaigrette dressing, and smoked Gouda cheese come together to make the farmer’s market orzo salad.
The sweet flavor of onion and the zesty lemon-flavored vinaigrette add additional flavors to your fried chicken entrée, while the addition of cheese introduces a dairy component to your meal.
5. Green Beans with Bacon
Steamed green beans are a classic vegetable to serve with fried chicken and a healthier choice if you’re wanting to avoid heavier food selections.
But if green beans are too plain for you, cook them sprinkled with bacon pieces to add some additional protein to your meal, not to mention a smoky flavor.
Another staple side dish commonly served with fried chicken; the creaminess of coleslaw perfectly balances out the salty crunchiness of the fried chicken.
Made from shredded cabbage and carrots and doused in mayonnaise dressing, this lighter choice enlivens your fried chicken entree with its creamy and tangy flavors without the heaviness and extra calories of other popular side dish choices.
7. Parmesan Potato Wedges
Potato wedges are a savory side dish to pair with your fried chicken, but they’re even better sprinkled with grated parmesan cheese!
To take the flavor of your parmesan potato wedges even further, add sour cream or sweet chili sauce to your potato wedges, or just dip them in ketchup. Either way, your parmesan potato wedges make for a satisfying side dish to serve with your fried chicken.
8. Corn on the Cob
Grill up some corn on the cob to serve with your fried chicken for a healthier, yet satisfying pairing. The refreshing crunch of corn on the cob mixed with the subtle sweetness of the corn itself is a great contrast to the tender texture of white chicken meat.
Melt a pat of butter on your corn on the cob and sprinkle a little salt and pepper to add some additional flavor to your meal.
9. Heirloom Tomato Salad
Heirloom tomato salad, complete with heirloom tomatoes, grape tomatoes, spinach leaves, red onions and vinaigrette dressing, is just the salad to serve with your fried chicken entrée.
The zesty flavor from the tomatoes and vinaigrette dressing enhance the flavor of the crispy batter of the fried chicken, as well as the tender white meat.
10. Hush Puppies
Hush puppies are deep-fried balls of cornbread, and while they’re commonly paired with seafood entrees, they pair just as well with fried chicken. They bring just a touch of sweetness to an otherwise salt-heavy meal.
For a healthier version of hush puppies, try baking them in a muffin tin using olive oil instead of shortening or vegetable oil.
For a taste of southern cooking, serve cornbread with your fried chicken. The sweetness of cornbread and its crumbly texture pays the perfect complement to the fleshiness of the white meat in fried chicken.
You can also make a healthier version of cornbread by limiting the amount of sugar in the recipe or omitting sugar altogether for a savory cornbread.
12. Potato Salad
Potato salad is another classic side dish that pairs perfectly with fried chicken. The tart and tangy flavor from mustard cuts through the tender texture of the chicken meat, making potato salad and fried chicken an optimal balance of textures and flavors.
Try serving potato salad alongside your fried chicken in the hot summer months. The cool potato salad will offset the warm fried chicken.
13. Baked Beans with Bacon
Baked beans are another savory side dish to pair with your fried chicken and are a great selection to serve at barbeques and cookouts that will leave your guests’ tummies full.
The smoky barbeque flavor of the baked beans enhances the flavor of your entire meal, especially when cooked with bacon.
14. Zucchini Sauté with Thyme
Zucchini is a versatile option to serve alongside your fried chicken, and you’ll love this version of zucchini that is sauteed and seasoned with thyme.
This dish is simple and flavorful, and zucchini is arguably one of the best vegetables you can choose to serve with your fried chicken entrée.
15. Fried Okra
To put a southern spin on your fried chicken dinner, try pairing it with fried okra. Coat the okra in panko breadcrumbs or cornmeal, then deep-fry until crispy and golden brown.
Fried okra introduces a vegetable to your meal but with a yummy fried batter that is crispy, crunchy, and absolutely satisfying served with fried chicken.
16. Macaroni and Cheese
Macaroni and cheese is a creamy side dish that offsets the crunchiness of your fried chicken and remains a dinner table staple the whole family will enjoy.
Since fried chicken is all protein, serving the starchy, creamy, and cheesy macaroni and cheese pays it the perfect complement and is a great choice for barbeques or serving a table full of children.
17. Summer Squash Casserole
Another healthy side dish to serve with your fried chicken is summer squash casserole. This casserole dish takes just minutes to make.
The nutty and subdued sweetness of summer squash pair perfectly well with a bucket of fried chicken for summertime barbeques and cookouts, while adding a vegetable to your meal.
Now that you know what to serve with fried chicken, it’s time to get cooking. You’ll enjoy mixing and matching different side dishes to serve with your entree.