13 Easy Side Dishes for Your Next Taco Night

updated Apr 14, 2020
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Credit: Joe Lingeman

Tacos are almost always part of our weekly meal plan. Filling them is no problem — roasted vegetables, carnitas, fish — almost anything goes inside a tortilla! But then I feel stumped about what to serve alongside our tacos. These easy side dishes are perfect for taco night or to serve alongside any other Mexican fare on your table.

Slaw of any kind works especially well as a side dish because it can also be piled high on your tacos. This one is delicately spiced and just a little creamy without being overpowering.

Credit: Joe Lingeman

Finished with fresh tomatoes and queso, these slow cooker beans make a hearty side and can double as a meal themselves.

Credit: Brie Passano

Yes, salsa totally qualifies as a side dish! You can serve it up as a standalone salad or toss it with crunchy greens for serving alongside rice and beans or quesadillas.

Credit: Joe Lingeman

One of my favorite lunch salads also works really well as a side dish for fajitas, tacos, or enchiladas, and the leftovers make eating the rest of the week easier, too. If you plan to make extras of this quinoa salad for lunch, leave the avocado off until just before eating.

Elote — grilled corn with lime-y crema and queso — is a pretty obvious choice for a Mexican side dish, right? Don’t sleep on this classic.

If you’re looking to keep taco night a little low-carb, this cauliflower take on Mexican rice is just the thing! It has all of those beloved Tex-Mex flavors, with an all-vegetable base.

This classic is well-loved for a reason — fragrant, flavorful rice really rounds out taco (or enchilada) night without much extra effort.

Credit: Joe Lingeman

These charro beans have bacon, tons of vegetables, and a lush broth you’ll really want to swipe tortillas through.

Credit: Joe Lingeman

If you want elote off the cob, esquites is for you! The best part is you can make this salad using frozen corn when you can’t get fresh.

Credit: Rikki Synder

These stuffed peppers use lots of shortcuts, making them a great choice for nights when you need a Mexican side dish with minimal effort.

Credit: Joe Lingeman

Yes, another salsa that can double as a salad or side dish — and, let’s be honest, could totally fill a taco too.

Chipotle’s signature rice is full of lime and cilantro, and cooked with bay leaf for lots of flavor from a simple pot of white rice.

Credit: Joe Lingeman

This is one of our family’s favorite summer sides that can be served hot or cold with feta (as written) or fresh queso.