When you’re in the mood for seafood, shrimp cakes are a versatile and tasty meal.
But once you’ve got your shrimp cakes on the table, what should you serve them with?
Fortunately, we’ve got that part covered.
What to Serve with Shrimp Cakes?
If you’re looking for the perfect pairing for shrimp cakes, then a sweet and savory combination is the way to go. For example, you could serve these with a side of roasted asparagus and some crusty French bread. Or, you can serve them with a green salad and some homemade ranch dressing.
Still looking for options?
Here are 15 side dishes that go well with shrimp cakes:
The beauty of biscuits is that they’re pretty easy to make at home, and they can go with just about anything.
One of my personal favorites is shrimp cakes.
The sweet crunchiness of the biscuits goes so well with the soft, buttery flavor of the shrimp cakes.
If you’re craving a little extra, you can also throw some mushrooms into your shrimp cakes… bonus points if you do it using a mix of oyster and shiitake mushrooms.
You can even throw in a little lemon zest for extra zing—or even serve your whole dish on top of a bed of greens for an all-around balanced meal.
One thing to consider before you choose this particular side dish is that it might not be the best choice if you’re watching your carbohydrate intake.
Instead, I’d suggest trying a fruity squash or something along those lines.
Get ready to have this dish become a staple in your life: steamed broccoli.
Here’s how to make it:
- Start by slicing the broccoli into small florets.
- Place the broccoli in a saucepan and steam for about 4 minutes—you want it cooked through, but still crunchy!
- Add some garlic powder and salt and pepper to taste.
Now, if you’re serving this as a side dish for shrimp cakes, there are a few things to consider: what kind of sauce will you be using?
Steamed broccoli goes well with tangy sauces like lemon or orange juice.
If you’re worried that the flavor will overpower the taste of your shrimp cake itself, try adding some salt and pepper!
3. Garlic bread
I actually love making garlic bread at home.
All you need is a baguette, a clove of garlic, butter, salt and pepper.
Here’s how to make this side:
- Cut your baguette into thin slices and spread them on a baking sheet.
- Melt some butter (or use olive oil if you want to keep things light), mince your garlic clove (the more the better), and add some salt and pepper.
- Brush your butter mixture over the bread slices.
- Bake at 350 degrees until they’re golden brown, then serve with shrimp cakes!
One important thing to consider when choosing garlic bread as your side dish is whether or not your dining companions have dietary restrictions that would prevent them from eating it.
If you’re eating with someone who has lactose intolerance, for example, adjust your recipe by using margarine instead of butter!
4. Fried rice
Here’s how we make fried rice:
- Cook the rice: Get a pot of water boiling, and once it’s there, drop in the rice. Let it boil for 5-10 minutes. Once it’s done, drain it in a colander and let it cool for a few minutes before moving on to step 2.
- Fry the rice in oil: Put your oil into a large skillet, then throw in your rice. If you’re feeling adventurous, you can add some chopped onion or garlic to this step as well! Stir occasionally and let it cook until all of the grains are slightly browned and crispy—usually around 20 minutes.
- Add soy sauce to taste: Once the rice is done cooking, add soy sauce to taste—you’ll probably need about 1/3 cup for this recipe (but you should adjust according to your preferences). Chop up some green onions and sprinkle those on top of everything for garnish!
And now you’re ready to serve!
Finally, don’t be afraid to get creative with what goes into your fried rice!
You can toss in leftover veggies from last night’s dinner or even some pineapple chunks if you’re looking for a fruity twist.
Now, we know what you’re thinking: salad? How ho-hum. Salad doesn’t sound good with anything.
But hear us out!
Salad doesn’t have to be your run-of-the-mill iceberg lettuce with a little bit of dressing.
You can make a gourmet chef-level salad at home in just a few minutes.
- Buy some mixed greens from your local grocery store.
- Chop up your favorite veggies—we love carrots, tomatoes, and celery!—and add them to the greens.
- Make the dressing with 1 part red wine vinegar and 2 parts olive oil. Mix it up and add salt and pepper to taste!
- Serve it with some shrimp cakes (which, if you don’t know how to make already, you can find directions for online).
Now that’s a meal!
When making this dish at home, the one thing to consider is portion size: after all, even a simple salad can get boring if you eat too much of it.
That’s why we like to serve ours in half-sized portions for an easy appetizer or snack any time!
This dish is super easy to make yourself, but if you’re pressed for time, you can always buy it at the store.
It’s always a crowd pleaser.
Here’s how to make it:
- If you do choose to make it yourself, just take some cabbage and run it through the shredder (or chop it up with a knife if you have to).
- Then add a few tablespoons of mayonnaise and some apple cider vinegar (about a tablespoon of each) and toss to combine.
- Add salt and pepper to taste.
That’s all there is to it!
One thing to consider is that this side isn’t especially filling.
If you’re making shrimp cakes for dinner for your family or for guests instead of an appetizer or snack, make sure you pair it with something more substantial if your crowd tends to eat a lot.
Making Cornbread from scratch can definitely feel like a tall order, but we promise it’s easier than you might think.
Here’s our approach:
- Preheat the oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Mix together cornmeal, sugar, salt, and baking powder in a large bowl.
- Add milk and melted butter or vegetable oil.
- Stir until just combined (this is an important step—don’t over mix!).
- Pour into a greased loaf pan or cast iron skillet and bake for 25-30 minutes, or until cooked through (you’ll know it’s cooked when you stick a toothpick in the middle of the loaf and it comes out clean).
- Slice, serve, and enjoy!
One thing to consider before choosing Cornbread as a side dish for your shrimp cakes is that it has a high gluten content, which could cause allergic reactions in some people if you’re serving your shrimp cakes to guests with varying dietary restrictions (but don’t worry—you can use gluten-free flour instead of regular flour if that’s an issue).
You know what goes great with shrimp cakes?
Macaroni and cheese.
And you can make it at home!
Just grab some elbow macaroni, some butter, some milk, and some cheese (preferably American or Cheddar, but you can use whatever you want).
Here’s how to make it:
- Boil the macaroni in lightly salted water.
- Once the macaroni is soft, drain the water and return the noodles to the pot.
- Add a pat of butter to the noodles and stir until melted.
- Pour in milk and stir until completely incorporated into the noodles.
- Add cheese about a half cup at a time and stir until completely melted and incorporated into the other ingredients before adding more. Repeat until you’ve added as much cheese as you want—you’ll probably need about two cups of cheese for one cup of pasta (but it’s really up to your preference).
- Serve immediately!
To finish off this delicious side dish consider topping it off with breadcrumbs or bacon bits to add crunchy texture to this creamy side dish.
9. Onion rings
These are onion rings made with an incredible batter that creates a shell of perfection around a crunchy onion core.
They’re just as light as the shrimp cakes and have a beautiful golden-brown color that will contrast with the cream-colored cakes without being too aggressive or taking away from the look of your meal.
- Plus, they’re EASY to make: just mix together one egg, one cup of flour, one cup of milk, half a teaspoon of baking soda, and a pinch of salt in a bowl until combined.
- Then dip your onions into this mixture and deep fry them until golden brown (approximately two minutes).
Boom! Perfect side dish!
Now, there’s one thing to note before you decide to go for this particular side dish: Onion rings tend to be oily and may be heavy enough to take away from the taste of your homemade shrimp cakes.
So think about what flavor profile you want your meal to have before deciding whether or not this is the right side dish for you.
10. French fries
Let’s face it: French fries are fantastic.
But they’re also super easy to make at home.
So let’s talk about how to serve them up as the perfect side dish to your delicious meal!
- First, you’ve got to pick your potatoes. And we’re not going to lie: not all potatoes are created equal when it comes to making French fries. If you want fries that are crispy on the outside and fluffy on the inside, you should use Russet potatoes.
- To start, peel the potatoes and cut them into strips—about a half-inch thick will do. Then soak them in ice-cold water for a couple of hours. This’ll help get rid of some of the starch in the potatoes and make them even crispier!
- After that, dry off the potato strips as best you can and toss them in oil (we recommend avocado) before frying at 350 degrees until golden brown. Let ’em rest for a bit and then serve with a little salt, pepper, or whatever else floats your boat!
Now here’s one thing to consider before choosing this particular side dish: if you want a healthier option, you could always bake your fries instead of frying them!
11. Mashed potatoes
You know what goes great with shrimp cakes?
And making mashed potatoes at home is actually super easy.
So, here’s how to do it:
- Boil a few russet potatoes in water until they’re fork-tender.
- Drain the water and add some butter, milk, and salt—and if you want to get fancy, some sharp cheddar cheese and bacon bits.
- Mash! And enjoy.
One thing to consider before choosing this particular side dish: you may want to look into how much butter goes into the recipe you choose.
It can end up being more than you bargained for!
If you’re looking for something healthy, tasty and quick to make, this is perfect.
To make it, you’ll need:
- one bunch of asparagus (1 lb.)
- 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 1 teaspoon of coarse kosher salt
- a pinch of black pepper
Here’s how to do it:
- Preheat your oven to 400 degrees F.
- Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or aluminum foil (you can also use a non-stick baking sheet if you have one).
- Snap off the woody ends of the asparagus by holding the spear at both ends and bending the thick end until it breaks naturally.
- If any spears are thicker than the rest, peel them with a vegetable peeler to remove the skin from the bottom third or so.
- Toss them onto your baking sheet, then drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper.
- Roast until tender, about 13–15 minutes.
- Serve immediately!
The only thing to consider before choosing this side is that it’s not great for leftovers—it gets soggy pretty quickly once it’s been cooked.
13. Green Beans
We use green beans because we love the way they pop between our teeth.
It’s a great side dish because it’s easy to prepare and quick to cook, which means you’ll have time for more important things.
Green beans are easy to prepare and quick to cook:
- If you’re using fresh ones, just cut off the ends and either toss them in a salad or throw them out.
- Then steam them until they’re al dente—not so soft that they’re mushy but not crunchy either. You want that nice little bit of bounce when you bite into them but not so much that they shatter in your mouth like marbles.
- Once they’re done steaming, add butter or olive oil, along with salt and pepper according to taste.
- Try adding some garlic powder too if you like that kind of thing!
Corn on the cob is one of our favorite summer treats, and it goes perfectly with this meal.
There’s just something about the sweet, buttery crunch of roasted corn on the cob that pairs beautifully with these savory little cakes, making each bite an incredible experience.
And here’s how to make this mouthwatering dish at home:
- Buy a bunch of ears of corn and peel back the husks.
- Toss them in butter and then wrap them back up in the husks.
- Place them on a grill and let them cook for about five minutes on each side (or until they’re golden brown). Then take them off the heat and let them cool for about five minutes.
- Peel back the husks again, slather that corn with more butter, and sprinkle it generously with salt and pepper (and maybe a little bit of paprika).
- Eat it.
- Repeat until you can’t eat any more… then eat some more anyway because it’s delicious!
Just one thing to consider before choosing this particular side dish for your holiday party:
You might want to share it with your guests beforehand—it can be pretty messy!
15. Baked beans
Baked beans go surprisingly well with shrimp cakes.
Making your own baked beans is actually incredibly easy, and tastes even better than any store-bought variety.
- All you have to do is combine one cup of navy beans with 1/2 cup of diced onion, 1/4 cup of molasses, 2 teaspoons of salt, and 1 teaspoon of dry mustard in a saucepan.
- Add three cups of boiling water to the pan and bring it up to a boil again, then remove it from the heat and let it sit overnight.
- In the morning, pour everything into a baking dish and add another half cup of boiling water.
- Cover it tightly with foil and bake at 325 degrees Fahrenheit for two hours or until done, stirring occasionally.
Just be careful when choosing which molasses you want to use—if you choose fancy molasses (also known as blackstrap molasses), your baked beans will have a way stronger flavor than if you choose light molasses or sorghum syrup.
15 Easy Sides for Shrimp Cakes
- Steamed broccoli
- Garlic bread
- Fried rice
- Macaroni and cheese
- Onion rings
- French fries
- Mashed potatoes
- Roasted Asparagus
- Green Beans
- Corn on the Cob (preferably roasted)
- Baked beans
- Choose a side dish from this list that looks good to you.
- Prepare the ingredients according to the recipe.
- Be ready to eat in less than 20 minutes!