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Ten "Go To" Side Dishes You'll Make Again and Again

Easy Side Dish Recipes for Every Day


Side dishes are often the last thought on my mind, especially on busy weeknights. But I have a stable of "go to" recipes, I turn to again and again, because they're easy, and my family likes them. Here are my top ten.

1. Roasted Green Beans

Roasted Green Beans
Kris Timken/Getty Images

This is one of those simple recipes that requires very little prep time, yet tastes amazing. If you want the kids to eat green beans like French fries, try this easy side dish recipe.

2. Broccoli with Cheese Sauce

Broccoli with Cheese Sauce
Stephanie Gallagher

The broccoli for this recipe is steamed in the microwave, so it's a pretty quick side. To make this recipe even easier, use pre-washed, pre-chopped broccoli, which you can find in the produce section of your supermarket.


3. Crockpot Rice

Crockpot Rice
Stephanie Gallagher

Want foolproof rice without having to watch the clock? This Crockpot rice is the answer. Use jasmine or basmati rice for the fastest results (it'll take 1-1/2 to 2 hours) or converted rice, if you want to give it 4 hours or so.


4. Broccoli Mashed Potatoes

Broccoli Mashed Potatoes
Stephanie Gallagher
This recipe not only combines two side dishes in one, it's also a great way to introduce the picky eaters in the family to broccoli. With just four ingredients (plus salt and pepper), this mashed potatoes recipe is a snap to prepare.


5. Crispy Kale

Crispy Kale
Stephanie Gallagher

Kale is loaded with vitamins, minerals and fiber, making it a super healthy recipe for kids. And this preparation for kale is not only easy, it's incredibly tasty, too. The roasting mellows the kale and makes it crunchy.


6. Broccoli Salad Recipe

Broccoli Salad
Stephanie Gallagher

This is one of those dishes I make often for potlucks, and people always want the recipe. The combination of crunchy, creamy, sweet and salty is amazing. To save time, use pre-cut broccoli florets and pre-cooked bacon for this easy side dish.


7. Grilled Vegetables

Grilled Vegetables
Stephanie Gallagher

This is one of those recipes that you can vary dozens of different ways with different vegetables and salad dressings. I've used zucchini and mushrooms here, but you can also use onions, red peppers, asparagus, eggplant and more. If you're having trouble with the vegetables falling through the grill grates, just grill them whole, then cut after grilling.


8. Mashed Cauliflower Twice Baked Potatoes

Mashed Cauliflower Twice Baked Potatoes
Mark Thomas/Getty Images

This hearty dish has lots of flavors kids love: potatoes, butter and cheese. But it also has good-for-you cauliflower and it tastes great. Save time in preparing this recipe by buying pre-chopped cauliflower florets.


9. Corn Pudding

Corn Pudding
Stephanie Gallagher

This is one of those dump-and-stir recipes that is easy enough for a five-year-old to make. Really! The only thing a kindergartener couldn't do to prepare this corn pudding is put it in the oven.


10. Creamy Vanilla Sweet Potatoes

Creamy Vanilla Sweet Potatoes
Nielsen-Massey Vanillas
This is one of my favorite sweet potato recipes. The sweet potatoes are roasted, then mixed with cream cheese, butter, maple syrup and vanilla. Although the recipe calls for topping with bacon, this dish tastes just as great without it.
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