Perfect Summertime Side Dishes

Perfect Summertime Side Dishes

On a hot summer day, nothing beats grilling out under the sun with family and friends. Juicy hamburgers and grill-marked hot dogs are a dinner staple, along with a beautiful steak and barbeque ribs. There are standard go-to side dishes: corn on the cob, coleslaw, and potato salad. Sometimes, you need a kick of something new with your meal.

Compiled here are five side dishes that are off the beaten path, and will create more visual, textual, and savory meal experience. When grilling, it’s important to have a well-rounded, complete dinner for those eating, even if they’re only your family. Remember to keep those charcoals hot!

Garlicky Sweet-Potato Fries French fries have long been associated with hamburgers and hot dogs, and are a constant companion to fast food meals. Garlicky sweet-potato fries will kick you side dish up a notch with a taste of garlic and herbs. A recipe from Bobby Flay, a grill master himself, calls for sweet potatoes, olive oil, garlic, thyme, red chili, and parsley. These flavors come together to create a unique taste. You can replace the red chili with chipotle chili powder to create a smoker flavor.

Melon Slaw While fruit sprinkled with a little sugar is a sweet dessert delight, this slaw works fruits into the meal itself and creates a refreshing tang to go with your grilled food. This recipe is fairly straight forward, and easily changed according to taste and preference. Asian pear and watermelon are the staple fruits, and cucumber, shallots, mint, salt and pepper, and a few other garnishes are added to complete the dish.

Blue Cheese Almond Stuffed Olives An easy hors d’oeuvres while the meal is grilling, these stuffed olives are compliment to almost any meal, filled with blue cheese that offsets the sweet almond inside. Baked for just over five minutes, they are stuffed with blue cheese and an almond sliver before being layered back in the jar, alternating with garlic and peppercorns for extra flavor. You can even add these to a dirty martini at the end of the night.

side dishes

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Grilled Herb Corn on the Cob Corn on the cob is one of the easiest side dishes to make: stick them on the grill, turn a few times, and done. Because the corn seems to be served plain, you can make it a little more interesting. Grilled herb corn on the cob utilizes cilantro, garlic, chili powder, mayonnaise, lime juice, Romano cheese, and salt to create an unbelievably delicious taste. The corn is then charred on the grill for added flavor. This is a guaranteed hit.

Oriental Cole Slaw Coleslaw is another side dish often associated with barbeques, easy to make and complimentary to the grilled food. Asian coleslaw is a lighter alternative, with more texture than regular slaw. Ramen noodles are roasted with almonds, sunflower seeds, and seasoned cabbage to make this dish. The dressing is not as heavy as a regular coleslaw dressing, made with soy sauce, Ramen noodle seasoning, and a few other ingredients. An easy dish to make, the crunch goes impeccably well with grilled meals.

Grilling gives food such rich flavor, making these kicky side dishes can only enhance the meal. Twists on old favorites that complement the smoky flavor of grilled meat are sure to make your barbeque the best this summer.

Sara Stricker is a link builder, making the world a better place, one link at a time.

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