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10 Best BBQ Sides for the Ultimate Backyard Barbecue


Mighty Quinn’s BBQ Famous Southern Sides
Mighty Quinn’s BBQ | Famous Southern Sides

When it comes to chillin’ and grillin’, we are the masters of the grill. What sets a good barbecue apart from an epic BBQ are the sides. Side dishes are small accompaniments like vegetables, cold salads, and starches and carb-heavy savory dishes like mac ‘n’ cheese.

Our go-to sides for a BBQ always include hot and cold options plus savory and sweet side dishes. No matter what style of BBQ you like, from Texas BBQ to Carolina BBQ to Kansas City BBQ, get lit with the best BBQ sides.

What to bring to a barbecue that will impress?

What should you bring to a barbecue that will impress? Anything, really. Think of your favorite comfort foods and side dishes or what dish you make best and get those for your next BBQ.

Some barbecue sides are similar to savory Thanksgiving sides like green bean casserole and sweet potato soufflé topped with marshmallows or brown sugar and pecans.

Classic BBQ sides that will impress any BBQ fans include:

  • Baked apples
  • Baked beans, pit beans, or Texas ranch beans
  • Baked potatoes
  • Coleslaw
  • Collard greens
  • Cornbread or corn muffins
  • Corn casserole or corn bake
  • Corn on the cob
  • Creamed corn
  • Creamed spinach
  • Green beans
  • Hushpuppies
  • Mac ‘n’ cheese
  • Macaroni salad
  • Mashed potatoes
  • Onion rings
  • Pickles
  • Potato salad
  • Sweet potato soufflé
  • White bread

Other popular BBQ sides include watermelon salad, succotash, cucumber salad, grilled asparagus, garlic bread or Texas toast, and Ambrosia salad (a creamy fruit salad).

How many sides should you have at a BBQ?

How many sides you should have at a BBQ depends on the number of people attending your barbecue. It’s tempting to say the more, the merrier, but, in reality, three sides is sufficient. Preparing a trio of sides is also manageable. Aim to have 4 oz. to 5 oz. per side per person. This way, if someone doesn’t eat one of the sides on offer but wants seconds of another, you have enough food.

Having 4 oz. to 5 oz. per side per person may seem like a small amount but consider these are sides. Your guests are likely to eat appetizers, the main dish, and dessert too. If you think offering 3 sides is limiting, consider asking each guest to bring a different side dish and soon you’ll have a smorgasbord!

Best Grilling and BBQ Side Dishes

You’re gonna flip for our BBQ sides, no matter if you crave Southern-style sides like collard greens and sweet potato soufflé, classic comfort foods like mashed potatoes, or ready-to-eat prepared sides like pickles and slices of white bread.

Terry Black's Barbecue Texas Brisket Chili with Beans

Terry Black’s Barbecue’s Texas Brisket Chili with Beans

A hallmark of Central Texas barbecue is smoked brisket. Since 2014, Terry Black’s has been smoking its famous brisket in Lockhart, Texas. 

Terry Black’s Texas Brisket Chili is a superlative BBQ side of smoked brisket with seasoned ground beef, beans, and Texas spices.

LawLers Barbecue’s BBQ Signature Sides

Even if you aren’t indulging in hickory smoked Alabama BBQ with white sauce, you’ll love Southern-style sides from LawLers Barbecue. Since opening in Huntsville, Alabama, in 1978, brothers Philip and Jerry Lawler have been pit smoking meats and making BBQ sides from scratch.

LawLers Barbecue’s BBQ Signature Sides include savory sides like homemade vinegar slaw, classic potato salad, barbecued beans, and mac ‘n’ cheese.

LawLers Barbecue BBQ Signature Sides
Mighty Quinn’s BBQ Famous Southern Sides

Mighty Quinn’s BBQ’s Famous Southern Sides

New York City’s Mighty Quinn’s BBQ combines Texas and Carolina BBQ. Founder and pitmaster Hugh Mangum and his team makes some of the best ribs, brisket, burnt ends, and sensational Southern sides.

Mighty Quinn’s BBQ’s Famous Southern Sides include an addictive sweet potato casserole with maple and topped with pecans and legendary baked beans with burnt ends.

Rodney Scott’s Whole Hog BBQ’s BBQ Sides

There has been a near-constant line since Rodney Scott opened his eponymous Rodney Scott’s Whole Hog BBQ in Charleston, South Carolina in 2017. 

Rodney Scott’s Whole Hog BBQ’s BBQ Sides include farm-fresh collard greens mixed with a little whole hog meat, potato salad made with boiled red potatoes, Duke’s mayo, yellow mustard, and a hard-boiled egg, and creamy, dreamy mac ‘n’ cheese. Don’t forget to add a quart of baked beans and fresh baked sweet and buttery cornbread.

Rodney Scott's Whole Hog BBQ Sides
Kings BBQ Carolina BBQ Oink Sampler

Kings BBQ’s Carolina BBQ Oink Sampler

Kinston, North Carolina’s Kings BBQ is known for its slow-smoked and pulled hand-chopped pork, but their Southern sides made from family recipes are equally noteworthy.

Kings BBQ’s Carolina BBQ Oink Sampler includes 1 lb. of hand chopped pork, 2 racks of BBQ pork ribs, BBQ sauce, 12 hushpuppies, and 1 pint each of Brunswick Stew, potato salad, and slaw.

Jack Stack BBQ’s Jack Stack Sides

Founder Jack Stack learned how to make BBQ from his father and then branched out in the mid-1970s opening his own restaurant in Kansas City. His famous BBQ is cooked over hickory wood and served with an amazing assortment of sides.

Jack Stack BBQ’s Jack Stack Sides include a taste of Kansas City in the form of slow cooked hickory pit beans, cheesy potatoes, and creamy cheesy corn bake.

Jack Stack BBQ Sides
Old 300 BBQ Savory Sides

Old 300 BBQ’s Savory Sides

Blanco, Texas’ Old 300 BBQ is an icon in the BBQ world. Founded in 2013, this BBQ joint is famous for its locally raised, grass-fed smoked brisket, but don’t overlook the made-in-house sides.

Old 300 BBQ’s must-try Savory Sides include a trio of 32 oz. sides, including creamed corn, green beans, and potato salad — enough to feed 8 to 12 BBQ lovers.

Blue Smoke’s BBQ Sides

Part of Danny Meyer’s Union Square Hospitality Group, Blue Smoke took New York City by storm when it opened in 2002. Ingredients are sourced from Southern farmers and purveyors and pit smoked to perfection. While the BBQ meats are the stars of every meal, the sides deserve some love too.

Blue Smoke’s BBQ Sides include 1 quart of creamy coleslaw, 12 fresh and fluffy cornbread muffins, 1 quart of savory pit beans, and 1 quart of creamy, cheesy mac ‘n’ cheese with cheddar and American cheeses.

Blue Smoke BBQ Sides
Ed Mitchell & Sons Signature BBQ Sides

Ed Mitchell & Sons’ Eastern Carolina Signature BBQ Sides

Ed Mitchell and his son, Ryan, have been sourcing free-range pigs from the best North Carolina farmers since opening in 1990 in Wilson, North Carolina. Their sides pair perfectly with their pit-smoked BBQ.

Ed Mitchell & Sons’ Eastern Carolina Signature BBQ Sides include a choice of 4 signature sides, including  triple bean Carolina baked beans, Brunswick Stew chock-full of pork, chicken, corn, okra, and lima beans, Carolina-style collard greens, and sweet potato casserole with marshmallow pecan topping. Try all 4 or double up on your favorites.

Soulbelly BBQ’s BBQ Sides

Chef Bruce Kalman honed his pitmaster skills at Las Vegas-area BBQ pop-ups before opening Soulbelly in Las Vegas in 2020. His Texas-style brisket, BBQ spare ribs, tri-tip pastrami, smoky pork sausages, and classic sides are mmmemorable.

Soulbelly BBQ’s BBQ Sides is a trio of sides, including fluffy corn casserole finished with Hatch chile peppers, Texas Ranch Beans made with white and pinto beans, bacon, and BBQ sauce, and mac ‘n’ cheese made with house-made pasta mixed with sharp cheddar cheese and Béchamel sauce and topped with pork rind bread crumbs.

Soulbelly BBQ Sides

Get all up in our grill. America’s best BBQ sides for your next BBQ are shipping nationwide on Goldbelly!

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