Wondering what to serve with meatloaf? Well, we have 15 mouthwatering side dishes to help make your meatloaf dinner even more delicious. From mac and cheese to healthy cauliflower, there are side dishes for meatloaf that everyone will love!
We searched high and low to find the best recipes that go well with meatloaf. Some recipes are quick and simple while others will show off your culinary skills. It’s always a good idea to think about how much time you have to spend cooking when you are choosing your sides! Remember that classic potato dishes will take longer to cook than a quick salad.
You also want to keep in mind that meatloaf is a very hearty main course. You may want a lighter side dish. A nice green vegetable or a simple salad side may be good. However, meatloaf is also considered a comfort food so you may want a warm, rich side dish. A creamy roasted potato casserole or a filling mac and cheese may be just up your alley! We have both kinds of side dish options here.
Think about the flavors in your meatloaf as well. Most meatloaf recipes are made with ground beef, garlic, breadcrumbs, onions, spices, and some ketchup or tomato sauce. What would pair well with these flavors? We definitely kept all of these things in mind as we searched for recipes that would be good with your meal.
Time to take a look at our favorite meatloaf sides to get inspired. Then head to the kitchen to start cooking your meal! Our sides are sure to jazz up your meatloaf dinner and help make your meal complete. You may even want to pick two or three of these perfect, complimentary side dishes. They are just all so delicious! It is hard to choose just one favorite. A potato dish and a veggie sounds like a good place to start.
1. Brussels Sprouts
Brussels sprouts are incredibly healthy as they are full of vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants. They are a great, simple side to help make your meatloaf dinner a little more nutritious. Our recipe is very easy and can be made in about 10 minutes. Start cooking this recipe a few minutes before your meatloaf is baked so that the sprouts and main course are done at the same time. Roast the food for a little longer to get a crispier outside. Add some grated parmesan or a little bit of butter to make the dish taste even more rich and flavorful.
2. Macaroni and Cheese
Creamy, rich, and filling is the perfect way to describe this mac recipe. We love the white cheddar in our recipe as it adds a different, delicious flavor to the pasta dish. Mac and cheese is a classic side to serve with meatloaf. Both foods are considered to be comfort foods so, when served together, you have the ultimate, comforting meal! You can even try breaking your meatloaf apart and mixing it into the cheesy pasta to make a whole new dish. Choose a different shaped noodle to add a new twist to the recipe. Add a few green peas or chopped ham for some extra taste and nutrition.
3. Mashed Potatoes
When you think of what to serve with meatloaf, you may automatically think about making mashed potatoes. This classic side dish is one that everyone loves. This recipe from Gimme Some Oven is simple yet makes the best mashed potatoes we have ever tried. Be sure to use Yukon Gold potatoes as they are lower in starch. Leave the peels on the potatoes before you mash and cook them for a little extra fiber and texture. One bite of these creamy mashed potatoes and you will be in heaven! Mashed potatoes are one of the classic comfort food options that pair perfectly with almost any meat.
4. Baked Sweet Potatoes
A warm, soft-baked sweet potato is a wonderful side to serve with your meatloaf. The naturally sweet taste of the sweet potatoes goes well with the savory meat of the meatloaf. You can bake the sweet potatoes in the oven alongside your meatloaf. This will ensure all the food is hot and ready to eat at the same time! Use this recipe from Love and Lemons to make a perfectly tender sweet potato. The recipe also suggests some interesting sweet potato topping ideas that you may want to try. Be sure to keep in mind the flavors of your meatloaf when you choose your toppings. You always want your sides to complement the main course.
5. Roasted Carrots and Potatoes
Our recipe makes a perfect vegetable and starch to serve alongside your meatloaf. You only need four main ingredients to put together our roasted carrots and potatoes recipe. Using baby carrots makes this recipe even more simple as there is no peeling or chopping required. You can use larger carrots if needed, just be sure to cut them into small, bite-sized pieces. Serve your meatloaf with some gravy and pour it all over the carrots and potatoes as well! Try adding a few chopped bell peppers, some broccoli florets, or even using a sweet potato in place of the regular potatoes. Rinse the potatoes after you chop them to remove some excess starch and make the potatoes even crispier.
6. French Green Beans
Green beans are the perfect vegetable to serve with your juicy meatloaf. Using fresh green beans rather than frozen ones will ensure the beans have a nice crunch. The crisp texture is wonderful when served next to your softer meatloaf. We love the recipe from Once Upon a Chef which shows how to make classic, French-style green beans. Caramelized shallots and a touch of sugar help to make the green beans sweet. The sweet flavor and savory meatloaf are a perfect match!
7. Rice Ball Skillet
Meatloaf tends to have garlic, tomato, and onion flavors which are reminiscent of Italian cuisine. Making Italian-style rice makes for a perfect flavor combination! This recipe from Iowa Girl Eats for a rice ball skillet is a fantastic side. The rice is full of nice tomato flavor and also lots of gooey cheese. It is much easier than making real, spherical rice balls as you do not need to roll and shape the rice. Simply bake it right in the pan! There is also no deep frying involved which means this recipe is much healthier than other rice balls out there.
8. Cauliflower Casserole
Pairing your meatloaf with vegetables is always a good idea. Not only does it make your meal healthier but many vegetables also complement a meaty main course. Our recipe for cauliflower casserole is full of nutritious veggies but also tons of mouth-watering cheese. Everyone in your family will love this cheesy dish! Bake the cauliflower casserole in the oven alongside your meatloaf. Try using broccoli in place of cauliflower for a new take on this tasty recipe. This is a wonderful way to please those who may be wary of the taste of cauliflower.
9. Apple Cranberry Salad
Meatloaf tends to be served in the colder months of the year. Therefore, you may want a fall or winter-themed side. This recipe for Apple Cranberry Salad from The Cafe Sucre Farine makes for a beautiful, fall-flavored side. Tender baby spinach leaves are tossed with dried cranberries, apple slices, almond slices, and pomegranate seeds. The salad is topped with a homemade cider dressing. Try adding some blue cheese crumbles for a little extra decadence. However, this salad is healthy and flavorful just as written.
10. Roasted Garlic Caesar Salad
The roasted garlic caesar dressing is really what makes this salad from Healthy Seasonal Recipes incredible. Freshly roasted, soft cloves of garlic are pureed with lemon juice, olive oil, anchovies, mustard, and parmesan cheese to create a tasty salad dressing. Crisp romaine lettuce and radicchio lettuce are tossed with the dressing and served chilled. This salad is quite simple yet has a unique and strong flavor. It goes great with meatloaf thanks to the delicious garlic dressing. You can try adding a few crunchy croutons or some good, slice tomatoes to the salad to make it even more filling.
11. Garlic Parmesan Carrot Fries
Carrot fries are a fantastic way to serve vegetables along with your meatloaf. Making the veggie into fries is also a great way to make everyone in your family excited to eat their vegetables! Carrots that are transformed into fries are a definite win. Thinly sliced carrots are coated in a garlic, parmesan cheese mix and then baked until golden brown in this tasty recipe from Southern Discourse. The carrot fries are crisp, cheesy, and a little bit sweet. They are an amazing side dish to serve with your meat loaf especially if your meatloaf has garlic as well. Side dishes that have similar ingredients to the main course are always winners. Try to use baby carrots which would only need to be sliced in half to create perfectly sized fries. This would save time and help get your sides on the table faster!
12. Baked Broccoli
You can make crispy, salty baked broccoli in about 30 minutes. Easy sides are the best! Follow this simple recipe from Love and Lemons and your broccoli will be ready in no time. Toss the broccoli florets in olive oil, salt, Meyer lemon juice, and red pepper flakes and you’re done! Meyer lemons are slightly sweeter than regular lemons and also have a floral taste. Regular lemons will work fine if you can’t find a Meyer lemon. You can also skip the red pepper flakes if you do not want your broccoli to taste spicy.
13. Garlic Bread
Soft, flavor-packed garlic bread is a great side to serve with your meatloaf. The garlic bread recipe from The Recipe Critic is straightforward and easy to make quickly. Spread softened butter across a loaf of French bread then sprinkle with chopped garlic, salt, and grated parmesan cheese. The bread only needs to heat for a few minutes to melt the butter. Leave the garlic bread in the oven a little longer for a crispier loaf. Garlic bread is delicious when dipped into your meatloaf sauce. A simple side like garlic bread may be exactly what your meat-filled meal needs!
14. Fresh Tomato Salad
Take advantage of fresh tomatoes when you make your meatloaf dinner in the summer. Multi-colored cherry tomatoes make this fresh salad from Spend With Pennies truly beautiful and delicious. Sliced red onion, fresh herbs, and a quick drizzle of olive oil and vinegar complete this salad. The recipe calls for bocconcini which are small balls of mozzarella cheese. If you cannot get these in your store, some chopped bocconcini will work great as well. Add balsamic vinegar in place of red wine vinegar for a new twist on this easy salad.
15. Potato Casserole
Everyone in your family will love this cheesy, classic potato casserole dish. This recipe from the Plain Chicken will show you how to quickly mix frozen hash brown potatoes, creamy canned chicken soup, sour cream, cheddar cheese, butter, and ritz crackers. The casserole can be baked right in the oven with your meatloaf. The top of the casserole is crispy while the filling is thick and creamy. The mix of textures is delicious, interesting, and fantastic next to your tender meatloaf. You can fully bake these potatoes then wrap and freeze the pan. Reheat the dish whenever you are ready to enjoy it!
There are so many great recipes that would be amazing when served next to your favorite meatloaf. Try a simple salad for a lighter meal or make a hearty plate of mashed potatoes. You could also choose a roasted sweet potato side or opt for a zesty, lemon-flavored side dish. Whatever your mood may be, there are good side dishes for meatloaf just waiting to be made! Go ahead and start cooking one of these tasty sides and then let us know what you think! We love to hear which recipes you use and which become a family favorite.
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