What Are the Best Ideas for Brisket Side Dishes?

A side dish of cabbage salad pairs nicely with brisket.
Julienned Granny Smith apples can be used in a slaw that makes a good side dish for brisket.
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  • Written By: Lori Kilchermann
  • Edited By: Lauren Fritsky
  • Last Modified Date: 07 April 2014
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Some of the best brisket side dishes are prepared in the same pan as the brisket entree, such as when making boiled or roasted brisket. These dishes offer flavor as well as nutrition and can complement the brisket and the method used for preparing the meat. Starchy side dishes can take advantage of the gravy that is often made from the drippings of roasted brisket. Other brisket side dishes are based on barbecued brisket and traditional favorites and flavors of certain locals and nationalities. Vegetables, rice and fruits are commonly featured along with brisket, and the dishes include both hot and cold recipe options.

Brisket is served in many configurations, however, three of the most common types are roasted, boiled and barbecued. The type of side dish that goes the best with each type of brisket can depend on the manner in which the beef is prepared. Traditional dishes, such as corned beef and cabbage, feature brisket and cabbage boiled together. Some recipes include potatoes being prepared in the same pan as the meat and cabbage. This allows the potatoes to absorb some of the flavor of the meat. Carrots are also cooked in the same pot in some brisket recipes.


Roasted brisket is often made by having the potatoes, onions and carrots being cooked in the same pan along with the beef. This mix of vegetables can also include parsnips, zucchini and rutabagas. Brisket side dishes can include a wide assortment of various vegetables.

Rice, mushrooms and steamed greens are also commonly prepared side dishes when paired with roasted brisket. Some recipes call for the roast brisket drippings to be made into a gravy. It is then served over the rice. Other recipes call for the mushrooms to be mixed into the rice and served together.

Barbecued brisket is often paired with summertime dishes, such as potato and macaroni salads, baked beans and coleslaw. When serving barbecued brisket, the brisket side dishes may be served either warm or cold, depending on personal taste and preference.

Some side dishes add the sweetness of fruit to counter the barbecue sauce and bring out the flavor of the beef. Apple slaw is a type of coleslaw made with tart, Granny Smith apples that are prepared julienne style and used in place of cabbage. This is an optional side dish that pairs well with most types of brisket.


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