Wondering What to Serve with Pulled Pork? We Have 35 Tasty Ideas

We dare you to name one con when it comes to pulled pork. You can try, but we’re pretty sure there’s not a single bad thing to say about the summer staple. Pulled pork is meaty, tangy, saucy, sweet, spicy and can be paired with just about any BBQ side imaginable. It may take a while to prepare, but the wait is well worth the effort. Now that we’ve convinced you of what you’re cooking next, let us take things a step further: Next time you’re wondering what to serve with pulled pork, lean on this list of 35 delicious ideas.

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1. Grilled Corn with Spicy Aioli

Garlicky sriracha mayo > melted butter and salt, no contest. If the weather’s off, feel free to cook the corn indoors on a grill plate instead of on the barbecue.

2. Slow Cooker Baked Beans

We love using the Crockpot over the summer because it means not having to sweat over a hot stove all night. Less time in the kitchen = more time in the yard.

3. Light and Tangy Coleslaw

Whether you’re serving it on the side or piling it high atop a pulled pork sandwich, coleslaw is an absolute must at any cookout. It’s crisp, refreshing and pairs with smoky meat like a charm.

4. Easy Pretzel Buns

Want to make a pulled pork sandwich instead of serving the meat solo? Turn to these impressive buns that your guests won’t believe are homemade.

5. Cauliflower ‘Potato’ Salad

You won’t find spuds or mayonnaise in this creamy picnic staple. Instead, we use cauliflower and a mix of Greek yogurt, sour cream and Dijon mustard.

6. Jalapeño-Avocado Mac and Cheese

Of all the pulled pork side dishes, mac and cheese might be the most essential. Its buttery, decadent flavor is just the match for tangy barbecue.

7. Rainbow Vegetable Skewers

The trick to not burning a single skewer, you ask? Stick to one veggie per stick so they all cook evenly. Pass the lemon-parsley dressing, please.

8. Yogurt Biscuits with Honey Butter

This Southern-inspired side is a guaranteed win, even with picky kids. We trade butter in the dough for Greek yogurt to keep it moist, but don’t worry—the biscuits are brushed with honey butter before being baked.

9. Easy Homemade Pickles

As far as pulled pork sides go, you may not think of pickles right off the bat. But they’re served at real-deal barbecue joints for a reason: Their vinegary acidity acts as a palate cleanser, cutting through the meat’s fattiness and richness between bites.

10. Rodney Scott’s Pimento Cheese

The key to this award-winning pitmaster’s iconic cheese spread? Shredding the sharp cheddar by hand. It may seem like a pain at first, but pre-shredded cheese contains added ingredients that prevent clumping, so it’s the only way to get the smooth, creamy consistency you crave.

11. Chilled Cucumber Salad

The hottest summer day is no match for this refreshing side dish. It’s as simple as quick-pickling European cucumber, red onion and garlic with fresh dill.

12. Grilled Peach and Halloumi Salad with Lemon-Pesto Dressing

Pulled pork is the star, but this stunning salad could very well steal the spotlight. Think sweet, charred peaches, crispy pine nuts, tangy halloumi and lots of fresh greens.

13. Sweet-and-Spicy Cornbread

Fresh Fresno chiles meet honey and all the melted butter atop a tangy, sour cream-laced cornbread that will straight-up knock your socks off. Don’t say we didn’t warn you.

14. Summer Millet Salad

Over quinoa? We have just the swap. Meet millet, a nutritious, gluten-free grain that’s just as hearty and comforting. Here, it’s mixed with scallions, cherry tomatoes and cubed Havarti.

15. Skillet Pasta with Summer Squash, Ricotta and Basil

This beauty 1) cooks in a single pan, 2) is prime for warm weather, unlike, say, spaghetti and meatballs and 3) will look downright divine in the center of your patio table.

16. Veggie Niçoise Salad with Red Curry Green Beans

The traditional French version is topped with canned tuna, but we went ham with vibrant veggies instead. We’re talking green beans, arugula, radishes, cucumber and potatoes.

17. Kale and Brussels Sprout Caesar Slaw

We don’t blame you for thinking cabbage tastes a little…meh. Kale and sprouts have much stronger tastes that can hold their own against vegan Caesar dressing.

18. Cheddar Biscuits with Caramelized Onion Gravy

By swapping sausage for caramelized onions, these biscuits doused in gravy are totally vegetarian. TBH, we’d plan to use one of the biscuits as a bun for a pulled pork sandwich.

19. Zucchini Caprese Salad

Aka summer on a plate. Grilled zucchini’s crisp, mild flavor is just the match for mild mozz, juicy tomatoes and zingy balsamic.

20. Yellow Tomato Gazpacho

If you’ve never tried yellow tomatoes, they’re much less acidic than their red cousins and slightly sweet. The addition of two ripe peaches makes this 45-minute wonder even sweeter.

21. Smoky Barbecued Corn

One bite and you’ll never settle for plain boiled corn again. These puppies are slathered in chili-lime mayonnaise, then rolled in Parmesan cheese and smoked paprika.

22. Baked Sweet Potato Fries

There’s really no need to brave a pot of spitting oil to get your fry on. These bake to crispy perfection in the oven in just over half an hour.

23. Corn Fritter Caprese with Peaches and Tomatoes

Not only are the fritters bursting with sweet summer corn, but they’re also loaded with chopped scallions, shredded mozzarella and Parmesan.

24. BLT Pasta Salad

Bury us in black pepper bacon. This sandwich-inspired side dish has all the crunch, creaminess and flavor of the O.G., minus the bread.

25. Grilled Watermelon-Feta Skewers

BRB, swooning hard over those char marks. If you need tips for assembling the sweet-and-salty skewers, follow our guide for cutting watermelon. (It’s easier than you think, promise.)

26. 20-Minute Burrata Salad with Stone Fruit and Asparagus

If you hit the farmers market and picked up the tastiest spring and summer produce in one trip, you’d have the makings for this mélange of sugar snap peas, asparagus, peaches, plums and cherries.

27. Loaded Baked Potato ‘Chips’

Have you ever ordered a baked potato with all the trimmings (bacon! cheese! sour cream!) only to get full after two bites? These minis solve that problem. Go ahead, have a dozen.

28. Salami, Artichoke and Ricotta Pasta Salad

The only bowties we want to see at our barbecue are these beauties, coated in balsamic-mustard vinaigrette.

29. 15-Minute Cucumber Avocado Blender Soup

Helloooo, refreshment. It’s as simple as dumping avocado, cukes, fresh herbs and Greek yogurt into a blender and whirling until smooth. The Asiago-encrusted baguette is just the cherry on top.

30. Melon Salad with Chili Powder, Mint, Lime and Flaky Sea Salt

If you’re one of those people who are bored by cantaloupe and honeydew, this recipe will change your mind. It’s sweet, spicy, sour, salty—what else could you want?

31. Roasted Broccoli and Bacon Pasta Salad

This earthy, hearty dish, complete with lemony breadcrumbs and a bacon-infused mustard vinaigrette, demands a permanent spot in your summer rotation.

32. Grilled Sweet Potatoes with a Dilly Dip

We love shoestring fries as much as the next person, but there's something to be said for spuds that are thick enough to sport drool-worthy char marks. Don't even get us started on the herby yogurt dip.

33. Watermelon Salsa

Your first instinct may be to spoon it onto broiled salmon or scoop it up with tortilla chips, but watermelon's sweetness makes it a prime pairing for pulled pork too. Even better, it's only eight ingredients away.

34. Herb-Butter Glazed Radishes

Radishes are super underrated, so your guests will never see this vibrant, seven-ingredient side coming. Use the bright, herbaceous compound butter on everything from steak to a baguette.

35. Ranch Potato Salad

Everyone's favorite dressing plays the star in this lip-smackingly tasty side dish. The key is using acidic buttermilk, tangy white vinegar and all the fresh herbs you can get your hands on.

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Taryn Pire is PureWow’s associate food editor. A former bartender and barista, she’s been writing about all things delicious since 2016, developing recipes, reviewing restaurants and investigating food trends at Food52, New Jersey Family Magazine and Taste Talks. When she isn’t testing TikTok’s latest viral recipe, she’s having popcorn for dinner and posting about it on Instagram @cookingwithpire.

taryn pire
Taryn Pire

Food Editor

Taryn Pire is PureWow’s food editor and has been writing about all things delicious since 2016. She’s developed recipes, reviewed restaurants and investigated food trends at...
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