17 Christmas Side Dish Recipes to Pair with Your Favorite Entrees

Round out your meal with a classic Christmas side.

fondant potatoes in cast iron skillet
Photo:

Jacob Fox

Don't stop at the holiday ham—share the spotlight of your traditional Christmas dinner with these favorite side-dish recipes. Classic bread stuffing, creamy mashed potatoes, bright salads, and cozy root vegetables are just the start of our best Christmas side dish ideas.

01 of 17

Orange- and Balsamic-Glazed Tricolor Carrots

Orange- and Balsamic-Glazed Tricolor Carrots
Andy Lyons

Goes Best with: Beef Brisket

Showcase the beauty of tricolor carrots. A balsamic glaze flavors the Christmas vegetable side dish, which proves a hearty companion for tender beef brisket.

02 of 17

Rustic Garlic Mashed Potatoes

Rustic Garlic Mashed Potatoes
Scott Little

Goes Best with: Cornish Game Hens

It's hard to find a meal that doesn't go well with mashed potatoes, but we're especially fond of this garlicky blend with golden roasted game hens. The petite chickens can be adjusted to fit the number of diners at your Christmas dinner.

03 of 17

Classic Bread Stuffing

Classic Bread Stuffing
Andy Lyons

Goes Best with: Deep-Fried Turkey

Turkey and stuffing go together like, well, turkey and stuffing. Try deep-frying your holiday bird for super succulent slices of meat, then serve with our classic bread stuffing that can be prepared in your slow cooker.

04 of 17

Mushroom Fricassee with Fresh Herbs

Mushroom Fricassee with Fresh Herbs
Blaine Moats

Goes Best with: Roasted Chicken

Fricassee is a cooking method in which meat or, in this case, fresh mushrooms are sliced, sauteed, and served with a white wine sauce. The seasonal side dish proves a worthy topping to rich roasted chicken, but can also be paired with polenta or tempeh for a vegetarian Christmas recipe.

05 of 17

Everything Caramelized Brussels Sprouts with Bacon

Everything Brussels Sprouts with Bacon
Jason Donnelly

Goes Best with: Pork Loin

Dress up classic roasted Brussels sprouts with chopped bacon and everything bagel seasoning. Modernize the Christmas side dish by cooking it in your air fryer and finishing it with a drizzle of maple syrup.

06 of 17

Broccolini with Peas and Seared Lemons

Broccolini with Peas and Seared Lemons
Blaine Moats

Goes Best with: Roasted Goose

Roasted goose is a rich, buttery dark meat, so keep the rest of your Christmas menu light and refreshing. A trio of greens—including broccolini, peas, and Swiss chard—brightens the main dish with tart citrus slices.

07 of 17

Fondant Potatoes

fondant potatoes in cast iron skillet

Jacob Fox

Goes Best with: Ham

Often called melting potatoes, this take on the classic French potato dish is flavored with olive oil, butter, rosemary, and garlic. To make, slice the potatoes and brown them first, then cook them low and slow until they are creamy.

08 of 17

Easy Focaccia Casserole Bread

Easy Focaccia Casserole Bread
Andy Lyons

Goes Best with: Pot Roast

Get the goodness of those endless restaurant bread baskets with this crumbly focaccia recipe. The bread can be made in a standard casserole dish in no time with fast-rising yeast. Use it to sop up any remaining sauce from your Christmas pot roast.

09 of 17

Roasted Green Beans with Beets, Feta, and Walnuts

Roasted Green Beans with Beets, Feta, and Walnuts
Andy Lyons

Goes Best with: Lamb Chops

Root vegetables, such as beets, are particularly good candidates for roasting because they can stand the high heat without losing their shape. Cook them with green beans, then add your choice of toasted nuts and crumbled cheese. The red-and-green Christmas vegetable side makes an elegant starter for tender lamb chops.

10 of 17

Wild Rice Dressing

Wild Rice Dressing
Andy Lyons

Goes Best with: Baked Salmon

The grainy nuttiness of wild rice fuses with flaky baked salmon for holiday perfection. Fresh mushrooms stud the dressing with earthy, meaty dimension.

11 of 17

Green Bean and Mushroom Skillet

Green Bean and Mushroom Skillet
Carson Downing

Goes Best with: Roast Chicken

Put a fresh twist on classic green bean casserole. Instead of a heavy cream sauce, toss thin green beans with mushrooms and crispy bacon. Top the vegetable side dish with slices of herb goat cheese and crispy shallots. If you're not a fan of goat cheese, swap in any salty cheese like feta, Parmesan, or blue cheese.

12 of 17

Cauliflower "Couscous"

Cauliflower "Couscous"
Scott Little

Goes Best with: Roasted Pork Loin

Roasted pistachios contribute color, crunch, and delicate flavor to this faux-grain salad. Balance the mild taste of roast pork loin with crumbly cauliflower and two types of tart dried fruit. The holiday side salad is ready in under an hour, plus it's gluten-free!

13 of 17

Meringue-Topped Sweet Potato Casserole

Meringue-Topped Sweet Potato Casserole
Raymond Hom

Goes Best with: Baked Bone-In Ham

The humble sweet potato reaches new culinary heights when topped with our easy homemade meringue. Pair it with another Christmas classic, succulent baked ham, and you've got yourself a can't-lose holiday dinner combination.

14 of 17

Skillet Scalloped Corn

Skillet Scalloped Corn
Andy Lyons

Goes Best with: Brined Turkey

Serve up a cozy dose of comfort with this extra-easy scalloped corn. The vibrant one-pan veggie side dish is ready to serve in just 15 minutes, and its cheesy sauce makes a gooey alternative to your turkey's gravy.

15 of 17

Brussels Sprouts Casserole

Brussels Sprouts Casserole with Pancetta and Asiago Cheese
Blaine Moats

Goes Best with: Beef Rib Roast

Say hello to your new favorite holiday side dish. Buttery Brussels sprouts get a gourmet update with a sprinkle of shredded Asiago cheese and crisp pancetta. Pile the creamy casserole high next to a steaming slice of beef rib roast—you won't regret it.

16 of 17

Potato, Celery Root, and Parsnip Mash

Potato, Celery Root, and Parsnip Mash
Carson Downing

Goes Best with: Glazed Ham

Balance the sweetness of the glaze with this savory Christmas side dish for ham. Toss boiled cubes of potatoes, parsnips, and celery root with butter, cream, and fresh thyme for a totally splurge-worthy side.

Test Kitchen Tip: Make the recipe up to one month before serving and freeze. Let the dish thaw in the fridge and gently reheat in a slow cooker.

17 of 17

Roasted Sweet Potato-Bacon Mac and Cheese

roasted-sweet-potato-bacon-mac-cheese-RU337871
Carson Downing

Goes Best with: Pulled Pork

Ensure your homemade mac and cheese is extra-creamy by grating the cheese yourself. Pre-grated cheese will result in a less creamy sauce. Top the dish with crispy bacon and Parmesan cheese.

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