Family-Friendly Sides

Here's some ideas for side dishes the whole family will love. Kids and adults will both love these great additions to lunch and dinner.

Broccoli Crunch Salad with Bacon and Currants

Broccoli Crunch Salad with Bacon and Currants

Premade broccoli salads are delicious from grocery stores, but making your own is fun and much more cost effective. This is great way to get kids to eat veggies – even the notorious broccoli.

View Recipe: Broccoli Crunch Salad with Bacon and Currants  

Crunchy, Creamy Coleslaw

Crunchy, Creamy Coleslaw

Kids can be skeptical toward cabbage because it’s not sweet or buttery. It does have a color and crunch factor, though. Try using a combo of red and green cabbage.

View Recipe: Crunchy, Creamy Coleslaw  

Kid-Approved Roasted Broccoli

Kid-Approved Roasted Broccoli

Who said kids won’t eat broccoli? Roasting leaves it tasting its absolute best. Once you master the roasting technique, play around with flavor options. You can zest a lemon or grate Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese over the top after roasting, or mix in some currants at the end. Yum.

View Recipe: Kid-Approved Roasted Broccoli  

Roasted Carrots and Snap Peas

Roasted Carrots and Snap Peas

This is another example of how roasting the simplest veggies makes them taste amazing. Tossing in the mint at the end turns this recipe from simple kid food into sophisticated family food—and basil works just as well.

View Recipe: Roasted Carrots and Snap Peas

Brussels Sprouts with Crispy Bacon

Brussels Sprouts with Crispy Bacon and Shallots

Loaded with bits of crispy bacon and shallots, they’re sweet and caramelized and everything you could ask for in a side dish. Give this under-rated vegetable a try—you just might change your mind, too.

View Recipe: Brussels Sprouts with Crispy Bacon and Shallots

Green Beans with Toasted Almonds and Lemon

Green Beans with Toasted Almonds and Lemon

Unless you’re making a green bean casserole for Thanksgiving, keep it simple when cooking green beans. The key is finding fresh, crisp beans. 

View Recipe: Green Beans with Toasted Almonds and Lemon

Roasted Cauliflower with Sage

Roasted Cauliflower with Sage

Cauliflower gets as bad a rap as Brussels sprouts. But kids will adore this oven-roasted version, which caramelizes the sugars, leaving it incredibly sweet.

View Recipe: Roasted Cauliflower with Sage  

Herbed Brown Rice Pilaf

Herbed Brown Rice Pilaf

This is comfort food at its finest. It’s perfect as a side dish and a little roasted chicken makes it a meal. For a little crunch, add some toasted almonds or pine nuts.

View Recipe: Herbed Brown Rice Pilaf  

Cilantro-Lime Rice

Cilantro-Lime Rice

This rice is simple and will quickly become a family favorite. You can serve it with practically everything, from fish tacos to Skirt Steak with Chimichurri Sauce.

View Recipe: Cilantro-Lime Rice

Creamy Cannellini Beans with Garlic and Oregano

Creamy Cannellini Beans with Garlic and Oregano

The beans in this recipe are creamy, flavorful, and full of protein. Don’t worry if you don’t have the herbs. The garlic alone adds so much flavor to the beans. Serve them as an entrée on their own, or alongside braised meat or chicken.

View Recipe: Creamy Cannellini Beans with Garlic and Oregano  

Chili-Roasted Sweet Potato Nuggets

Chili-Roasted Sweet Potato Nuggets

Sweet potatoes are so good for you. They’re an excellent source of vitamin B6, C, and D, and contain iron and magnesium. Dice them up and bake them at a really high temperature. The results are delicious!

View Recipe: Chili-Roasted Sweet Potato Nuggets

Roasted Fingerling Fries

Roasted Fingerling Fries

These are hands down the easiest potatoes to make. They get all crispy and delicious in the oven.

View Recipe: Roasted Fingerling Fries  

Classic Mashed Potatoes

Classic Mashed Potatoes

These creamy, fluffy, kid-friendly mashed potatoes get their texture from butter, milk, and a touch of sour cream. For the fluffiest, lump-free potatoes, it’s worth investing in a food mill or potato ricer. You won’t be disappointed with the results.

View Recipe: Classic Mashed Potatoes  

Twice-Baked Sweet Potato Boats with Bacon-Pecan Topping

Twice-Baked Sweet Potato Boats with Bacon-Pecan Topping

It must be something about the contrast of smooth sweet potatoes, salty bacon, and crunchy pecans mixed with the right amount of brown sugar that makes this simple side so delicious.

View Recipe: Twice-Baked Sweet Potato Boats with Bacon-Pecan Topping  

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