5-Ingredient Sides

Throw together a simple side dish without skimping on flavor with these five-ingredient recipes. 

Photo By: Renee Comet ©2013, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved

Photo By: Renee Comet ©2013, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved

Photo By: Renee Comet ©2013, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved

Photo By: Renee Comet ©2013, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved

Photo By: Renee Comet ©2013, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved

Photo By: Renee Comet ©2013, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved

Photo By: Renee Comet ©2013, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved

Photo By: Renee Comet ©2013, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved

Photo By: Renee Comet ©2013, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved

Less Is More

When preparing the perfect accompaniment for a crowd-pleasing main dish, we gravitate toward fresh, seasonal ingredients that can speak for themselves. These recipes showcase fresh produce without the need for much doctoring, all while saving time, money and energy.

Lemon Almond String Beans

This simple side is ideal in a pinch, since it takes only about 5 minutes to boil green beans until they're crisp-tender. Lemon zest adds bright flavor and color, and don't forget the almonds, which lend a nutty crunch.

Get the Recipe: Lemon Almond String Beans

Italian-Style Skillet Potatoes

Rosemary, garlic and grated Parm (or Pecorino) transform basic white potatoes into a rustic, hearty side.

Get the Recipe: Italian-Style Skillet Potatoes

Roasted Broccoli with Garlic

Bring this easy weeknight side dish together by tossing broccoli florets in sliced garlic, salt, pepper and extra virgin olive oil, and roasting until the edges are crisp and golden.  

Get the Recipe: Roasted Broccoli with Garlic

Cast-Iron Carrots with Curry

Coconut oil is great for high-temperature frying — it gives the carrots their caramel-brown glaze without burning them. Dust with curry powder and top with chopped cilantro for a bright twist on a classic.

Get the Recipe: Cast-Iron Carrots with Curry

Spaghetti Squash with Parmesan Cheese

With its spaghetti-like strands, this squash can sub in for a classic, comforting side that's traditionally made with pasta. Best of all, it's remarkably simple: Use a fork to scrape roasted spaghetti squash flesh into strings, then toss with Parmesan and butter.

Get the Recipe: Spaghetti Squash with Parmesan Cheese

Arugula Salad with Olive Oil, Lemon and Parmesan Cheese

Light and refreshing, this green salad is a great way to ease into a decadent meal. Dress up the arugula's mildly peppery flavor by tossing the tender leaves in a simple Mediterranean-inspired mix of lemon and olive oil.

Get the Recipe: Arugula Salad with Olive Oil, Lemon, and Parmesan Cheese

Baked Polenta

Serve Giada's soft, buttery polenta in place of bread or rolls at your next dinner party. Once the baked polenta has cooled enough to handle, cut it into any shape you desire.

Get the Recipe: Baked Polenta

Sauteed Spinach

Tyler's sauteed spinach is the perfect nutrient-packed side to accompany a hearty protein.

Get the Recipe: Sauteed Spinach