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From BBQ baked beans to pasta salad to fruit salad, dips, slaws, and MORE, we have all the side dishes you need for your summer picnics, potlucks, and backyard cookouts.
Best BBQ Side Dishes
Summertime is all about being outside doing some cooking, eating and hanging out with family and friends. Be sure to also check out our Grill Recipes if you need more than sides.
If it hasn’t happened already, you’ll surely be invited to some kind of summer gathering this season and you’ll be asked to bring a side dish. Of course, you will say “yes” but in your mind you are thinking “Oh no! What am I going to bring?!” Well, you have a couple options here. You can bring a bag of chips. You know the drill… pop open the chips, slap the bag on the table and walk away slowly while looking around, hoping no one realized your lazy “side dish” attempt (don’t worry, we have all done it. I have done it more times than I would care to admit).
OR you can bring a side that will really impress the crowd… that is what this post is all about. All of these bbq side dish recipes are tried and true crowd pleasers. They are all super easy, full of flavor, and go perfectly alongside your burger and hot dogs. Next time someone asks you to bring a side, get excited knowing that you can come here to get the recipe that will be the perfect side dish for your party!
Types of BBQ Side Dishes
What is your favorite summer side dish to bring to BBQs? Do you like bringing warm side dishes that you can serve in a Crock Pot? Or cold barbecue sides that you can make ahead of time? Or perhaps an easy dip that you can serve with chips? We are going to make this really easy and break down all our favorite summer sides into categories so you can scroll down and find your favorite type and then choose from there. From corn salad to green beans to veggies, we’ve rounded up all the classics and some new recipes for you to try.
You can never go wrong with bringing a tasty sauce or dip to a BBQ, especially one of these dips! Make one or make them all. They are all super easy to make and can all be made ahead of time. Consider even making one of these dip recipes a day ahead (I think most dips taste better the next day anyway)!
- Creamy Corn Dip
- Best Guacamole Ever
- Dill Pickle Dip
- Cowboy Caviar
- 7 Layer Bean Dip
- Dorito Dip
- Easy Spinach Dip
- Creamy Clam Dip
- Chili Cheese Dip
- Copycat Skotidakis Jalapeno Greek Yogurt Dip
Warm BBQ Side Dishes
If you aren’t into the cold side dishes, try one of these hot side dishes instead! All of these can be kept warm in a Crock Pot for your next backyard BBQ. It’s always nice to have at least one hot side dish to complement anything from the grill. We love all of these recipes but our favorite has to be the BBQ Baked Beans! I mean, come on, you can’t have a BBQ without BBQ Baked Beans!
- BBQ Baked Beans
- Mexican Street Corn
- Mexican Street Corn Cups
- Air Fryer Corn on the Cob
- Macaroni and Cheese with Ham and Peas
- Instant Pot Mac and Cheese
BBQ Side Dish Salads
When you want to bring a healthy side dish to your next BBQ (well… healthiER) you can always try one of these veggie sides! A few of them include bacon or a little bit of chicken so they aren’t necessarily “vegetarian” but they are mostly vegetables so we are still going to count it. Fresh peas, carrots, zucchini, cabbage, avocados, corn on the cob, green pepper, cherry tomatoes and red onion add gorgeous flavor and texture to your barbecue plate. If you are looking for a more traditional green salad you can check out our salad category HERE.
- Classic Cobb Salad
- BBQ Chicken Salad
- Wedge Salad
- Strawberry Spinach Salad
- Caprese Salad
- Creamy Green Pea Salad with Bacon
- Cucumber Salad (Marinated Cucumbers)
- Asian Cucumber Salad
- Chopped Broccoli Salad
- Grilled Corn Salad
- Beet Salad
- Red Pepper Coleslaw
- Fresh Mango Avocado Slaw
- Jicama Apple Slaw
- KFC Copycat Coleslaw
- Chopped Cabbage Salad (Pai Mai)
The nice thing about pasta salads at BBQs is they are generally very cheap to make. They are also easy to double or triple so you can feed a crowd. I also love how you can choose your add-ins to your liking. Don’t like peas? Leave them out. Want more pickles? Go ahead! So easy to adjust ingredients for picky eaters or for allergies!
- Traditional Macaroni Salad
- Pizza Pasta Salad
- Shrimp Pasta Salad
- Hawaiian Macaroni Salad
- Layered Pasta Salad
- Greek Tortellini Pasta Salad
- Italian Pasta Salad
- Bacon Ranch Pasta Salad
- Tuna Macaroni Salad
- Southwest Pasta Salad
Potato Salads (and Other Potato Side Dishes)
Since we are from Idaho, we decided that “potatoes” needed to have their own category. You can’t have a BBQ in Idaho without some kind of potato side dish! French fries dipped in ranch dressing, or oven baked sweet potato fries with melted cheddar cheese are a favorite. And our classic potato salad is a side dish that is NEVER absent at our family BBQs. It has been a favorite in our family for generations! Eggs, potatoes, creamy mayo, fresh herbs, how can you go wrong?
- Homestyle Potato Salad
- German Potato Salad
- Bacon Gorgonzola Potato Salad (see recipe below)
- Grilled Potatoes
- Potatoes with Peas
- Grilled Foil Ranch Potatoes
- Roasted Caesar Potatoes
- Potatoes Au Gratin
- Potato Wedges
- Twice Baked Potatoes
Fruit Salads (and Other Fruit Side Dishes)
No BBQ is complete without some kind of fruit salad. You’ve got to have something sweet to offset all those savory BBQ foods! Plus, summer is the perfect season to dive into summer peaches, lemons, watermelon, strawberries or cherries. You’ll also find some “borderline” fruit salads below that are really more like dessert than a salad. We will let you decide which category it falls into!
- Easy Fruit Salad
- Creamy Grape Salad
- Grilled Fruit Kabobs
- Easy Cream Cheese Fruit Dip
- Peach Caprese Salad Skewers
- Waldorf Salad
- Watermelon Feta Salad
- Cookie Salad with Mandarin Oranges
- Snickers Apple Salad
- Strawberry Pretzel Jello Salad
- Blueberry Jello Salad
- Ambrosia Salad
- Watergate Salad
BBQ Side Dishes – Bacon Gorgonzola Potato Salad
- 4 medium potatoes
- 3 hard boiled eggs
- 10 strips of bacon cooked and crumbled
For the Sauce:
- 1/3 cup mayonnaise
- 1/2 cup sour cream
- 2 teaspoons fresh chopped dill
- 1/3 cup crumbled gorgonzola cheese
- 1 teaspoon worcestershire sauce
- salt and pepper to taste
- Scrub potatoes, but leave the skins on. Slice the potatoes in half lengthwise (from end to end).
- Cut the halves again lengthwise so you have 4 long quarters. Then slice those the opposite direction into lots of ¼ inch slices. It should give you thin triangle slices of potato.
- Boil the potato slices until cooked but not soft or mushy. Keep testing it with a fork. Hard boil the eggs and cook and crumble the bacon.
- Mix together the sauce ingredients then gently fold in the potatoes, eggs, and bacon.
- Refrigerate for at least 3 hours before serving. The longer you wait, the better the flavor will be!
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This is really an amazing list! Thanks for sharing! Saving this list for summer cookouts!
Love this collection so much. I’ve already made the mac and cheese and it’s amazing! Thank you!
Thank you so much for sharing this amazing recipe! Will surely have this again! It’s really easy to make and it tasted so delicious! Highly recommended!
Hmm is anyone else experiencing problems with the pictures
on this blog loading? I’m trying to determine if its a problem on my end or if it’s
the blog. Any feedback would be greatly appreciated.
Hi there! I wanted to pop over and let you know I’ve featured your blog along with this post and several of your other Feature Friday round ups over at my blog Seaside Simplicity – http://seasidesimplicity.blogspot.com/
Have a great weekend! 🙂
You guys seriously have the best recipes. All of these sides are totally speaking to me (especially that Pai Mai…)!