Whether you are grilling or pan searing, steaks are beloved. It could be a ribeye, New York strip, picanha, or a massive Tomahawk, it doesn’t matter. People are going to love a steak. If you are making a steak dinner, you want that steak to be perfectly done. You want to serve the best steak.
However, you can’t forget the side dishes. You don’t want to put a beautiful steak on a plate next to instant mashed potatoes or boxed macaroni and cheese. So what are the best sides for steak?
These side dishes can help ensure your entire dinner is of the same quality as the steak.
Table of Contents
Potato Based Side Dishes
Smoked Creamy Au Gratin Potatoes
Who doesn’t love sliced potatoes cooked perfectly in a cream sauce? It pairs well with a perfectly-done steak. This recipe takes a dish full of richness and amps it up with the addition of cheese to the cream sauce. When assembling the dish, alternating potato discs and sliced onion means every bite has a full array of flavors.
The sauce is reminiscent of making a homemade cheese sauce for macaroni and cheese. Like making baked mac and cheese, you can uncover the scalloped potatoes and stick them under a broiler to add that crispy finish to the dish. This is one of the best sides for steak.
Baked potatoes are a staple side dish with steak. Twice-baked potatoes take that simple side and make it a star. It’s like taking a loaded baked potato but turning the insides into loaded mashed potatoes.
These twice-baked potatoes are simple to make with most of the time spent with the potatoes in the oven. The author, Ree Drummond of Pioneer Woman fame, does recommend making your own homemade bacon bits for the filling. Potatoes, cheese, and bacon. How can this not be one of the best potato sides for steak?
Easy Oven Roasted Potatoes
If you are looking for a bit more crispiness in your potatoes, these easy oven-roasted potatoes could do the trick. These are simple and easy to make with the ability to season them however you like. The longest part of the preparation, soaking the potatoes, is optional. If you have the time, it will help remove some of the potato’s starch which can lead to a fluffier interior.
The best part is you can adapt these potatoes based on what seasonings you have on hand. If you like growing herbs at home, they will go perfectly in this dish. These also make for good leftovers as well. You can use them as homemade hash browns or in a hash for breakfast or simply reheat them for lunch.
Cheesy Smashed Potatoes
Our very own Jannah Haas developed this recipe that will add layers of flavors and textures as a side dish to steak. The potatoes develop a smoky flavor if you bake them using a smoker. Rather than turn them into mashed potatoes or twice-baked potatoes, these get smashed in a skillet to about ½” thick, then crisped and topped with cheese.
These potatoes also get more flavor from being sprinkled with garlic salt and onion powder after being smashed. It doesn’t get much better than a smoked potato flavored with garlic and onion and topped with cheese. You can do these on a gas grill as well. Just add some wood chips as detailed here for both the original baking and when melting cheese to get the smoky flavor you want.
Creamy Mashed Potatoes
Mashed potatoes are a perfect side dish, whether it’s for Thanksgiving turkey or steak. There may be debates between creamy versus chunkier mashed potatoes, but this recipe is all about creamy, whipped mashed potatoes. Since we are going for creamy potatoes, these potatoes are completely peeled.
The recipe also calls for using hot milk to help better incorporate during the mixing process. Whipping the potatoes using a stand mixer gives this recipe the fluffy whipped texture you’re looking for. Mashed potatoes are one of the best sides for ribeye steak.
Vegetable Based Side Dishes
Perfectly done asparagus is a great side dish to a perfectly done steak. Mushy, overcooked asparagus isn’t. Jannah Haas came up with a homemade recipe for us that is fit for a steakhouse that is easy to make at home.
It only calls for six ingredients including the asparagus. You get tangy asparagus that holds up when you chew it and is still a bright green but no longer woody. Picking the proper asparagus also helps as the thicker stalks will be more woody and harder to eat. However, if you pick too thin of stalks, they will quickly overcook and turn mushy.
When you cook carrots, they develop a sweet flavor that you wouldn’t know existed if you only ate them raw. This recipe takes the sweetness of a roasted carrot and marries it with the earthy tones of thyme and oregano. Carrots are also a great vegetable to serve for most picky eaters who aren’t fans of veggies due to their sweetness.
Side dishes do not need to be complex and time-consuming to prepare. Sometimes simple is best. The steak should be the star of the dinner plate, so a flavorful yet simple side dish like roasted carrots works well.
Mushrooms are an iconic accompaniment to steaks, whether as a side dish or even a topping. This recipe for garlic mushrooms adds herbs to the usually-simple preparation of cooking mushrooms in garlic and butter for an extra pop of flavor.
For even more flavor, the author gives you the option of adding onions and white wine. The sweetness that develops as the onions cook helps balance the earthiness of the mushrooms.
Sautéed Green Beans with Garlic
Speaking of garlic, these green beans are tossed with garlic that gets golden-brown and crispy. This dish continues the theme of simple and easy side dishes to pair with steak that still pack a flavorful punch.
The author cautions against using a garlic press because the resulting garlic won’t get crispy. Instead, she recommends using your knife skills and mincing fresh garlic cloves yourself.
Roasted Brussels Sprouts with Bacon
Brussel sprouts may be a divisive vegetable, but roasting them with garlic and bacon can turn them into bundles of amazing flavor. Then topping them off with a balsamic reduction made with balsamic vinegar and brown sugar? You get this beautiful recipe. By cooking the sprouts on a high heat (425°F), they roast, developing flavors in conjunction with the olive oil, bacon, and garlic roasting with them.
Then drizzling a homemade balsamic reduction just takes it to the next level. It’s easy to make, simply simmering balsamic vinegar and brown sugar together until it develops a sauce thick enough to coat the back of a spoon. The whole recipe is easy since the sprouts, bacon, and garlic all roast together in one pan. This is one of the best sides for steak dinner.
Perfectly Grilled Corn on the Cob
Corn on the cob is an iconic part of any summer cookout. The sweetness of the corn married with salt and butter makes it a perfect side dish for anything off the grill. When you then cook the corn on the grill, the sweetness also develops a charred and roasted layer. Chef Bobby Flay’s take on the staple also comes with homemade butter options as well.
He has a BBQ butter that would fit on the table at your backyard BBQ, but the herb butter might fit better alongside your steaks.
Wedge salads are a common item found at restaurants and steakhouses. A wedge of iceberg lettuce topped with blue cheese dressing and bacon works well with steaks. However, the drawback to a traditional wedge salad is that the toppings can go everywhere and the bottom of the wedge rarely gets enough toppings.
This twist on the classic helps address that problem. Rather than taking a head of iceberg lettuce and cutting it into quartered wedges, you slice the head into flat discs. That means more surface area for your toppings and ensures that every bite gets dressing, bacon, croutons, and tomatoes. Honestly, why don’t more places do it this way?
Carb-loading side Dishes
Smoked Mac and Cheese
Creamy macaroni and cheese just amplifies the richness of a steak dinner, making it an indulgent affair. Just don’t use boxed mac and cheese. Michael Haas, president of Angry BBQ, developed this recipe as an alternative to what you’ll find on store shelves. The recipe calls for four types of cheese including whipped cream cheese to help with the creaminess of the cheese sauce.
Then to top it all off, the whole pan goes into your smoker 30-45 minutes to finish. You get the creamy cheesiness of a traditional mac and cheese paired with woodsmoke flavor.
Soft Dinner Rolls
Really, would any steak dinner be complete without soft, chewy rolls? Top these rolls with butter, whether that’s a regular butter or a specialty butter like honey butter, and you’ll feel like you’re at a steakhouse. The recipe is simple, just be aware that you will need to take some time. These are yeast rolls, so there are two separate times for letting the dough rise.
The author does highlight a couple of hacks that can help shorten the length of time the dough spends rising if you’re a little low on time. You can even make these ahead and freeze them before thawing them out and warming them when you need them.
Wrapping It Up
It’s hard to beat a steak as the highlight of the meal but a lot of these sides will impress your guests and be remembered. If you have any other great steak side recipes, let us know!