There is no better way to introduce the porcupine meatball than with its origin.
The porcupine meatball is most commonly found in Africa, but it is also widely used in American cuisine.
However, there are many different ways to prepare this recipe.
The word “Porcupine” comes from Latin words meaning “spiny pig” or “spiny hedgehog”.
Though that might not sound too appealing, do know that the porcupine meatball is one of the most succulent dishes available.
Furthermore, it would be hard to find a more delicious recipe without spending hours in the kitchen.
A porcupine meatball’s primary ingredient is ground beef (which can be substituted for ground pork or turkey).
It is filled with boiled rice and usually topped with tomato sauce.
It can also be served as a side dish (or appetizer), and there are many different accompaniments to choose from.
The porcupine meatball can be paired with any number of vegetables, bread, and salads.
However, the side dishes that accompany porcupine meatballs do not need to be limited to these; it is really up to your preferences.
In this article, we will list some of the more popular porcupine meatball pairings and some less common accompaniments.
Why Consider Serving Side Dishes for Porcupine Meatballs?
If you are looking for a way to serve porcupine meatballs that is both delicious and unique, then consider serving side dishes.
For example, if you serve them independently (with no other dishes), they will likely become drier and less tasty.
It is always nice to have some additional flavors to mix in with your meal.
You can always have a nice salad to pair with your porcupine meatballs.
However, there are some other tasty options that you may want to try.
For example, if you wanted to change things up a bit, consider serving them with rice or mashed potatoes.
You can also serve the porcupine meatballs atop egg noodles mixed with butter, or you could even try serving them with pasta salad.
Side dishes can be beneficial to bring out the flavor of the porcupine meatballs.
What to Serve with Porcupine Meatballs? 7 BEST Side Dishes
Below, we have listed the seven best side dishes to accompany porcupine meatballs.
1 – Fried Rice
First off, we have fried rice. Few dishes go better with porcupine meatballs than fried rice.
It is a simple dish, but one that goes great when you pair it with your meatballs.
As far as preparation goes, consider making the rice ahead of time and then cooking the porcupine meatballs just before serving.
This way, you can ensure that both dishes will come out piping hot and fresh.
As far as the ingredients go, you should already have everything available.
For this dish, follow your favorite fried rice recipe and then top it with porcupine meatballs.
That’s it – super easy.
However, bear in mind that you may want to choose a fried rice recipe that does not have too many intense flavors.
Although porcupine meatballs are tasty, the flavor will be lost if you overshadow them too much with spices or other ingredients.
2 – Pasta Salad
Pasta salad is another great side dish to serve with porcupine meatballs.
It is one of those dishes that can be served as a dish on its own (and some people prefer it as such).
However, you may want to serve pasta salad alongside your porcupine meatballs.
In this case, how you prepare your pasta salad will significantly impact the quality of the flavor pairing.
Keep in mind that if you do not create a tasty pasta salad, the pairing will not be as good.
As far as preparation goes, consider making your pasta salad recipe (or use one of our recommended ones).
The key to preparing this dish is to make sure it has an equal balance of ingredients.
You do not want too much tomato sauce or onions in there – instead, you want your pasta salad to taste balanced.
Make sure the ingredients are fresh, too. Avoid canned vegetables if you can.
You may also want to avoid adding any sauce or dressing to this dish right before serving it – otherwise, the porcupine meatballs might not synergize with it as well.
3 – Mashed Potatoes
Mashed potatoes are an excellent side dish to serve with porcupine meatballs.
In particular, the mashed potatoes should be prepared simply – avoid making them too complex.
You want them to taste their best when you pair them with your meatballs.
For this pairing to work, you will need to ensure that the mashed potatoes are seasoned correctly.
You want them to taste good on their own but also be complemented by your porcupine meatballs.
If you make too many spices or other ingredients in the mashed potatoes, this dish will not work well – it needs to be simple.
That is why we recommend following a tried-and-tested recipe.
4 – Rice Pilaf
Next on our list of best side dishes to serve with porcupine meatballs, we have rice pilaf.
This dish is quite simple to prepare, and it goes great when you serve it alongside your meatballs.
To make this dish successfully, you will need to prepare it with simple ingredients complementary to porcupine meatballs.
That being said, you do not want your rice pilaf to overshadow the flavor of your meatballs either.
Follow a recipe that includes ingredients you know will taste good together – simplicity is key.
Also, consider adding some vegetables or other components to this dish to make it more delicious.
5 – Steamed Vegetables
Steamed vegetables are another good side dish to serve with porcupine meatballs.
Although they are not the most popular choice, they do offer different flavors which work well together.
The key to making this pairing successful is in choosing your vegetables.
Some types of vegetables go better than others – but it is best to select vegetables that are either on the milder side (so they do not overpower your meatballs) or on the firmer side (if you like intense flavors).
For example, broccoli and cauliflower both work well with porcupine meatballs.
You can also try carrots, cabbage, onion, peppers, etc.
Then you have to choose between boiled, baked or steamed vegetables.
6 – Salad
A salad is an excellent choice if you do not want to serve a heavy side dish with your porcupine meatballs.
This dish often works better when it is not paired with anything else on the menu.
That being said, consider serving some rolls alongside your salad to add some carbs.
Salads are relatively easy to prepare, and they always include fresh ingredients (which makes them very healthy).
You can serve any salad with porcupine meatballs, but we recommend that you avoid creamy salads – too many intense flavors may be involved, which will interfere with the taste of your meatballs.
For an ideal pairing, we recommend serving a fresh garden salad alongside your porcupine meatballs.
This dish is best enjoyed on its own or accompanied with some bread and rolls.
7 – Veggies and Dip
Last but not least, we have veggies and dip as one of the most classic side dishes to serve with porcupine meatballs.
The great thing about this pairing is that it takes no time at all to make.
You can prepare some raw vegetables (carrots, broccoli, etc) along with some dip (ranch dressing works well) – voila.
We are not saying you should always serve this dish – sometimes people prefer other options which might be more flavorful.
However, if you are trying to cut down on preparation time, veggies and dip are always great options.
You can serve this dish with either bread or rolls alongside for a complete meal.
However, it is best served on its own rather than paired with other dishes – that way, you get to enjoy all the flavors of your porcupine meatballs.
In conclusion, porcupine meatballs are delicious.
The trick to making them even better is serving them with the suitable side dishes.
The seven best options presented in this article do not take much time or effort to prepare, and they are guaranteed to be a perfect match for your meatballs.
So don’t hesitate and try them tonight.