15 Healthy Side Dishes for Chicken

Vegetable Birdseed Pilaf
Photo: Allrecipes

Your boring weeknight chicken dinners are at an end. We've assembled a list of light side dishes for chicken that are heavy on flavor. Get inspired by a cauliflower couscous, or keep it deliciously traditional with rosemary roasted potatoes. Lighter fare doesn't have to equal blandness — incorporate these wonderfully fresh recipes into your routine for a healthy, satisfying spin on chicken side dishes.

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Quinoa Tabbouleh

Quinoa Tabbouleh

This take on tabbouleh, a Middle Eastern salad, trades bulgur for quinoa and adds spiced, shredded carrots to the mix. A wholesome, incredibly seasoned side that will take weeknight chicken to new heights.

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Mediterranean Zucchini and Chickpea Salad

Mediterranean Zucchini and Chickpea Salad
Allrecipes Magazine

"I made it for a group and everyone loved it, including those who don't really like veggies, " says Katherine C. For a full-fledged meal, she adds chopped chicken to this side dish.

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Paleo Cauli Couscous

Paleo Cauli Couscous
Photo by LilSnoo. LilSnoo

Red peppers, Kalamata olives, and riced cauliflower simmer in chicken broth, lemon zest, and lemon juice in this delightfully fragrant chicken side dish. The herbed cauliflower makes a perfect bed for roasted chicken.

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Roasted Garlic Cauliflower

Roasted Garlic Cauliflower on a black plate

"Great dish! Followed the other suggestions to cover with foil and roast at 425," says melmeow79. "Also added two small chicken breasts, which I cut into 1" pieces. Served over brown rice to round out the meal."

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Roasted Parmesan Rosemary Potatoes

Roasted Parmesan Rosemary Potatoes

These roasted potatoes boast just the right amount of punch, holding their own next to well-seasoned chicken without overpowering it. You can't go wrong with crispy skin and simple, but impactful flavor.

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Marinated Green Beans with Olives, Tomatoes, and Feta

Marinated Green Beans with Olives, Tomatoes, and Feta

"Every time I have a barbeque, this salad is a must," says Maryann Dekens. "I cook the beans so they are still crunchy and add them warm to the marinade." Check out our collection of recipes for barbequed and grilled chicken for inspiration.

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Heirloom Tomato Salad with Rosemary

Heirloom Tomato Salad with Rosemary
Kim's Cooking Now

Accessible ingredients make this salad an excellent recipe to have on hand. You can replace rice vinegar with balsamic or a red wine variety in a pinch. Earthen rosemary, tangy vinegar, and juicy tomatoes make for a perfectly balanced bite that complements chicken.

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Air Fryer Roasted Okra

air-fried okra in a white bowl
Buckwheat Queen

You can season this basic (and slime-free!) okra with whatever condiments sound appetizing, making this a fun, customizable option as a chicken side dish. Our home cooks have added hot pepper flakes, sriracha salt, garlic powder, soy sauce, cayenne, and smoked paprika.

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Sautéed Radishes

Sauteed Radishes
Photo by lutzflcat. lutzflcat

"I can't believe how good they were," says Kerri C. "This side dish is a great substitute for fried potatoes for someone on a diet that restricts carbs. This recipe is a keeper!"

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Simple Broccolini

a white ceramic dish holding steamed broccolini garnished with half a lemon slice

Broccolini is the milder (and smaller) cousin of broccoli, making it an optimal choice for pairing with richer, more complex chicken dishes. Simple seasonings and a squeeze of lemon juice are all that's needed for this beautifully fresh vegetable.

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Moroccan Spicy Carrot Salad

Moroccan Spicy Carrot Salad
Photo by laurah. laurah

"Omitted the cilantro and served it hot as a side dish for chicken shawarma," says kshaw. "It was very simple to make, and my guests loved it! I will make it as a cold salad next time."

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Vegetable Birdseed Pilaf

Vegetable Birdseed Pilaf

Plate the juiciest chicken recipes with this pilaf so that the millet (a grain that birds enjoy, hence the name) can absorb the flavor of its plate partner. The grain is cooked with white wine and a generous amount of garlic for an incredibly savory experience.

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Swiss Chard with Portobellos

Savory Swiss Chard with Portobellos
Photo by naples43102.

Meaty Portobellos transform Swiss chard into a substantial side. Leeks, Parmesan, and red pepper flakes up the ante with a spicy, creamy finish. Eat your veggies and truly enjoy every bite with this simple chicken side dish recipe.

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Kale, Quinoa, and Avocado Salad with Lemon Dijon Vinaigrette

Kale, Quinoa, and Avocado Salad with Lemon Dijon Vinaigrette

Kale, quinoa, and avocado have all been dubbed "superfoods," which kind of sets this salad in a class of its own. Add chicken to this bright and tangy dish and you have a complete, delicious meal.

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Oven Roasted Asparagus

Oven-Roasted Asparagus in a white bowl
Allrecipes Magazine

Simple asparagus spears always make a worthy side dish for chicken. A tender, well-seasoned result is what you'll get when you follow this popular recipe. Get creative with your spices and create a new classic!

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