When you are serving balsamic chicken, you want sides that will complement it well, not overpowering the flavor of the dish and providing something different as a contrast to help fill out the meal.
What to serve with balsamic chicken? We will show you some of the best side dishes to have with this dish to help bring out the flavors, complement it well, and make your meal feel complete.
If you need some help on how to properly bake a chicken breast then we got you covered.
What Is Balsamic Chicken?
While there are many ways you could make this dish, at its core, balsamic chicken is a chicken that has been marinated in balsamic vinegar.
You can marinate the chicken in a bag of balsamic vinegar and other seasonings and spices overnight or for at least a few hours.
A minimum of 30 minutes is recommended for marinating, but if you let the chicken marinade for several hours, the seasonings can penetrate better and soak your chicken so that the flavor gets absorbed by the meat more completely.
How to Make Balsamic Chicken
- Chicken Breast or Leg
- 1 Crushed Garlic Clove
- 1 tsp Fresh Oregano
- 1 tsp Fresh Basil
- 100ml Balsamic Vinegar
- 1 tbsp Olive Oil
I recommend adding these onto the chicken after it has soaked in the marinade for a few hours but before you place the chicken into the oven.
To make this chicken, preheat the oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit and take the chicken out of the marinade.
You can get rid of any excess liquid from your marinade or save it to season something else later on. Pat the chicken down lightly with paper towels and then prepare your baking pan with some cooking oil.
You can add your seasoning to the chicken at this point and then bake your chicken for about 23 minutes.
The chicken should darken with that cooking time and should reach an internal temperature of 165 degrees Fahrenheit. If this is the first time you're making balsamic chicken in the oven, do check the internal temperature before you try to serve it.
Once the chicken is done cooking, you should let it rest for about 10 minutes to cool down before you try to cut it.
This resting time ensures that the juices permeate the chicken and don't seep out when you cut the chicken open.
You can finish off with a balsamic chicken glaze, if you want to add more balsamic vinegar flavor to the dish.
If you have been storing your chicken in the fridge prior to cooking then it’s always a good idea to label your food so that you know if the chicken is fresh and safe to use.
Side Dishes for Balsamic Chicken
What kind of side dishes go well with balsamic chicken? Let’s talk about a few of my favorite additions to the meal when you’re serving up this chicken.
Balsamic chicken can be kind of acidic, thanks to the high vinegar content. That gives it some bite, and you want to find foods that help to counter that a little bit.
Creamy mac and cheese is a really good choice because the creamy dairy and the thick pasta act as a base (or anti-acidic) to counter what the acid is doing.
So, if you’re wondering what to serve with balsamic chicken and peppers, where a lot of the food is kind of acidic, choose a very base dish like creamy mac and cheese. Both the pasta and the dairy in this dish will work well to provide a counterpoint to the vinegar and the pepper.
Roasted potatoes also work really well for the same reason. They provide a starch that’s in contrast to the protein of the chicken to help make your meal more filling and complete and give it a healthy balance. They also provide a counter to the acidity of the balsamic vinegar in the chicken.
If you’re looking for veggies to go with your balsamic chicken, I want to make a few suggestions. Baked brussels sprouts, boiled carrots, cooked green beans, and roasted corn are all good additions to the meal. These add color and nutrients to your meal, and they make for a healthier and varied dinner.
Try cooking your veggies in different ways, like sautéing them or grilling them to give them a different look and texture. While the chicken is marinating, you can be preparing your veggies and other side dishes.
What Sides to Serve with Braised Balsamic Chicken?
When you braise your chicken, you’re cooking it low and slow so it’s really tender and juicy. What kind of side dishes can you serve with braised balsamic chicken?
This is a chicken that’s extra juicy, so choose something that’s a dry counterpoint to it to help complement it better. I would suggest garlic bread or any kind of dry bread.
You could also try serving this chicken with fajita fixings, like roasted peppers, roasted tomatoes, and fajita wraps.
This gives your dish a lot of color and works really well with the braised balsamic chicken. Your dish won’t be overly acidic because of the fajita wraps and how they absorb not just the acidity but also the extra liquid.
You don’t have to stop with just one side dish to go with your balsamic chicken. For a complete and robust meal, I would suggest bread, a veggie, and a pasta.
This really fills out your meal and gives you a lot of variety. It’s especially helpful if you have small pieces of chicken to have several sides so that you feel full after your meal.
What Dessert to Serve with Balsamic Chicken?
When you are looking at desserts to go with the chicken, choose something that doesn’t have any acid to it. So, I would avoid lemon or lime dishes, as they can be kind of acidic and cause acid reflux or indigestion. Choose something that’s creamy or made from flour, such as a cheesecake, ice cream, cake, or a pie with a thick crust.
What I’ve given you so far are just a few suggestions that you could start with. There are tons of different side dishes and desserts that can go well with balsamic chicken, but I want you to think about how they interact with the chicken and particularly the acidity of the balsamic vinegar.
That way, you can have a complimentary meal that doesn’t just put the focus on one type of food, a single texture, or a specific flavor.
Frequently Asked Questions About Balsamic Chicken
Can you marinade chicken in balsamic vinegar
Place your chicken breast in a bag and add your balsamic marinade sauce. Leave to marinate for 2-3 hours.
How long should you marinade chicken in balsamic sauce
Do not marinade for longer than 8 hours or this may cause the texture of the chicken to deteriorate.
References: Chicken and Food Poisoning – https://www.cdc.gov/foodsafety/chicken.html