Piri piri chicken is one of those easy, no-fail meals for dinner, but what do you serve with this kind of spicy chicken to make it a balanced meal?
Well, many people have piri piri chicken with chips or salad, but there are many other sides you can pair with this chicken dish that you might have yet to think of.
To give you some cooking inspo, we've compiled a list of favourite healthy side dishes to pair with your piri piri chicken dish below.
When you hear 'piri piri', many people think this means extra spicy, but how hot is this chicken dish? Piri piri originates from the African bird's eye chilli and is spicy. But, most of the time, this will be used as a marination on meat dishes.
That being said, you can make piri piri chicken less spicy by using fewer chillies, but no matter what, it will have noticeable heat to the dish.
Piri piri chicken is typically served with various sides that help balance out the spicy dish's heat.
Here are some delicious and easy-to-make sides that are perfect for serving with piri piri chicken.
Rather than make a bowl of simple white rice with your piri piri chicken, you can make tasty coconut and lime rice to compliment the spicy dish and add a Mexican element.
To make it, all you need is to cook your rice in coconut milk and squeeze in a dash of fresh lime juice.
Air fryer chips go great with piri piri chicken and some ketchup on the side. They are also much healthier than your traditional fried chips in oil.
Cut your potato wedges or chips, boil them in water for a few minutes, spray them in oil and add your spices.
Sweet potatoes make the perfect side dish to piri piri chicken since the sweetness balances out the heat of the piri piri. This would also pair well with some creamy coleslaw which we will move on to next.
If you don't have sweet potatoes, regular mashed potatoes are also a great choice. Add some butter and milk to make the mash even creamier.
If you love coleslaw, lighter versions without mayo are a great side to have with piri piri chicken.
To make this delicious side dish, you need onions, grated carrot, lettuce and some yoghurt, add lime juice and seasoning, and then enjoy your slaw!
Garlic naan is an underrated side to have with piri piri chicken, the garlic in the bread helps to balance the heat of the spice, and the bread can also be used to scoop up any more of the remaining piri piri marinade to ensure nothing goes to waste!
Mexican rice is a traditional side to have with piri piri chicken. This rice is also spicy and easy to make with some simple spices and veggies like corn.
You can add beans to your Mexican rice for an extra protein hit. We suggest making this at home rather than buying packet mixes which are often unhealthy due to the oil inside, this also makes great leftovers for extra dishes!
You can't go wrong with a pickle pasta recipe or a standard tomato cucumber salad.
Both are refreshing and work well with the dish's heat, allowing you to get both of your veggies and carbs into one meal.
For health lovers, a kale and quinoa salad can pair nicely with your piri piri chicken.
Mix your kale and quinoa with some pomegranate for a fruity twist.
Corn on the cob works well with this Mexican cuisine. They are also super easy to make, requiring you to wrap them up in some foil with butter and garlic on the side, then bake them in the oven on low heat for around 30 minutes.
We also recommend grilling them for extra flavour.
Couscous is easy to make in a few minutes alongside your piri piri chicken. It can be mixed with roasted veggies like broccolini, cauliflower, bell pepper and onions for an extra health boost.
We recommend soaking your couscous in chicken stock for extra flavour.
Macho peas are a popular pairing with piri piri chicken. All you need is some peas, fresh mint, chopped chilli and butter, and seasoning. These add an extra kick to your meal for spice lovers but also greens for health at the same time.
Halloumi can be grilled in olive oil and served with piri piri chicken. Its high melting point also allows the cheese to be fried. The tangy and saltiness of the halloumi cheese makes a beautiful side dish to calm down the spiciness of the meal.
This wholesome dish is usually served alongside a simple salad and potato dishes like chips. But, sometimes, people put lemon wedges too.
Piri piri chillies are said to be much hotter than jalapenos, but this can depend on the kind of chillies you choose.
Piri piri chicken is pretty healthy, some marinades have oil, but the chicken is usually grilled or baked, which makes it a healthier alternative to deep-fried chicken.
A piri piri marinade typically has onions, garlic and tomatoes in since this compliments the chilli flavour.
To conclude, piri piri chicken can be served with various veggie side dishes like a simple salad or roasted veggies. Other popular side dishes include chips, Mexican rice or couscous.
Choose a side which helps to balance the heat of the piri piri chicken. For example, halloumi and corn on the cob could work well. Also, make sure to include a veggie dish to make it a balanced meal.