If you’re craving a delicious meal but don’t feel like cooking up something complicated, Spanish rice is one healthy, mouth-watering way to go.
But, you know what makes the dish even more flavorsome? Equally delicious sides.
When paired well, Spanish rice served with a side dish brings out a wholesome spark to it.
We know that Spanish rice contains low-fat but combine that with items like beans, and you get a much healthier meal filled with fiber.
This article will provide the 7 best side dishes to pair with Spanish rice.
Let’s get started.
Why Consider Serving Side Dishes with Spanish Rice?
You don’t have to be a 5 star Michelin chef to get creative in the kitchen.
Most times, you’re only a side dish away from leveling up your main dish.
Hence, adding some solid side dishes to your Spanish rice will instantly revitalize your entire meal.
While Spanish rice alone is healthy, including side dishes can increase the nutritional content of the overall meal.
Plus, you gain the benefit of not having to listen to constant complaints from picky eaters.
If they happen to dislike the main dish, the side dishes can act as another tasty alternative.
What To Serve with Spanish Rice? 7 Best Side Dishes
From baked potatoes to fajitas, we have included on our list various side dishes that make a heavenly pair with Spanish rice.
1 – Coleslaw
The best part about this dish is that you can serve it either hot or cold, and so it pretty much takes away your worry of preheating the meal – if you’re in a hurry.
It’s also a versatile choice as there are various flavors you can experiment with in coleslaw.
If your Spanish rice happens to be a spicy meal, you can balance this out with a mild flavored coleslaw or create a bland version and allow your guest to add spices of their choice.
As a side dish, coleslaw can give off many flavors like sweet or acidic without overwhelming the main hero.
2 – Chicken Tacos
We’d say this next sidekick is a versatile one as there are numerous ways to prepare them.
You can serve the tortilla filling in different flavors to counterbalance the intense flavor of Spanish rice.
This side dish can also be eaten either hot or cold.
And if you have someone that isn’t too excited by tacos, you can simply repurpose the filling as a chicken side and serve alongside your rice.
In addition, the dish works out well whether it’s spicy or not, which makes it an exciting addition for children.
Just make sure to keep the flavors rich & simple.
3 – Sautéed Prawns
Perhaps you’ve heard of the rice and seafood meal Arroz Marinero? Well, it’s a traditional dish from Spain, and you can think of this one as a side dish that takes inspiration from that particular union.
You can go in a similar path as the original recipe by combining sautéed vegetables with prawns, which are then simmered in either stock or water along with various seasonings.
Since seafood and rice pairs well, you’ll get tons of options aside from prawns to choose like crabs, salmon, and more.
Plus, Due to its rich, intense flavors, it uplifts the flavor profile of your Spanish rice even more.
4 – Chips & Salsa
Although these are typically known as the ‘appetizer’ dish served before the main course, they make an excellent companion for Spanish rice.
As salsa contains a bit of a spicy kick to it, the rice helps maintain this dynamic and prevents the meal from becoming a fiery disaster.
Plus, the chips are just another bonus for people that aren’t fans of spice as they can keep munching on and on.
Overall, chips & salsa make a great appetizer, so why not repurpose it as something more than that? After all, part of creating exciting & delicious meals is experimenting with them.
5 – Fajitas
We know that fajitas make great appetizers, but they also make great sides, mainly due to their preparation.
Since the dish normally includes raw peppers & vegetables, it serves as a quick and delicious side dish you can whip up anytime.
Additionally, if you have a large gathering, you can take things next level by adding chicken into your fajitas.
This way, your side dish gets the chance to shine on people that aren’t a fan of Spanish rice.
What we like the most about the pair is how well it compliments each other without overpowering their individuality.
6 – Carnitas
Carnitas make an excellent partner for Spanish rice because of its flexibility and easy preparation.
As you can already find pre-packaged & seasoned carnitas, all that’s needed is to pop them in the microwave and serve it as a killer side dish.
If you want to balance the sizzling rice, you can serve the carnitas as a cold garnish/side as well.
Since these are generally eaten as tacos, you can use the tortillas as another addition.
You can also give carnitas nachos a try to further change things up.
You get tons of options with carnitas, and thankfully, they pair well with our main hero, Spanish rice.
7 – Baked Potatoes
Although potatoes are a common side dish, there’s a good reason behind the popularity.
It offers great range, flavor, and taste.
Especially with baked potatoes, you can serve them up both hot and cold depending on the state of your Spanish rice.
Plus, since baked potatoes are popular during dinner, you can reuse leftovers by including them into your meal plan as a side dish.
You can shake the dish up by adding more seasoning or simply mashing and serving them up beside your main dish.
There’s more than one way with potatoes, thus, making it a dish worth experimenting with to enhance your meal.
Spanish dish makes an excellent meal all on its own, but with the help of side dishes, it quickly moves from good to great.
But not every food will go well with Spanish rice, which is why it’s crucial to pair the right dishes to prevent the side from ruining the main.
When paired incorrectly, it destroys the entire purpose of enhancing the meal quality.
Fortunately, whether it’s something cold, hot, or light, there’s always an inviting side dish that will support Spanish rice without reducing its flavor or nutritional value.
With that said, we hope you’re ready to try some of the flavorful side dishes we have provided above.