40+ Summer Side Dishes For Your BBQ!

Looking for an easy recipe for your summer bbq? This ultimate collection is full of delicious sides, salads and veggies to complement your grilled favorites!

40+ Summer Side Dishes Collage of Photos

40+ Summer Side Dishes For Your BBQ!

Side Dishes make the meal! Yes, we said it. A great grilled piece of meat is wonderful and what summer is all about, but we’re here for the sides.

If you’re planning on making sides for a crowd here’s a good rule of thumb:

  • Make one pasta or potato side, the starches are filling and go great with grilled meats.
  • Make something with greens, either a Cole Slaw or a classic salad, this will add bulk to the plate without weighing people down.
  • Finally, a good fruit salad is ALWAYS a win, this is a great way for people to feel good about their meal choices before enjoying the all time summer favorite dessert, SMORE’S!

How much to make per person?

Since you’ll be making 3-4 side dishes along-side your main course you don’t need to follow the traditional serving sizes.

We recommend assuming it will feed double to triple the amount of people as most people will take smaller portions and may not each every dish. To be sure you have enough the best thing to do is have lots of easy finger foods people can supplement with in addition to their main plates of food. 

Finger foods like cut vegetables or cut fruit, crackers and cheese or chips are perfect as a way to round out a BBQ get together.


Easy Cole Slaw Recipe (Coleslaw)

This traditional coleslaw recipe is an easy side dish made with shredded cabbage mix and creamy dressing - ready in 5 minutes!
Check out this recipe


Macaroni Salad

Classic Macaroni Salad is an easy side dish you can make the night before your next picnic or potluck with a creamy and tangy dressing.
Check out this recipe


Easy Fruit Salad

Easy Fruit Salad recipe for a refreshing dish with assorted ripe fruits, fresh berries, and simple dressing made of citrus juice and honey.
Check out this recipe


BBQ Bacon Wrapped Corn on the Cob

Bacon wrapped corn on the cob is a crispy, delicious appetizer or side dish to take to your next BBQ.
Check out this recipe


Cucumber Tomato Salad Recipe

Cucumber Tomato Salad with a quick and easy dill vinaigrette in just 10 minutes is the perfect side salad full of fresh summer vegetables.
Check out this recipe


Potato Salad Recipe

Classic Potato Salad with a creamy mayonnaise dressing with relish, mustard and celery salt coating potatoes and chopped hard boiled eggs.
Check out this recipe


Easy Pasta Salad

Easy Pasta Salad made with mozzarella, black olives, cherry tomatoes, and bell peppers in a creamy Italian dressing is the PERFECT side dish!
Check out this recipe


Texas Caviar (Cowboy Caviar)

Texas Caviar (Cowboy Caviar) is a fun side or chip dip made with black eyed peas, black beans, corn, tomatoes, jalapenos with a cilantro lime vinaigrette in just 15 minutes!
Check out this recipe


Broccoli Raisin Salad

Broccoli Salad is an easy summer side with raisins, bacon and sunflower seeds for barbecues and summer potlucks that can sit without wilting!
Check out this recipe


Corn Succotash

Corn Succotash made with freshly grilled corn, zucchini, grape tomatoes, red bell peppers, lima beans and red onion.
Check out this recipe


Baked Beans Recipe

The BEST EVER Baked Beans that have won 4 bbq competitions! Prepped in just 15 minutes, they are going to be the hit of your summer barbecue.
Check out this recipe


Big Mac Pasta Salad

Big Mac Pasta Salad is a fun twist on a summer side dish! Easy cheeseburger pasta salad with McDonald's special sauce, topped with sesame seed bun croutons!
Check out this recipe


Pimento Pasta Salad

Pimento Pasta Salad is a delicious take on a classic Macaroni Salad made with elbow macaroni, pimento peppers, cheddar, mayo and chives. 
Check out this recipe


Curried Egg Salad

Curried Egg Salad is the perfectly easy lunch recipe you can serve as a main dish over a salad or in a sandwich with a delicious curry mayo dressing.
Check out this recipe


Cobb Potato Salad

Cobb Potato Salad is the perfect mix of a Chicken Cobb Salad with bacon, egg, avocados and Blue Cheese mixed with red potatoes and ranch dressing.
Check out this recipe


Baked Mac and Cheese Recipe

Baked Mac and Cheese is the ultimate classic side dish for any meal with three cheeses, perfect for the holidays and for BBQ’s!
Check out this recipe


Popeye's Coleslaw (Copycat)

This Popeye's Coleslaw is the best coleslaw to go with fried chicken! Crispy green cabbage tossed in creamy dressing, easily made in minutes.
Check out this recipe


Southwestern Potato Salad

Southwestern Potato Salad made with avocados, black bean, corn and cheese with a creamy southwestern dressing that's the perfect side dish for your BBQ.
Check out this recipe


Milk Boiled Corn

Milk Boiled Corn is an easy side dish boiled with water, milk, butter and salt until it is sweet, tender and buttery in less than 20 minutes!
Check out this recipe



Elote, or Grilled Mexican Street Corn, is an easy side dish topped with mayonnaise, crema, queso fresco, chili powder and lime.
Check out this recipe


Crispy Sweet Potato Fries

Crispy Sweet Potato Fries with a single magic ingredient to keep them crispy! No more soggy fries, these stay crispy even if you have to reheat in the oven.
Check out this recipe


Shrimp Salad

Creamy Shrimp Salad with celery, red onion and a dill mayonnaise dressing is a great sandwich filling or lettuce topper you can make in just minutes.
Check out this recipe


Brown Sugar Grilled Pineapple

Easy Brown Sugar Grilled Pineapple made in a grill pan is the quintessential side dish to any summer dishes you're making. When grilled the pineapple gets soft, tender and melts in your mouth!
Check out this recipe


Beer Battered Onion Rings

Beer Battered Onion Rings are the perfect combination of crispy, light and fluffy with a hint of sweetness from the beer. A great side for your summer bbq!
Check out this recipe


Chipotle Inspired Jalapeno Lime Corn Salad

A delicious fresh, bright corn salad just like the salsa served up at Chipotle. Takes less than five minutes to make, an hour or so to sit and let the flavors meld together.
Check out this recipe


Classic Three Bean Salad Recipe

Classic Three Bean Salad with green beans, garbanzo beans and kidney beans tossed with a sweet and sour dressing is the perfect summer side.
Check out this recipe


KFC Coleslaw

KFC Coleslaw is a five minute side dish you'll enjoy all summer long with your favorite chicken and more! Tastes exactly like the original!
Check out this recipe


Bacon Blue Cheese Potato Salad

Bacon Blue Cheese Potato Salad takes the classic potato salad and kicks it up a notch with the flavors of bacon and blue cheese. This will be a summer bbq favorite!
Check out this recipe


Mexican Corn Salad

Mexican corn salad is an easy no-cook side dish for your summer bbq with corn, mayo, lime juice, chili powder, cilantro and cotija cheese that gives you elote flavors without the cob!
Check out this recipe


Cheddar and Sour Cream Roasted Potatoes

All the flavors of Cheddar and Sour Cream Potato Chips on freshly roasted potatoes! Made with 100% natural powdered cheddar and sour cream and totally craveable!
Check out this recipe


Loaded Garlic French Fries

Oven Baked Loaded Garlic French Fries tossed in slightly warmed chopped garlic, olive oil and kosher salt, just like you enjoy at the ball game!
Check out this recipe


Strawberry Spinach Pasta Salad

Strawberry Spinach Pasta Salad with almonds, feta, and an easy balsamic and olive oil dressing is the perfect side dish for a potluck or get together.
Check out this recipe


Easy Greek Pasta Salad

Easy Greek Pasta Salad with a homemade vinaigrette, pasta, feta, and olives is the perfect, easy lunch meal you can enjoy at room temperature. Also great with added chicken or shrimp.  Pairs well with Pure Leaf® Unsweetened Black Iced Tea.
Check out this recipe


Italian Antipasto Pasta Salad

Italian Antipasto Pasta Salad is delicious and easy with creamy Italian dressing, cheese, salami, olives, tomatoes, bell peppers and pasta that's the perfect addition to your summer menus!


Creamy Bacon Pea Salad

Creamy Bacon Pea Salad with mayonnaise, bacon, cheddar and crunchy sweet peas. The perfect southern summer side dish in just five minutes!
Check out this recipe


Chicken Caesar Pasta Salad

10 Minute Chicken Caesar Pasta Salad is so quick to make and so delicious you will put this in your regular rotation for lunches, parties, picnics and bbqs!
Check out this recipe


BBQ Chicken Pasta Salad

Easy BBQ Chicken Pasta Salad with a creamy BBQ dressing, corn, bell peppers, black beans and juicy chicken breast. A perfect summer side!
Check out this recipe


Chicken Bacon Ranch Pasta Salad

Chicken Bacon Ranch Pasta Salad with just a handful of ingredients will be the most popular side dish at your summer bbq events and picnics!
Check out this recipe


Sweet Coleslaw

Sweet Coleslaw is a favorite Southern BBQ side. Creamy slaw with an easy mayo-based dressing with vinegar, celery seed, and sugar in minutes.
Check out this recipe


German Potato Salad Recipe

German Potato Salad is a traditional warm potato salad with bacon and caramelized onions mixed with a tangy vinegar and sugar dressing.
Check out this recipe


El Pollo Loco BBQ Black Beans

El Pollo Loco BBQ Black Beans are a classic side option that are sweet and a bit of heat from scratch. The cult favorite no longer on the menu!
Check out this recipe

Collage of Summer Side Dishes with text through the middle

About the Author: Sabrina Snyder

Sabrina is a professionally trained Private Chef of over 10 years with ServSafe Manager certification in food safety. She creates all the recipes here on Dinner, then Dessert, fueled in no small part by her love for bacon.

Sabrina Snyder is a professionally trained personal and private chef of over 10 years who is the creator and developer of all the recipes on Dinner, then Dessert.

She is also the author of the cookbook Dinner, then Dessert – Satisfying Meals Using Only 3, 5 or 7 Ingredients, published by Harper Collins.

She started Dinner, then Dessert as a business in her office as a lunch service for her coworkers who admired her lunches before going to culinary school and becoming a full time personal chef and private chef.

As a personal chef Sabrina would cook for families one day a week and cook their entire week of dinners. All grocery shopping, cooking and cleaning was done along with instructions on reheating. As a private chef she cooked for private parties and cooked in family homes in the evenings for families on a nightly basis after working as a personal chef during the day.

Sabrina has been certified as a ServSafe Manager since 2007 and was a longstanding member of the USPCA Personal Chef Association including being on the board of the Washington DC Chapter of Chefs in the US Personal Chef Association when they won Chapter of the year.

As a member of the community of food website creators Sabrina Snyder has spoken at many conferences regarding her experiences as a food writer including the Indulge Food Conference, Everything Food Conference, Haven Food Conference and IACP Annual Food Professionals Conference.

Sabrina lives with her family in sunny California.

Dinner, then Dessert, Inc. owns the copyright on all images and text and does not allow for its original recipes and pictures to be reproduced anywhere other than at this site unless authorization is given. If you enjoyed the recipe and would like to publish it on your own site, please re-write it in your own words, and link back to my site and recipe page. Read my disclosure and copyright policy. This post may contain affiliate links.


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