Side

It's Steak Night, Baby—Here Are 27 Creamy & Crunchy Sides

From scalloped potatoes and classic frites to citrusy asparagus and kimchi fried rice.

January 25, 2021
Photo by Rocky Luten

There's something about steak that feels celebratory. You might have a go-to ribeye recipe for a holiday or anniversary, or you like to throw a New York strip on the grill to spruce up an otherwise ordinary weeknight. Countless variations in cut, temperature, rub, and sauce make the slabs of beef all the more distinguished. I love a recipe that incorporates a side along with a steak—hey there, skirt steak and smashed cucumbers and Caesar-inspired flank steak (both of these meat marinades also act as a dressing for the side salad!)—but on a special “steak night,” I like to go big with the sides.

And just as there is a steak for every occasion, there is an ideal side (or three) for every steak. Here are 27 crunchy, spicy, creamy accompaniments that will further enhance your meal. Whether you’re looking for a flavor-packed counterpart to brighten up the table (think: citrusy asparagus and fiery kimchi fried rice), or prefer classic steakhouse fixin's (looking at you, scalloped potatoes and creamed spinach)—we’ve got sides that will put up a fight for center stage.

Here are 27 killer recipes that are begging to be served with steak.

1. Charred Radicchio Wedge

Wedge salads are rarely described as “stunning,” but replacing pale iceberg for seared purple-red radicchio warrants the compliment. The salad is topped with a low-effort buttermilk andcrème fraîche dressing and decorated with pears, pancetta, gorgonzola crumbles, and herbs.

2. Absurdly Addictive Asparagus

Make this once, and you won’t want to make asparagus any other way. The pancetta masterfully enhances the fresh ingredients with its salty smokiness. It’s no surprise why the recipe has received over 300 rave reviews.

grab a spatula & cook with us:

3. Grilled Brussels Sprouts

Make it easy on yourself by grilling your side alongside the steak. The open flame of the grill will lend a smoky aroma and enhance the flavors of the onion and garlic powders in the glaze.

4. Roasted Onion Salad with Arugula and Walnut Salsa

This striking salad from Yotam Ottolenghi’s Plenty More is a vision, with caramelized onion swirls over a delicate bed of peppery arugula. Walnuts, tossed in a spicy, tangy dressing, provide a crunchy contrast.

5. Kimchi Fried Rice

Pair your steak with something a little spicy and all-the-way comforting —kimchi fried rice. The fermented cabbage offers a tangy kick to mitigate the richness of a hearty steak.

6. Roasted Mushroom Salad

Make these umami-packed mushrooms ahead of time and store them in the fridge. Better yet, make a double-batch and use any leftovers to top a sandwich, or, like recipe developer cucina de mammina does—for wine-fueled snacking.

7. Garlicky Roasted Potato Salad

Voted our “Best Potato Salad,” contest winner, this spin on Spanish patatas bravas will delight with its garlic-heavy mayonnaise.

8. Scalloped Potatoes

Inspired by Julia Child’s scalloped potatoes, recipe developer Josh Cohen tops his Yukon Golds with nutty, melty Gruyère.

9. Tahini Roasted Broccoli

This roasted broccoli crisps up in just ten minutes, with only a few ingredients (how we love a staples-friendly recipe!) Tahini, garlic, and lemon team up to create a hard-to-stop-eating creamy coat.

10. Dilled, Crunchy Sweet-Corn Salad with Buttermilk Dressing

Swap out coleslaw for this herb-packed, crunchy side. It’s a colorful, raw salad that will brighten any steak dinner.

11. Lacinato Kale & Mint Salad with Spicy Peanut Dressing

Hearty kale gets dressed in this spicy, show-stopping number. This salad is bold enough to stand up to steak, so if there are any vegetarians at the table all will be OK.

12. Pre-Seasoned Mashed Potatoes

When you want your spuds to wow, make this recipe. Here, “you hit the potatoes with flavor before they see it coming.” No boring, bland, gluey mashed potatoes on this table.

13. Creamed Spinach and Parsnips

This is a creamy, comforting rendition of a classic steak side. Sweet and nutty parsnips maintain their snap for a textural contrast to the silky spinach.

14. Hasselback Potato Skillet Bake

If you want to take a classic potato dish and elevate it, hasselback it. The thin gaps between potato slices allow the buttery herbs to melt into the center while the edges caramelize to crispy perfection.

15. Truffled, Mustardy Mac & Cheese

It will be hard to determine what the main feature of the meal is when truffled mac and cheese is served with steak. Mustard gives the dish a kick you didn’t know it was missing.

16. Edd Kimber’s Yorkshire Pudding

The Great British Baking Show winner shares his foolproof recipe for perfectly golden tops, and tender, hollow centers—everything you need for a stellar Yorkshire Pudding. Most likely, you’ll already have all five ingredients on hand. Now, that’s a nice bake.

17. Fully Grilled Caesar Salad

Recipe developer Loves Food Loves to Eat prefers to grill every component of her meals during the spring and summer—even welcoming Caesar salad to her grilled repertoire. The smoky char on the romaine hearts makes for a worthy pairing with grilled steak.

18. Roasted Vegetables with Bright & Crunchy Herbed Topping

Roasted root vegetables are perked up with pickled shallot, parsley, and lemon zest. This highly adaptable recipe provides suggestions for any flavor preferences or allergies. Seeds, nuts and breadcrumbs are interchangeable to finish the dish with a toasty crunch.

19. Warm Farro & Mustard Green Salad with Maple-Roasted Acorn Squash

This hearty salad delivers bitter greens tamed by sweet caramelized squash and nutty farro. The result is a textural medley of soft feta, crunchy walnuts, and tender acorn squash.

20. Cauliflower Gratin with Mornay Sauce

A mozzarella and Parmesan-based mornay envelops cauliflower florets for a casserole that’s essentially a grown-up mac and cheese.

21. Steak Frites

Transport yourself from your kitchen to a Parisian brasserie by making steak frites. For the crispiest fries, soak the sliced potatoes in water overnight to release excess starch.

22. Wonder Fries

These fingerling potatoes get their creamy inside and crispy exterior from being boiled, smashed, then fried. To complete the addictive package, dunk the fries in a miso mayonnaise and sprinkle with green onion.

23. Haricots Verts à la Dijonnaise

Classic Haricots Verts act as a bright counterpart to rich steak. This recipe is a nod to quintessential French flavors, calling for tarragon, anise, and mustard.

24. Fried Goat Cheese with Honey and Black Pepper

Molten goat cheese is swaddled in an airy, crispy crust—the little bites beg to be popped in your mouth over and over. A drizzle of honey softens the tang of the goat cheese.

25. Pull-Apart Cheesy Baked Potato

Baked potato meets cheesy fries in this hands-on side. Set up a toppings station to make these customizable. Suggested fillings include, but are not limited to: cheddar + kimchi, blue cheese + hazelnuts, and jalapeño + jack cheese.

26. Spice Merchant Cauliflower Couscous

This one goes out to all the gluten-free folks: the “couscous” here is actually cauliflower! There is no lack of flavor with toasty cumin, earthy za’atar, and plump golden raisins.

27. Mayo-Grilled Coleslaw

Grilling the marinated cabbage results in a uniquely smoky, blistered slaw. Serve it warm or cold, with a thick steak on the side.

What's your go-to side with a steak dinner? Let us know in the comments!

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Maria Miyashiro

Written by: Maria Miyashiro

1 Comment

Renee D. January 29, 2021
Great article and recipe suggestions!!