Discover What to Serve with Jambalaya – A Southern Treat!

what to serve with jambalaya

Welcome, foodies! If you’re looking to spice up your mealtime, look no further than jambalaya. This savory Southern dish is bursting with flavor, but it can be challenging to find the perfect accompaniments. That’s where I come in. In this article, I’ll be sharing my expert recommendations on what to serve with jambalaya. Whether you’re a seasoned pro or a beginner in the kitchen, these pairings will take your jambalaya to the next level.

Key Takeaways:

  • Pairing the right side dishes with jambalaya can elevate your dining experience
  • Classic Southern favorites like cornbread and collard greens complement the spicy flavors of jambalaya perfectly
  • Green vegetable options like sautéed green beans and roasted bell peppers provide a balance to the rich flavors of jambalaya
  • Cajun-inspired sides like gumbo and dirty rice add depth and complexity to your meal
  • Don’t be afraid to experiment with international flavors like olive oil and parmesan cheese

Classic Jambalaya Side Dishes

When it comes to serving jambalaya, there are some classic side dishes that never fail to impress and satisfy. These jambalaya serving suggestions will not only complement the flavors of your main dish but also add a touch of Southern charm to your meal.


What better way to accompany jambalaya than with a slice of freshly baked cornbread? The soft texture and sweet flavor of cornbread make it the perfect complement to the spicy and savory flavors of jambalaya. Serve it warm with a dollop of butter for an extra indulgent experience.

Green Salad

A fresh green salad is a great way to balance out the richness of the jambalaya. Use a mix of lettuce, spinach, and arugula for a variety of textures and flavors. Top it off with some cherry tomatoes, sliced cucumbers, and a tangy dressing to add some zing to your palate.

Red Beans and Rice

Red beans and rice are a staple in Southern cuisine and pair perfectly with jambalaya. The creamy texture of the beans and the fluffy rice will soak up the flavorful sauce of the jambalaya and create a delicious contrast in texture.

Collard Greens

Collard greens are a classic Southern side dish that pairs beautifully with jambalaya. The bitterness of the greens contrasts the richness of the jambalaya, creating a well-balanced and satisfying meal. Add some bacon bits for some extra flavor and crunch.


Okra is a beloved Southern vegetable that can be enjoyed in a variety of ways. For a jambalaya side dish, try pan-frying or baking the okra until crispy. The crunchy texture and mild flavor of the okra will complement the complex and spicy jambalaya perfectly.

Corn on the Cob

There’s something nostalgic and comforting about biting into a juicy corn on the cob. Boil or grill the corn until it’s tender and serve it alongside your jambalaya for a satisfying and simple side dish.


Grits are a classic Southern dish made from ground corn and are a perfect accompaniment to jambalaya. Serve them steaming hot with a pat of butter and a sprinkle of salt for a simple yet delicious side dish.

Mac and Cheese

Mac and cheese is a crowd-pleaser and a favorite side dish for many. The creamy and cheesy goodness of mac and cheese pairs perfectly with the spicy and savory flavors of jambalaya, creating a comforting and indulgent meal.

Southern Favorites

When it comes to Southern cooking, there are some classic side dishes that are a must-try alongside jambalaya. These sides are perfect for adding a touch of comfort to your meal, and they pair well with the spicy flavors of jambalaya. Here are some southern favorites that you should consider serving with your jambalaya:


No meal is complete without a flaky, buttery biscuit. Serve these delightful treats warm with a dollop of butter. They soak up the flavorful sauce of jambalaya, making them a perfect accompaniment for this dish.

Collard Greens

Collard greens are a classic side dish in Southern cuisine. These leafy greens are sautéed in bacon grease and served with a dash of vinegar. They add a slightly sour, savory flavor that contrasts the spiciness of jambalaya.


A slice of cornbread is the perfect side dish to serve with jambalaya. The sweetness of the corn contrasts with the heat of jambalaya, creating a perfect balance of flavors. Serve with a dollop of butter or honey for added sweetness.

Corn on the Cob

There’s nothing like biting into a juicy ear of corn. Grill or boil corn on the cob and serve it with butter and salt. This is a classic side dish that pairs well with jambalaya, especially during the summer when corn is at its peak.

Fried Okra

Fried okra is a Southern favorite that’s often served alongside jambalaya. The crispy texture and mild flavor of fried okra make it a perfect complement to the spicy jambalaya.

Deviled Eggs

Deviled eggs are a classic appetizer that can also make a great side dish. These bite-sized treats are a must-try alongside jambalaya. You can add a dash of cajun seasoning or hot sauce to give them a flavorful kick.

Mac and Cheese

Mac and cheese is the ultimate comfort food, and it pairs perfectly with jambalaya. Serve it as a side dish or make it the main course. Top it with breadcrumbs or bacon for added flavor and texture.

Chicken and Dumplings

Chicken and dumplings is another classic Southern dish that’s perfect for serving with jambalaya. The tender chicken and doughy dumplings are a comforting addition to any meal.

Cajun Spiced Corn Bread

Bring a twist to the classic cornbread by adding some cajun spices to the mix. The savory flavors of cajun seasoning work well with the sweetness of cornbread, making it a perfect side dish for jambalaya.

These Southern favorites are just a few examples of the many side dishes that you can serve with jambalaya. Experiment with different pairings and find the perfect side dish to complement your jambalaya.

Green Vegetable Delights

Adding some green veggies to your jambalaya dish is an excellent way to balance the rich flavors and bring some nutritional value to the meal. Whether you prefer sauteed green beans or roasted bell peppers, these delicious vegetables will complement the spiciness of your jambalaya perfectly.

Green Beans

Green beans are a classic side dish that pairs well with jambalaya. To prepare them, wash and trim the ends off the beans. In a frying pan, heat up some oil and add some minced garlic. Once the garlic is fragrant, add the green beans and cook for 5-7 minutes, until they are tender. Season them with salt and black pepper to taste.

Bell Peppers

Bell peppers are another great option to add color and flavor to your jambalaya meal. You can either roast them in the oven or saute them in a pan. To roast them, cut them into large chunks, and place them on a baking sheet. Drizzle with olive oil, salt, and black pepper, and roast in the oven for 20-25 minutes at 400°F. If you prefer to saute them, cut them into thin slices, and cook them with some oil in a frying pan until they are tender.

Swiss Chard

If you’re looking for a more unique green vegetable, try adding some swiss chard to your jambalaya dish. Swiss chard has a slightly bitter taste that pairs well with the spicy flavors of jambalaya. Wash and chop the chard into small pieces. Heat up some oil in a frying pan, add some minced garlic, and cook until fragrant. Add the chard to the pan and cook until it wilts, about 5-7 minutes. Season with salt and black pepper to taste.

No matter which green vegetable you choose, it will add a fresh and healthy element to your jambalaya meal. Give them a try and taste the difference for yourself!

Savory Bread Options

What is a hearty meal without some delicious bread to accompany it? When it comes to serving jambalaya, there are several bread options that can complement the savory flavors of this Southern dish.

Garlic Bread:

Garlic bread is a classic choice to serve with jambalaya. The combination of garlic and butter creates a rich and savory flavor that perfectly complements the spiciness of the dish. To make garlic bread, slice a baguette or Italian loaf, brush with melted butter and minced garlic, and bake until golden brown.

Cheddar Biscuits:

If you’re looking for a more indulgent bread option, cheddar biscuits are sure to satisfy. These flaky biscuits are loaded with sharp cheddar cheese and butter, making them a perfect choice to serve alongside jambalaya. To make cheddar biscuits, combine flour, baking powder, salt, sugar, and shredded cheddar cheese in a bowl. Add in cold butter and buttermilk, then bake until golden brown.

Garlic Cheddar Bread:

For a twist on traditional garlic bread, try making garlic cheddar bread. To make this savory bread, start with a loaf of French bread. Cut thin slits in the bread and stuff with a mixture of butter, garlic, and shredded cheddar cheese. Bake until the cheese is melted and bubbly, then serve hot.

Whichever bread option you choose, be sure to serve it warm alongside your jambalaya for the ultimate indulgent meal.

Cajun Inspirations

One of the most exciting aspects of jambalaya is how well it pairs with traditional Cajun dishes. The bold and spicy flavors of cajun seasoninggumbo, and dirty rice perfectly complement the savory taste of jambalaya.

For those unfamiliar with Cajun food, it is a style of cooking that originated in Louisiana and combines elements of French, African, and Native American cuisineCajun spices, which are a blend of herbs and peppers, are a staple in this type of cooking and add depth and complexity to any dish.

Classic Cajun Dishes

“Laissez les bon temps rouler” – Let the good times roll!”

When it comes to traditional Cajun dishesgumbo is a must-try. It’s a thick stew made with a variety of proteins such as chicken, sausage, and seafood, along with the “holy trinity” of Cajun cooking: onions, celery, and bell peppers. It’s seasoned with a healthy dose of cajun spices, giving it a spicy and smoky flavor.

Dirty rice is another Cajun classic that pairs perfectly with jambalaya. This dish is made by cooking rice with ground meat, vegetables, and cajun spices. The meat and vegetables are what “dirty” the rice, giving it a unique texture and flavor.

Cajun Seasoning

As I mentioned earlier, cajun seasoning is a blend of herbs and spices and is a critical element in Cajun cuisine. You can use store-bought seasoning or make your own by mixing garlic powder, onion powder, paprika, cayenne pepper, and other spices.

Add a sprinkle of cajun seasoning to your jambalaya or use it to season other sides dishes like roasted vegetables or grilled shrimp.

Creole vs. Cajun

It’s essential to note that while Creole and Cajun cuisine share similarities, they are not the same. Creole cooking developed in the New Orleans area and blends French, Spanish, and African influences. In contrast, Cajun cooking originated in rural southern Louisiana and is more rustic and hearty.

Experiment with Cajun Spices and Dishes

If you’re feeling adventurous, try experimenting with different Cajun spices and dishes to complement your jambalaya. From po’boys to red beans and rice, there are countless options to choose from.

Whether you opt for the classic gumbo or decide to try something new, incorporating Cajun cuisine into your jambalaya meal will take your taste buds on a flavorful journey through Louisiana’s rich culinary history.

Fresh and Light Options

When I’m in the mood for something light and refreshing to pair with my jambalaya, I turn to a classic cucumber tomato salad or some delicious grilled oysters.

cucumber tomato salad is a perfect way to add some crisp and juicy flavors to your meal. Simply slice a few cucumbers and halved cherry tomatoes, toss them with a light dressing of olive oil, lemon juice, salt, and pepper, and you’re all set.

If you’re feeling adventurous, try grilling some oysters for an intense and smoky flavor. Brush the oysters with garlic butter and sprinkle with some fresh herbs like thyme or rosemary. Grill the oysters for a few minutes until they are cooked to perfection and enjoy the juicy and flavorful goodness.

“I always find that a refreshing cucumber tomato salad or some succulent grilled oysters can provide a zesty and tangy contrast to the rich and spicy jambalaya.”

For a fun and creative twist, pair your jambalaya with a delicious tomato sauce that can serve as a dipping sauce for your bread or meat. You can also try incorporating Mediterranean flavors by using fresh herbs, feta cheese, or olives.

Remember, the key to finding the perfect side dish for your jambalaya is experimentation. Try different combinations and find the one that satisfies your taste buds and complements your dish perfectly.

Creative Ways to Complement Your Jambalaya with International Flair

If you want to add some excitement to your jambalaya meal, try incorporating some flavors from around the world. In this section, I’ll guide you through some delicious international complements that will take your jambalaya to the next level.

Mediterranean Twist with Olive Oil

For a Mediterranean-inspired jambalaya, drizzle some high-quality olive oil over your dish. The fruity and rich flavor of olive oil complements the spices in jambalaya perfectly. You can also serve a simple cucumber tomato salad dressed with olive oil and red wine vinegar on the side to contrast the warm and spicy flavors of jambalaya.

Italian Influence with Parmesan Cheese

Sprinkle some grated parmesan cheese over your jambalaya for a touch of Italian flavor. The nutty and salty flavor of parmesan adds depth to the dish and enhances its rich and savory taste. Pair your jambalaya with a simple green salad dressed with lemon and parmesan, or a side of garlic bread for a heartier Italian twist.

Roasted Vegetables for Depth and Flavor

If you want to add more texture and depth to your jambalaya, try roasting some vegetables and serving them as a side dish. You can roast bell peppers, zucchini, eggplant, or any other vegetable you like and season them with Cajun spices or herbs like thyme and rosemary. The roasted vegetables will provide a smoky and slightly sweet flavor that complements the spiciness of jambalaya perfectly.

International InspirationJambalaya Complements
GreekFeta cheese, olives, roasted red peppers
SpanishChorizo, saffron rice, gazpacho
MexicanBlack beans, avocado, salsa, tortilla chips
IndianBasmati rice, naan bread, raita

Other International Complements to Try

Looking for more international inspiration? Try incorporating these flavors:

  • Bacon grease for a touch of Southern cuisine
  • Cheddar cheese for an American twist
  • Creole seasoning for a taste of Louisiana Creole cuisine

With so many delicious options to choose from, there’s no limit to the creative ways you can complement your jambalaya. Experiment with different flavors and find your perfect combination to elevate your jambalaya experience.

Spicy Complements

If you’re a fan of spicy flavors, you’ll love pairing your jambalaya with some delicious spicy complements. The heat from these sides will complement the bold and savory flavors of the jambalaya, creating a tantalizing culinary experience.

Spicy Corn Muffins

For a classic Southern side dish with a kick of spice, try some spicy corn muffins. The sweetness of the corn perfectly balances out the heat, making these muffins the perfect complement to any spicy jambalaya. I recommend adding some melted butter to the muffins right before serving to create a mouth-watering, savory treat.

Cajun-Style Vegetables

For a healthy and spicy side dish, try roasting some mixed vegetables with cajun seasoning. This combination of spices adds a bold and spicy flavor to the vegetables, making them the perfect accompaniment to any jambalaya. Try using bell peppers, onions, and zucchini for a colorful and flavorful mix.

Spicy Rice

You can also add some heat to your side dish by serving your jambalaya with spicy rice. Simply add some cajun seasoning or hot sauce to your rice before cooking for an extra kick. The spice from the rice will complement the bold flavors of the jambalaya, making for a truly delicious meal.

Spicy Coleslaw

If you’re looking for a lighter side dish to complement your jambalaya, try some spicy coleslaw. The crunchiness of the cabbage perfectly balances out the heat from the cajun spices, making for a refreshing and satisfying side. Serve your coleslaw with a dollop of sour cream to add a cool and creamy element to the dish.

There you have it – some spicy and delicious side dishes to complement your jambalaya. From classic Southern sides to roasted vegetables with a Cajun twist, these spicy complements will add a new dimension of flavor to your meal. Experiment with different spice levels and find the perfect complement to your spicy jambalaya!

Beans and Corn Delights

If you’re looking for a hearty and filling side dish to complement your jambalaya, black beans and corn maque choux are perfect choices. Both dishes are flavorful, colorful, and packed with nutrients that will balance out the spiciness of your jambalaya.

Black Beans

Black beans are a staple in Southern cuisine and are a delicious complement to jambalaya. They are rich in protein, fiber, and iron, making them a healthy and filling addition to your meal. Here’s a quick and easy recipe for black beans:

“Mash cooked black beans with garlic, cumin, chili powder, and a squeeze of lime juice. Heat on medium heat until warm and serve alongside your jambalaya.”

Corn Maque Choux

Corn maque choux is a classic Cajun side dish that pairs perfectly with jambalaya. It’s a sweet and savory corn mixture that is often served as a side dish but can also be used as a topping for grilled meats or fish. Here’s a recipe for corn maque choux:

4 ears of sweet corn1. Cut the corn off the cob and set aside.
2 tablespoons of butter2. Melt the butter in a large skillet over medium heat.
1 small onion, chopped3. Add the chopped onion to the skillet and sauté until soft, about 5 minutes.
1 bell pepper, chopped4. Add the chopped bell pepper to the skillet and sauté for another 5 minutes.
1 garlic clove, minced5. Add the minced garlic to the skillet and sauté for 1 minute.
1/4 cup of heavy cream6. Add the corn to the skillet and stir to combine.
Salt and pepper, to taste7. Add the heavy cream and season with salt and pepper.
Fresh parsley, chopped8. Sprinkle with fresh parsley and serve alongside your jambalaya.

These sides are easy to prepare and are sure to impress your guests. Try them out and discover how they can enhance the flavors of your jambalaya!


In conclusion, finding the perfect side dish to complement your jambalaya can make all the difference in your dining experience. Remember to consider classic Southern favorites as well as international twists to add depth and complexity to your meal.

Don’t forget to factor in preparation time and total time to ensure the side dish compliments your main dish seamlessly without delaying your meal.

And if you’re new to cooking or looking for an easy recipe, don’t be afraid to start with a simple side dish like a green salad or some warm garlic bread. With a little practice and experimentation, you’ll soon discover the perfect side dish to take your jambalaya meal to the next level.

So let’s get cooking! Try out some of these jambalaya side dish suggestions and transform an already delicious main dish into a perfect Southern feast.


What are some classic jambalaya side dishes?

Classic jambalaya side dishes include green salad, cornbread, and rice.

What are some Southern favorites to serve with jambalaya?

Some Southern favorites to serve with jambalaya are biscuits, collard greens, cornbread, and fried okra.

Can I include green vegetables as side dishes with jambalaya?

Absolutely! Green vegetables such as sautéed green beans, roasted bell peppers, and swiss chard make great additions to jambalaya.

What are some savory bread options to serve with jambalaya?

Savory bread options like garlic bread and cheddar biscuits pair well with jambalaya.

Are there any Cajun-inspired side dishes that go well with jambalaya?

Yes, some Cajun-inspired side dishes that go well with jambalaya are gumbo and dirty rice.

Can you suggest any fresh and light options to serve with jambalaya?

For a fresh and light option, try a cucumber tomato salad or grilled oysters alongside your jambalaya.

How can I add some international flair to my jambalaya meal?

Adding high-quality olive oil, grated parmesan cheese, or roasted vegetables can bring an international twist to your jambalaya meal.

Are there any spicy complements that pair well with jambalaya?

Yes, if you enjoy spicy flavors, consider serving jambalaya with spicy corn muffins or adding extra Cajun seasoning.

What are some bean and corn delights that go well with jambalaya?

Black beans and corn maque choux are excellent choices to enhance your jambalaya meal.

How can I determine the perfect side dish to serve with jambalaya?

Experiment with different pairings and find the side dish that complements your jambalaya flavors best.

Check out some other posts...
Scroll to Top