Soul food sides are a collection of tried and true soul food recipes tested by generations of Southern soul food cooks.
Recipes prepared with love and presented as an essential supporting cast to the main course dish.
While soul food sides bring a bit of comfort and tradition to the table, they don’t have to be difficult to make.
These soul food sides are easy enough for anyone to make and everyone to love!
Starting with good old fashioned favorites like a soul food macaroni and cheese recipe and creamy mashed potatoes to contemporary favorites like million dollar pork jowl bacon or soul food pasta with Italian dressing.
These Southern-inspired sides are the perfect complement to any main course.
What are the most popular soul food sides?
While soul food recipes may be accredited to the Southern US states, it’s a cuisine loved everywhere! Especially these favorite soul food sides:
- Soul food collard greens
- Soul food candied yams
- Soul food potato salad
- Soul food baked mac and cheese
Soul food sides feature diverse recipes, from sweet potato casserole, Southern green beans, a fried green tomato recipe, and Black folks’ fried okra to how Black people prepare fried fish and Southern sweet tea.
What is the meaning of soul food?
‘Soul’ describes the swag and unique style of African American cuisine. You know. The flavor.
What are good soul food sides?
Soul food is a style of cooking developed by African Americans in the Southern United States.
It is characterized by its emphasis on flavor, and soul food side dishes are generally rich with butter, cream, and sweet or savory flavors.
Best soul food sides
- Black Folks Soul Food Collard Greens Recipe
- Black Folks Chicken And Dressing
- Black Folks Soul Food Baked Macaroni And Cheese
- Black Folks Creamy Mashed Potatoes Recipe
- Black Folks Southern Potato Salad Recipe
- Black Folks Soul Food Southern Coleslaw Recipe
- Black Folks Southern Candied Yams
- Black Folks Southern Green Beans
- Black Folks Southern Soul Food Baked Beans
- Soul Food Southern Fried Green Tomatoes
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What is considered a side dish?
Side dishes are curated enhancements to accompany the stars of any entrée or meal.
Soul food sides usually feature traditional Southern soul food classics. The ones you’d find on any soul food menu.
What is a good side dish to go with fried chicken?
What are some soul food sides?
Check out this list of the best soul food recipe sides that put tangible food answers to these common soul food recipe questions:
What goes good with chicken thighs? What should you serve with a whole chicken? Or what goes with chicken and dumplings for dinner?
What is good to bring to a potluck?
What is the most popular soul food side item?
What is a soul food collard greens recipe?
Black folks’ collard greens are the quintessential dish of any Southern soul food dinner. And with good reason!
Black folks have mastered the way collards soak up sauce and seasonings.
Collards are one of those foods you can eat on their own or as a complement to just about anything else on your plate.
“Why be eye candy when you can be soul food?”
Or both! Because soul food collard greens are the eye candy of the South. But only when they’re seasoned the Black folks’ way!
Do you have to make collards with pork fat?
Meats like pork can intensely flavor collard greens.
These alternatives will produce the same depth of flavor profile for your Southern soul food flavored collard greens!
What main dish goes well with collard greens?
Collard greens are the darling delectable food of the South. Meaning you can pair this side dish with almost anything!
Including your choice from the beautiful soul food main dish recipes listed HERE!
What is a BBQ without potato salad?
Simply put – bland. A soul food potato salad recipe is the center of every Black BBQ menu!
If you had a cookout without potato salad, did you really have a cookout?
Nope! A cookout without potato salad is like a concert without the main artist!
You see, Black folks cherish soul food potato salad.
If Black folks Southern fried chicken is Michael Jackson.
Black folks’ potato salad is Prince.
Its fans are Die. Hard!
People will wait in line for Black folks’ potato salad. And if it were to ever die, people would mourn it for months. (If not years!)
What’s special about Black America’s potato salad?
Soul food is all about seasoning to perfection. The flavor!
The same holds true for a Black folks’ soul food potato salad recipe.
How long can you actually leave potato salad out?
Because it’s a moist recipe made with eggs, potato salad should be refrigerated overnight.
However, it can be left out for several hours at room temperature without going bad.
Easy soul food sides and menu ideas
Soul food cornbread recipes
Beverage soul food recipes
Dessert soul food recipes
How did a traditional English country dish become one of the most beloved soul food recipes and Southern dishes?
Banana pudding has a Southern identity that stretches back over half a century.
Black Southern banana pudding is an elevated version of the Americanized English trifle.
African-American cooks in the South reimagined this layered homemade custard dish to perfection!
Why buy expensive popsicles when you can just make your own?
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Soul food sides FAQs
How many sides should you have for dinner?
You only need about 2-3 sides.
In that case, you can enlist help from your guests with a potluck of side dishes!
What are traditional Black foods?
These soul food recipes! My best examples of soul food. Easy enough for anyone to make and everyone to love!
What are 3 examples of soul food everyone knows?
Probably the most popular:
What are typical soul food dishes?
- Southern soul food buttermilk fried chicken
- Black folks soul food smothered chicken
- Soul food Southern baked macaroni and cheese
- Black folks soul food collard greens
- Black folks soul food candied yams
- Black folks homemade cornbread
- Southern Black banana pudding
- Black folks red soda drink
How do you get your grits creamy?
I like using an Instant Pot when cooking this shrimp and grits recipe because it makes the cooking time and temperature for rice, grains, porridge, and grits easy and effortless.
It’s just a drop in the pot for soft fluffy grits every time!
I like to use and recommend Bob’s Red Mill white corn grits/polenta.
What goes good with collard greens and cornbread?
What is the difference between soul food and Southern food?
Soul food and Southern cuisine are often compared.
But it’s enslaved African Americans who developed soul food’s distinct character by creating outstanding meals from what was thought to be less-than-desirable cuts of meat and produce.
What is considered Southern comfort food?
A “comfort food” is food that brings back fond memories or reminds you of a person or place you love.
Favorite Southern comfort foods are often “smothered” or “drowned” in a flavorful gravy or sauce.
How do you make gravy from scratch?
It’s super easy! Simply sauté butter and flour with Worcestershire sauce, salt, and pepper.
How do you make Southern comfort food chicken pot pie?
Easily! The answer is in this recipe HERE!
What is a typical Southern dinner?
What do you serve at a Southern dinner party?
- Southern-style whole chicken
- Cranberry sauce cornbread
- Brown sugar-glazed carrots
- Creamy mashed potatoes
- Southern sweet tea
What can you cook on a lazy Sunday?
Soul food Sundays are a heartwarming family union in Black American households.
A time-honored tradition of gathering around the family table to catch up on each other’s lives and enjoy favorite African American foods from Southern fried cabbage to pork chops or fried chicken!
What are soul food cookout sides?
If the soul food cookout is about the main course, then the soul food cookout side dishes are about enhancing the main dish flavors!
How do you choose a side dish?
What you choose for a side dish depends on the type of meal you’re having.
For example, If you’re having a soul food cookout or BBQ, you’ll want soul food cookout side dishes that balance the heat of spicy or grilled meat.
What are classic sides at a Southern cookout?
If you’re grilling a tender pork belly, pair it with a delicious bowl of macaroni salad.
Making the perfect side dish is an art form, and choosing the right soul food cookout sides will help you master the art of side dishes.
What are good sides to bring to a cookout?
What do you serve at a Southern BBQ? And what do you bring to a cookout?
All your cookout questions are answered here with the below roundup of delicious soul food cookout side dishes!
What are some good recipes for Memorial Day parties?
What is the most popular soul food?
But, of course, you know, African Americans didn’t invent the chicken!
We just perfected seasoning it!
That’s how soul food Southern fried chicken became arguably the most popular of the many soul food recipes.
Perfectly seasoned to perfection. That’s the soul food way!
The answer is soul food Southern fried chicken. A recipe that Black folks created and perfected!
What makes this recipe so special?
When it comes to Soul food Southern fried chicken, there’s no denying that chicken with a balance of flavorful, tender meat on the inside and crispy seasoning on the outside is a soul food recipe specialty.
At what temperature do you cook soul food fried chicken?
The temperature to maintain the hot oil when deep-frying this Black folks’ soul food Southern fried chicken recipe is 350 degrees F.
What else can you use to season the flour?
Other than a sprinkle of salt and pepper, some Southern fried chicken recipes even call for cornstarch to thicken the batter for extra crunch. Or hot sauce for more heat!
What is the use of a deep fryer?
Deep fryers are a wonderful invention that can make your life so much easier!
You can quickly and easily use them indoors or outdoors to fry foods like Southern fried chicken in deep oils at high temperatures.
Do air fryers work for soul food Southern fried chicken?
I’d be remiss if I didn’t mention using an air fryer to make this Black folks’ soul food Southern fried chicken recipe.
Air fryer chicken is a healthy and crispy alternative to deep-fried chicken. You can eat healthier while still getting that crispy Southern fried chicken taste and texture!
What is a good side dish to go with fried chicken?
Start with a soul food side dish favorite – a Southern collard greens recipe.
Wondering what to serve with fried chicken?
A new Soul Food Pot recipe roundup is coming soon!
Why is food so important to Black culture?
Soul food has a rich and flavorful history that ties Black culture to its African roots.
That history is deeply reflected through soul food recipes. Black people’s food.
In the 1940s, soul food restaurants appeared in every large American city with a sizeable Black population, attracting a diverse clientele with their flavorful and culturally rich foods.
What cities have the best soul food restaurants?
Some of the most famous soul food restaurants are:
- St Louis, MO – Sweetie Pie’s restaurant
- Los Angeles, CA – Roscoe’s Chicken And Waffles
- Harlem, NY – Sylvia’s
- Las Vegas, NV – Marcus Samuelsson’s Streetbird
What cities have the best soul food scene?
States also have specific soul foods that they are famous for.
- Alabama fried catfish
- Mississippi pot roast and Southern fried catfish
- Tidewater Virginia yock
- Texas BBQ
- What is South Carolina’s famous food? South Carolina low country boil
- Carolina collard greens
- Georgia peach cobbler
- North Carolina sweet tea
- Louisiana shrimp and grits
What food is known in New Orleans?
How can you get started making soul food recipes at home?
After looking at the soul food sides list of favorites above, you might think everything looks and sounds so good, but where do you start?
Thanks to Instant Pot, most of these recipes are made to order in a fraction of the traditional time without compromising the authentic soul food flavors or ingredients.
Love easy Instant Pot recipes?
Now you can enjoy iconic African American soul food recipes (Black folks’ food) reimagined via Instant Pot.
With so many African American recipes, which one will you try first?
What do you think of these soul food sides?
Have you had them?
Would you make them?
Comment below and lemme know.
- Instant Pot electric pressure cooker
- 2 pounds collard greens 3 bundles
- 1 turkey leg pre-cooked/smoked (this ingredient is optional)
- 1 cup yellow onion diced
- 2 cups tomatoes diced
- 4 cups chicken stock use vegetable stock to make vegan and vegetarian-friendly
- 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
- 3 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
- 2 tablespoons honey
- 1 tablespoon hot sauce or sriracha sauce
- 2 cloves garlic minced
- ½ teaspoon Old Bay seasoning or Cajun or Creole seasoning
- 1 teaspoon red pepper flakes
- 1 tablespoon salt
- 1 teaspoon black pepper
- Clean the collard greens and cut off the stems.
- Then roughly chop the leaves in half through the midline and then into bite-sized pieces.
- Open the Instant Pot lid and add the wet ingredients (chicken stock, vinegar, Worcestershire sauce, honey, and hot sauce to the stainless-steel inner pot.
- Next, add the onion, tomatoes, garlic, Old Bay or Cajun seasoning, red pepper flakes, salt, pepper, and stir to combine the ingredients.
- Finally, add the collard greens, followed by the cooked turkey leg.
- Press down to sink the greens as much as you can into the liquid broth.
- Close the Instant Pot lid (make sure the valve is up – in the position for sealing) and pressure cook on high for 15 minutes.
- When the cooking time is finished, allow a natural pressure release for at least 15 minutes.
- To open the Instant Pot lid, move the valve to ‘venting’ and manually release any remaining pressure, if applicable.
- Serve Black folks’ soul food collard greens right away and enjoy!