Our Favorite Easter Side Dish Recipes
After a morning of hunting for colored eggs, fill your Easter brunch, lunch, or dinner table with a variety of side dishes that deliciously complement your glorious glazed ham or rack of lamb. It's time to take full advantage of the budding spring vegetables to brightly adorn your table, from vibrant green peas to stunning pink and purple radishes. This collection of our favorite Easter side dishes consists of traditional fare, along with a mix of fresh and new recipes that are perfect for an Easter feast.
Bacon-and-Cheddar Grits Quiche
Spread cheese to the edge of the warm, bacony grits "crust" to prevent any custard from seeping out while the quiche bakes.
Hot Chicken Deviled Eggs
These Southern-inspired deviled eggs say summer fun like nothing else. A picnic-perfect use for leftover fried chicken, these tasty bites are spicy, but not burn-your-mouth spicy. Feel free to increase or decrease the cayenne pepper depending on how much of a kick you like. A sweetness from the chopped pickles, tang from the vinegar and hot sauce, and salty-savory deliciousness from the fried chicken make for a perfectly balanced chicken + eggs-perience.
Steak and Deviled Eggs
Deviled eggs are made even more savory with the addition of our garlicky, rich Perfect Roasted Beef Tenderloin. Old school crispy shoestring potatoes add texture and flavor like no other ingredient can. These deviled eggs are the perfect way to use the leftover "end" of the beef tenderloin and pair well with any Super Bowl food.
Coconut-Ginger Sweet Potato Brûlée
Green Goddess Deviled Eggs
Rum and Honey-Roasted Cayenne-Cumin Carrots
Spring Pea Shoot Salad with Beets and Dulse Vinaigrette
Toasted Couscous and Tomato Salad
Spring Pea Pasta with Ricotta and Herbs
Our one-pot primavera brings together seasonal favorites: fresh herbs, crunchy sugar snap peas, and sweet peas. Combining ricotta cheese with the salty water left over from boiling the pasta makes a super-easy, creamy sauce.
Minty Pea Soup with Parmesan Croutons
This bright and fresh spring soup has all of the elements of amazing flavor, topped of course with the crispy crunch of some cheesy croutons.
Ham Cured Pineapple with Prosciutto and Pomegranate
Most people adorn their holiday ham with pineapple. This year, flip the script and "hamify" a whole pineapple. The result is a "wow" worthy holiday centerpiece that resembles a modern version of the classic ham, pineapple, and maraschino cherry combination. The glaze, pomegranate, prosciutto, and charred pineapple hit every flavor note in the book. Carve the pineapple like, well... a ham.
Chipotle Scalloped Potatoes
Cheesy, smoky, and savory—all of our favorite flavors come to play in Chipotle Scalloped Potatoes.
Classic Parmesan Scalloped Potatoes
Gently stirring twice while baking promotes even cooking and creaminess to this hearty scalloped potato recipe. Pull out of the oven, stir once more, then sprinkle with cheese, and continue baking without stirring for a casserole that's golden brown on top. For a scalloped potato recipe that doesn't require a ton of hands-on time or a plethora of ingredients, this delicious dish is sure to be a crowd-pleaser.
Sweet Potato and Gouda Gratin
Our favorite new side dish (or vegetarian main, if made with vegetable broth) is a colorful version of scalloped potatoes. For richest flavor and color, look for deep-orange-fleshed sweet potatoes with skin that's burnt orange to dark red. A food processor's shredding disc and 2-mm. slicing blade make quick work of the cheese, sweet potatoes, and shallot.
Asparagus with Balsamic Tomatoes
This breakfast option is fluffy, salty, cheesy, and will make you think you are in France. Using a gluten-free pie shell will also yield outstanding results. Serve this for breakfast or for brunch with a mixed greens salad.
Spinach and Feta Quiche with Quinoa Crust
Cheesy quiche partners beautifully with a bright, citrusy salad. Whisk together 2 tablespoons canola oil, 1 tablespoon white wine vinegar, 1 teaspoon honey, and 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt in a large bowl. Add 3 cups baby kale, 3/4 cup grapefruit sections, and 1/4 cup sliced red onion; toss to coat.
Roasted Veggie Mac and Cheese
Mac and Cheese with Squash
Zucchini and Goat Cheese Quiche (Quiche de Courgettes au Chèvre)
This dish is a bit of a project, but once you have the pastry rolled and pressed into the tart pan, most of the work is done, and you can do that well in advance. Keep the dough in the freezer, ready to bake when you need it. (The crust is a lightened adaptation of Tanis' original crust. We reduced the amount of butter by 5 tablespoons and the cream cheese by 2 ounces, and doubled the amount of yogurt.)
Carrot and Zucchini Spaghetti
Surprise your friends and family at your next dinner with this spiralized veggie pasta dish. Here we combine zucchini and carrots "pasta" with spaghetti noodles, top with fresh herbs, and finish with boiled eggs (boiled in the pasta water!).
Caprese Galette with Balsamic Reduction
The fresh summer favorite, Caprese Salad, gets a delicious and elegant makeover in this savory galette. Featuring thick slices of heirloom tomatoes and fresh mozzarella cheese, boosted with a fresh basil pesto and rich balsamic reduction, this stunning tart is loaded with bold, fresh flavors and makes for the perfect addition any summer gathering. And the best part is, despite its lovely presentation, this Caprese Galette is incredibly simple to pull together. If possible, try to use ripe, locally sourced tomatoes for this recipe, as they’ll generally offer fuller flavor than what you pick up at the supermarket. This galette can be served warm from the oven or at room temperature—just garnish with a few fresh basil leaves before you put it out, and get ready to rake in the compliments.
Tortellini Salad with Zucchini and Peas
'Tis the season for zucchini. Make the most of it in this light and summery salad where it's just barely wilted.
Zucchini Noodle Salad
If you don't own a spiralizer, you can use a julienne peeler. Some grocery stores now sell premade zucchini noodles.
Zucchini Rice Gratin
Inspired by Julia Child's classic recipe for Tian de Courgettes au Riz (zucchini gratin), my version is comforting yet fresh and clean--it's not overloaded with heavy cream or cheese.
Stuffed Zucchini Boats with Tomato Salad
The microwave quickly steams the zucchini so that you only need to run the stuffed boats under the broiler for a minute or two at the end.
Zucchini's mild flavor concentrates into something much richer when you cook it until most of its liquid evaporates.
Grilled Corn Pasta Salad
This vibrant, flavor-packed summer side dish combines a bounty of favorite seasonal flavors into a single, epic pasta salad. The recipe comes from our friends The Food Gays, and they developed this colorful grilled corn dish as a fresher, brighter alternative to the typical mayo-based pasta salads that often show up a summer parties. Packed with fresh produce and dressed in a light and zippy lemon-mustard vinaigrette, this grilled corn pasta salad is anything but boring. Give it a try at your next summer cookout and enjoy as the compliments pour in.
A little bit of butter is great, but seasoning corn with chili powder and grated lime rind takes corn from a backyard favorite to something really special.
Easy Tomato Salad with Basil Chimichurri and Ricotta
For a simple and elegant way to serve your summer farmers' market tomatoes, this speedy salad is perfect. Dressed in a basil chimichurri and speckled with creamy dollops of ricotta cheese, this show-stopping side is perfect for effortless entertaining.
Cheesy semolina is like a warm hug from a cherished aunt. It’s terrific on its own but can go anywhere mashed potatoes or polenta would go, and it is unique enough to be a fun addition to a dinner party. Whether you are eating it right out of the pot in your lap in your pajamas, or serving it in your best china to guests, this is a perfect dish to have in your arsenal. The choice of cheese is up to you: Want your semolina extra creamy and smooth? Go for a soft cheese like cream cheese, chevre, or even Boursin. A little more texture? Try a grated melting cheese with some backbone, fontina, gruyere, cheddar. Looking for deeper umami? Hit the parmigiano or pecorino.
Cauliflower with Cheese Sauce
Tender cauliflower topped with a velvety smooth Cheese Sauce is a favorite side dish among kids and adults. This version, from Southern culinary legend Nathalie Dupree, is as easy to prepare as it gets. Steam the cauliflower in a steamer basket, then drain and top with cheese sauce and crunchy browned breadcrumbs.
Clementine-and-Collard Greens Salad
This healthy yet hearty salad makes a great winter meal, just when you’re in need of something bright and sunny. Sweet and juicy clementines, a favorite citrus down South, liven up this mix of chicken, collard greens, pecans, and crumbled goat cheese. Massage some of the dressing into the collards to tenderize the greens and make them more flavorful.
Gnocchi Gratin with Ham and Peas
You'll love the flavor of this simple gratin. Gruyère is an aged Swiss cheese with a firm texture and sweet, slightly nutty flavor. If you can’t find Gruyère, Comté, Appenzeller, and Emmenthaler are in the same cheese family and good substitutes. This dish is easy to make-ahead. Simply prep the unbaked gratin up to two days ahead and store in the refrigerator. When you're ready to server, bake as directed.
Yellow Gazpacho with Herbed Goat Cheese Toasts
You don’t have to wait for cold weather to enjoy a satisfying bowl of soup. Gazpacho is a refreshingly chilled, summer soup, usually made with a pureed mixture of fresh tomatoes and other garden vegetables, olive oil, breadcrumbs garlic. You can even stir in cold shrimp or crab to make this a more complete meal. The gazpacho is even better when prepared one day ahead and stored in the refrigerator, which allows the flavors more time to blend.
Kettle Chip-Crusted Fried Green Tomatoes with Tasso Tartar Sauce
Pull out the fryer and make crunchy fried green tomatoes. Tasso is a highly spiced, cured, and smoked pork used to flavor dishes in Cajun cooking. You will often find it used in gumbos. If you can’t find tasso, look for Andouille sausage, another heavily spiced pork sausage used in Cajun dishes.
There are three must-have ingredients in a good pan of succotash. You must have fresh tomatoes, and we prefer cherry tomatoes to boost the sweetness of the dish and add a little acidity for balance. Instead of heavy cream, this recipe calls for salted butter to give the colorful vegetables richness without turning them gray. And where many succotash recipes call for soft herbs such as tarragon, chives, and parsley, we prefer basil. Its classic flavor and aroma just says “summer”. While pork is a traditional ingredient in many Southern variations of succotash, it's certainly not essential to this side. For a vegetarian option, follow the recipe but omit the bacon and replace the drippings with 2 tablespoons of extra-virgin olive oil. Still want a hint of spice? Sprinkle the finished dish with a little bit of smoked paprika.
Watermelon, Cucumber, and Feta Salad
Cucumbers add a welcome crunch to this refreshing summer salad of cubed watermelon, fresh herbs, and crumbled feta cheese. You can replace the fresh mint with basil if you prefer, or use a combination of both herbs. A personal-sized seedless watermelon is just the right size for this salad, but you can also use pre-cut melon or a portion of a larger watermelon. Be sure to dress the salad right before serving it to prevent the melon and cucumbers from watering down the vinaigrette
Turnip Green Salad
If you think turnip greens are only edible if they are simmered in a pot of liquid and seasoned with a ham hock, check out this recipe. This summer salad makes delicious use of abundant produce such as fresh turnip greens, heirloom grape tomatoes, and colorful watermelon radishes. Ideal as a side dish for a summer cookout, the hearty greens and cauliflower lend enough bulk to make this salad a main dish. Feel free to add other summer vegetables to the recipe, such as chopped zucchini, yellow squash, or cucumbers. We've topped this salad with Green Goddess Dressing for even more flavor.
Baked Macaroni and Cheese
Two-Toned Scalloped Potatoes
Using both sweet potatoes and Yukon gold potatoes gives classic, comforting scalloped potatoes a delicious upgrade. Perfect for family gatherings and holiday dinners at any point in the year, this impressive potato side dish delivers creamy richness, robust savory flavor, and a delightful crunch with a herby panko-pecan topping. You can assemble the dish (minus the topping) ahead of time and refrigerate up to 12 hours before you’re ready to bake.