We’ve all been there: you’re at a summertime barbeque, the burgers and chicken are sizzling on the grill, and it smells divine. But, you glance over at the side dishes, and it’s the same old calorie-laden coleslaw and greasy potato salad. Yikes! You know what I’m talking about, right? Well, fear no more. We believe no one should have to compromise on taste or their health just for the love of BBQ. With this in mind, we’ve put together a collection of Healthy Barbecue Side Dishes that are not just lip-smacking but also healthier than your typical BBQ fare. These sides are nutritious, easy to whip up and — here’s the best part — they’re delicious!
While you’re at it, check out our Mouthwatering Recipes With Barbecue Chicken that you can serve as your main dish.
Grilled Vegetable Skewers
Source: The Forked Spoon
Colorful, vibrant veggies, laced onto skewers and grilled to absolute perfection. You’ve got that delightful charred flavor, where each bite is a mini explosion of smoky goodness. These skewers are a cheerleader for those who love a good veggie treat and those aiming for a healthy game day spread. Pair these skewers with a zingy yogurt-based dip and some whole-grain garlic bread.
Source: Eating Bird Food
Imagine a mouthful of this salad; you’ve got fluffy quinoa, the nuttiness harmoniously blending with the crunch of fresh cucumbers and tomatoes. Now, add the zesty punch of lemon, and you’re practically doing a victory dance on each bite. Want a secret play for this dish? Throw in some ripe, creamy avocado chunks to add richness and make it even more satisfying.
Sweet Potato Salad
Source: Love And Lemons
Anyone craving sweet and savory flavors will cheer for this salad. It brings back memories of autumn days, cozying up in front of the TV, and rooting for your team. Now, imagine pairing this salad with some spicy grilled chicken or a veggie burger. Together, they form a game-day combo that leaves taste buds cheering and waistlines smiling. Ready for the salad showdown?
Fresh Corn Salad
Source: Spend With Pennies
Are you ready for the underdog that might steal the show? Enter Fresh Corn Salad. Imagine savoring a spoonful of this refreshing salad. You’ve got juicy corn kernels, each bite bursting with summery sweetness, with crisp bell peppers and zesty lime dressing. It’s a side that’s as satisfying as your team’s winning touchdown.
Greek Yogurt Coleslaw
Source: Gemme Some Oven
Crispy, vibrant veggies enveloped in a creamy, tangy Greek yogurt dressing. Each spoonful is a refreshing burst of crisp cabbage and carrots, contrasted by the creaminess of the yogurt. Add a sprinkle of toasted sesame seeds for an unexpected crunch and a hint of nuttiness. This coleslaw would be loved by those who enjoy a healthier spin on traditional barbecue sides.
Grilled Asparagus with Lemon Zest
Source: Joyful Healthy Eats
Welcome to the field, Grilled Asparagus with Lemon Zest – the side dish that’ll score big on your game day. Bite into these grilled beauties; the asparagus is tender yet snappy, sprinkled with a zesty lemon kick that amps the flavor. Want to score some extra points with your crowd? Top it off with a sprinkle of Parmesan cheese for a salty, umami hit that marries so well with the freshness of lemon.
BBQ Spiced Roasted Chickpeas
Source: Minimalist Baker
This snack is a crowd-pleaser, especially for those who relish a crunch and love bold flavors. It’s reminiscent of classic BBQ chips with a healthy, protein-packed twist. Pair these roasted chickpeas with a cold craft beer or a veggie platter. Either way, you’re serving a powerhouse that’s as thrilling as the final quarter.
Watermelon Feta Salad
Source: Love & Lemons
Get your taste buds ready for a refreshing sprint down the field with the Watermelon Feta Salad. The juicy, sweet watermelon cubes are contrasted by the salty, creamy feta, creating a mouth-watering explosion of flavors. Want to kick it up a notch? A sprinkle of fresh mint or basil leaves will add a fragrant freshness that takes this salad to the next level.
Grilled Portobello Mushrooms
Source: Well Plated
The mushrooms are juicy and tender, with a delightful smoky flavor enriched by a simple marinade. Want to go for the flavor touchdown? Top them off with a dollop of herbed goat cheese for a creamy, tangy contrast. These grilled goodies will garner fans among veggie lovers and those leaning toward the more sophisticated flavors.
Zucchini and Corn Grilled Salad
Source: Simply Delicious Food
This salad will be a hit with those looking for fresh, flavorful sides that offer a break from traditional heavy game day fare. It reminds you of a sunny tailgate party, the grill fired up, and the anticipation of the game in the air. Pair this salad with a smoky BBQ chicken or a hearty veggie burger, and you’ve got a game-day combo that’s as balanced as your favorite team’s offense.
Tomato Cucumber Mozzarella Salad
Source: Natasha’s Kitchen
Let’s huddle up and discuss Grilled Asparagus with Lemon Zest, a side dish sure to score points at your game day party. These perfectly grilled asparagus spears, their earthy taste are uplifted by the tantalizing zest of fresh lemon. Looking to go an extra yard with this dish? Sprinkle generously with finely grated parmesan cheese for a salty umami contrast that’s a total game-changer.
Black Bean and Corn Salsa
Source: Spice Up The Curry
Add a dash of smoked paprika for a smoky twist, and trust me, your salsa game will never be the same again. This dish is sure to score big with those who love a vibrant, fresh salsa with a bit of a kick. It’s reminiscent of tailgate parties under the open sky, where the excitement for the game is just as intense as the flavors on your plate.
Sweet and Sour Grilled Eggplant
Source: Ricardo Cuisine
This dish will capture the hearts of those who appreciate a blend of sweet, sour, and umami in their game day fare. It will take you to those laid-back BBQ nights, where the grill sizzles as the game commentary echoes through the backyard. Pair this eggplant with juicy grilled chicken skewers or a hearty couscous salad. Together, they create a winning team that’ll leave your game-day guests asking for more.
Healthy Potato Salad with Yogurt
Source: Jessica Gavin
Gear up for a game day favorite with a healthful twist – Healthy Potato Salad with Yogurt. Imagine digging into creamy, tender potatoes harmoniously mixed with crunchy celery and red onions, all coated in a tangy, light Greek yogurt dressing. Add a generous sprinkle of fresh dill or chives, giving it that aromatic lift that sends the flavors into the end zone.
Grilled Pineapple with Honey Drizzle
Source: Simple Joy
This dessert-like side will win over those who enjoy a balance of natural sweetness and zesty flavors. It’s reminiscent of those carefree, sun-drenched summer cookouts, the game on the radio, and the grill fired up. Serve this grilled pineapple with some BBQ chicken skewers or with vanilla ice cream for a sweet end to your game-day feast.
BBQ Cauliflower Bites
Source: Eating Well
The cauliflower is tender, the BBQ coating is a delightful burst of tangy, savory flavor that will have you reaching for more. Looking to add an extra field goal? Serve it with a creamy Greek yogurt dip to balance the BBQ zest perfectly. This party snack is perfect for those who enjoy a plant-based alternative to traditional BBQ fare. It carries the reminiscent feel of classic BBQ cookouts but with a healthful, modern twist.
Lemon Garlic Green Beans
Source: Tasting Table
Enjoy a zingy, flavorful veggie side with Lemon Garlic Green Beans. It takes you back to those family cookouts, the TV blaring with the game, and delicious food. Pair these green beans with a succulent grilled steak or a blackened fish fillet for a game-day meal worthy of a championship ring. This is a side dish that’s sure to be the unsung hero of your game day menu.
Potato Salad with Celery and Whole Grain Mustard
Source: Misfit’s Market
Let’s huddle up for a game day favorite that never disappoints — Potato Salad with Celery and Whole Grain Mustard. Scoop into this hearty salad, the creamy potatoes perfectly balanced by the crunch of fresh celery and the tangy pop of whole grain mustard. Want to score some extra flavor points? Toss in some chopped dill pickles for an added zesty crunch to take this potato salad to the next level.
Tangy Cucumber Salad
Source: The Kitchn
Let’s welcome the Tangy Cucumber Salad to the game day line-up, a refreshing side that will earn its stripes. Each bite is a burst of fresh cucumber, elegantly balanced by a tangy dressing that keeps you returning for more. It’s like a refreshing halftime break amidst the heavier, intense flavors typical of game day.
Roasted Veggie and Quinoa Salad
Source: Eating Well
Crumble some feta cheese for a tangy contrast that plays beautifully against the savory roast veggies. This salad will be a hit with those seeking a hearty, nutrient-rich side on game day. It sparks memories of post-game meals that fuel recovery while satisfying big appetites. Eat this salad with some grilled chicken skewers or a juicy, lean steak for a combo that’s as balanced as a perfect pass.
Vegan Macaroni Salad
Source: Simple Veganista
Add a handful of colorful veggies like red bell pepper or shredded carrots for added crunch and a vibrant kick. It’s like revisiting those warm, comforting family barbecues, but with a plant-based twist. Enjoy this salad with smoky vegan BBQ ribs or a hearty veggie burger for a game-day spread as inviting as the final whistle.
Grilled Brussels Sprouts with Balsamic Glaze
Source: Once Upon A Chef
This dish is a must-try for veggie lovers and those who appreciate bold, contrasting flavors. It’s like a cozy autumn afternoon turned into a side dish, perfect for enjoying the game with loved ones. Imagine the delight of biting into these mini cabbages, their natural earthiness beautifully offset by a sticky, sweet, and tangy balsamic glaze.
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