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What To Serve With Beef Rendang – 45 BEST Side Dishes

If you’re wondering what to serve with your beef rendang, you’ve come to the right place.

In this article, I list 45 of the most popular side dishes for beef rendang.

In a rush? Here’s the short answer.

The best dishes to serve with beef rendang are coconut rice, eggplants in sambal, sauteed spinach, and cucumber salad. For some Asian fusion, pair the curry with mashed potatoes or a creamy apple slaw. For dessert, try lemongrass or kaffir lime mousse.

Ready? Let’s jump right in.

Asian-inspired items

Pair your beef rendang with these dishes to keep the Asian theme going! 

I love mopping up that spicy rendang sauce with a delicate net pancake, but you can also go with scallion pancakes (which are much easier to make).

Feeling extra hungry? Put together a bowl of gado gado to go with your beef rendang for a filling meal. 

Gado Gado

Gado gado is a delicious salad hailing from Indonesia, where beef rendang is extremely popular!

A traditional gado gado is a mix of raw, or very lightly blanched vegetables, boiled eggs, boiled potatoes, tempeh or tofu, and a peanut sauce.

But (just like any salad) you can pick and choose what you include, so why not skip the peanut sauce and use your beef rendang as a toppper.

Why we love this recipe: it stays true to tradition.

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Vegan gado gado
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Green bean and tofu salad
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Marinated vegetable salad

Homemade sambal

If you’re a fan of spice, you can’t have an Indonesian dish without a side of sambal.

All of the ingredients are easy to get, with the most important one being chili. Any red chilis are fine to use, so decide wisely based on how spicy you want the sambal to be.

And make a big batch because the sambal will last for two weeks in the fridge!

Why we love this recipe: it will satisfy all your spice cravings.

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Indonesian sambal
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Malaysian sambal
Make it familiar
Pickled jalapenos

Chinese handmade noodles 

These handmade noodles may not be a traditional pairing, but they’re chewy, springy and the perfect base to soak up all the goodness from your rendang’s delicious sauce. 


Pro tip: roll out the dough for these noodles slightly thinner than you want them – they expand during the cooking process and you don’t want to end up with doughy noodles. 

Why we love this recipe: it has loads of visuals to guide you and you only need 3 ingredients.

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Chinese handmade noodles
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Cavatelli pasta
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Zucchini noodles

Net pancakes

Also called roti jala, these Malaysian pancakes get their name from their lace-like appearance. 

In Malaysia there is a special pan you use to make them, but if you’re not in Malaysia don’t worry!

You can improvise by using a small water bottle and poking some holes in the bottom – easy peasy!

Or you can make the pancakes without holes in them, they’ll still taste great.

Why we love this recipe: they’re fun and unique.

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Net pancakes
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Roti canai
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Scallion pancakes

Lemongrass and kaffir lime leaf mousse


This isn’t technically a side dish, but it’s an excellent way to end your beef rendang meal.

The lemongrass and kaffir lime give the mousse a bright, citrusy twist – just what you need after a heavy meal.

And the mango coulis adds that pop of fruity sweetness that’ll keep you coming back for more. 

Why we love this recipe: it’s restaurant-worthy.

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Lemongrass and kaffir lime leaf mousse
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Coconut and kaffir lime panna cotta
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Kaffir limeade


Beef rendang is just begging for a starchy side that’ll soak up all the goodness from its boldly-spiced sauce.

You can keep it simple with plain steamed rice, but I love the creamy sweetness that coconut rice adds. 

Creamy mashed potatoes are also a tasty option, even if they’re not traditional!

Coconut rice

Beef rendang and coconut rice are a match made in heaven. 

The rice is lightly sweet and creamy – just what you need to offset your beef rendang’s bold flavors. 

And this Minimalist Baker coconut rice recipe is my favorite because it uses coconut milk and coconut water to give the rice a distinct tropical flavor minus the extra richness. 

Psst… adding toasted coconut flakes is optional but will bring a delightful crunch. 

Need some coconut substitutes? I’ve got guides to the best replacements for coconut water and coconut flakes.

Why we love this recipe: it’s an easy one-pot dish.

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Coconut rice
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Herb-infused mashed potatoes 


Go for some American-Asian fusion and pair your beef rendang with creamy mashed potatoes.

A basic mash will do, but a simple trick to elevate your spuds is to infuse your cream with aromatic herbs before mixing it into the mash.

Becca goes for a mix of garlic, thyme, bay leaf, cilantro, and fennel… but you can use whatever you have to hand.

Why we love this recipe: it’s impossible to mess up.

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Lemon turmeric quinoa

Tired of the traditional rice sides?

Swap it out for quinoa instead.

The lemon in this recipe keeps it really fresh, and contrasts nicely with all the warming spices in the rendang.

Then the earthy turmeric and creamy coconut balance things out so the dish isn’t too sharp.

Why we love this recipe: it’s super healthy.

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Warm veggie sides are the perfect nourishing accompaniment to beef rendang. 

You can’t go wrong with quick and easy steamed veggies, but you can also try whole fried okra for a crunchy Southern twist.

Chinese garlic green beans

These aren’t your ordinary sauteed green beans. 

They’re flash-fried in extra hot oil, making their exteriors wrinkled and crisp, while their interiors stay perfectly crisp-tender. 

The process only takes about two minutes, so don’t leave these unattended (I learnt that the hard way!).

And if you’re not a fan of green beans, you can try this method with brussels sprouts instead. 

Why we love this recipe: a serving only clocks in at 103 calories.

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Sesame snap peas

Whole fried okra 

I was never the biggest fan of okra, but everything changed when I tried fried okra.

Frying helps eliminate okra’s naturally slimy texture and gives it an irresistibly crunchy bite (a great contrast to the melt-in-your-mouth beef).

You can use any high smoking oil to fry, but this recipe recommends going with shortening for a lighter, crispier coating. 

Why we love this recipe: it tastes delicious when you dip it in your rendang sauce.

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Whole fried okra
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Okra and green tomato fritters
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Smothered okra

Garlic sauteed spinach

Sauteed spinach is one of the quickest, easiest, and healthiest side dishes you can make. 

It’s perfect when you’re in a rush or feel like you need to add some sort of last minute vegetable to the plate!

I always have a bag in my fridge for that exact reason.

Why we love this recipe: you only need 5 minutes to make it.

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Spinach salad

Eggplants in sambal


The sambal used in this recipe is known as balado sambal and it’s different from the sambal I suggested earlier.

Balado sambal is used in cooking rather than as a condiment. And in this recipe it’s smothered all over some soft and tender eggplants (eggplants are known as terong in Indonesian).

Pro tip: go for smaller eggplants because they tend to have less of a bitter flavor.

Why we love this recipe: it’s surprisingly addicting.

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Eggplants in sambal
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Beef rendang is a pretty heavy dish, so a crisp salad is an excellent way to add a fresh bite. 

I love a simple cucumber salad because it brings a cooling sensation to combat rendang’s heat, but a creamy slaw also works nicely.

Cucumber salad

Want something refreshing on the side of your beef rendang?

Try a cucumber salad.

The vinegar and sugar mixture will infuse the crisp cucumbers with a sweet-tangy bite that’ll cut through the rich curry sauce.

Pro-tip: use a mandoline slicer to achieve uniform, thinly sliced cucumbers. 

Why we love this recipe: there’s no cooking involved, just some slicing!

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Cucumber salad
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Granny smith apple slaw

This may look like regular coleslaw, but it’s got a secret ingredient. 

The addition of Granny smith apples lends a juicy crunch and extra tartness to this slaw. And the Greek yogurt dressing makes it deliciously creamy without being too heavy. 

It’s great for providing a cooling bite.

Why we love this recipe: it’s healthier than full-fat mayo slaws.

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Bok choy salad

In the summer months, all you need is a side salad.

Aside from the leafy greens, this salad is packed with radishes and carrots which give it a satisfying crunch. 

Then everything is tied together with a simple, but incredibly moreish sesame soy dressing.

Psst… use baby bok choy for best results.

Why we love this recipe: it’s brimming with good-for-you vitamins and nutrients.

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Bok choy salad
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10 minute sauteed bok choy

The best side dishes to serve with beef rendang

  • Gado gado
  • Homemade sambal
  • Chinese handmade noodles
  • Net pancakes
  • Lemongrass and kaffir lime leaf mousse
  • Coconut rice
  • Herb-infused mashed potatoes
  • Lemon turmeric quinoa
  • Chinese garlic green beans
  • Whole fried okra
  • Garlic sauteed spinach
  • Eggplants in sambal
  • Cucumber salad
  • Granny smith apple slaw
  • Bok choy salad

What To Serve With Beef Rendang (45 Ideas)

In this short recipe, I show you exactly what to serve with your beef rendang.
5 from 2 votes
Print Pin Rate
Course: Side Dish
Cuisine: malaysian
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 15 minutes
Servings: 1 person
Calories: 195kcal


  • 1 portion eggplants in sambal
  • 1 portion apple slaw
  • 1 portion coconut rice
  • 1 portion cucumber salad
  • 1 portion garlic sauteed spinach
  • 1 portion gado gado … and more


  • Prepare your beef rendang according to your favorite recipe.
  • In the meantime, choose one of the following sides to serve alongside it.
  • Side dishes include: gado gado, homemade sambal, chinese handmade noodles, net pancakes, lemongrass and kaffir lime leaf mousse, coconut rice, herb-infused mashed potatoes, lemon turmeric quinoa, chinese garlic green beans, whole fried okra, garlic sauteed spinach, eggplants in sambal, cucumber salad, granny smith apple slaw, and bok choy salad.
  • Serve immediately and enjoy!


Serving: 100g | Calories: 195kcal

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