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Fancy Steak Side Dishes

Steak is a popular main course which usually is paired with a baked potato or mashed potatoes and vegetables. I particularly find this to become so boring at times. I also find it difficult when I'm hosting a dinner party and some of my friends including myself are on keto. Over the years I've scoured the internet, experimented with my own ideas, and collaborated with others to ditch the potatoes and level-up when it comes to steak side dishes. 

Whether you're hosting a dinner party or having a typical family dinner, these elevated side dishes will leave you wondering if you'll ever serve steak with mashed potatoes again (well....just not all the time).

 Flowering Red Onions

                                 Photo credit: Food Network

This side dish is unbelievably simple to make, but it's guaranteed to steal the show. It looks like a beautiful lotus flower on the plate. You may not think a red onion could have so much flavor but this recipe does! The red onion once roasted with the brown sugar and vinegar syrup, is so sweet and flavorful. It pairs exceptionally well with steak or fish. The great thing about this recipe is you can make it in advance and then warm and serve when ready. 


  • 6 medium red onions
  • 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons white wine vinegar
  • salt and pepper
  • 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon dark brown sugar


Preheat oven to 425 degrees F. 

Slice the bottoms of the onions so they sit flat., and then slice 1/4 inch off the tops. Place them root-end down on a cutting board. Cut 3 slits in the stem side of each onion, crisscrossing making 6 pie slices. Only cut two-thirds through (don't cut all the way through).

Add salt and water to a medium pot and bring to a boil. Place the onions in the pot and cook until tender on the outside, about 5 minutes. Remove from the pot and let cool. Once cool, gently open the onion petals like a flower. 

Simmer the white and red vinegars, water, and brown sugar in a small pot over medium heat. Simmer for 2-3 minutes until it becomes syrupy. 

Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and arrange the onions leaving space in between each. Drizzle them with olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Roast in the oven for 40-45 minutes until the tips are lightly brown and the "petals" have opened. 

Plate the onions on a serving dish and spoon over the brown sugar/vinegar syrup over the onions and serve 

Roasted Tomato Mac and Cheese

                                  Photo credit: Victor Protasio

There's not very many people who don't like mac and cheese. This elevated twist from Southern Living will change the way you eat this childhood favorite. The roasted tomatoes add a beautiful sweetness to this cheesy dish. The smooth and creamy decadent cheeses make this a perfect pair against a nice juicy steak. 


  • 8 ounces uncooked elbow macaroni
  • 4 plum tomatoes, cut into 1/4-inch thick slices
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon chopped fresh oregano
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
  • 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon dry mustard
  • 1 1/2 cups 2% reduced-fat milk
  • 4 ounces Monterey Jack cheese, shredded
  • 3 ounces sharp cheddar cheese, shredded
  • 2 fontina cheese, shredded
  • 1 ounce Parmesan cheese, grated


Cook the pasta according to the directions. Drain and set aside. Preheat oven to 450 degrees F. 

Place the plum tomato slices on a wire rack on a baking sheet. Generously brush each tomato with olive oil. Sprinkle the tomatoes with pepper, 1/4 salt and oregano. Bake for 18-20 minutes until slightly charred.

In a medium saucepan, melt butter over medium heat. Whisk in the flour constantly about 2-3 minutes until it becomes a slight nutty color. Whisk in the dry mustard and then slowly whisk in the milk until thickened. Remove the saucepan from heat and cool slightly about 3 minutes. Slowly whisk in cheddar, Monterey Jack, fontina and remaining salt. Continue until the cheeses are completely melted and then stir in the pasta. 

Grease a 2 quart baking dish and spoon in the pasta mixture. Top with the tomatoes and sprinkle with Parmesan cheese. Bake at 450 degrees until bubbly and the tomatoes are aromatic, about 10 minutes. Ready to serve immediately.

Roasted Artichoke With Lemon Aioli


One of my favorite restaurants offers a delicious grilled or roasted artichoke with their fillet mignon. The thought of making this side dish may sound intimidating, but it couldn't be simpler. What really intensifies the vegetable side is the creamy lemon aioli dip. Try this once and you'll forever ditch the regular mayo I promise. 


  • 4 medium artichokes
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1/2 medium lemon
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1/4 cup mayonnaise
  • 1/4 cup plain Greek yogurt
  • 1/2 teaspoon minced fresh garlic
  • 1/4 teaspoon lemon zest
  • 1 teaspoon creamy dijon mustard (I use Grey Poupon)


Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

Starting from the top, cut the tips off each artichoke. Prepare the chokes by using kitchen scissors and snipping off the tips of the outer leaves. Cut each artichoke lengthwise in half. Carefully scrape with a spoon the fuzzy center and remove.

Grease a 15x10 baking pan with olive oil or cooking spray. Rub the inside of the artichokes with lemon and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Place in the baking pan cut side down. Squeeze more lemon all over the artichokes. Cover the baking pan with foil and bake on a lower oven rack for 50-55 minutes until tender. 

while the artichokes are cooking, mix all of the aioli ingredients in a bowl. Refrigerate until ready to serve the artichokes. 

Grilled Corn With Cotija and Chile Lime Butter

This is an easy way to elevate an ear of corn. Grilled corn on the cob pairs perfectly with a ribeye steak. I personally prefer cotija cheese, but you can also use feta. 


  • 6 ears corn, in their husks
  • 1 cup unsalted, room temperature butter
  • 1 tablespoon chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon cayenee pepper
  • Juice of 3 limes
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 cup cotija cheese or feta cheese


Heat at grill to medium-high heat. Grill the corn in their husks about 3 minutes each side until the husks begin to blacken. 

In a bowl, mix together the butter, cayenne pepper, chili powder, lime juice and salt and pepper. 

Peel back the corn husks without removing all the way to use as handles while eating. Rub generously the chili-lime butter all over the corn and garnish with cotija or feta cheese. 

Wedge Salad with Garlic Bleu Cheese

You might be thinking wedge salad, really? How is this unique? The wedge is an iconic side dish to a steak, and the garlic oil with bleu cheese dressing takes it to the next level. I love a wedge salad and haven't even had one close to this at the nicest of restaurants. This recipe comes courtesy of delish.If you don't want to make this the side, you can include it as a 5-star starter. 

Ingredients For Garlic Oil:

  • 1 1/2 cups garlic cloves
  • 2 cups extra-virgin olive oil

Ingredients For Wedge Salad:

  • 8 slices thick-cut bacon roughly chopped
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 1/2 cup garlic oil
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1/2 cup buttermilk
  • 3 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1/4 cup bleu cheese crumbled
  • 1 tablespoon dill
  • 1/2 tablespoon chives
  • Freshly cracked pepper
  • 1 head iceberg lettuce
  • 2 tomatoes, finely chopped


In a small saucepan, cook the garlic cloves covering them completely in olive oil until submerged. Heat over medium heat until the oil begins to simmer. Reduce heat to low and cook for 1-1/2 hours until the cloves are golden brown and the cloves can turn into a paste. Transfer the garlic and oil into an airtight container in the fridge for up to two weeks.

In a cast iron skillet, cook the bacon until the fat has rendered and the bacon is crispy. Set aside and drain on a paper towel. 

In a medium bowl, whisk together the egg yolk, salt, and garlic paste (the smashed cloves) until the consistency is silky. Slowly whisk in the oil while whisking, just a few drops at a time. There should never be pools or beads of oil. Whisk until the texture looks that of mayonnaise. Slowly whisk in the buttermilk and lemon juice. Add the bleu cheese and whisk until the cheese and other ingredients are completely incorporated. Fold in the chives and dill, and season with salt to taste. 

Slice the head of lettuce in half, then cut in half again to make wedges. Drizzle the wedges with dressing making sure to get into the layers of the lettuce. Top each wedge with more dill, bacon, tomato and chives. Drizzle additional dressing on top.  


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