One of the most popular, and easy-to-make, comfort dishes is the beef stew. It’s a hearty meal that’s great for cold nights and can be served at any time of the year. The main ingredient in the beef stew is beef of course. But there are lots of other ingredients that add flavor and texture to your meal.
This article will help you in choosing the best side dishes for beef stew.
19 Best Side Dishes For Beef Stew
Potatoes go great with beef stew because they’re filling and absorb all the delicious flavors from the meat and broth. They also have a high starch content so they help make you feel full longer than other foods do. Potatoes come in many varieties including sweet potatoes, red potatoes, white potatoes, yams, and Yukon gold potatoes just to name a few! Try adding them to your next pot-o-gravy or using them as a substitute for pasta or rice in your favorite casserole dish or soup recipe!
2. Mashed Potatoes
One of the most common side dishes that goes well with beef stew is mashed potatoes. Mashed potatoes go great with almost any type of meat and are very easy to make. Simply boil some potatoes until they are soft enough to mash, then add butter, milk or cream (if desired), salt, and pepper. Mash them up until they reach your desired consistency, adding more milk if needed to thin them out a bit. You can also add garlic powder or onion powder if you want something extra flavorful!
3. Roasted Potatoes
Roasted potatoes taste delicious with beef stew! You can roast them in the oven or on the stovetop with olive oil and garlic powder. Or you can buy pre-seasoned roasted potatoes at the store if you don’t feel like making them yourself.
Coleslaw goes great with beef stew because it adds a bit of crunchiness that contrasts with the softness of the meat. You can make your coleslaw ahead of time and store it in an airtight container in the fridge until you’re ready to serve dinner.
Bread is a great compliment to beef stew because it adds a nice softness to the mouth that contrasts with the meat. Bread can be toasted for crunchiness and dipped into the gravy for a delicious treat!
Pasta is a great option for serving beef stew because it acts as a side and the main course. Kids love it because of the fun shapes, like stars and hearts, you can make with pasta if you get creative! It also complements beef stew well because it absorbs the flavor from the meat and gravy.
7. Green Beans
Green beans are always a great side dish to pair with beef stews because they’re packed full of nutrients and vitamins that will help keep your body healthy while providing you with energy levels that last throughout the night after dinner!
8. Cottage Cheese and Fruit Salad
This side dish is a healthy alternative to the usual mashed potatoes. It’s also very easy to make and it only takes about 15 minutes to prepare. It can be served warm or cold, but I prefer serving it warm because it tastes better that way.
In a large bowl, combine the fruit with cottage cheese, yogurt, honey, and cinnamon. Stir until well combined. Serve with a spoonful of granola on top.
9. Garlic Mashed Cauliflower
Cut the cauliflower into florets. Cook in boiling water for 10 minutes or until just tender. Drain well, then return to the pan over low heat for 2 minutes to evaporate any excess moisture from the vegetable. Add butter, garlic salt, and black pepper and mash until smooth.
This recipe is one of my favorites! It’s so creamy, rich, and flavorful and goes perfect with any dish. The best thing about this recipe is that you don’t need many ingredients to make it, so it’s perfect for those days when you don’t have much time on your hands.
10. Roasted Broccoli
Preheat the oven to 450 degrees F.
Cut the broccoli into florets and toss them with olive oil, salt, and pepper. Roast for 15 minutes, until tender. Serve immediately or at room temperature.
11. Asparagus Spears
Trim the ends of fresh asparagus spears; peel the bottom 2 inches of each spear with a vegetable peeler. Place spears in a 9×13-inch baking dish and pour 2 tablespoons water over them; cover with foil and bake at 400 degrees F for 10 minutes or until crisp-tender. Serve immediately or at room temperature.
12. Creamy Polenta or Grits
Polenta is a dish made from cornmeal. It’s a slow-cooked porridge that can be served as a side with meats, poultry, and seafood. To make polenta, cornmeal is cooked in water until it reaches a creamy consistency. This can be done on top of the stove, but it’s much easier to cook polenta in the oven. The advantage of cooking polenta in the oven is that you don’t have to stir it constantly so you can spend more time enjoying your company at the table. You can also leave it unattended while you prepare other dishes for your meal.
Pair with beef stew to add a delicious creaminess. If using grits, cook them first in salted water and then add butter and cheese.
13. Rice Pilaf
This is a great side to serve alongside your beef stew. It also works well with chicken and veggie stews. You can make this dish with either brown or white rice. If using brown rice, you will need to soak it overnight before cooking it in water or stock and seasonings of your choice. Add fresh herbs such as thyme or rosemary for extra flavor!
14. Buttered Noodles
Buttered noodles are a classic choice because they’re easy to make and pair well with the savory flavors of beef stew. A homemade breadstick recipe is another good choice — it’s a great way to use up leftover bread and butter from breakfast or lunch. And if you’re really feeling ambitious, you can make homemade rolls using our easy recipe below!
This is a great side dish that can be made in a flash. Just cook the noodles in boiling, salted water, and then drain. Melt some butter and add it to the noodles along with salt and pepper to taste. You can also add finely chopped parsley if you like.
15. Homemade Breadsticks/Rolls with Butter
If you have time, these homemade breadsticks are delicious and make for an impressive presentation at the table. They are best served warm from the oven but can be served out of the skillet as well. You can also make these into rolls if you prefer them that way.
To make them: cut 2 pounds of bread dough into 10 pieces and roll each piece into a rope about 3 inches long. Twist each rope around your finger to create a spiral shape and place it on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper or a silicone mat (you may need two sheets). Cover and let rise until doubled in size (about 1 hour). Bake at 350 degrees for 20 minutes or until browned on top and firm to the touch (see note). Remove from oven and brush tops with melted butter while still hot then serve immediately.
16. Steamed Veggies
Steamed vegetables are a great side dish for any beef stew. Try steaming cauliflower, butternut squash, carrots, and parsnips. They’re all delicious and full of vitamins and nutrients.
17. Green Beans Sautéed in Bacon Fat or Olive Oil
Green beans work well with almost any meat dish, including beef stew. Cook them until they’re tender, but not mushy. If you want to add a little extra flavor to your green beans, sauté them in bacon fat or olive oil before adding them to your beef stew.
18. Arugula, Pear, and Blue Cheese Salad
This salad has a great combination of flavors. The arugula is peppery and bitter, which goes well with the sweetness of the pears. The blue cheese adds a sharp bite that offsets the sweet pears, and the walnuts add crunch.
This salad is easy to make, and it is sure to please. The combination of arugula and blue cheese is a classic one, but the addition of pears provides some balance to the flavors.
19. Roasted Beet Salad with Goat Cheese and Walnuts
If you are looking for an alternative to the traditional greens that come with a beef stew, this roasted beet salad is just what you need. Roasting beets brings out their natural sweetness while also adding some crunchiness to them. This recipe calls for goat cheese, which adds creaminess as well as saltiness to the dish. In addition to beets, this recipe uses walnuts in both its dressing and its garnish.
This salad is full of great ingredients that work together well. The beets are roasted until tender, so they have a caramelized flavor that pairs nicely with the goat cheese. The goat cheese also adds creaminess to this dish as well as protein for some extra staying power.
I hope this article has been helpful to you. I think that the best side dishes for beef stew are ones that complement the meat and vegetables in the stew without overwhelming them. In my opinion, that means choosing sides that are lighter, when possible.
For example, if you’re making a beef stew with carrots, potatoes, and broccoli, I would choose a potato salad as my side dish (it’s light) instead of mashed potatoes or pasta salad (both of which are heavier).
If you’re making a beef stew with steak pieces, mushrooms, and peas, I would choose a side salad with vegetables instead of something like macaroni and cheese or mashed potatoes (again: heavy).
I hope this helps!