What to Serve with Beef Tenderloin: A World of Ultimate Sides
Beef tenderloin, the champion of dishes.
Has any meat eater ever in the history of the world turned down an invitation to a dinner party where beef tenderloin was going to be served?
We’re guessing no. As in, absolutely not.
The “tender” in tenderloin is no joke, either. When cooked well, (i.e. don’t overcook it!), this lean cut of beef is tender and deeply succulent.
Beef tenderloin – the source of filet mignon steaks – isn’t the cheapest cut of meat, so you want to give it all of the adoration you can muster.
It richly deserves the attention and it will reward you richly in return.
And so of course, what to serve with beef tenderloin for side dishes should be just as luxurious. And no, we’re not just talking about lobster tails!
Whether you’re making a romantic dinner for two or putting together a feast for family cooking up beef Wellington, choosing the right sides can make or break your meal.
But don’t stress. Take a few deep breaths. We’re here to help.
To begin with, we say don’t be afraid of archetypal combinations, like a hearty, starchy baked potato or meaty stuffed mushrooms.
But there’s also no reason not to explore less typical sides as well, like braised fennel or savory and sweet roasted pears.
Lay that beautiful piece of beef beside the perfect pairing and it just gets better and better.
Side Dishes for Beef Tenderloin: A Checklist for the Ages
So, settle in, pour a nice glass of hearty red wine, and get ready to get your beef on. Because we have a list of quintessential sides for beef tenderloin that’s about to whet your appetite.
1. Garlic Buttered Mushrooms
Succulent, amazing beef deserves an equally umami-rich side dish. And what fits the bill more than mushrooms dripping with butter and garlic?
We mean, c’mon.
That’s pretty amazing. These mushrooms are everything you’re looking for.
Earthy, thyme-ey, savory, and delectable – these mushrooms will be sitting pretty on the plate next to a rosy piece of beef tenderloin.
Of course, mushroom make great steak toppings too. So go ahead, eat them in the same bite!
Sara has the recipe you’re looking for over at Dinner at the Zoo.
2. Roasted Potatoes with a Kiss of Dijon
Elegant. Rustic. Scrumptious. Crispy.
You know what we’re talking about.
Perfectly roasted potatoes.
And the perfect potato deserves an elevated bit of seasoning to match their delectable flavor. We love the brightness of dijon along with a bit of sweet paprika and savory herbs.
This recipe pairs perfectly with beef tenderloin’s succulence. It’s kissed with mustard and garlic, and it has a hint of Italian flavors to round out the flavor profile from “good” to “mouthwatering.”
Ingrid over at The Cozy Apron has the potato recipe of beef tenderloin’s dreams.
3. Brussels Sprouts with Pancetta and Sage
Well-seasoned meat loves other meat. It also loves earthy vegetables. All that, and it still has love to spare for assertive herbs.
Get your all-encompassing love on for some sweet and savory Brussels sprouts that bring home some salty and garlic flavors.
Pancetta rounds out this dish, helping it pair flawlessly with a crusted piece of beef tenderloin. Just imagine them on the plate together.
Just imagine it. It sounds pretty amazing doesn’t it?
Kathleen at Gonna Want Seconds has all the deets for this slightly sweet and very succulent side dish.
4. Roasted Green Beans with Onions and Bacon
Simple, salty elegance is one of the things we love with our favorite high-end cut of beef. We also love how green beans are fresh with a kick of – well – whatever you surround them with.
They love to absorb flavors.
And when they’re surrounded by bacon, oh, Mama.
They’re too good for the words of mere mortals.
Dorothy over at Crazy for Crust has a fantastic recipe for green beans and bacon that will never leave you wondering what to serve with beef tenderloin again.
5. The Biggest Fluffiest Popovers
When there’s a beef tenderloin on the table, there’s a good bet that an amazing pan sauce is in the vicinity.
It’s not a written law per se, and no law enforcement official will show up to scour your dining room table for some liquid gold. But we don’t need laws to be members of a civilized society.
So, of course there’s going to be a gravy or au jus. Remind you of a French Dip sandwich?
Because we’re civilized.
And when there’s a gravy, we all crave something hearty and rich to sop it up with.
So, we ask: What would be better than a big, fluffy, eggy, and airy popover to run through said gravy?
The answer is, well, not much. Popovers are magnificent.
Here’s a fantastic popover recipe from Heather over at Sugar Dish Me.
6. Baby Kale Salad
Fresh baby kale jumps just jumps out of the bowl. It sings, it dances, it’s the hip ingredient that just keeps getting hipper.
It’s the Helen Mirren of greens.
And when it’s tossed with a garlicy lemon vinaigrette, all is right with the world.
Especially when there’s parmesan and pine nuts.
But, hark! What is this? Creamy avocado too? That’s a twist we weren’t predicting. And yet, it just seems like the ultimate flavor combination.
Grab Maya’s easy and fabulous recipe from Wholesome Yum.
7. Yorkshire Pudding
While similar to popovers, this bready bad boy of the world of drippings is really a different animal entirely.
It’s cooked in a cast iron skillet and is probably the best, fluffiest side dish your mouth has ever encountered. And it all but sings out for some beef.
It’s time to get your rendered fat on, folks.
Just think how much you’ll want to combine a bite of this, a bite of tenderloin, and a drizzle of gravy.
Your fork will demand a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.
Judith over at Bake Eat Midnight has the recipe that your cast iron pan has been looking for.
8. Savory Mashed Sweet Potatoes
Sweet potatoes that are mashed into creamy and succulent submission are the flavor contrast that beef tenderloin has been craving.
They’re lightly garlicy, buttery, cheesy, and have the perfect kiss of salty goodness.
Every bite is even better than the next. Can you taste the sour cream goodness? It’s something that we contemplate on a daily (if not hourly) basis.
Karina has an irresistible recipe for succulent potatoes over at Café Delites.
9. Broccoli Gratin
Why, yes. Yes, we are always happy to eat our greens.
Especially when they’re creamy and coated with perfectly browned panko.
Did we mention that there’s sharp cheddar cheese involved?
A savory cheese sauce enveloping perfectly crisp-tender broccoli and providing a hit of crunch is something that pairs effortlessly with a rosy tenderloin.
Mary at Bunny’s Warm Oven has the simple recipe that will entice everyone in the room to grab a spoon and dig in.
10. Roasted Leeks
We love leeks.
There. We said it. We’re putting it out for the whole world to know.
There’s something about their mild and delicate flavor that keeps us coming back for more.
So, we wondered what would happen if instead of quickly sautéing them, what if we just slow roasted them?
We mean, sloooooow roasted them.
And then cranked the oven to get them golden brown and crispy.
Well, that sounds pretty great to us. And they’ll look stunning on a plate next to perfectly cooked beef.
Jordan over at The Fitchen has a recipe for leeks that we found very enticing. Very. Enticing. Indeed.
11. Duchess Potatoes
Classics are classic for a reason.
And even if you’ve never had these, or seen them – or even if you’ve never even heard of duchess potatoes – once you see them on the plate you just inherently know they’re a winning accompaniment to beef tenderloin.
They’re just that transcendent.
So, let’s pull out our piping bag and get these elegant little swirls of potato flavor on a baking sheet.
There’s some beef that’s waiting impatiently on the plate for them.
The Cooking Foodie has the deets.
12. Asparagus with a Horseradish Glaze
We love a good horseradish dipping sauce with beef tenderloin. There’s just something about the light sharpness and hint of heat that brings out the best in beef.
Can beef be even better? Occasionally, yes.
So, we put our thinking caps on and wondered if there was another way we could incorporate that rustic root into a side dish.
And then we stumbled on this. Getting the sauce on some asparagus…
Hello, elevated asparagus! Come join the beef on the plate.
Snuggle on up. The two of you will love each other.
Melissa over at Serving Seconds has the recipe we’ve been craving.
13. Crispy Sunchokes
Sunchokes started appearing on our “favorite food list” fairly recently. They’re a little like if a potato hung out with a nut and they decided to go out rabblerousing for a night.
Sunchokes are just a blast to hangout with.
We thought they would pair incredibly well with beef tenderloin.
Especially if they were sliced thin, crisped up, and fried.
Can you taste the crunch? Can you imagine munching on these in between bites of perfectly cooked beef tenderloin?
Oh, yes. We can.
Meet one of our newest favorite beef tenderloin sides.
Emilie at The Clever Carrot has a recipe that will inspire you to pull out the mandolin and get frying!
What to Serve with Beef Tenderloin – Time to Get Things Started
So, we’ve looked at some great beef tenderloin sides, but let’s not forgot about starters. It’s time to go beyond side dishes for a moment!
You can have a tender beef stew, but a beef tenderloin steak dinner is a special occasion, so it’s worth the extra effort to think through some spectacular appetizers.
With such a commanding and hearty main course, it’s nice to start off with some lighter dishes.
It’s also nice to project a little bit of sophistication. And we like our sophistication to come without being overly complicated, so we can focus our attention on the star dish.
How about some thyme and tomato tartlets? Maybe it’s all that alliteration, but that sounds like a great beginning to us.
Tartlets can be made individually crafted or simplified using frozen phyllo cups. They’re the perfect bite-sized containers for flavor combinations that you come up with. And with minimal muss and fuss.
How about shallots, mushrooms, and bacon? Spinach, queso fresco, and red pepper? Cranberries with caramelized onion and brie?
Yes. Yes. And yes, please. All these little pockets of flavor will get your excited for the main course.
On the less formal end of the spectrum, a salad with bitter radicchio or endive balanced out with citrus slices and a citrusy vinaigrette would be a light and enticing beginning to the umami bombs that follow.
And truly, there’s nothing more casually elegant than a well-put together cheese course.
Picture a nice large cutting board brimming with fresh fruits, cheeses, whole grain crackers, and bread slices is a simple and satisfying way to get a dinner party started.
Desserts to Finish Up with A Bang
It might seem a little indulgent, but leaning into the richness of a tender beef steak dinner by ending with a rich, chocolatey dessert is a perfect idea in our book.
You don’t get to do this every night of the week. So, come on, indulge yourself.
A chocolate cheesecake dusted in powdered sugar would fit right in. As would a thick chocolate mousse or a bittersweet chocolate tart.
If you want to go on the “lighter” side, whip up a batch of bite-sized dark chocolate truffles.
They’re easier to pull together than you think, and they can set up in the refrigerator while your tenderloin is finishing up in the oven.
As great as it is, though, there’s no reason to make dessert all about chocolate. Just imagine a pecan pie – perhaps with a bit of bourbon – and you know what we’re talking about.
In the end, there are so many incredible options for what to serve with beef tenderloin that there’s no reason to be intimidated.
We’ve given you a list of great starting points, so it’s time to put down that wine glass and get cooking. You’ve got this.