Backyard BBQ Side Dishes

By Betty J. Kekse

Spring is here and time to get together for backyard BBQs! Here are recipes for two of my favorite side dishes Tuna & Red Bean Salad and an Asian inspired Red Cabbage Slaw. I hope you enjoy these easy to make, healthy, and tasty dishes. Both recipes are good at room temperature or served cold and the flavor gets better if you make them the day before, just remember to stir well before serving. Have a safe and delicious May!

Tuna & Red Bean Salad

Serves 10-12


  • 3 – 15.4oz cans of red kidney beans (drained & rinsed)
  • 2 TB – fresh lemon juice (about 1 lemon)
  • 1 ts – horse radish
  • ½ TB – Dijon mustard
  • 3 – cloves of garlic (minced)
  • ½ ts – jalapeño powder
  • 2 TB – of a sweet fruit vinegar (I am a big fan of the peach vinegar from the ABQ Olive Oil Company)
  • ½ ts – kosher salt
  • Fresh ground pepper
  • 2 TB – avocado oil
  • 1c – fresh flat leaf parsley (chopped)
  • 1 – 7oz can of tuna (flaked with a fork)


  • Drain and rinse the beans and put them in a medium mixing bowl (set aside).
  • In a small bowl whisk together the lemon juice, horse radish, Dijon mustard, garlic, jalapeño powder, salt and pepper and vinegar.
  • Whisk until well combined and then slowly pour in the avocado oil while continuing to whisk.
  • Pour over the bean and stir.
  • Add in the fresh parsley and gently stir.
  • Stir in the flaked tuna and serve or cover and put in the refrigerator for a later use. Yum!

Red Cabbage Slaw

Serves 14-16


  • ¾c – rice vinegar
  • 1TB – white sugar or honey
  • 3TB – ponzu
  • 1ts – garlic powder
  • 1ts – sesame oil
  • 2TB – avocado oil
  • 1 – small red cabbage (remove the stem/core and chop)
  • 2 – medium red or yellow bell peppers (sliced)
  • 1 – large carrot (shredded)
  • ½ – small red onion (sliced)
  • 1 – small jalapeño (optional – chopped)
  • ¾c – fresh cilantro (chopped)
  • 1/3c – toasted sesame seeds


  • In a small bowl whisk together the rice vinegar, sugar or honey, ponzu, and garlic powder.
  • Whisk until well combined and then add the sesame oil and avocado oil (set aside).
  • In a large mixing bowl combine red cabbage, bell peppers, carrot, onion, jalapeño, and cilantro, toss to combine (tongs work best).
  • Whisk the dressing one more time and pour over veggies, mix to be sure they are well coated.
  • Toss in the sesame seeds and serve or cover and put in the refrigerator for a later use. Yum!




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