Grilled chicken is a versatile and healthy basis for many meals. From casual to elegant, grilled chicken can be served at lunch or dinner. Grilled chicken can be paired with virtually any side dish. The best side dishes are determined by your personal preference and the meal at which you will be serving grilled chicken.
Steamed, grilled or raw, vegetables make a healthy, delicious side dish for grilled chicken. A large tossed salad or creamy coleslaw works best with grilled chicken served at a summer picnic. “Bon Appetit” recommends tossing everything on the grill and serving grilled chicken with grilled eggplant and squash slices. For children, try serving cubes or strips of grilled chicken with carrot sticks or celery sticks. They can easily be grasped by small fingers and paired with a low-fat yogurt dip for lunchtime fun.
Wild rice or brown rice, served with grilled chicken and vegetables, makes a low-calorie meal, but there are plenty of starches that pair well with grilled chicken. Chef Guy Fieri serves grilled chicken atop a bed of linguine tossed with a Cajun Alfredo sauce. The writers at “Bon Appetit” recommend grilled chicken served with corn on the cob, seasoned with lime and chilies. Beans and potatoes are also excellent grilled chicken side dishes.
A selection of fruits makes grilled chicken into a tropical treat. Mango, melon, berries and apples pair well with grilled chicken, whether combined in a fruit salad or served whole and separately. Martha Stewart recommends pairing grilled chicken skewers with a sweet and salty combination of cantaloupe and feta cheese, or a bright and colorful mixed tomato salad with grilled chicken breasts.
While not technically a side dish, choosing the right beverage can round out your meal. An ice cold beer goes well with chicken fresh off the grill, while wine provides a slightly more elegant finish. Well-chilled sauvignon blanc and chardonnay are good white wine choices, while chianti and pinot noir are red wines that pair well with grilled chicken. Lemonade, ice water and milk are good choices for non-alcoholic beverages.
References and ResourcesEating Well: Quick and Healthy Side Dishes
Chow Hound: What to Serve with BBQ Chicken
Martha Stweart: Grilled Chicken Menus
Cajun Chicken Alfredo
Supermarket Guru: Wine Pairing Ideas - Grilled Food
"Bon Appetit": Grilled Chicken Menu