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beef stew and...

  • j

side dish(es)???

making a low-key supper for four people, thought i'd do a hearty beef stew with root vegetables (carrots, parsnips and potatoes).

the logical choice is to do a mashed potato side dish but there are potatoes already in the stew so... what to make? a rice dish? the problem with a rice dish is that my family is asian and they really don't appreciate rice that is not steamed in a rice cooker, made in the asian way.

i just can't seem to think of anything that goes with beef stew. help, please? thanks in advance.

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  1. I would serve a salad or some green beans or asparagus. With the potatoes in the stew itself, you don't really need a separate starch as a side.

    If you want something potato-like, you might think about mashed cauliflower.

    For me, personally, the beauty of a stew is that its an all in one....so I'd go with a green side and leave it at that.

    1. Warm crusty bread ...
      Couscous ...

      1. A salad is always nice with stew. Having lived in Hawaii for the past 30+ years, it is hard for me to even remember the last time i had stew served without rice on the side - asian-style-rice-cooker rice.

        IMHO the subtle nutty flavor of brown rice is a great compliment to stew, but white rice works as well. As long as it is something your family likes already, why not?

        1. In the old days, before I worried about calories, I always served stew with egg noodles.

          1 Reply
          1. re: coll

            how about some kind of cornbread, there is all kinds of things added to cornbread
            that would go with beef stew.

          2. Beef stew NOT served over plain white steamed rice? I can't imagine.

            1 Reply
            1. re: Sam Fujisaka

              I'm with coll on the egg noodles! My mum used to make it like that.

            2. Yes, cornbread or fresh biscuits, or a really good bread, or dumplings cooked on top with a green salad or lightly cooked greens on the side.

              1. Cole slaw - I grew up with that combination - something about the cold creaminess of the slaw and the warmth of the stew was a great combination.
                I also make drop dumplings with thyme if I have enough of the "gravy" - nice and fluffy

                1 Reply
                1. re: Spoonula

                  My sentiments exactly...a good coleslaw and some crusty cornbread cooked in an old cast iron skillet is a fantastic combo

                2. I throw all the veggies in the stew (I don't like sides with stew - it just seems weird to me) and serve with egg noodles or bread. Leaves more time for a good dessert, anyway!

                  1. How about doing it Asian style?

                    4 teaspoons peanut oil, divided
                    1 (2 1/2-pound) sirloin tip roast, trimmed
                    1 teaspoon Chinese five-spice powder
                    1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
                    5 cups fat-free, less-sodium beef broth
                    1/2 cup dry sherry
                    1/4 cup thinly sliced peeled fresh ginger
                    3 tablespoons low-sodium soy sauce
                    1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper
                    4 garlic cloves, crushed
                    3 star anise
                    2 cups sliced shiitake mushroom caps
                    2 cups (2-inch) julienne-cut carrot (about 2 large)
                    4 baby bok choy, halved lengthwise (about 1 3/4 pounds)
                    12 ounces fresh uncooked Chinese egg noodles
                    1/4 cup thinly sliced green onions

                    Heat 2 teaspoons oil in a large Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Sprinkle roast evenly with five-spice powder and salt. Add meat to pan; cook 5 minutes, turning to brown on all sides. Add broth and next 6 ingredients (through star anise) to pan; bring to a simmer. Cover, reduced heat, and simmer 3 1/2 hours or until meat is tender. Remove meat from pan. Cover and keep warm.
                    Strain cooking liquid through a sieve over a bowl; discard solids. Heat the remaining 2 teaspoons oil in pan over medium-high heat. Add mushrooms and carrot to pan; sauté 5 minutes. Add bok choy and 4 cups reserved cooking liquid to pan. Cover and cook 5 minutes or until bok choy is tender.

                    Cook noodles according to package directions, omitting salt and fat. Drain. Divide noodles evenly among 8 bowls. Shred the meat with 2 forks; arrange 3 ounces meat over each serving. Top each serving with 2 tablespoons vegetable mixture and 1/2 cup broth. Place 1 bok choy half on each serving; sprinkle each serving with 1 1/2 teaspoons green onions.

                    1. I agree, no starch needed, but if you want one, how about purreed white beans? I serve that w/ braised lamb shanks, and it's really good.

                      1. thanks everyone for all the suggestions - biscuits sound like a good idea.. some kind of bread and salad i guess. that sounds pretty no-brainer. i always feel like i have to prepare more than just a one-dish meal because of my korean background (my mother has at least 4-5 side dishes at the table at all times).

                        1 Reply
                        1. re: jwn

                          Well, with Koreans - kimchi goes with anything.

                          Edit: That being said my wife (Korean) enjoys a good green salad and fresh fruit if ther is no rice or kimchi.

                        2. In my mind, stew is a one-dish meal. Never any sides at my house. I include plenty of onions, carrots, and potatoes. I use globe carrots, which stand up to long braising, and large chunks of onion (though they don't always make it through without melding into the gravy--perhaps I should just be halving them). You could serve fresh fruit with dessert ...

                          1 Reply
                          1. re: foiegras

                            I agree, all the veggies in the stew... and i usually make dumplings for the top

                            1. re: AbdulSheikhMohammed

                              Always serve mine with dumplings (for me) and crusty bread for husband and kids. Put all the veggies in the stew so that is all we have.

                            2. I replied elsewhere, but forgot to mention that a stalk of celery chopped up in the stew is wonderful in addition to carrots, onions, and new potatoes...also a couple of tablespoons of tomato paste

                              1. Definitely put a couple turnips in the stew...it really makes a difference!
                                For sides, I would offer some kind of crusty bread that is good for soaking up gravy and maybe make some garlic herb butter to spread on the bread?

                                Definitely salad, too and if you want some more sides, a relish plate with olives, cornichons and pickled veggies is always nice.

                                1. did the beef stew with root vegetables (potatoes, parsnips, onions, carrots) last night. the stew came out very good and thick so i skipped a side dish. i had planned to steam corn on the cob and some asparagus (my parents are on a low sodium diet).

                                  i also made a good spinach salad (with dried cranberries, toasted slivered almonds, apples, heirloom tomatoes) and a loaf of crusty bread, toasted so that it would be able to hold the stew.

                                  thought this would be enough food but just as i predicted, my father asked, where's the next course? =\

                                  thanks everyone for their input!

                                  1 Reply
                                  1. re: jwn

                                    isn't it nice to know there are things you can always count on (parents usually top the list - for better or for worse).

                                  2. I love homemade applesauce with beef stew!

                                    1. Egg noodles with a little bit of butter and chives.

                                      1. I am hooked on parpardelle noodles at the moment and would serve the beef stew over them.

                                        1. Just about every food mall and lunchwagon in Hawaii offers beef stew (Asian-style with white rice). Sidedishes are usually a choice of tossed green or macaroni salad. I think either are a good match.