What can you pair with chicken wings? These delicious fried treats are some of the favorite foods in my house. Whether we are celebrating the Super Bowl or just getting through another week, we love chicken wings.
So much so, in fact, that I have a few different recipes for them. I have “healthier” chicken wings and then the ones that are downright decadent and for the days we aren’t thinking about our waistlines or arteries.
However, I always try to sneak in some good sides as well, especially because not everyone loves chicken wings or loves getting their fingers messy when they are eating them. Some of the best sides for chicken wings include:
There is nothing better to pair with your chicken wings than some good old fashioned french fries. There are just so many ways that you can make these – they can be crunchy and thin or steak fries that are fat and soft in the middle.
You can even get them frozen if you want. There are just so many different options out there that you will never run out of different textures and styles, but you will run out of fries.
If you want to go with something a little healthier, you can always make green bean fries, zucchini fries, or some other sort of friend vegetable. You could even go with sweet potato fries if you want something to really contradict the tang of the chicken wings.
Macaroni And Cheese
Another great option for a side for wings is macaroni and cheese. It’s an easy to make, easy to store side that is casual enough for any gathering you may have. The other great thing is that you already have many of the toppings that people would like right in your wings!
Some people love to add hot sauce or wing sauce to their mac and cheese while other people want to add bread crumbs. You won’t have to make any special purchases and you can still enjoy your meal. Additionally, the kids will eat it up so you won’t have to worry about them only eating a few bites of a wing.
Chips and Salsa
Another great side is just plain old chips and salsa. This will help to cut down on the heat from the wings (if they are spicy) and you can eat them with your hands, which means people won’t have to worry about getting their utensils all dirty.
Chips also help to add to the casual feel of the meal. You can choose to add salsa or to make some sort of guacamole, which will also help to ease the heat.
Another great option for your side dish for wings is a yummy fruit salad. I like to choose fruits that aren’t too tangy but have a lot of water content to help cut down on the flavors of the chicken wings. Cut up watermelon, strawberries, mangos, and citrus fruits to help cut some of the fat.
Fruit salad is a great option for everyone because kids love it, adults love it, and you can usually get the pieces of it pretty cheap.
If you have cut up some watermelon, save some for grilling. If you haven’t tried it before, now is the time to experiment. Grill your watermelon for a short time, squeeze some lime on top and add cotija cheese. You can even sprinkle with a bit of cilantro if you like it (I tend to put some in a bowl next to the watermelon because I know not everyone likes it!)
Coleslaw is another great option because it is crisp and fresh (and really easy to throw together). There are many different types of coleslaw out there. For a picnic, I would go with a creamy coleslaw that will cut some of the heat of the wings and serve as a different texture. Just make sure that you keep everything as cold as possible because it can be pretty gross if it is warm.
If you don’t want the mayonnaise, you can also make a plain coleslaw or even a pickled coleslaw and get the same thing.
Another great option is potato salad. Once again, you can make this in many different ways. The best potato salad is creamy and rich with just a little bit of vinegar. The fresh veggies, crunchy texture, and some good pepper will turn regular potato salad into something you’ll crave every summer.
Russet potatoes are your only option when it comes to a side for wings, the two flavors just blend perfectly, and when they break down? You’ve got award-worthy potato salad.
Are you sensing a trend? Cucumber salad is one of my favorite options for a side dish during the summer months because it is cooling, refreshing, and melds perfectly with so many different flavors. If you can’t find English cucumbers, you can always use regular cucumbers. Just make sure that you slice them as thin as you can, use thin onions, and good quality sour cream. Some people throw dill into their cucumber salad, but I find that the simpler it can be, the better.
Corn On The Cob
Corn on the cob is a good side dish for wings because you can eat both of them and get messy without having to worry. Corn on the cob is easier to make than most people think, and you can adjust it to how you are making your wings. Using your grill? Wrap those cobs up in tinfoil. Using the over? You can make your corn in a pot of hot water! It’s the perfect adjustable dish.
You can always make Mexican street corn, some taco salad, or even cut the corn off the cob for some great other options if someone doesn’t want to eat it plain.
Another great option is baked beans. It will go right along with whatever you have planned for your wings. I like my beans to be a mixture of types to add some flavors and textures that you wouldn’t expect. You can make them healthier or tastier (with baked beans, I find that there isn’t really a middle ground).
You may want to expand your horizons a bit if you’ve never had pickled okra. This Creole dish is one of my favorites, especially as a finishing touch or a side on any meal. People probably won’t eat a ton of this, but it helps to add some new flavors to your meals.
If you are going to pickle your own okra (which I suggest), always choose the smaller pods because they will hold the juices better. The bigger pieces of okra tend to be too dry.
Beets are misunderstood foods, and I think they deserve more. One of my favorite sides for any dish, including chicken wings, is a good cold beet salad. Slice up your beets thin and see how you can transform it. If you like beets already, I suggest cutting them a bit thicker because you will get a purer taste.
There are just so many sides that can go with chicken wings. It will really depend on who you are going to eat the wings with, what the event is, and what flavor wings you are making.
To be honest, I think the best sides are some good, sturdy napkins, a few wet wipes, and strong trash bags. Most people get so laser-focused on eating their wings that they don’t worry about anything else.