Do you have duck in your freezer? If it’s been there a while because you’ve been wondering what to serve with duck, this post is for you.
And honestly, for me as well, because I’m worried my duck I bought on sale is going to get freezer burnt if I don’t cook it.
I love chicken, but many people prefer duck over chicken, and for a good reason.
Duck is undoubtedly more flavorful than chicken, with rich, dark, fatty meat.
Meat lovers can’t help but savor the tender, fatty, and moist duck meat, whether it’s roasted or baked to perfection.
Crisping that thick skin is part of the process (and the wonderful flavor).
If overcooked, the fat will create a rubbery texture, which is not quite tender as you expect in duck meat.
Also, leftover duck fat is versatile for cooking.
You can use this for cooking your veggies and other meats, which already gives you an upper hand when it comes to flavor.
Another reason is that you can pair duck with limitless side dishes.
From potatoes to pasta and simple leafy greens, duck meat is an excellent complimentary main dish.
Thinking about what to serve with duck?
Here’s 18 side dishes you must try!
But our favorite is #16, which will have you cooking duck regularly every week along with this side dish!
I know, I know.
It’s milder, DIY Rice-A-Roni, but better. So much better.
Vermicelli is a thin noodle that can be mixed into any type of rice that will add more starchy goodness.
It is toasted in olive oil, which gives more character than plain steamed rice.
While just a few simple ingredients, the toasting process just layers in the flavor.
This easy and quick garlic noodle recipe will surely become a staple in your kitchen every time you’re cooking duck meat.
It only has an eight-ingredient list, but packs a punch when it comes to flavor.
The garlic noodles are salty, rich, and sweet, creating a party in your mouth.
It’s perfect for any glazed duck meat or even just a simply roasted duck with salt and pepper will already make your dining experience enjoyable.
Why not choose an all-year-round favorite as the side dish for your duck meat?
Mashed potatoes are a classic tradition that will remind you of those special occasions spent with the entire family around the dining table.
Mashed potatoes are starchy, which absorbs all the saltiness from the duck meat.
Plus, the texture is creamy, which is a perfect tandem for the duck’s crisp skin and tender meat.
If you prefer pairing veggies with your flavorful duck, green beans are also a good choice.
Green beans were a serious learning curve for me.
I kept relying on canned green beans because I just kept UNDERcooking the fresh ones.
But I finally got it.
Taste-testing for tenderness was critical too, I found. Every stove is different.
These crisp, green gems provide contrast to the tender and moist duck meat.
While I think the ginger accentuates the duck rather nicely, we have other green bean recipes that will do the trick, too.
I love broccolini. There, I said it.
It’s crisp and mild without the overwhelming, easily recognizable “broccoli” vegetal taste.
Broccolini, otherwise known as baby broccoli, has thinner stems than broccoli, making it faster to cook and the whole vegetable is pleasant to eat.
Sauteeing broccolini will only need butter, salt, garlic powder, and pepper.
You can even add a tablespoon of sesame oil for that extra Asian taste.
Cook the broccolini on the pan until it’s crisp and the stem is tender.
Again, taste-testing is the way.
If you don’t know what orzo is, it’s classic Italian dried pasta!
It means “barley” in Italian, hence, the shape of the pasta.
Orzo pasta is made from either white flour or whole grain and is a perfect alternative to rice or ordinary pasta.
This recipe is filled with lemony goodness, with a nice crunch from the asparagus pieces.
Don’t forget to top it with lemon zest for that extra oomph!
I usually think of buttery mushrooms as accompanying steak, but hear me out.
This garlic butter mushroom recipe is decadent and melts in your mouth like butter.
Well, butter is actually one of the ingredients, along with teriyaki sauce and steak seasoning!
Smother the mushrooms in a pan with butter and sauce, saute with garlic, and add a tablespoon of olive oil.
These could honestly go with anything: eggs, salads, fish, but as a side for duck, these do just fine and dandy!
If you think the classic deviled eggs are a bit boring, then try this deviled eggs recipe, topped with bacon bits!
It’s a great twist to the traditional deviled eggs that are made with mayonnaise, sour cream, shredded cheddar and vinegar.
The crispy bacon bits will give the deviled eggs a good crunch when you bite into it.
Sure, you can go for the ordinary fries to go with your duck meat.
But don’t waste all the fat that’s laden with flavor for this duck fat fries recipe.
So once the oil bubbles, drop the fries in.
If you have delicate fleur de sel, use that instead of table salt.
There is nothing more comforting when thinking of what to serve with duck than an apple spinach salad.
The crunch and slightly bitter taste from the baby salad against the apple bits, toasted walnuts, and apple cider vinaigrette is heaven!
And don’t forget the salty kick from the goat cheese or feta cheese that will make this a great addition to your duck meat.
If you want a lighter and much sweeter alternative to french fries, then go for sweet potato fries.
These are truly irresistible, especially when eating these with your duck and dipping the sweet potato fries in your favorite sauce!
Plus, you can sprinkle the fries with all your favorite spices.
In this recipe, a simple seasoning consists of garlic, chili powder, salt, and pepper, and your sweet potato fries are good to go in the oven or air fryer!
Who would’ve thought bell peppers are one of the options when thinking of what to serve with duck.
These roasted bell peppers are delightfully mild; the cooking removes some of that “bite.”
Pour on some Italian dressing, pair with goat cheese, and top with nuts, and this salad is to die for!
13. Glazed Carrots
Glazed carrots aren’t just easy to make, but they’re also packed with flavor!
And it will only take a few ingredients to create these lovely, savory butter-glazed carrots.
You’ll have the perfect bite to every crunch once you pop it in the microwave for about 6 to 7 minutes.
The sugar will caramelize, giving the carrot a nice brownish color.
The butter will also give the carrot pieces a shiny and delectable taste.
This is one of my favorite recipes on the whole CookingChew site!
Roasting vegetables means you’re caramelizing the natural flavors of your chosen veggies.
And you use whatever you have on hand, even radishes, because roasting makes them mild flavored.
Farro is nutty and chewy but mild in flavor.
I didn’t add it to the recipe, but a couple of forkfuls of goat cheese on top of the hot veggies make this -chef’s kiss-.
Give the cut veggies lots of room on the tray and make sure they are well salted.
A splash of apple cider or balsamic vinegar is so nice.
15. Mashed Pumpkin
Pumpkin doesn’t only have a place on the Thanksgiving table.
It’s a perfect side dish on every occasion, especially if you elevate this dish with cinnamon around the fall season!
Mashed pumpkin tastes salty and sweet, and has a creamy texture that goes perfectly well with duck.
This is layers of tomato flavor, with beautiful roasted planks of eggplant with lots of high-quality red sauce.
No breading on this, so it’s going to come out a bit lighter than the usual “parmigiana” dishes you may have heard of.
If your duck is leaning toward a simple dusting of S&P, this hearty side will be all you need.
Another classic Italian side dish is the Italian peas with mushrooms.
You can use baby Bella mushrooms for this recipe and pair them with Italian sweet peas.
The marriage of flavors from the earthy mushrooms and sweet peas is a feast in your mouth!
The cooking process also only takes 5 minutes and you’re good to go, perfect for when you’re ready to devour that tender duck!
I’m adding this recipe in because I had a side of wild rice pancakes with crispy, sliced duck at a great restaurant near me.
Something wasn’t quite right about them though; the flavor was good but the texture was too “American breakfast pancake” fluffy or something.
So this one, more of a fritter in texture, is really what I’d be going for.
Wild rice has a dark, chewy texture, and the fritter sustains the chewy rice beautifully.
The bottom line
Thinking of what to serve with duck means you’ll have so many options because duck is a versatile meat.
The important thing is that the side dish that you choose should always compliment the flavors of the duck.
You can go the simple route by adding in a couple of green, leafy vegetables.
Or you can have another exciting side dish that is bursting with flavor.
- Vermicelli Rice
- Garlic Noodles
- Loaded Mashed Potatoes
- Ginger Green Beans
- Sauteed Broccolini
- Lemon Orzo Asparagus
- Garlic Butter Mushrooms
- Spicy Southwestern Deviled Eggs
- Duck Fat Fries
- Apple Spinach Salad
- Sweet Potato Fries
- Italian Roasted Pepper Salad
- Glazed Carrots
- Farro Salad With Roasted Vegetables
- Mashed Pumpkin
- Italian Eggplant Parmesan
- Italian Peas With Mushrooms
- Wild Rice Pancakes
- Pull your duck out of the freezer and refrigerate to thaw.
- Pick a couple of these sides so you know what to serve with duck.
- Get to cookin’ and chewin’ and share with your friends!