When you’re deciding what to serve with pulled pork sandwiches, you really try to think of what flavors work best together, what textures complement each other, and what will look best on the plate next to the pile of tender, juicy meat dripping in sweet, tangy, and maybe even spicy barbecue sauce.
You can serve almost anything as a side with a sandwich, but there’s something special about pulled pork.
Luckily, pulled pork sandwiches come in many varieties; just about every region has its own special way of doing things- Texas, California, the Carolinas.
The thing about having so many different styles of a pulled pork sandwich is that it allows for multiple ways to dress it up, countless side options, and endless culinary diversity.
However, despite their potential for exotic pairings, pulled pork sandwiches are often type-cast and backed into a cuisine corner.
We’re here to change that, though.
While this list does include some tried and true classics, it also includes some rather exotic new plate pals for your pulled pork sandwiches.
Whether it’s the Baked Bean Stuffed Peppers, the Grilled Brussels Sprouts With Fennel And Prosciutto, or the Air Fryer Jalapeno Cheddar Avocado Fries, there’s something here for those with traditional tastes as well as more adventurous palettes.
Looking for a sneaky way to get your kids (or picky adults) to eat their vegetables? Check out recipe #27.
So what are you waiting for?
Pulled pork sandwiches scream southern, and you don’t get much more southern than grits.
These Easy Fried Grits Cakes, however, put a fun twist on a classic.
Use them as a crunchy and satisfying side dish, or put them right on your sandwich for an added layer of crispiness and flavor.
If you’re looking for something new to introduce with a side dish for pulled pork sandwich bliss haven’t jumped on the aioli train yet, it’s time to get on board.
While aioli’s good on pretty much everything, this grilled corn recipe certainly makes a case for possibly the best pairing.
However, an even better pairing is Grilled Corn with Spicy Aioli and pulled pork sandwiches.
After all, it’s the best of both worlds- traditional staples and a trendy new garnish.
Broccoli Salad is a fan-favorite blend of textures, flavor profiles, and food groups.
It’s a simple yet complex recipe that will be a terrific sidekick to a tender, juicy pulled pork sandwich.
There’s something in this broccoli salad for everyone- cranberries, bacon, sunflower seeds, cheese, and the custom dressing.
Best of all, you can customize all the proportions to your liking, so you get exactly what you want out of this recipe.
Fresh fruits and veggies never fail to set off a big meaty sandwich, which is exactly why we’re including this Tomato Salad with Pickled Onion.
This recipe expedites the pickling process, but it doesn’t sacrifice the flavor of the finished product.
You can easily swap out the red onion for a sweet or yellow onion, and you can use any type of tomato that suits you.
The tomato balances out the onion, and both work together to complement the flavor of the pork.
Cabbage is traditionally paired with pork dishes, but this red cabbage slaw is a fresh take on an age-old food friendship.
It’s colorful and crisp and refreshing, thanks to the red cabbage and carrots, and the green onions give it an added depth that many slaws are lacking.
Purple Cabbage Slaw is a beautiful addition to any pulled pork sandwich plate, and like the grit cakes, can be just as purposeful on the side or on the sandwich.
Potato salad may seem like a tired trope of old-school barbecues, but this Hawaiin spin reinvigorates our tastebuds and our summer party menus alike.
The macaroni, celery, red onion, peas, and carrots add delightfully unexpected dimensions of texture and taste.
Pork pairs nicely with a Hawaiian flair, and this potato salad is creamy, delicious-proof.
Sides to go with pulled pork sandwiches are generally down-home comfort food, but this recipe takes comfort food to another level.
Cheese, asparagus, hollandaise sauce- what’s not to love?
Asparagus is often served alongside savory meat dishes, but the cheesy casserole spin on an otherwise plain veggie side is anything but ordinary.
It’s ooey-gooey yet crisp and juicy, and it looks pretty darn good on a plate next to a pulled pork sandwich.
8. Fried Okra
There’s nothing new and trendy about Fried Okra, but it has the kind of staying power that transcends time and space.
Seriously- one bite of these Fried Okra tips with the lemon aioli and you’ll swear you’re in your long-lost southern granny’s kitchen.
They’re deep-fried to perfection and packed with spices both savory and spicy that balance well with the dipping sauce included in the recipe.
You really can’t go wrong here.
When you’re brainstorming sides for pulled pork sandwiches, sometimes you’re in the mood for baked beans, sometimes you’re in the mood for roasted veggies, and sometimes you’re in the mood for both.
Luckily, these Baked Bean Stuffed Peppers include all of the above.
They’re beautiful, mouthwatering, and flecked with spinach and feta to both teases the eye and give the tastebuds all they can handle.
What goes with pulled pork sandwiches?
This Crunchy Quinoa Cabbage Salad is part slaw, part salad, part everything you want it to be.
It’s both chewy and crunchy, bursting with flavor and color, and loaded with some of the notorious superfoods.
There’s a tangy edge to it that balances the straightforward full flavor of the pork.
Its hodgepodge of shapes, colors, and textures provides a welcome juxtaposition to the solid block of sandwich it will lay next to.
Air fryers have certainly changed the sandwich side and snack game, but they’re typically associated with items like mozzarella sticks, wings, and other pre-fried and frozen treats.
These Jalapeno Cheddar Avocado Fries will change the way you think about your air fryer, though.
They are crunchy on the outside yet warm and soft on the inside, and the jalapeno breading gives them just enough of a kick to mix things up.
Top it off with a dipping sauce of your choosing, and you’ve got the perfect companion for a pulled pork sandwich.
12. Fruit Salad
We know you can eat or serve pulled pork sandwiches in any season, but there’s something about the summer that makes you crave that melt-in-your-mouth delicacy.
So, it makes perfect sense, then, that serving Fruit Salad alongside your sandwiches is a winning combination.
This Fruit Salad is radiant and makes use of fruits you don’t often see in salads, giving it a leg up on the fruit salad competition.
Green beans are another very traditional pairing for pulled pork sandwiches, but in recent years green beans have enjoyed a renaissance of culinary technique.
Roasted green beans are the latest trend in bean cuisine, which allows you to experiment with new flavor profiles and seasonings.
Between the ease of preparation and the explosion of flavor, these Roasted Parmesan Green Beans will blow your mind and make you question how you’ve made it so long without having them.
Like green beans, corn is a time-tested side dish for traditional southern foods like pulled pork sandwiches that is finally seeing some spark in the way we use it.
This Fresh Avocado Corn Salad is not your grandmother’s corn; it’s fresh, crisp, light, and introduces ingredients like tomatoes, red onion, and cilantro.
There’s nothing boring about this corn, and it will certainly play nicely with the savory notes of your pulled pork sandwiches.
Though we usually think of hush puppies as a side for fried fish dishes, these Heavenly Hush Puppies are any sandwich’s best friend.
The cajun seasoning and the sweet onion play off of one another to achieve a perfectly balanced sweet and spicy dimension to an age-old savory staple.
Between your pulled pork sandwich and hush puppies, you can bet you’ll be experiencing a little taste of heaven on earth.
If there’s ever any question of what to eat with pulled pork sandwiches, never doubt your instinct to rever back to a classic.
We know there’s nothing new and exciting happening with collard greens, but we just couldn’t resist suggesting them as a side for your sandwiches.
Collard greens and pulled pork sandwiches are the southern equivalents of peanut butter and jelly; it just works, so why try to fix what’s not broken?
Since you’re already working with pork, you may have the ham hock needed for this recipe on hand- a sign these two were meant to be side-by-side.
If your pulled pork sandwiches are the main attraction of a barbecue, chances are you’ll consider having a pasta salad on the menu.
Pasta salads are easy and delicious, but if you don’t mix it up every now and then, they can get a little stale.
This Lemon Orzo Pasta Salad recipe is a very unique spin on your average pasta salad, and it’s everything you want it to be citrusy, savory, filling.
Plus, it accommodates vegan diets.
Potatoes also have the unfortunate potential of getting stuck in a culinary rut; so why not pull them right out of it with this Creamy Bacon Parmesan Potatoes recipe?
The title says it all, but in case that’s not convincing enough, they’re also pretty darn easy to make, considering how complexly delicious they are.
This recipe is also super customizable in terms of what meats, cheeses, seasonings, and other ingredients you prefer to use.
If the pulled pork sandwich is already plenty of meat and starch for you, you may want to consider a side that’s purely veggie.
Grilling veggies is completely genius because it gives them the grilled flavor while enhancing their natural qualities at the same time.
Zucchini and squash are particularly well-suited to grilling, and they make a colorful and texturally diverse addition to your pulled pork sandwich meal.
On the other hand, if you can’t get enough starch, you should absolutely be pairing your pulled pork sandwiches with this Jalapeno Cheddar Cornbread.
It’s just the right amount of crumbly, sweet, moist, and yes, spicy.
This recipe is surprisingly not complicated and proves that if your cornbread is basic you’re doing it all wrong.
Succotash may not seem like a typical barbecue food, but it’s got all the right stuff- onion, peppers, squash, beans, and corn.
The fresh herbs in this recipe give the dish a fresh-from-the-garden taste, and the combination of textures makes every bite unique.
Serve it with your pulled pork sandwiches once, and you’ll be doing it again forever.
Ok, so we couldn’t help ourselves- we just had to include fries on this list.
I mean, every sandwich needs a hot, crispy fry by its side, right?
These Baked Rosemary Garlic Fries are easy to make and loaded with flavor that sets them apart from their ordinary french fry cousins.
Oh yeah, and the fancy dipping sauce is pretty amazing, too.
23. Cowboy Caviar
Cowboy Caviar is like the Tex-Mex version of Succotash but served chilled.
Like Succotash, it’s jammed full of all the right stuff- peppers, beans, onions, tomatoes, corn, even avocado- but the fresh cilantro, oil vinegar, lime juice, and hot sauce really make it something to write home about.
You can eat it by the spoonful or use it as a dip, just as long as it makes it in your mouth.
Fried Green Tomatoes seem like a super-secret southern delicacy- and they are- not they’re not actually all that difficult to make.
Basically, you slice ‘em, coat ‘em, fry ‘em, and devour ‘em.
They’re a great non-meat, non-starchy side for pulled pork sandwiches, and they taste great both beside and on the sandwich, too.
Once again, we’re bringing back a barbecue classic, but we’re willing to bet you’ve never had deviled eggs made this way before.
This recipe subs out the mayo for Greek yogurt, giving the eggs a completely different flavor.
Your family or guests will be totally surprised- in a good way- and probably request these Greek Yogurt Deviled Eggs from now on.
Carrots have a naturally sweet flavor, and these Cinnamon Glazed Carrots play to that strength.
They’re almost like candied baby carrots, somehow both sweet and savory, and take almost no time at all to cook on the stovetop.
Not only will they look pretty cute next to your pulled pork sandwich, but their flavor will also complement the tender meat and whatever sauce you prefer to lather it in.
If you’ve never cooked with butternut squash before, this is your chance to try it out in the most incredibly delicious way.
This Butternut Squash Mac and Cheese, of course, is cheesy, but it also hones in on a nutty flavor and adds depth to the texture of the squash.
It’s also a sneaky way to get your kids (or picky adults) to eat their vegetables!
Even if you question whether or not butternut squash is for you if this mac and cheese is next to your pulled pork sandwich, we’re betting you’re not going to turn it down.
Once again, we couldn’t help ourselves; it’s impossible not to include Baked Beans on a list of pulled pork sandwich slides- they just go so well together!
We must admit, though, that these Baked Beans had us scratching our heads as it starts out with several cans of- get this- pork and beans.
It seems totally suspect, but after all the doctoring up those pork and beans go through- molasses, real bacon, onions, brown sugar, and lots of time in the oven- they really do live up to their name.
We’d be remiss if we didn’t have at least one cauliflower dish on this list, but we wanted to make sure it was one that would really knock your socks off.
This Air Fryer Frozen Cauliflower essentially mimics a chicken wing, but with all the benefits of a vegetable.
They’re easy, fast, and are sure to become a family favorite, especially if you have any vegetarians in the bunch.
In case you’ve been living under a rock, brussels sprouts have totally reinvented themselves in the last several years, which is exactly why they hold a spot on our pulled pork sandwich sides list.
This particular recipe grills the Brussels after they’ve been marinated in a balsamic glaze and chars them to perfection alongside mouthwatering prosciutto.
They are unique, delicious, and might even steal the show from the pulled pork sandwiches.
Panzanella is a classic Italian family meal dish, but using it as a side for pulled pork sandwiches is the perfect blend of culinary cultures.
The Italian vinaigrette permeates through the tomatoes, onions, chickpeas, and cucumbers, and saturates the bread, softening it just enough without making it soggy.
This Summer Panzanella recipe will be a welcome addition to your next summer cookout.
The bottom line
Pulled pork sandwiches are more versatile than you think.
While they’re delicious enough on their own, there are plenty of sides to give them that extra little spark to really pop off.
Give the recipes on this list a try, and you’ll never rack your brain for pulled pork sandwich sides again.
- Easy Fried Grits Cakes
- Grilled Corn With Spicy Aioli
- Broccoli Salad
- Tomato Salad With Pickled Onion
- Purple Cabbage Slaw
- Hawaiian Potato Salad
- Cheesy Asparagus Casserole
- Fried Okra
- Baked Bean Stuffed Peppers
- Crunchy Quinoa Cabbage Salad
- Air Fryer Jalapeno Cheddar Avocado Fries
- Fruit Salad
- Roasted Parmesan Green Beans
- Fresh Avocado Corn Salad
- Heavenly Hush Puppies
- Southern-Style Collard Greens
- Lemon Orzo Pasta Salad
- Creamy Bacon Parmesan Potatoes
- Grilled Zucchini And Squash
- Jalapeno Cheddar Cornbread
- Baked Rosemary Garlic Fries
- Cowboy Caviar
- Grandma’s Southern Fried Green Tomatoes
- Deviled Eggs With Greek Yogurt
- Cinnamon Glazed Carrots
- Butternut Squash Mac And Cheese
- Best Ever Baked Beans
- Air Fryer Frozen Cauliflower
- Grilled Brussels Sprouts With Fennel And Prosciutto
- Summer Panzanella
- Find your favorite side dish from our What To Serve With Pull Pork Sandwiches list.
- Gather all the ingredients needed.
- Start creating your new favorite side dish.
- Share and comment! Did you make any changes to make it your version?