appetizers to go with pulled pork

We know you love pulled pork, but you can make it even better by learning about the best sides and appetizers to go with pulled pork.

Nothing beats pulled pork slathered in BBQ sauce and served on a bed of soft, lightly toasted buns.

The pork, while time-consuming to prepare, is well worth it. You should complement its succulent, savory flavors with accompaniments that can hold their own.

So, what are some of the best sides with pulled pork sandwiches? Let’s find out.

Tip: Always put your money on a boneless pork shoulder to get the best meat for pulled pork. 

What are the Best Appetizers to Go with Pulled Pork?

the best appetizer

There are many options, and what works for you usually depends on your personal preferences. 

Try Cheese and Pretzels

Pretzels and cheese would be a great accompaniment to the pulled pork as an appetizer.

This is not a really original pick, but it is a crowd-pleaser every time.

The salty goodness of pretzels contrasts with the spiciness of the meat, creating a delicious and novel taste sensation.

It is also delicious with sharp provolone or even extra sharp cheddar for a contrasting flavor. 

How to Use It?

how do you use

Similarly simple to make, get some uncooked small pretzel rods and pair them with your preferred shredded cheese.

Bite-sized treats can be made with just these two ingredients by topping each rod with a tiny quantity of cheese and baking for about 10 minutes. 

Try Hummus and Carrots

The sweetness of carrots is a wonderful complement to the creaminess of hummus, and they both perfectly complement your pulled pork.

You cannot go wrong with hummus as a source of heart-healthy fats to round out your meal.

It can be used as a dairy-free alternative to cheesy spreads and other luscious dips because it offers a wide range of vital vitamins, fiber, proteins, and minerals.

Making or buying hummus is a simple way to bring the exotic flavors of the Middle East into your own kitchen. 

Put Your Money on Crackers and Dill Pickles

try crackers and pickles

Dill pickles paired with crackers are a great accompaniment to pulled pork as an appetizer.

If you are in the mood for something a little bit healthier yet full of taste, this is the perfect option.

The tangy pickles and crunchy crackers will provide a great contrast to the savory pork. 

What are Some Best Sides to Go with Pulled Pork?

Whether you opt for pulled pork sandwich or try another recipe, you can always enhance the flavor using some of the following side dishes.

Jalapeno Cornbread

the cornbread jalapeno

Cornbread is the perfect complement to any barbeque dish.

Follow your standard cornbread recipe and add some minced jalapenos for a spicy twist on those delightfully tender bites.

That substantial sandwich with a touch of sweetness from the corn and a kick from the jalapenos is just what you need.

Tip: You can always add some cheese crumbles to the cornbread if you are in the mood for some extra adventure! 

Mac & Cheese

Macaroni and cheese are a crowd-pleaser. For a decadent supper, pair the meat with this ooey-gooey side.

When you bite into that juicy, delicate pork and soft bread, you will love the taste of Mac & Cheese even more. 

Note:Spread a thick layer of parmesan and breadcrumbs over the top of the macaroni and cheese for a crunchy finish to make it perfect! 

Corn Pudding

try corn pudding

Are you looking for a way to turn your cornbread into something even more delicious?

If you want it to be even creamier and tangier, add some sour cream and milk.

Try corn pudding and serve it with your pulled pork for a perfect combination. 

Note: Creamy corn pudding is delicious with pulled pork, and it is also possible to add rosemary, sage, cheese, or even grated apples for texture and flavor. 


Feeling confused about what to serve with your pulled pork? We say Coleslaw!

To North Carolinians, serving pulled pork without coleslaw is a social faux pas. The two of them must stay together!

When feeding a large group, it is important to offer vegan-friendly dishes that everyone can enjoy.

Traditional coleslaw is loved for its excessive mayonnaise content, but it may not work for everyone.

Therefore, opt for a cuisine that can be enjoyed by vegans as well as meat eaters due to its exceptional flavor.

Tip: Traditional coleslaw can be purchased at the shop, but consider cooking it at home to guarantee its freshness. 

Try Sweet Corn Fritters

try sweet corn fritters

You cannot keep corn out of southern cooking, can you?

And corn on the cob is something everyone loves, and they will love it even more with butter melting down their chins.

Corn fritters are a great option if you want to prepare a distinctive side dish to go with pulled pork.

A golden, crispy ball of batter encasing delicious corn would be difficult to resist, right? 

Have Some Tomatoes with Stewed Okra

Stewed okra with tomatoes is a classic southern side dish that will elevate the taste of your pulled pork sandwiches.

To prepare okra, slice it up and simmer it with tomatoes for a delicious meal.

Most Southerners prefer to include bacon, but you can omit the meat if you choose. 

Note: Depending on what you add while cooking, you can always use it as a main dish or a side dish. 

Make Some Macaroni Salad

make a macaroni salad

Who can say no to a tasty macaroni salad topped with smoked meat? And pulled pork in particular is a fan favorite here!

The ideal macaroni salad flavor combines sweet and sour flavors.

To retain the mayonnaise’s richness and creaminess, use only mayonnaise made with whole eggs. 

Note: Pickle relish and many other vegetables and spices can go in there as well. Some options include carrots, onions, red peppers, and celery. 

Try Potato Salad

Talk about salads and you will love potato salad for how unique it tastes with your pulled pork sandwich.

If you are looking for a creamy side to go with your pulled pork barbecue, this potato salad is the way to go.

Tip: Consider using Yukon Gold or white potatoes in your potato salad, as they are less starchy and more shape-retaining than other types. 

Try Some French Fries

try french fries

There is no room for debate here, right?

After all, those good old French fries have the power to improve the flavor of everything they touch, especially pulled pork sandwiches.

Whether you want them hand-cut and thin or thick and crispy, just do not forget the BBQ powder, salt, or cheese powder when preparing your fries.   

Find Some Space for Southern Deviled Eggs

Deviled eggs are great as an appetizer for a more formal sit-down supper or as part of an extensive buffet.

And they are one of the best accompaniments to pulled pork sandwiches.

Making deviled eggs looks complicated, but the end result is worth the effort.

The stuffing of creamy eggs is tricky, but it is always the best part. 

How Do You Choose the Best Sides or Appetizers with Pulled Pork?

how to choose appertizer

There are a few things to keep in mind when deciding what to serve as an appetizer before digging into your pulled pork main course. 

How Rich Is Your Main Dish?

Choose a lighter appetizer, like grilled cheese sandwiches or tomato soup, when serving pulled pork with heavy side dishes like baked beans, coleslaw, or creamed corn.

The reason is that you will not find your main course to be as tasty if you eat something rich and creamy to start the meal. 

How Spicy Is the Meat?

Pick a side dish that will enhance the pulled pork’s flavor without competing with it.

Serve something less spiced (like salsa) alongside your dish of hot pulled pork, especially if it is spicy because it also contains fried okra or cheddar cheese grits.

You have to consider this important point when choosing an appetizer to avoid overwhelming the taste buds of your diners. 

How Cold or Hot Should Your Appetizer Be?

how hot or cold

It is also an important consideration and helps you to decide on the best appetizer to go with your pulled pork.

The answer to this question is conditional on the temperature outside at the time you intend to serve the dinner.

But in reality, everything comes down to a matter of taste. 


Pulled pork sandwiches are just outstanding, and you can make them stand out simply by using the best sides and appetizers to go with pulled pork.

Thankfully, the options are diverse and you will never run out of good ideas.

Just consider your original recipe for pulled pork and how spicy it is to begin with to choose the best most suitable sides.