13 Hanukkah Side Dishes So Tasty You’ll Want to Make Them the Main Event
A classic Hanukkah dinner menu is within your grasp, even if it's your first time hosting the holiday meal. From latkes and kugel to brisket and challah, these traditional Hanukkah side dish recipes will spark old memories and new traditions (and leave only empty plates behind).
Best Basic Challah
Save room on your Hanukkah table for a stunning braid of challah. Yes, you can DIY it! If this is your first attempt, our how-to video along with the recipe will lead you to a perfect plait. Adventurous chefs can reach for our flavorful adaptations, such as garlic-herb, parmesan, or chocolate.
Test Kitchen Tip: For sheen, brush the loaves with an egg wash before baking.
Potato pancakes are a must on any Hanukkah menu. After you’ve had the classic version on night one, switch things up! For a modern upgrade, try adding mochi flour for a showy texture that holds up well to toppings.
Jerusalem Noodle Kugel
The twist on this classic sweet kugel recipe is its shape. Instead of cooking in a rectangular dish, our noodle kugel is baked in a round springform pan ($9, Kohl's). This way, it's easy to pop out and display on your Hanukkah dinner table! Garnish with fresh parsley leaves, then slice wedges as you would a cheesecake.
Sticky Roasted Carrots with Citrus
Sweet, spicy, tangy, and nutty all at once, these carrots will leave everyone rooting for another serving of this sheet pan Hanukkah side dish. Honey, chiles de arbol, citrus, and tahini deliver on those flavor notes, while in-season carrots get even sweeter once you roast them. To save time and oven space as you prep the rest of the meal, complete this vegetable recipe a few hours ahead and refrigerate until it’s time to dine. The carrots taste just as amazing chilled.
Matzo Ball Soup
One of the quintessential Passover and Hanukkah foods, this hearty yet healthy soup is so packed with delicious elements we have a tough time picking our favorite. The homemade chicken stock? Wait, no. The caramelized onions. Or what about the light and fluffy club soda-spiked matzo balls? Let’s just say all of the above is what we love most (and think you will to) about this classic Jewish recipe.
Classic Potato Latkes
Shredded potato latkes are a traditional Hanukkah dinner item, and we love how versatile they are. (Not to mention quick: A batch takes less than 30 minutes!) This easy holiday recipe is flavored simply with garlic and salt, but can be topped with applesauce or remixed with sweet potato, beets, or carrots.
Whether you pile it on top of latkes, swipe it up with your meat entrée, or slather it on a Brie-topped toast, this applesauce will steal the show the moment you add it to your Hanukkah dinner buffet. The warm fall spices help each spoonful taste like the all-American pie. Have extra jars? Gift them to friends, neighbors, or coworkers for a Hanukkah present that will keep on giving for days to come.
Fresh Citrus and Cranberry Salad
Balance out brisket’s richness with a crisp and refreshing salad. Tart cranberries, seasonal citrus, and peppery arugula pack a massive flavor punch in a well-balanced side dish. It tastes best chilled, so toss it together before you start roasting your entrée and refrigerate until it’s time to light the menorah.
Pressure Cooker Potatoes with Tarragon Butter
Craving a break from latkes come days seven and eight of your holiday celebration? Try this easy Instant Pot recipe that still features plenty of spuds but in a different format. Smashed rather than shredded, the potatoes in this Hanukkah side dish are loaded with flavor by way of butter, garlic, Parmesan, and fresh herbs.
Brown Butter Brussels Sprouts and Apple
This dressed-up sprouts recipe, ideal for sharing around the holidays, offers a lovely sweet-savory combo platter thanks to apples, walnuts, and Brussels sprouts.
There’s no wrong time to serve pillowy popovers with an airy center: with a plate of eggs at brunch, alongside slow-braised soups and stews, or next to your entrée of choice. Kitchen staples including flour, sugar, eggs, milk, cheese, and salt—seriously, that’s all you need for this Hanukkah side dish—magically transform when you follow celebrity chef Tyler Florence’s easy instructions.