Popeyes sides
Photograph: Courtesy Popeyes

All of the Popeyes sides, ranked from worst to best

Looking for a tasty sidekick for your crispy fried chicken? We tried the full Popeyes sides menu to find the best ones.


A fried chicken feast is never complete without essential sides, and that holds as true as anywhere when you're at Popeyes. 

Like any fast-food restaurant, the menu is subject to change over time, and some of the chain's classic sides are no longer available (RIP, Cajun rice). And yet, what remains is worth every bite, crafted to complement that famous crunchy fried chicken (or, depending on the mood, a basket of fried shrimp). You can even get them on their own for a perfect girl dinner.

We taste-tested our way through Popeyes' sides (and a few sweets, too) to find the hidden gems in the orange-hued "Louisiana Kitchen." From mashed potatoes to biscuits to surprise hits, here are our favorite add-ons to your next three-piece at Popeye's.

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Popeyes sides, ranked

7. Red Beans & Rice

This dish is a classic in Creole cooking, so it’s no surprise to find it on the Popeyes menu. Is the best rendition of the Mardi Gras favorite? Definitely not (sometimes the rice is overcooked). But it’s a nice counterpoint to fried chicken with its smokey flavor.

6. Cajun Fries

The Cajun fries nod to Popeyes’s New Orleans connection. When they’re hot and crispy, the fries are great, but if they’ve been sitting around for too long, we’d recommend passing and getting your carbs in with the other sides.


5. Coleslaw

You’re not exactly getting your fill of vegetables at Popeyes. While it may seem like coleslaw and fried chicken are a great pairing, we’d recommend passing on this side order. It’s almost too creamy and even worse, too bland.

4. Homestyle Mac & Cheese

Scoop that mac! Made with real butter and cream, as any good mac & cheese should be, Popeye's version is both sumptuously creamy and—thanks to a baked cheese topping—with just a bit of toothiness that elevates it. With a new recipe in 2021 that brings it more in line with home-cooked mac, the only problem is: it's never enough.


3. Cinnamon Apple Pie

Desserts aren’t top of mind when you think of a fried chicken destination like Popeyes. But like many fans, we’d agree it’s even better than the McDonald’s version. The fried pocket treat is just sweet enough with cinnamon sugar on the outside, and when it’s warm and crisp on the outside, the inside bursts with a generous apple filling.

2. Mashed Potatoes with Gravy

Mashed potatoes are a great foil for fried chicken. You experience comfort food at its best, combining poultry with a bed of soft potatoes. But what makes this side so good is the richness of the gravy because otherwise, the potatoes on their own are bland.


1. Biscuits

The buttermilk biscuits haven’t left the menu since debuting in 1983. They’re soft and delicate, yet flaky and crumbly. Whether you eat them plain or create your own chicken sando, you can’t go wrong. If anything, you can’t go to Popeyes and not get biscuits with your fried chicken.

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