A gluten-free diet may make you feel like your options in the carb department are limited. But not all breads, pastas, pizza crusts and tortillas are made with wheat flour, nor do they need to be. Read on for 31 gluten-free side dishes that’ll impress every guest at the table (no matter their diet), from naturally gluten-free salads and soups to wheat-less riffs on classic carb-y dishes.
The 31 Best Gluten-Free Side Dishes to Serve All Year Round
1. Gluten-free Cheesy Cauliflower Patties
2. ‘everything Bagel’ Cauliflower Rolls
These low-carb, gluten-free gems are just plain genius. The base calls for a head’s worth of riced cauliflower and almond flour, plus a few additional pantry staples to help it bind and give it flavor.
3. Sweet Potato Noodles With Almond Sauce
How do you get the starchiness of pasta without using any flour, you ask? Spiralize a few sweet potatoes and sauté them in oil until tender. (Just be sure to substitute gluten-free flour in the creamy almond sauce.)
4. Vegan Butternut Mac And ‘cheese’ With Smoky Shiitake ‘bacon’
No pile of pulled pork is complete without a mound of mac by its side. Trade regular pasta for your favorite wheat-less kind (we’re partial to chickpea) to make the whole dish gluten-free.
5. Chilled Cucumber Salad
If you’re hosting gluten-free guests, you can’t go wrong with crisp, refreshing veggies in a simple vinegar dressing. Add a dollop of sour cream to the salad for a touch of creaminess.
6. Lemon-tahini Salad With Lentils, Beets And Carrots
7. Velvet Corn Soup
There’s not much more to this summery side than fresh-off-the-cob corn, heavy cream and a glug of white wine. Top each bowl with juicy corn kernels, crumbled bacon and a swirl of sour cream or yogurt.
8. Gluten-free Cheese And Cauliflower ‘breadsticks’
Our favorite cruciferous veggie does it again. These cheesy, crispy dippers deserve to be plated with a cup of warm marinara and your favorite gluten-free pasta dish.
9. Zoodles With Avocado And Mango Sauce
10. Summer Millet Salad
11. Potatoes Au Gratin
Thankfully, the quintessential comfort food is totally free of wheat, so everyone can get in on those layers of buttery scalloped potatoes and rich Gruyère cheese.
12. Cauliflower Tortillas
Taco Tuesday is saved, thanks to this easy gluten-free alternative to flour tortillas. All it takes is a head of cauliflower, a couple of eggs and a few key spices. While they bake, round up your carnitas, spicy shrimp and guacamole.
13. Pan-roasted Broccoli ‘steaks’ With Garlic-sesame Vinaigrette
Sure, cauliflower gets a lot of the glory, but broccoli is just as deserving of the spotlight. Here, the crowns caramelize to crispy perfection in a honey-spiked vinaigrette that even your kids will like.
14. Shaved Spring Vegetable And Apple Salad With Ginger-dijon Dressing
15. Harissa And Honey-roasted Carrots
Our favorite method for plating veggies is now officially the yogurt moat. The dukkah garnish—a spice mixture of toasted nuts, seeds and herbs—takes the carrots up yet another notch.
16. Keto Instant Pot Greek Cauliflower Rice
17. Salt And Vinegar Roasted Potatoes With Feta And Dill
Creamy on the inside, crispy on the outside—just like French fries. The secret to the perfect texture is boiling the potatoes until they just start to get tender, then roasting them until golden in the oven.
18. Kelp And Zucchini Noodle Pad Thai
Kelp noodles are not only gluten-free, but they’re also loaded with nutrients including iron, calcium, fiber and vitamin K. Soak them in water with a bit of salt and lemon juice to soften them.
19. Cauliflower Fried Rice
Your favorite takeout accompaniment, minus the extra carbs. Be sure to use tamari in place of soy sauce if you want to keep the dish totally gluten-free.
20. Roasted Sweet Potatoes With Sriracha And Lime
This vibrant spud dish comes together in just under an hour (and we’re betting you have all the ingredients you need already, save for the tubers).
21. Grilled Corn With Spicy Aioli
Here’s one BBQ side that’s sure to please each and every one of your guests. Instead of dousing the cobs in butter and salt, slather them in garlicky sriracha mayo.
22. Curry Noodles With Broccoli Rabe And Purple Cabbage
With a few simple swaps—like rice noodles and tamari in place of spaghetti and soy sauce—this bold dish becomes a gluten-free masterpiece. The Thai-inspired sauce has coconut milk, red curry paste, lime juice and lots of stir-fried veggies.
23. Cacio E Pepe Cauliflower
Contrary to popular belief, pasta isn’t the only delicious vehicle out there for creamy Pecorino Romano sauce and a ton of black pepper. Cauliflower florets work just fine, too. (Be sure to use corn starch or gluten-free flour to thicken the sauce instead of AP flour.)
24. Cold Sesame Cucumber Noodles
Helloooo, refreshment. Whip up a few fillets of teriyaki salmon to devour with the noodles alfresco.
25. Sugar Snap Pea Salad With Chèvre Ranch
This creamy, tangy salad is as delicious as it is creative. Pair it with juicy grilled steak—the dressing’s salty flavor will cut right through its fattiness.
26. Pizza With Cauliflower Crust
You won’t miss the flour one bit, since the crust is super crispy and made with a ton of mozzarella and Parmesan. Feel free to swap marinara for pesto if you’d prefer.
27. Vegan Slow-cooker Detox Coconut Soup
Despite being gluten- and dairy-free, this side is shockingly creamy, thanks to canned coconut milk. Pile your bowl high with fresh greens and glass noodles.
28. Radicchio, Lentil And Apple Salad With Vegan Cashew Dressing
The dairy-free dressing is only four ingredients away. We see this fall dish pairing beautifully with pork chops, roast chicken or turkey.
29. Vegan Spaghetti Squash With Mushroom Marinara Sauce
Using spaghetti squash in place of real pasta not only makes the dish low-carb, but also lighter (meaning you’ll have plenty of stomach space left for meatballs or chicken cutlets).
30. Avocado Rice
Creamy, buttery avocado makes everything better, from toast to tacos—and rice is no exception. Pair this citrusy side with everything from roast pernil to pollo a la plancha.
31. Herby Shoestring Fries
When in doubt, potatoes, oil and salt are a surefire home run. Spruce the fries up with fresh rosemary and pair them with burgers, scallops, fried fish and beyond.
For even more great recipes, check out our first cookbook, Only the Good Stuff.