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What To Serve With Fried Catfish: 42 Best Side Dishes

What To Serve With Fried Catfish: 42 Best Side Dishes

If you’re looking for great ideas on what to serve with fried catfish, this roundup of the best sides for catfish is the perfect place to start!

Fried catfish deserves more hype at the table. 

The perfectly golden brown and crusted fish is unbelievably tasty. 

It has a slightly sweet and mild flavor with a dense and moist texture. 

It is less flaky than other types of white fish when deep-fried. 

Catfish can also easily absorb the seasonings you rub on it, so you can coat it with cornmeal batter and baking flour for a unique combination of flavors and a more crunchy take. 

Just like most fried foods, though, fried catfish can be greasy and heavy, which is why it is better to serve it with a side dish to balance it out. 

There are a lot of recipes that you can pair with catfish, from the classic coleslaw and casserole to the sweet cornbread and bread rolls; these dishes are sure to delight your family and friends. 

If you are unfamiliar with side dishes and don’t know what to serve with fried catfish, we’ve rounded up our favorites for you to make at home. 

They complement the taste of this scrumptious staple in the South, and you can bring them to your next fish fry. 

Check out #42 for something with kale yet so flavorful!

Southern cooking means adding fresh-grown greens to the meal, like collard greens.

Even if you are not into vegetables, you will certainly love this recipe because it is addictive and loaded with flavor. 

It is cooked with onions, garlic, and bacon, then topped with pepper vinegar for a bit of tang. 

Ingredients include: Collard greens, bacon, pepper flakes, garlic, onions, and chicken broth. 

Fried okra is a popular side dish and is known as Southern popcorn. 

It is made by coating the okra in buttermilk and then breaded in cornmeal coating and flour. 

It is fried in peanut oil until it is crispy and succulent, and you can enjoy it as an appetizer or snack too. 

Ingredients include: Okra, cornstarch, flour, eggs, salt, and pepper.

This classic side is a great partner for fried catfish. 

The crunchy cabbages and carrots and creamy dressing coated in mayonnaise make it so scrumptious and refreshing with a hint of sweetness. 

If you want more crunch, you can add broccoli in there for a more pleasing texture. 

Ingredients include: Green cabbages, carrots, purple cabbages, white vinegar, and mayonnaise.

No-Mayo Carolina Coleslaw, anyone?

Crawfish Etouffee is a Louisiana favorite with a rich, buttery, and intensely flavorful sauce and heaps of herbs, spices, and crawfish tails. 

It is over-the-top delicious, and adding the right amount of seasoning can make it a knockout dish. 

Ingredients include: Butter, crawfish tails, bell pepper, onion, flour, crawfish stock, and hot sauce.

You can never go wrong with cornbread. 

It is light, fluffy, soft, crumbly, and has crisp edges. 

It is a bit sweet, and that is what makes it irresistible. 

With this recipe, you can add a unique spin to the classic by adding jalapeños and cheddar cheese for a spicy and salty take. 

Ingredients include: Cornmeal, flour, baking powder, butter, eggs, and milk.

Potato salad is a side that is always present at picnics and holiday get-togethers, especially if the main course is fried. 

The mixture of potatoes and mayonnaise makes for a fantastic contrast to the crispy catfish. 

Ingredients include: Potatoes, shallots, dill, mayonnaise, and yogurt

Believe it or not, you can also deep fry tomatoes, which are as tasty as fresh ones. 

The slices of green tomatoes are covered in cornmeal and are fried until golden. 

Not only do these fried tomatoes make for a great side, but they can also be eaten as a snack. 

Ingredients include: Egg whites, cornmeal, green tomatoes, sea salt, and chives.

Level up your mashed potato by making it more buttery and garlicky. 

This recipe can increase the flavor of this classic dish tenfold, and it is an excellent comfort food that will undoubtedly be a crowd favorite at barbecues. 

Ingredients include: Garlic, potatoes, milk, salt, and butter.

This Southern delicacy has red kidney beans, smoked sausage, and vegetables. 

It is thick, creamy, and delectable, and it will have everyone clearing their plates. 

It is a great dish to make on busy weeknights, and it also makes for an amazing leftover.

Ingredients include: Sausages, olive oil, garlic, Cajun seasoning, cayenne, and red kidney beans.

French fries are always a terrific option when you are serving fried food. 

Its neutral flavor goes well with catfish, and it’s versatile, too, because you can top it with melted cheese or salsa or prepare it with a dipping sauce for a more special treat. 

Ingredients include: Russet potatoes, vegetable oil, and salt.

Up your side dish game with these crowd-friendly onion rings.

They have a beautifully crispy crust, and the onions inside are sweet and tender. 

The strong raw flavor of the onion fades to the background and is replaced with a tasty outer coating and seasoning. 

You can pair it with the dip of your choice. 

Ingredients include: Onion, vinegar, sour cream, salt, and pepper. 

Redneck caviar, or Carolina caviar, is a cold bean salad that is made with black beans, peas, tomatoes, corn, and chopped vegetables tossed in a zesty and rich vinaigrette. 

Not only does it pair with fried catfish, but it also goes well with tortilla chips

Ingredients include: Peas, black beans, tomatoes, corn kernels, bell pepper, and onions. 

Take a bite from your childhood with this classic pasta salad. 

It is overflowing with vegetables and bursting with flavors that everyone will come back to for seconds. 

Ingredients include: Pasta spirals, cucumbers, black olives, onions, and mayonnaise.

These Grilled Potatoes with Blue Cheese cooked in a foil pack will become your new favorite side dish. 

Grilled with bacon and chives, these potatoes are cheesy, crisp, and smothered in melted blue cheese and garlic. 

Ingredients include: Potatoes, olive oil, sea salt, pepper, and blue cheese. 

Hush puppies are a must-have at any fish fry. 

These fried balls of cornmeal batter may look simple, but they are so addictive that it is impossible to have only one. 

It has crispy outer edges with slightly soft, tender, and sweetened centers. 

Ingredients include: Cornmeal, flour, Cajun seasoning, baking soda, and milk.

A cucumber salad is always a tremendous choice when having fried food because it is easy to make, refreshing, and has the balance between tangy and sweet. 

It also has a nice crisp in every bite, and the pepper gives it a nice kick. 

Ingredients include: Sour cream, onions, cucumber, vinegar, garlic powder, dill, salt, and black pepper.

Creamy avocado, juicy tomatoes, piquant onions, and savory lemon dressing are mixed in a bowl to create this simple yet lip-smacking avocado salad. 

This side dish is ideal for vegetarians, and it helps mellow the rich taste of the catfish. 

Ingredients include: Lemon zest, olive oil, onions, tomatoes, avocados, and salt. 

Since fried catfish is flaky and crispy, it is best paired with something creamy and rich. 

When it comes to creamy dishes, macaroni and cheese is easily placed on top of the list. 

Not only will it satisfy your hunger, but it will also delight your palate. 

Ingredients include: Elbow pasta, butter, cheddar cheese, Gruyere cheese, and paprika. 

Salt and vinegar chips are modified fish and chips. 

It will cut through the richness of the fish and will also give a nice contrast to the meal. 

While you can just get a bag of chips from the nearest store, you can make the dish more interesting by making your own.

To make these chips, slice potatoes as thinly as possible and submerge them in a salt and vinegar mixture before frying them until they are golden and crisp.

Ingredients include: Russet potato, white distilled vinegar, vinegar powder, and salt.

If you want an alternative to French fries, you can use sliced asparagus instead. 

Instead of deep-frying them, you can pop them in the oven so they won’t go soggy. 

Remember to coat the asparagus in breadcrumbs and cheese for that extra flavor. 

Ingredients include: Parmesan cheese, asparagus, eggs, salt, and freshly ground black pepper.

Give your fried fish a refreshing side by serving it with the classic corn on the cob. 

Slather some butter on the corn and season it with salt. 

The corn is so tasty and rich that you will be obsessed with it. 

Ingredients include: Corn, butter, and salt. 

If you want to switch up the classic mashed potatoes, use cauliflower instead. 

It does not lack flavor, so you will still have the creamy mash, but it is lighter and less starchy. 

Top it with sour cream, cheese, and bacon for a more mouthwatering side. 

Ingredients include: Cauliflower, butter, sour cream, and Parmesan cheese.

Creamed corn has an impressive blend of sweet and spicy, and you can’t stop with only one bite. 

The corn is seasoned with salt, sugar, pepper, and nutmeg; you can make it your own by adding other seasonings you want. 

Ingredients include: Butter, corn, salt, nutmeg, black pepper, and cayenne pepper.

This Leek Gratin will liven up your dinner party. 

The dish melts in your mouth with the garlic-infused sauce and cheesy topping. 

You can decide if you want to use bread crumbs or not, or you can substitute it with almonds or crumbled bacon for a bit of texture. 

Ingredients include: Leeks, salt, fontina cheese, heavy cream, and Parmesan cheese.

Broccoli is a vegetable that you can depend on because it is always available, easy to prepare, and goes well with just about any dish. 

Although it has a reputation for being tasteless and soggy, especially when microwaved, its steamed version is different. 

It is palatable, and you can drizzle the sauce on top for a perfect finish. 

Ingredients include: Broccoli, garlic, oyster sauce, and pepper.

This custardy casserole is so good you will want to scrape the pot clean just to get every last bit of its caramelized goodness. 

You can enjoy it with fried catfish or eat it on its own with garlic bread. 

Ingredients include: Corn, butter, flour, eggs, and milk.

These roasted potatoes are made with flavorful ingredients, including garlic, oregano, and lemon. 

They bake up satisfyingly crispy on the outside and tender on the inside. 

Ingredients include: Potatoes, oregano, chicken stock, and parsley.

Caesar is probably the most famous type of salad out there, and it is all thanks to its light dressing and simple ingredients. 

The fresh lettuce matches the tangy dressing, cheese, and crisp bacon, and you can croutons if you want something more to munch on. 

Ingredients include: Romaine lettuce, Parmesan cheese, egg yolks, black pepper, and croutons.

This recipe may make you skeptical because it has a slightly different texture than rice, but it is definitely worth the try. 

It is light, filling, and cheesy, and it makes for a nice companion for fried catfish. 

Ingredients include: Cauliflower rice, butter, salt, and cream cheese.

If you have any dying spinach in your pantry, this recipe is for you. 

The creamy side dish will make you forget that you’re eating a vegetable, and it will turn you into a fan of leafy greens. 

The combination of three types of cheeses will make your family feel like you’re dining at a steakhouse. 

Ingredients include: Butter, yellow onion, garlic cloves, spinach, mozzarella, cream cheese, and Parmesan cheese.

Catfish and sugar snap peas are a match made in heaven.

Crunchy and sweet are two of the most interesting flavor combinations there are, and when you put them together in one dish, it is like enjoying candy with your meal. 

Since fish is oily, it takes on the flavor of whatever side you pair it with. 

The peas have a natural, sweet taste that adds balance to the rich flavor of the catfish. 

Ingredients include: Dried thyme, garlic powder, sugar snap peas, and black pepper.

This asparagus dish can add a deliciously bright touch to your dinner. 

It can bring bland vegetables to life and turn them into a tempting treat.

Ingredients include: Asparagus, lemon juice, olive oil, and garlic powder.

This is one dish that everyone will love and run for seconds, even if they do not like brussels sprouts. 

This is because the vegetable is seasoned and roasted until the smoky flavor seeps in, so each bite tingles your tastebuds. 

Ingredients include: Brussel sprouts, salt, pepper, and cheese.

Cauliflower is a blank canvas flavor-wise, which means you can season it with anything, and it absorbs it.

For this recipe, the cauliflowers are roasted with garlic cloves and sprinkled with cheese and salt.

It is cheesy with some zest, and you can even experiment using your favorite spice blend. 

Ingredients include: Cauliflower, garlic, salt, and Parmesan cheese.

Cheese grits are another comfort food on the list. 

It lets you feel warm and cozy, and the taste of the sharp cheddar cheese and garlic is so captivating.

Ingredients include: Grits, cheddar cheese, salt, butter, and garlic powder.

Slathered in buttery goodness, these Garlic Knots are oh-so delectable. 

Each garlic knot is soft, fluffy, and chewy, and they can also be eaten with salad. 

Ingredients include: Yeast, butter, milk, and garlic powder. 

These stuffed peppers are tasty sides with white beans, spinach, cheese, and a vinaigrette that contrast the catfish. 

You can even make it your own by adding other ingredients that you like, such as ground beef or pork.

Ingredients include: Bell peppers, pearled couscous, shallots, Parmigiano Reggiano, and olive oil.

No matter what the centerpiece of your lunch or dinner is, this squash succotash is sure to steal the spotlight. 

The balance of sweet and creamy is perfect. 

Ingredients include: Summer squash, corn kernels, ground black pepper, and  lima beans.

This risotto recipe differs from the classic risotto because it is packed with nutty flavor in just minutes. 

You don’t have to follow the slow-stirred version to enjoy this dish. 

It is filling and scrumptious with lots of mushrooms and Parmesan cheese. 

Ingredients include: Butter, shallots, mushrooms, pearl barley, and Parmesan cheese.

This zucchini dish is light, savory, and the best way to celebrate the vegetable in all its green glory. 

The sweet flavor of corn matches the savory onions and mild zucchini. 

Ingredients include: Butter, onion, zucchini, corn, and lima beans.

You won’t miss the taste of meat in this flavorful vegetable frittata. 

It has the appeal and texture of quiche but without the fuss of a crust. 

Ingredients include: Zucchini, butter, eggs, pepper, garlic, and Gruyere cheese.

Kale may not be everyone’s cup of tea, but this recipe will change your mind. 

An amazing addition to your table, this rich and creamy dish features kale in a velvety cheese sauce, and the garlic accentuate the leafy greens. 

There is nothing about this side that you won’t love. 

Ingredients include: Olive oil, vegetable stock, kale, cream cheese, Parmesan cheese, and white cheddar. 

The bottom line

Catfish on its own is already a blast, but eating it with incredible side dishes will make you feel like royalty at a feast. 

You can choose from many sides for fried catfish, and you can go with savory, sweet, cheesy, or tangy side pairings. 

Whatever it is that your palate craves, there is a recipe for you.

More About Catfish

What To Serve With Fried Catfish: 42 Best Sides

What To Serve With Fried Catfish: 42 Best Sides

If you’re looking for great ideas on what to serve with fried catfish, this roundup of the best sides for catfish is the perfect place to start!


  • Collard Greens
  • Fried Okra
  • Coleslaw
  • Crawfish Etouffee
  • Cornbread
  • Potato Salad
  • Fried Green Tomatoes
  • Mashed Potatoes
  • Red Beans And Rice
  • French Fries
  • Onion Rings
  • Redneck Caviar
  • Pasta Salad
  • Grilled Potatoes With Blue Cheese
  • Hush Puppies
  • Cucumber Salad
  • Avocado Salad
  • Macaroni And Cheese
  • Salt And Vinegar Chips
  • Asparagus Fries
  • Corn On The Cob
  • Mashed Cauliflower
  • Creamed Corn
  • Leek Gratin With Cream And Fontina Cheese
  • Steamed Broccoli
  • Creamed Corn Casserole
  • Roasted Greek Potatoes
  • Caesar Salad
  • Cheesy Cauliflower Rice
  • Creamed Spinach
  • Roasted Sugar Snap Peas
  • Lemon Pepper Asparagus
  • Roasted Brussels Sprouts With Garlic
  • Roasted Garlic Parmesan Cauliflower
  • Cheese Grits
  • Garlic Knots
  • Pearled Couscous Stuffed Peppers
  • Summer Squash Succotash
  • Barley Risotto With Mushrooms
  • Zucchini And Fresh Corn Succotash
  • Cheesy Roasted Vegetable Frittata
  • Kale Gratin


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