20 Best Sides For Chicken Wings
Sure, celery sticks are fine—but they're not exactly the liveliest things to serve with spicy, juicy chicken wings. Instead, opt for one of our fun and tasty recipes. From cooling Creamy Cucumber Salad to Ranch Mashed Potatoes (the ultimate comfort food indulgence), this collection of chicken wing sides can't be beat.
Super-Crispy Oven Fries
These unbelievably crispy oven fries cut the grease and calories of a standard French fry and taste way better. While this process isn't as fast as a deep fryer, the extra time is worth it. You can even parboil the potatoes ahead of time and wait until it's closer to serving time to bake them.
Oven-Fried Zucchini Sticks
Serve these crispy zucchini fries to kick off a meal or as part of a fun appetizer spread, along with cured meats, cheeses, and olives. Any jarred marinara sauce will work for dipping, but our test kitchen prefers Rao’s brand. If you’re not a fan of marinara, substitute Alfredo sauce or pesto.
Poblano Mac and Cheese
Are you ready for the cheesiest Mac and cheese in your life? With a cheese pull so long you could play double dutch with it? This poblano mac and cheese might just be the only mac and cheese you’ll ever make again. If you’re not a fan of heat, use a bell pepper instead of a poblano to cut down on the spiciness.
Endless Summer Salad
This abundantly loaded salad is the ultimate love letter to summer. Featuring a colorful menagerie of seasonal gems, it’s as gorgeous as it is delicious. Plus, it’s absolutely flexible; consider this recipe a blueprint for bringing together everything that catches your eye at your own local farmer’s market this week.
Creamy Cucumber Salad
Cool, herbaceous, and refreshing, this creamy cucumber salad is the perfect accompaniment to any number of summer entrees, including barbecue pulled pork, grilled chicken, smoked brisket, and more. If you can’t find English cucumbers, simply use regular cukes, but peel them first.
Crispy Air-Fried Onion Rings With Comeback Sauce
Ah, onion rings—the ultimate deep-fried indulgence. Thanks to your air fryer, you can rescue this crunchy favorite from the realm of diet banishment and invite it back to your plate. These rings of allium awesomeness come out of the air fryer boasting a superbly crispy coating without any heavy greasiness.
Blue Cheese Mac-And-Cheese
This incredibly rich baked mac and (blue) cheese might be the one dish that even the most staunch blue cheese hater will embrace with open arms. If a side dish better suited to accompany your next steak dinner exists, we sure don’t know what it could be.
Grilled Sweet Potato Fries
Side dish or snack? We say both! If you think sweet potatoes are just for Thanksgiving, give these spicy wedges a try. The smoky spice blend is easy to whip up ahead of time, but the potatoes are best eaten while hot.
Crispy Air Fried Sweet Potato Wedges
Side dish or snack? We say both! If you think sweet potatoes are just for Thanksgiving, give these spicy wedges a try. The smoky spice blend is easy to whip up ahead of time, but the potatoes are best eaten while hot. Though it’s tempting to crowd the air fryer basket and cook everything in one batch, resist the urge—air flow is crucial for maximum crispiness. Not a fan of cilantro? Try basil, parsley, or fresh thyme leaves.
Like a cross between a vinegar-based coleslaw and chowchow, Permanent Slaw is tender and tangy. This easy salad is designed to be prepared in advance. The longer this side dish sits, the more flavorful it becomes (hence the name).
Classic Potato Salad
No need to rush to the store—we’ve got the perfect potato salad recipe right here. Creamy and rich, with hints of tangy vinegar and crunchiness from fresh vegetables, this classic potato salad is hearty and perfectly delicious. Russet potatoes are the ideal here, because they break down a little and make the potato salad creamier.
Grown-Up Pasta Salad
You know that pasta salad from childhood (you know the one—rotini, canned olives, underripe grape tomatoes, cubed cheese)? It showed up at cookouts, sleepovers and every occasion in between, and it holds a special place in hearts a plenty—or at least it does around our office.
Air-Fried Jalapeño Poppers
The air-fryer jalapeño poppers allow you to enjoy everything you love about crispy pepper poppers without all of the not-so-lovable mess that comes with deep-frying.
Using fresh broccoli instead of bagged broccoli slaw makes for a sweeter, more flavorful end product. Look for refrigerated sauerkraut either in the deli or by the tofu in your local grocery store (canned lacks probiotics).
Ranch Mashed Potatoes
Not to brag, but this is the best version of homemade ranch mashed potatoes around. The fresh herbs really add some zing to this side and beautifully complement sour cream and buttermilk’s tang. For the fluffiest mashed potatoes, place the potatoes back in the pot after draining them and put them on low heat.
Baked Zucchini Chips
Opt for oven-baked zucchini chips as a light alternative to fries This recipe is a fun and easy way to use up summer zucchini, and it’s one your family will request time and time again. The high oven temperature will evaporate moisture from inside the zucchini and crisp the breadcrumb coating to a beautiful golden brown.
Crunchy Romaine Salad with Cilantro Ranch
For a vibrant green dressing, whiz all the dressing ingredients in a blender instead of whisking together in a bowl. Feel free to use this dressing to top any combination of greens and crunchy vegetables. Double the recipe, and you’ll have extra dressing on hand for the week.
Air-Fried "Everything Bagel" Kale Chips
Welcome to your new go-to snack food—kale chips 2.0! These flavor-packed nutritious chips come out of the air fryer even crispier than they do from your regular oven. Store-bought everything bagel seasoning can be gorged with sodium.
Air-Fried Dill Pickle Fries With Ranch Breadcrumbs
Pickle spears are one of those foods that’s meant to be fried, and sticking them in the air fryer makes for a fun finger food. The combination of juiciness and crunch remains fantastic, while the ranch breadcrumbs bring in so much flavor you won’t need a dipping sauce.
Peach and Celery Salad
The flavors of peach and celery meld beautifully in this no-cook side. Pistachios amp up the crunch factor.