What to Serve With BBQ Meatballs? (The Ultimate Side Dish Selection)

January 31, 2023
Written by Kristy J. Norton

One of my favorite things to make on the grill during summertime is BBQ meatballs. And mashed potatoes are my preferred side dish for these ball-o-meats. My love for variety in cooking tasks started me on an exploration of different side dishes that work for meatballs. Want to find out what they are?

Well, in this article, we’ll explore 12 delicious side dishes that complement BBQ meatballs perfectly. I’ll also include the prep method for the top six dishes. They’re easy to make, crowd-pleasing, and create a complete and satisfying meal.

what to serve with bbq meatballs

12 Side Dishes That Work for Meatballs 

When it comes to BBQ meatballs, the question on everyone’s mind is, “What should I serve with them?”

The truth is, there are so many delicious options to choose from. So it can be hard to decide what to serve with BBQ meatballs.

Here are 12 of my favorite side dishes to serve with BBQ meatballs.

1. Creamy Mashed Potatoes

I personally think mashed potatoes are a great side dish for BBQ meatballs. They complement the flavors of the meatballs and provide a comforting and satisfying texture. 

Mashed potatoes are a classic dish for BBQ meats in general. So they’re an excellent choice for a traditional BBQ meal. 

You can add some butter or sour cream to make them more delicious. Just make sure to mix in some parsley or chives for added freshness and color. Trust me, your taste buds will thank you!

How to Prepare Mashed Potato Side Dish?

Making mashed potatoes as a side dish for BBQ meatballs is super easy.

  • Firstly, start by peeling and cutting your potatoes into small chunks.
  • Then, boil a pot of salted water and add your potatoes.
  • Cook until the potatoes are nice and soft, which should take around 15-20 minutes.
  • Once they’re cooked, drain the potatoes and add them back to the pot.
  • Next, you’ll need to add some butter, milk, and salt to the pot.
  • Use a fork or potato masher to mash them until they’re nice and creamy. If you want to add some extra flavor, you can add some minced garlic or chives.
  • Some roasted garlic can also help bring out the flavor. Once you’ve achieved the desired consistency, you can transfer the mashed potatoes to a serving dish.
  • Finally, serve the mashed potatoes alongside your BBQ meatballs and enjoy your delicious meal. Don’t forget to top it with some shredded parmesan cheese or sour cream for an extra burst of flavor. Enjoy!
Hot and Creamy Smashed Potatoes

2. Potato Salad

Potato salad is another great side dish that goes well with BBQ meatballs. I prefer making mine with lots of mayonnaise, a little mustard, and chopped bell peppers. It’s a great way to add color and crunch to the meal.

How to Make Potato Salad Side Dish?

To make a delicious potato salad side dish for BBQ meatballs, you’ll need a few simple ingredients. 

  • First, start by boiling some potatoes until tender. Once they are cooked, drain them and let them cool. While the potatoes are cooling, you can start preparing the dressing. 
  • In a small bowl, mix mayonnaise, mustard, apple cider vinegar, and salt and pepper. Once the potatoes are cool, cut them into bite-sized pieces and add them to a large mixing bowl. 
  • Next, add some chopped celery, red onion, and parsley. Pour the dressing over the potato mixture and toss everything together until evenly coated. 
  • Finally, refrigerate the salad for at least an hour before serving to let the flavors meld together. And that’s it. Your potato salad is ready to be served with your BBQ meatballs.
Homemade Potato Salad

3. Grilled Veggies

You can also serve BBQ meatballs with grilled crunchy vegetables. The good thing about grilled veggies is that they add color and flavor to your BBQ meatballs.

For this, I like to grill bell peppers, zucchini, and eggplant. They add a lot of nutrients to the dish.

How to Make Grilled Veggies Side Dish?

  • Start by prepping your veggies. Again, this can be a variety of colorful vegetables like bell peppers, eggplants, or zucchini. If you want, include red onion. Cut them into bite-sized pieces.
  • Next, add a little oil (olive), salt, and pepper to the veggies and toss to coat.
  • Heat your grill to medium-high heat. Use a grill basket or skewers to make it easier to flip the veggies.
  • Once the grill is hot, add the veggies and cook for about 8-10 minutes, occasionally flipping, until they’re tender and have excellent grill marks.
  • Remove the veggies from the grill and squeeze fresh lemon juice or a sprinkle of your favorite herbs.
Grilled Vegetables Platter

4. Baked Beans

Baked beans are a classic side dish that goes great with BBQ meatballs. I prefer making them with lots of tomato sauce, brown sugar, and apple cider vinegar, as they bring some sweetness to the meal.

How to Prepare Baked Beans Side Dish?

Here’s how to make them:

  • First, preheat your oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit 
  • Next, you’ll need a few cans of navy or cannellini beans. Drain and rinse them, then place them in a baking dish.
  • In a separate pan, cook some diced bacon or bacon bits until crispy. Remove the bacon from the pan and set it aside.
  • In the same pan, sauté some diced onions and garlic until they’re softened. Add some BBQ sauce, sugar, and a little mustard to the pan. Mix everything and let it simmer for a few minutes.
  • Pour the BBQ sauce mixture over the beans in the baking dish and stir everything together. Add in the cooked bacon and mix it in.
  • Cover the baking dish with foil and bake it in the oven for about 30 minutes. After 30 minutes, remove the foil and bake for an additional 15 minutes.
  • Once the baked beans are done, let them cool for a few minutes before serving. They’re a perfect side dish to go with your BBQ meatballs.
Baked Beans on a Ceramic Bowl

5. Grilled Corn

Grilled corn pairs well with spicy meatballs. The corn can add sweetness and crunch to your BBQ meatball. I like to grill mine with a little bit of olive oil and a sprinkle of salt. They bring color and flavor to the BBQ meatball meal.

How to Prepare the Grilled Corn Side Dish? 

Making a delicious grilled corn side dish for your BBQ meatballs is super easy. You’ll need four ears of corn, 1/4 cup of melted butter, two cloves of minced garlic, and salt and pepper to taste. 

  • First, start by preheating your grill to medium-high heat. Next, take the corn and remove the husks and silk. 
  • Brush each ear with melted butter, and season with garlic, salt, and pepper. 
  • Place the corn on the grill, and cook for about 8-10 minutes, occasionally turning, until the kernels are tender and lightly charred.
  • Once the corn is done, remove it from the grill and let it cool for a few minutes. Then, cut the kernels off the cob and serve with your meatballs for a delicious and satisfying meal.
Grilled Corn with Butter and Aromatic Herbs

6. Egg Noodles

Egg noodles are good side dishes to add carbs to your juicy meatballs. I like to make mine with lots of butter and some sliced parsley. They also add some texture and flavor to the dish.

How to Prepare Egg Noodles Side Dish? 

  • Start by boiling a large pot of water. Once it’s boiling, add salt to the water for flavor.
  • While you wait for the water to boil, crack four eggs into a mixing bowl. Add 1 cup of flour and a pinch of salt. Mix until the dough comes together.
  • Once the dough is formed, turn it onto a floured surface and knead it for about 5 minutes until it becomes smooth and elastic.
  • Roll the dough out as thin as possible using a rolling pin. Then, using a knife or a pasta cutter, cut the dough into thin strips.
  • Once the water is boiling, add the egg noodles to the pot and cook them for about 3-4 minutes or until they’re al dente.
  • Drain the noodles and toss them with a little butter or olive oil. You can also add some chopped herbs or grated cheese for extra flavor.
  • Serve the egg noodles alongside your BBQ meatballs. I’m sure your guests will love it.
Egg Noodles with Bockhoy, Tomatoes, Mushrooms, and Meatballs

Other Side Dishes to Try

7. Tomato Sauce

This is a tasty sauce that can add some sweetness, color, and acidity to your BBQ meatball.

You can prepare it with lots of tomato paste, sugar, and some chopped basil. 

Raw Tomatoes and Sauce

8. Coleslaw

Coleslaw is popular among BBQ meatball fans as they add a refreshing crunch and tanginess to your BBQ meatball serving.

They’re best made with shredded cabbage, mayonnaise, and vinegar (apple cider). It’s the perfect side dish to balance out the rich flavors of the BBQ meatballs.

A Bowl of Crispy Coleslaw Salad

9. Grilled Pineapple

Grilled pineapple can add a sweet and tropical twist to your BBQ meatball. You can grill it with a sprinkle of sugar (brown) and cinnamon.

It’s a delicious and unique side dish that everyone will love.

Grilled Pineapple Slices

10. Grilled Asparagus

Grilled asparagus is another dish that complements BBQ meatballs. It can add green and a healthy side dish to your BBQ meatball meal.

Most people like to make it with a sprinkle of oil, salt, and pepper. It’s a tasty and healthy side dish. 

Grilled Asparagus with Lemon and Seasonings

11. Macaroni and Cheese

Mac and cheese is a comfortable side dish for your BBQ meatball serving. You can make yours with a creamy cheese sauce and some bread crumbs on top for added crunch. 

Baked Macaroni and Cheese

12. Cornbread

Cornbread is another option if you like the southern flavor in your BBQ meatball dish.

You can prepare it with a mixture of cornmeal, flour, eggs, and milk. It’s a perfect side dish for sopping up any extra BBQ sauce.

Jalapeno Cornbread Slices


These are some of my favorite side dishes to serve with BBQ meatballs. Next time you fire up the grill for some BBQ meatballs, don’t be afraid to experiment with different side dishes to find the perfect pairing. 

Whether you’re looking for something classic like mashed potatoes or something more unique like grilled vegetables, you can find a dish that will please everyone. With some BBQ meatballs prep time, you can have a delicious dish that will keep your guests coming back for seconds. Happy grilling!

By Kristy J. Norton
I'm Kristy – a chef and connoisseur of all things BBQ! You can find me either in my kitchen (or someone else's) or at a big outdoor barbecue surrounded by friends and family. In both my professional and personal life I’ve picked up more than a few tips and tricks for turning out delicious food. I consider it a privilege to share it with others!
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