A seafood boil is more than just a medley of seafood and veggies. It is a dish that brings together coastal communities, as the sea’s bounties are meant to be shared and enjoyed by many. Moreover, it’s a great recipe to get everyone together because it’s complete with protein, vegetables, and flavor!
However, if the whole town is coming over, adding just a few more sides to the menu is a good idea. Because seafood boils are rich and delicious, it’s important to choose some simple seafood boil sides like the ones in this article!
Many love sauces with their seafood boil, especially if it is plain or the sauce matches the flavors. Garlic butter sauce is highly recommended because its simple yet rich and savory flavors match nearly any recipe, whether basic or flavored. Moreover, it’s easy to make; you only need butter, garlic, lemon juice, salt, and parsley. Make as much as you need, especially if you have a large batch.
Louisiana seafood boils often feature Cajun flavors; thus, this cajun butter sauce would be best for them! However, you can use this for any other variant, especially if you love smoky and spicy flavors. Such smokiness and spiciness, as well as the sauce’s colors and aromas, are attributed to two complex spice blends: Old Bay and cajun. Cajun seasoning alone contains cayenne, garlic, paprika, pepper, onion, and oregano!
This seafood boil sauce is similar to cajun butter sauce, but the cajun spice blend is optional. Instead, the recipe concentrates on the Old Bay seasoning, a mixture of 18 spices! From paprika to nutmeg, Old Bay has it all. Thus, any dish that’s flavored with it – including this seafood boil sauce – benefits from the several layers of intense flavors.
Cocktail sauce is a tomato-based dip, so it’s tangy and much thicker than butter sauces. However, this recipe does not just use pure tomato sauce or puree; instead, it uses ketchup. The ketchup is mixed with Worcestershire sauce, horseradish, lemon juice, and hot sauce. Thus, if your seafood boil needs a bit of kick or heat, this cocktail sauce is the perfect side dish!
5. Tartar Sauce
The sauces mentioned above all feature spicy flavors, albeit at varying degrees. Thus, this tartar sauce sticks out because it isn’t spicy at all. Instead, it’s cool, creamy, and tangy, as it’s made from mayo, dill, parsley, lemon juice, sugar, black pepper, and onion. They are great if you want flavor contrasts with your seafood boil or need something to tone down the heat.
6. White Rice
Many seafood boils are saucy on their own; thus, they become extra juicy when served with a side sauce. While sipping on those flavored juices is incredible, you could use some carb-based sides to sop up those tastes. Boiled or steamed white rice is such a side dish – it’s easy to make, absorbs sauces excellently, and its plain taste profile allows the rich seafood boil flavors to stand out.
Aside from rice, you can use a buttery French baguette to absorb the sauces. To eat the seafood boil with bread, you can dunk the baguette into the sauce and then top it with seafood bits or pieces. In that way, you get the whole experience, from protein to juices. Grab a baguette from your favorite bakery, or make it from scratch with this recipe!
Sourdough shares similarities with French baguettes – they’re both crusty and light and can absorb seafood boil sauces. However, they are different in terms of appearance and flavor. As the name implies, sourdough has a tangy taste, which would be a novel yet pleasant contribution to your seafood boil meal. If you want to know if the flavor combinations work for your taste buds, make this recipe and dig in!
If you decide to serve your seafood boil with French bread, reserve some of them to make garlic bread with cheese. That way, you’ll still have some plain bread you can use to absorb sauces. Meanwhile, garlic bread contributes savory and cheesy flavors and textures you can enjoy alongside your seafood meal. It also takes little time, effort, or ingredients to make.
While most bread types are made from flour, cornbread is made from cornmeal, hence the sweet flavors and golden corn color. This US southern delicacy is tender and moist on the inside, although the outer part is a bit crisp and dry. You can use it to soak up the juices and sauces from your seafood boil while also introducing a pleasant sweetness that compliments the rich dish.
Salads are an excellent side dish for seafood boil because of their light, fresh, and crisp flavors. Coleslaw is one of the simplest and easiest salads you can make that fits the description. It’s made only from cabbages and carrots tossed in a mayo-based dressing. It’s often served cold, so this is a creative and delicious way to tone down the heat and spiciness of your seafood boil.
12. Potato Salad
Although most seafood boil recipes include potatoes already, it wouldn’t hurt to have just a bit more. This potato salad is a terrific addition to your meal because, like coleslaw, it is served chilled and has a creamy mayo-based dressing. Thus, it helps combat the spicy flavors and sauces of your seafood boil. However, it does have more flavorings and spices, like mustard.
Seafood boil usually has corn cobs and potatoes as its veggies. Asparagus spears are a great addition to that list as they offer crisp-tender textures and simple yet fresh flavors. They’re also effortless to make, especially with this recipe. It blanches the asparagus, so there’s no need to preheat an oven, prepare a grill, or set up a broiler. You only need a pot of boiling water and a handful of easy-to-find ingredients.