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What To Serve With Catfish – 39 Delicious Side Dishes

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

In this article, I list 39 of the most popular side dishes for catfish.

In a rush? Here’s the short answer.

The best side dishes to serve with catfish are sweet onion hush puppies, mac n cheese, and garlic butter rice. You can also serve a side of fried okra, fried potato slices, or sweet and sour greens. For more refreshing sides, try apple coleslaw, grilled asparagus, or lemon and dill potato salad.

Ready? Let’s jump right in.

Fried okra


Forget slimy okra if that’s what you’re used to. When you cook it right, okra comes out crunchy and delicious.

You can fry this healthy vegetable to perfection using an air fryer in ten minutes, making it perfect for last-minute dinners.

And the crispiness of this Southern-style fried okra will add a lovely contrast to your delicate fish.

Why we love this recipe: you don’t need any oil to make this fried okra.

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Fried okra with spicy aioli
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Stewed okra with tomatoes

Garlic butter rice

Why not complement your moist catfish with a carby side?

Garlic butter rice is simple yet tasty.

As well as the garlic butter, the rice is cooked in stock which infuses it with flavor from the get-go.

Psst… add some extra protein to this side with chickpeas. 

Why we love this recipe: you can easily change the flavors by adding things like lemon juice, fresh herbs, or extra garlic.

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Garlic butter rice
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Brown rice pilaf
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Black beans and rice

Sweet onion hush puppies

Fried catfish and hush puppies are a classic combination.

Both dishes are similarly coated in cornmeal so they’re crispy on the outside and soft on the inside.

And these hush puppies have a hint of sweetness from onions, which will goes really well with a sharp tartar sauce.

Why we love this recipe: you can’t go wrong with this traditional side.

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Sweet onion hush puppies
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Southern hush puppies
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Jalapeno cheddar hush puppies

Apple coleslaw

Coleslaw is another classic side dish that’s wonderful with fried fish or to use in catfish tacos.

And this recipe adds a fruity spin by making it with apples.

Apple coleslaw is a light, sweet, and crunchy dish that will bring a refreshing touch to your dinner.

Why we love this recipe: it’s perfect when you’re cooking for a crowd.

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Apple coleslaw
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Classic coleslaw
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Vinegar coleslaw

Sweet and sour greens


Green beans are one of my favorite vegetables.

They’re cheap, healthy, and easy to cook. But they can get a bit boring served plain.

Take things up a notch with smoky bacon and a sweet-but-sour sauce made with sugar, apple cider vinegar, and the umami-packed Worcestershire sauce.

Why we love this recipe: they turn a budget-friendly dish into something super tasty.

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Keep it simple
Lemony steamed green beans
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Green beans in tomato sauce

Lemon dill potato salad

Looking for a summer side?

Try a lemon dill potato salad.

The acidic notes from the salad will pair beautifully with the mildly sweet catfish, and the dill keeps things interesting.

Psst… add some crunch with chopped celery.

Why we love this recipe: you can count on this salad to make a lasting impression.

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Lemon dill potato salad
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Creamy red potato salad
Make it fun
Loaded baked potato salad

Onion rings

If sweet onion hush puppies aren’t your thing, what about onion rings?

They’re fun to make and even more fun to eat!

Just don’t forget the dipping sauce.

I like to go with horseradish sauce because I like the spicy kick it adds.

Why we love this recipe: the panko breadcrumbs ensure maximum crunch.

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Onion rings
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Bacon-wrapped onion rings
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Beer battered onion rings

Crawfish etouffee

Crawfish etouffee is perfect if you want to elevate your catfish with big, bold flavors.

The soupy dish is loaded with fresh crawfish, spices, and herbs.

Its rich gravy makes a delicious sauce for your catfish, and to complete the meal I’d serve a spoonful of the garlic butter rice I mentioned earlier on the side.


Why we love this recipe: it’s the ultimate Southern comfort meal.

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Grilled asparagus

One of the best things about spring is grilled asparagus.

It’s a sure sign that summer is nearly here!

Grilling the spears gives them a hint of smokiness and a crisp-tender texture. There won’t be a limp, soggy spear in sight.

Psst… if you’re poaching your catfish, I suggest topping your grilled asparagus with a lemon bearnaise sauce.

Why we love this recipe: it’s bright and fresh.

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Grilled asparagus
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Cheesy grilled asparagus
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Grilled bacon-wrapped asparagus

Shaved fennel salad

Fennel is a really underrated ingredient that I think should be more mainstream, and it’s delicious with fish.

It has a subtle grassy taste and a fresh, crisp texture.

Psst… don’t worry – it doesn’t taste like licorice!

Why we love this recipe: it takes 5 minutes to make and you only need 6 ingredients.

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Everyday salad

Blue cheese mac and cheese

Throwing a dinner party?

Impress your guests with an elegant blue cheese mac and cheese.

It’s rich, creamy, and comforting, but the blue cheese adds a touch of sophistication.

But don’t worry, it’s just a touch so the taste won’t totally overpower your catfish.

Why we love this recipe: it has a crisp finish because of the breadcrumb topping.

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Go traditional
Homemade mac and cheese
Make it unique
Fried mac and cheese bites

Fried potato slices and onions

Quick, easy, and filling.

These fried potato slices are a guaranteed crowd pleaser and a great alternative to the usual fries.

The potato slices are fried in butter, giving them a soft, fluffy texture with crisp edges.

Warning… these are pretty addictive.

Why we love this recipe: it’s a unique way to enjoy the humble potato.

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Fried potato slices and onions
Go traditional
Homemade French fries
Make it decadent
Scalloped potatoes

Cheese grits

Another traditional southern comfort food is cheesy grits.

They have a porridge-like texture that at first glance can be off-putting, but is really comforting once you start digging in. 

The creaminess of this side will make your catfish shine.

Why we love this recipe: you can eat the leftovers for breakfast the next day.

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Cheese grits
Make it spicy
Jalapeno cheddar cheese grits
Make it unique
Cheesy grits souffle casserole

What vegetables to serve with catfish?

The best vegetables to serve with catfish are simple ones like grilled asparagus, steamed broccoli, or sauteed green beans. For something more unique, try sweet and sour green beans, braised collard greens, or fried okra.

The best vegetables to serve with catfish:

What To Serve With Catfish

In this short recipe, I show you exactly what to serve with your catfish.
5 from 1 vote
Print Pin Rate
Course: Side Dish
Cuisine: American
Keyword: catfish side dishes, what to serve with catfish
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 15 minutes
Servings: 1 person
Calories: 144kcal


  • 1 portion catfish


  • Prepare your catfish according to your favorite recipe.
  • In the meantime, choose one of the following sides to serve alongside it.
  • Side dishes include: fried okra, garlic butter rice, sweet onion hush puppies, apple coleslaw, sweet and sour greens, lemon dill potato salad, onion rings, crawfish etouffee, grilled asparagus, shaved fennel salad, blue cheese mac and cheese, fried potato slices and onions, and cheese grits.
  • Serve immediately and enjoy!


Serving: 100g | Calories: 144kcal

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