What to Serve with Pulled Pork: 15 Ideas to Get You Rockin’!
Looking for a dinner you can make on-the-cheap? Pulled pork is a fantastic option.
Not only is the tough cut a cheaper one, but after slow cooking it, it has a melt-in-your-mouth texture that has made it the darling of southern meals.
Pulled pork sandwiches made with BBQ pulled pork are a dream come true, though you can serve it many other ways too.
With BBQ pulled pork, you can feed a crowd. Whether you’ve got a big, hungry family or you’re planning to have a stress-free backyard party before the weather gets too cold using your smoker, pulled pork will satisfy everyone’s appetite.
Of course, we know just what you’re thinking…there’s so many options for what to serve with pulled pork, what the heck do I choose?
Not surprisingly, there are plenty of answers. Some are rooted in tradition while others you may not have thought of before will get your mouth watering in a whole new way.
Pulled Pork Sides: Our Go-to List
Let the fun begin and see the following side dish ideas to create a fantastic lineup to round out your dinner table or party buffet!
1. Jalapeno Cheddar Cornbread
When you’ve got a big spread of food for your guests, one pulled pork side dish that you absolutely have to have is cornbread.
Cornbread is a southern staple, adding a touch of sweetness to your meal. You can make it the traditional way and that’s all fine and good, believe us.
But we love daring to be a little different when it comes to traditional recipes. It certainly got our attention when we saw cheddar and jalapeno cornbread existed.
With the sharp cheddar and spicy jalapeno, it adds a savory component that complements the sweetness of the cornbread fantastically.
Make plenty because you can always reheat leftover cornbread for the gift that keeps on giving.
Seriously, try it! Serene from House of Yummm has a wonderful and easy recipe for you!
2. BBQ Baked Beans
Let’s face it. You can’t have pulled pork without baked beans.
It would be a crime against humanity!
In all seriousness though, these had better be on your table when you serve pulled pork sides. What we love about BBQ baked beans is that you can modify the recipe to be meatless either for vegetarian and vegan guests or so you don’t go into meat overload.
You can also bake them in the oven or put them out on the grill or pit. Wondering how to make a big batch to feed a crowd?
How To BBQ Right has a video on it to help!
3. Simple Healthy Coleslaw
What goes with pulled pork? Coleslaw!
Those in North Carolina will shame you if you present pulled pork and don’t have any coleslaw.
It’s like the moon and stars.
They have to be together. You can always grab a traditional coleslaw from the store if you’re pressed for time, but making it yourself ensures it tastes fresh and crisp.
If you’re serving a crowd, having vegan-friendly options that taste good to everyone is a must. Sometimes traditional coleslaw can be really heavy on the mayo.
And we’re a little dubious about that vegan mayo.
So, go with a recipe that is vegan-friendly and tastes absolutely amazing whether you love meat or not.
Cookie + Kate has a recipe for a simple and healthy coleslaw that is perfect for everyone!
4. Sweet Corn Fritters
Corn is a popular side in southern cooking.
You can easily serve corn on the cob and make everyone happy with butter dripping from their chins.
There’s no shame in that. But if you want to make something truly memorable for what to eat with pulled pork, you should think about corn fritters.
Batter filled with sweet corn that’s then fried up into golden crispy balls is hard to say no to.
Plus, it’s worth breaking the diet for a taste. Stephanie at The Cozy Cook has a tasty and easy recipe for you!
5. Loaded Potato Salad
Summer is fading fast so when you want to know what to serve with pulled pork, you’ve got to put potato salad on the table.
We’ve paired potato salad with other great main dishes before, but when it comes to pulled pork sides, we totally recommend loaded potato salad.
It’s like a loaded baked potato in a cool potato salad format. As it’s still a bit warm out, that soothing cool from the chill of the potato salad really helps.
Plus, if you follow Shelly’s recipe at Cookies and Cups, you’ll know how to prep it ahead of a big gathering so your party planning just got more stress-free!
6. Stewed Okra and Tomatoes
One of the most popular southern sides out there is that of stewed okra and tomatoes.
Have you even seen okra before? It’s, well…it looks strange, that’s for sure! But it’s delicious.
One of the best ways to eat it is by slicing it up and stewing it in tomatoes. You can add bacon into that as most southerners do or you can keep it meatless.
It’s a very versatile side that simmers to perfect before your eyes.
Christin at Spicy Southern Kitchen shows you how it’s done!
7. Spicy Collard Greens
And now for the top cooked green southern side dish that should be on your table when you serve pulled pork…collard greens! In the south, this dish is always around.
You can count on it to be spectacular, especially when you add a little spice to it.
Everyone in the south has their own way of making collard greens, but again, we love when we spot something unique.
Gina’s recipe for spicy collard greens at Running to the Kitchen caught our eye, and it should yours too.
Plus it takes just 15 minutes to get it on the table, perfect for hectic weeknights when you’ve let that pulled pork cook in your slow cooker while you were at work!
8. Southern Deviled Eggs
When it comes to pulled pork combos and parties, you’ve got to make deviled eggs.
It’s the perfect finger food to serve as part of a big spread, or even as an appetizer for a more sit-down style meal.
Deviled eggs only look difficult to make and the payoff is perfection.
That creamy egg filling is everything. If you’ve tried at making deviled eggs before but failed, especially on presentation, follow this video by Divas Can Cook!
9. Easy Creamed Corn
Take some of the stress out of finding pulled pork side dishes by making creamed corn.
It’s the kind of pulled pork side that kids will gobble up.
Well actually, it’s the kind of side that EVERYONE is going to gobble up.
If you have another slow cooker that your pulled pork isn’t in, you can even make creamed corn in there for a set-it-and-forget-it side.
If not, you can make it in the oven. Creamy sweet corn is one of the most comforting southern sides there is.
Chungah at Damn Delicious has a recipe that’s seriously foolproof!
10. Onion and Tomato Curtido Salad
Do you like to try new things? We do too!
While traditional southern pulled pork sides are always a winner, there’s something to be said for pairing sides from other regions along with it too.
Case in point: curtido. It’s a Latin American side dish of tomatoes, onions, and lime.
Simple, refreshing, and completely delicious, it really needs to be on your table with your pulled pork.
Laylita’s Recipes makes it easy to get this Latin flair for your pulled pork side!
11. Super Creamy Macaroni and Cheese
Ok, look. We know we recommend macaroni and cheese with plenty of other main dishes too. But in our defense…cheese!
Creamy, soul-soothing cheese! It doesn’t get more southern than that.
Plus, if you have kids and they turn up their cute little noses at your BBQ pulled pork, you can be sure they’ll find at least one thing on the table that they will eat with macaroni and cheese.
If you make that creamed corn we mentioned above, they’ll have two things they’ll eat without complaining.
Admit it…your inner child wants super creamy macaroni and cheese too.
This is one dish you can make without a single processed ingredient and in about 30 minutes.
12. Macaroni Salad
And let’s say that your just mac’ed out with mac n’ cheese, or you want something chilled that you can make ahead of your company arriving.
In that case, we recommend macaroni salad. It’s easy, it’s crowd-pleasing and you can sneak in veggies.
If you don’t want to spend tons of time in the kitchen prior to your party, you can make this the night before and get out there with your margarita.
Sam at Sugar Spun Run has a great traditional macaroni salad that will disappear fast!
13. Rainbow Fruit Salad
You know what else goes with pulled pork? Fruit!
And nothing could be better than a fruit salad that has all the colors of the rainbow.
Fruit salad is a perfect picnic and barbecue side dish, one that pairs well with pulled pork.
Serve a rainbow fruit salad for a pulled pork side and you’ll have happy guests.
You can make it with a variety of fresh, seasonal fruits so anything goes.
We recommend getting your produce from your local farmer’s market if you can so you can enjoy the bounty of the harvest.
Feel free to substitute whatever is fresh for you right now when you follow this easy recipe from Holly at Life in the Lofthouse.
14. Honey Butter Biscuits
When you are planning things to go with pulled pork, you can do no wrong with honey butter biscuits.
Just watch out for the kids. They’ll snag all of them in the two seconds you have your back turned.
We know that can that pops and scares the daylights out of you is an easy way to go about making your biscuits, but truth be told, you can make biscuits that taste even better from scratch and it is seriously so much easier than you think.
It only takes about 30 minutes from start to finish with this fantastic recipe from Lyuba at Will Cook For Smiles!
Suffering succotash! We’re not completely sure why Sylvester always said this in those Looney Toons classics.
Succotash doesn’t suffer (it’s meatless) and you won’t suffer in the slightest when you eat this nutritious and delicious southern side brimming with veggies.
Whatever the case, for what goes with pulled pork, succotash truly delivers.
You’ve got a variety of colorful bell peppers, corn, onions, lima beans, and jalapeno that brings full-on flavor and makes getting your recommended daily allowance of vegetables super-easy.
Tricia at Saving Room For Dessert has a colorful succotash recipe plus step-by-step photos to walk you through making it.
What to Serve with Pulled Pork: More to the Story…
So we’ve checked out sides we adore for our tasty pulled pork, but we don’t always just plop a scoop of the meat on our plate, right? We eat serve it within other foods to create whole news dishes.
Let’s take a look at some of our favorite ways to eat pulled pork. What you decide will no doubt influence your side dishes as well.
Some people serve pulled pork as mostly whole and allow everyone to flake off the tender meat. Others shred it with forks and spoon it into buns.
There are many ways to enjoy pulled pork either formally or in a help-yourself style.
When you have BBQ pulled pork for a crowd, you may just place it in a warmer so everyone can take what they want and put it in a bun or leave it sans buns.
You can even make it Asian-style, Italian-style, or in other flavors. There’s really no wrong way to make it!
And even if you have a small family or there’s no company coming over, pulled pork is a great main dish.
Typically, pork shoulder is quite large though which means you’ll have leftovers.
And no, you’re not doomed to eat plateful of it day after day or get tired of pulled pork sandwiches.
What we love doing even when we don’t have guests coming is to make BBQ pulled pork and freeze portions of it that we can use in other ways.
Here are some of our suggestions for using that pulled pork in ways that will keep it from getting repetitive!
Pulled Pork Tacos
Give taco night a facelift by using your pulled pork as the filling. You can set up a make-your-own-taco station and let everyone serve themselves on a busy weeknight.
Pulled Pork Pizza
Why not have pizza night? Instead of waiting forever for delivery, you can make it yourself faster.
Having ready-made dough really makes it easy to get on the table, or when you have time, you can make your own pizza dough.
You can make it any way you like it, perhaps a more traditional pizza with pizza sauce, mozzarella cheese, and the pulled pork.
Or you can get creative with barbecue sauce instead of pizza sauce, thinly-sliced red onions, pulled pork, and mozzarella cheese.
The possibilities are endless!
Pulled Pork Nachos
You know when that pulled pork in your freezer will come in handy?
When everyone is coming over to watch the game! Pulled pork will help you make the world’s best nachos.
Pile it high on your tortilla chips with plenty of cheese, jalapeno slices, salsa, guacamole, and sour cream and watch how fast it vanishes!
Pulled Pork Rice Paper Wraps
Leftover BBQ pulled pork is also fantastic for Asian-style recipes. Get those rice paper wraps in the Asian section of your supermarket or in an actual Asian supermarket.
You don’t have to cook them. You just soak the wraps in cold water for about 20 seconds and they become pliable.
Fill them with pulled pork, red cabbage, onion slices, cilantro, lettuce, or whatever fresh veggies you’ve got and you’ve got a tasty, healthy meal that requires no heating up of anything in your kitchen.
Pulled Pork Fried Rice
While we’re talking about Asian cuisine, let’s talk about fried rice.
Fried rice is so easy to make that once you do it yourself, you’ll stop ordering it from the local takeout place around the corner.
Traditionally, Chinese people will take any leftover rice from dinner the night before and stir-fry it with leftovers while adding in egg and a little soy sauce to give it that color.
You can do the same with your pulled pork for a truly tasty dish that will fill you up.
Pulled Pork Quesadillas
Have tortillas and cheese in the house? Then take that leftover pulled pork and make quesadillas!
This is perfect for dinner on those crazy days where you can’t adult anymore, and absolutely delicious!
We’ve come up with some great sides for quesadillas too, so be sure to check ’em out.
Go country and serve your pulled pork with fried potato pancakes. Delight them both by topping with a poached egg and garnish with hollandaise sauce and fresh green onion.
Oh yeah, you’ve never tasted pulled pork like this before!
Pulled Pork Salad
Hear us out. We know pulled pork sounds strange on salad, but if you used it for a chef salad, or even better, a cobb salad, you will have a healthy lunch to trot out at the office.
Pulled Pork Philly
If you’re growing tired of pulled pork sandwiches, switch it up and make a different kind of sandwich with your pulled pork.
There’s nothing like a Philly to help you break out of the pulled pork sandwich rut.
Peppers, onions, mushrooms and cheese will give it the new taste you’ve been searching for.
Pulled Pork Gyros
Gyros are traditionally made with thin slices of spit-roasted lamb, but that doesn’t mean you can’t use your pulled pork to make them.
Just get the tzatziki sauce, onions, cucumbers, and chopped tomatoes and you’re rolling.
Finally add some delicious Mediterranean inspired side dishes for gyros and you’ll be in business.
We’re sure you can think of even more ways to use that extra pulled pork to make a variety of meals.
That’s why we love pulled pork…it’s so versatile that you can do anything with it. And you can’t deny it’s wonderful flavor, especially when smoked.
You can make a bunch and eat it all week long in a more ways than you can ever think of. If there’s any left, store your pulled pork for enjoyment in the future when the mood strikes.
For now, start by making it tonight and choosing your favorite sides from above for what to serve with pulled pork. Enjoy!