What to Serve with Mac and Cheese (30+ BEST Sides)

Wondering what to serve with mac and cheese? I’ve got you covered with this handy guide of the best sides for your favorite comfort food dish!

When the kids ask “What’s for dinner tonight?” and you answer “Mac & Cheese,” it’s guaranteed that you’re instantly upgraded to 🌟superstar🌟 status.

Macaroni and cheese can be super time consuming… So, often I’ll take a shortcut on weeknights and make this Instant Pot Mac & Cheese. However, I’ve also been known to make the boxed stuff too. I mean, it just evokes memories of childhood, right?

Overhead shot of bowl of mac and cheese on blue background.

But no matter which type of mac & cheese you’re serving, you’re guaranteed to find a perfect side dish here.

Mac & Cheese + Amazing Side Dish = PERFECTION!

From classics such as meatloaf and brisket, to healthier options such as broccoli and sauteed spinach, there are so many options.

So, let’s dig in!

Keep reading to discover 30+ of the best side dishes to serve with mac and cheese!

The BEST Sides for Mac & Cheese

Meatloaf in air fryer basket topped with tomato sauce & parsley.
This Air Fryer Meatloaf recipe is just as delicious as the classic baked version, but so much quicker. This recipe makes two tender meatloaves with crisp, caramelized surfaces and juicy, tender centers. Making homemade meatloaf has never been easier!
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Pieces of pork belly in air fryer basket.
Air Fryer Pork Belly is absolutely irresistible! Seasoned with an easy dry rub, these pork belly bites are air fried until they’re crispy, tender + juicy.
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Platter of grilled broccolini
This grilled broccolini is topped with a tangy apple cider vinaigrette and marcona almonds for a delicious crunch.
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This is the BEST Beer Chili recipe! A hearty one-pot chili with beans that’s rich, spicy and perfect for game day.
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Air fried chicken tenders on serving tray with small bowl of ranch and lemon wedges.
Air Fryer Chicken Tenders cook up golden & crispy on the outside, but juicy inside. The best part is they can be made in under 20 minutes with just 6-ingredients.
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Overhead close up of combined vinegar slaw in large white mixing bowl.
Vinegar Slaw is a super simple side dish recipe made without mayonnaise. It’s tangy, delicious and crunchy. 
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Overhead shot of baked Shake n Bake pork chops on baking sheet.
These Shake and Bake pork chops are a homemade of the classic dish you used to have as a kid. Pork chops are coated in a tasty breadcrumb mixture and baked until golden brown and delicious.
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Spears of asparagus cooked sous vide topped with parmesan shavings.
How to cook perfect asparagus sous vide. Bright green, perfectly cooked spears. With three options for flavoring – garlic, parmesan or lemon.
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Overhead shot of sous vide cooked brisket on serving tray next to pickles, bbq sauce and buns.
Sous Vide Brisket comes out fall apart tender, juicy and delicious every time. Get the perfect “bark” by finishing it on your grill, smoker or even the oven! 
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Overhead shot of din tai fung cucumber salad on grey plate with chopsticks.
This copycat Din Tai Fung Cucumber Salad is bursting with flavor. Beautifully marinated cucumbers drizzled in chili oil is an outstanding vegetarian appetizer you can enjoy for any special occasion!
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Glazed ham in roasting dish garnished with orange slices, served with mashed potatoes, cranberry sauce and rolls.
This Brown Sugar Mustard Glazed Ham Recipe is simply the best! Made with brown sugar, mustard, pineapple juice, and honey, this glaze makes an addictive and moist ham every time.
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Overhead shot of arugula salad next to shaved parmesan.
This Arugula Salad recipe with red wine vinaigrette is my go-to green salad. The arugula has a peppery bite to it which pairs wonderfully with the acid in the vinaigrette. It’s the perfect salad for pairing with rich dishes.
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Oven Barbecue Ribs slathered in the most delicious sticky barbecue sauce with a kick of garlic and optional heat! Tender and juicy melt-in-your-mouth ribs!
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Overhead shot of cherry tomato salad in grey bowl.
This Cherry Tomato Salad with Roasted Lemons is the perfect side dish. Sweet tomatoes combine with a tangy vinaigrette and delicious roasted lemons. 
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Crispy buttermilk fried chicken recipe inspired by Thomas Keller’s Ad Hoc restaurant. Juicy flavorful bites made with a bold spice blend.
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Toasty, buttery, herby, covered in a dusting of salty parmesan cheese, piping hot and fresh out of the oven—our homemade garlic bread recipe is everything you’re craving right now, and then some.
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Sauteed spinach in white bowl.
Add a healthy boost of nutrients to your dinner with this easy Sauteed Spinach. Baby spinach is added to a skillet along with garlic and olive oil, then sauteed gently to create a simple side dish that pairs with any meal!
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Homemade is best when it comes to Sloppy Joes! This easy recipe is a family favorite, and you can feel good knowing what goes into it. It’s ready in just over half an hour!
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Prepared radicchio salad in grey bowl with serving utensils.
This delicious Radicchio Salad is dressed in a creamy lemon-vinaigrette and tossed with buttery calvestrano olives, tasty breadcrumbs and nutty parmesan cheese. And, a special tip ensures that your radicchio won't be bitter!
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Overhead close up of three smoked pork belly slices with grill marks.
Smoked Pork Belly is the only thing better than bacon! Seasoned with an easy dry rub, the pork is cooked low and slow until it’s tender, juicy, and melts in your mouth. It’s a smoky and deeply flavored cut of meat that must make an appearance at your next barbecue.
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Shaved brussels sprouts salad in large bowl with serving spoon.
This Shaved Brussel Sprout Salad with Mustard and Parmesan is tossed in a light red wine vinaigrette and makes a delicious, crunchy side dish.
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We are finally in the home stretch of Super Bowl food sharing. So from now until Friday, I have some recipes that you can throw together in a matter of
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Overhead close up of bowl of kale caesar salad in white bowl with serving spoon.
This Kale Caesar Salad is topped with crispy homemade croutons and parmesan cheese. Massaging the creamy garlic dressing into the kale makes it extra tender and delicious.
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Shirazi salad centered in frame with serving spoon.
This simple Shirazi Salad recipe features fresh cucumbers, juicy tomatoes, and crisp red onion. Dressed with plenty of fresh herbs and tossed with a tangy dressing made with lime juice and olive oil. Every bite is bursting with refreshing flavors!
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Peppers with grill marks scattered on counter.
Learn how to make perfectly tender and blistered Grilled Peppers at home! It’s one of the best and easiest side dishes you can add to burrito bowls, fajitas, or pair with grilled meats.
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Caesar salad is a staple on restaurant menus across the country, but we’ve yet to find one as perfectly blended as this one – crisp romaine is tossed with creamy dressing, crunchy croutons and premium Parmesan. All hail Caesar!
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Serving spoon in bowl of tomato cucumber salad.
This Tomato Cucumber Salad features fresh cucumbers, juicy tomatoes, and crisp red onion. Dressed in a tangy homemade red wine vinaigrette, every bite is bursting with refreshing Mediterranean flavors!
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Over head shot of cooked brussels sprouts in grey bowl with spoon.
Air Fryer Brussel Sprouts with Balsamic cook up crispy and delicious with minimal oil with the help of your air fryer! Dressed simply with balsamic vinegar and a sprinkle of salt. You'll love these!
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Bowl of shaved fennel and celery salad topped with toasted pine nuts and parmesan
This Shaved Fennel and Celery Salad comes together quickly and has such a delicious light lemon vinaigrette and wonderful crunch. It’s the perfect side salad for rich and hearty dishes like pasta or braised short ribs.  
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Instant Pot Steamed Artichokes
Instant Pot Artichokes are quick and easy to make with the help of your electric pressure cooker. Plus, this recipe gives them SO much flavor!
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How to Make Ahead and Store

Many of these mac & cheese side dish recipes can be made ahead of time and stored in the refrigerator for a few days or even in the freezer. Simply check the individual recipes for full storing instructions and details on how to make ahead. 

More Side Dish Recipes:

Did you Make Any of These Mac and Cheese Side Dishes?

Please leave a comment and rating below, if you loved this round up of what to serve with mac and cheese. Also, be sure to snap a picture of your finished dish and share it with me on Instagram using the hashtag #platingsandpairings and tagging me @platingsandpairings.

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Overhead shot of mac and cheese in speckled bowl with spoon and grated cheddar scattered about.

What to Serve with Mac and Cheese: 30+ BEST Side Dishes

Wondering what to serve with ravioli? I’ve got you covered with this handy guide of the best sides for ravioli!
5 from 1 vote
Print Pin
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes
Servings: 4 people

Instructions

  • Choose your favorite mac and cheese side dish.
  • Gather the necessary ingredients.
  • Enjoy a delicious comfort food dinner!
Did you make this recipe?Mention @platingsandpairings or tag #platingsandpairings!
Bowl of mac and cheese with text overlay.

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