What Should You Serve With Cuban Sandwiches?
Cuban sandwiches are not your ordinary; they have a unique taste and texture that is hard to describe. They are made of ham or turkey, cheese, pickles, mustard, mayonnaise, lettuce, tomato, and sometimes olives. The bread used for the Cuban sandwich is usually white but can be any bread you like.
There are many different ways to make Cuban sandwiches. Some people prefer to use only one kind of meat, while others will mix them up. Some don’t put anything on their Cuban sandwiches at all. It’s really up to you how you want to serve it. You can fill many sides with Cuban sandwiches, such as fries, soup, salad, potato chips, beans, and more.
Why Serve Side Dishes With Cuban Sandwiches?
If you are thinking of making Cuban sandwiches, then you should know why you would want to serve side dishes with them. If you’re going to do something else besides the Cuban sandwiches, you might as well go all out and serve an entire meal. Here are some reasons why you’d want to serve fantastic side dishes:
Fruits are a great way to add flavor to food. When serving fruit with Cuban sandwiches, you could serve grapes, oranges, apples, bananas, strawberries, peaches, plums, pears, etc. These fruits will give the sandwiches a sweet taste and help balance the saltiness of the meats. You can make a fruit salad with your choice of fruits to pair with your favorite Cuban sandwich recipe.
Another excellent fruit pair recipe for Cuban sandwiches is watermelon slices and pineapple chunks. This combination is delicious because the watermelon’s sweetness complements the Cuban sandwich’s salty flavors.
2. Cuban-style Yuca
Yuca is made from cassava root. Cassava roots are similar to potatoes in appearance and texture. This vegetable’s mild flavor makes it perfect when paired with other foods. Cubans love yuca because it tastes so good and is easy to cook. You can find yuca in most grocery stores these days.
3. Fried Pickles
While most of you eat pickles from the jar, Cubans enjoy fried pickles. Fried pickles are crunchy and delicious. To make fried pickles, cut the cucumbers into thin slices and fry them until golden brown. Then dip them in flour and seasonings before frying again.
Pickles make Cuban sandwiches more exciting and fun to eat. They also provide a nice contrast to salty meats.
4. Sweet Potato
Sweet potato is an excellent pair for Cuban sandwiches because it goes perfectly with the flavors of the sandwich. This is an all-purpose side dish for all sorts of famous sandwiches. Sweet potatoes are full of vitamins A and C. They are also low in calories and fat. Sweet potatoes are available year-round and are often found in supermarkets.
A great sweet potato recipe would be to bake them whole and then slice them. Bake them at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for about 40 minutes. Once they are cooked, remove them from the oven and let them cool slightly. Slice them lengthwise and then crosswise.
5. Veggies With Hummus
Hummus is a popular side dish and dips for pita pieces of bread, but it also makes an excellent pair for Cuban sandwiches. Veggie hummus is a great choice if you’re looking for a healthier option. Vegetable hummus is made by blending chickpeas (garbanzo beans) with carrots, celery, olive oil, lemon juice, peppers, tomatoes, garlic, and herbs.
6. Tomato Soup
Sandwiches are always great, with tomato soup and Cuban bread being no exception. Tomatoes are high in lycopene, which helps prevent cancer. In addition, tomatoes contain potassium, iron, calcium, fiber, and vitamins A and B.
Try adding some fresh basil leaves to the soup to make this pairing even better. Basil adds a beautiful aroma and flavor to any soup or sauce.
7. French Fries
Like any English or American sandwich, Cuban bread also works well with a side of French fries. You may buy frozen store-bought fries or bake your fresh ones. Either way, they’ll be crispy and delicious.
8. Black Beans
Cuban sandwiches are usually served with black beans, white beans, refried beans, or kidney beans. All these types of beans are healthy options packed with protein. The best part about eating beans is that they fill you up without adding too much extra weight. This is a dish for people who love bread and beans altogether. It also gives a caramelized flavor which offers an elevated flavor experience.
9. Cajun Chips
Cajun is a trendy mix of spices. It’s used to flavor many different kinds of food, including chips. While there are wide varieties of Cajun chips as a cold side dish, plain tortilla chips are probably the easiest to find. Cajun is also one of the tastiest spicy foods and gives every bite a punch of flavor.
Corn is always a classic delicious side dish for any meal. But did you know that corn is a member of the bean family? So not only does corn provide a nice crunch, but it also adds some protein to your Cuban sandwiches.
11. Fried Plantain
Plantain is a starchy tuber that looks like a giant green banana. It’s native to Central America and the Caribbean. Fried plantains are a favorite snack all over Latin America. They are often eaten at breakfast but make a tremendous Cuban side dish for dinner.
Salads are a go-to pair for Cuban sandwiches. Many different salad combinations are commonly enjoyed. Some favorites include cucumber tomato salad, fresh salad, onions, cucumber, olives and olive oil, Swiss cheese, ham, bacon, and egg. You can even make a fruit salad if you prefer fruits to vegetables. Or you can also make a creamy macaroni salad with your choice of salad dressing.
Another classic perfect side dish and sandwich pair is coleslaw. Although this is much more popular in the US, Cubans also have their version. This slaw is typically made with cabbage, carrots, bell pepper, and vinegar.
14. No-mayo Coleslaw
If you’re not a big fan of mayo but love coleslaw, there is a variation called “no-mayo” coleslaw, and it’s a delightful side dish for sandwiches. This coleslaw contains no mayonnaise, so it’s perfect if you don’t want to use it. Instead, it uses sour cream or yogurt to add intense flavors.
15. Baked Plantains
Earlier, we showed you how fried plantains are a common and staple side dish in Cuba. However, baked plantains are another tasty alternative. These plantains are steamed instead of fried. They can then be topped with butter, cinnamon sugar, brown sugar, or honey.
16. Potato Salad
Aside from the usual mashed potato or French fries, you can always make potato salad a classic side dish. Cubans enjoy potato salad on top of their sandwiches because it provides moisture.
17. Homemade Pickles
Pickles are one of the most popular condiments in the world. Whether you prefer sweet jams or spicy pickles, there are plenty of ways to enjoy them. One of the best things about homemade pickles is that you control exactly what goes into them. This makes it an excellent pair for Cuban sandwiches.
Although empanadas are considered Mexican food, it also goes well with Cuban sandwiches and makes a fantastic side dish to it. Empanadas are small pastries filled with meat and vegetables. You can easily find them at grocery stores in the refrigerated section.
19. Mango Salsa
Mango salsa is a good option for a sweeter twist and a healthy side dish for Cuban sandwiches. This salsa has chunks of fresh mango, red onion, cilantro, lime juice, and jalapeño peppers.
20. Tater Tots
Lastly, the classic pairing for Cuban sandwiches is tater tots. Tater tots are little potatoes that have been battered and deep-fried. They usually come seasoned with salt and pepper.
It’s great that you talked about how there are many different ways to make Cuban sandwiches. I recently got interested in Cuban cuisine, and I am thinking of trying it out very soon. So with that in mind, I’ll try to stop by a Cuban restaurant next week.