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16 Best Applebee’s Sides on the Menu

Applebee’s is famous for its extensive drink menu and appetizers; however, most people overlook Applebee’s sides and just how good they are.

This, of course, is a big mistake! Though not all sides are available at every Applebee’s location, there are a wide variety of options for diners to choose from.

Deciding which side to pair with your meal can be difficult, so we’ve rounded up the best Applebee’s sides for you to try with your next meal.

16. Steamed Broccoli

You probably remember the fights it took to get you to eat broccoli as a kid.

While many people grow to like broccoli as they get older, it brings back unappetizing memories for others.

Fortunately, for those willing to eat broccoli, Applebee’s broccoli side brings a healthy aspect packed with Vitamin C to their meals. At 100 calories, this side is a nice alternative.

The broccoli is doctored a little to include a small amount of cream, garlic powder, and salt, but otherwise, it’s just a cluster of broccoli steamed with water.

While no customizable options are available, you can always add salt and pepper to add more flavor.

15. Garlicky Green Beans

Like the Steamed Broccoli, the garlicky green beans are a simple, easy side that pairs well with everything on Applebee’s menu.

If you want more green in your diet, these are for you!

At 170 calories, this handful of green beans will supplement your meal and fill you up. The green beans also make great leftovers.

These cooked green beans are delicious as they have a garlic butter sauce over the top to add extra butter and garlic flavor.

14. Homestyle Cheesy Broccoli

For those who aren’t as interested in eating plain vegetables but still want a relatively healthy alternative, the Homestyle Cheesy Broccoli is a great way to get some vegetables on your plate.

The Cheesy Broccoli takes the plain steamed broccoli and adds queso and chunks of cheddar cheese to give a creamy, somewhat salty flavor to the mix.

The queso is made from milk, American cheese, Cheddar cheese, and Parmesan cheese, and it’s the same queso served with the chips on Applebee’s appetizer menu.

At 210 calories, the Cheesy Broccoli isn’t as healthy as some other options but is delicious.

13. Caesar Salad

Like many restaurants, Applebee’s has a smaller version of its Caesar Salad that can be added as a side to any entree.

The salad is served with Applebee’s Garlic Caesar dressing, along with croutons, lettuce, and parmesan cheese.

You can customize your salad to remove or add ingredients.

At 230 calories, the smaller version of the large Chicken Caesar Salad is a delicious side to add to your meal.

12. Side House Salad

The side house salad is one of Applebee’s most customizable sides.

With ten different dressing options, you’ll find a flavor to enjoy regardless of your dressing preferences.

The 130-calorie salad is made from lettuce, tomato, cucumbers, croutons, and shredded cheddar cheese.

For the dressing, you may choose from one of the following:

  • Bleu Cheese
  • Caesar
  • Dijon Honey Mustard
  • Fat-Free Italian
  • Honey French
  • Lemon Olive Oil Vinaigrette
  • Mexi-Ranch
  • Oriental
  • Ranch
  • Thousand Island

You can also customize your salad by adding or removing specific ingredients.

Left as is, however, the crunchy combination of fresh vegetables makes for a great side to your meal.

11. Cheetos Flamin’ Hot Crunchy Snack Bag

Unless you’ve been living in outer space for the last four years, you’ve probably heard about the massive resurgence that Cheetos has had in popularity. Now, Applebee’s has joined the craze.

Available at select restaurants, the Cheetos Flamin’ Hot Crunchy Snack Bag is, quite literally, a snack-size (2 oz) bag of Flamin’ Hot Cheetos. And while simple, they’re pretty good.

The side is not customizable but allows you to customize your meal by dipping the Cheetos in your food or crunching them up and sprinkling them on the top.

At 330 calories, the side is made by Cheetos and includes the following ingredients:

  • Cornmeal
  • Vegetable Oil
  • Salt
  • Sugar
  • Yeast Extract
  • Cheddar Cheese
  • Onion Powder
  • Skim Milk
  • Garlic Powder

10. French Onion Soup

If you love onion flavor in your food, you’ll love the Applebee’s French Onion Soup.

The small creamy, cheesy, onion-flavored soup makes for a great side on a cold day.

At 370 calories, the soup only comes as a side, is not customizable, and is made from water, onions, onion powder, Swiss cheese, Parmesan cheese, crushed croutons, and salt.

While the onion flavoring is strong and, for some, a little overpowering, it pairs well with the cream and cheese that give this hearty soup a nice thick texture.

The soup might not be the best side for every entree on the menu, but it pairs well with enough that we would recommend trying it at least once.

9. Tomato Basil Soup

For many, tomato soup is consumed as a side to go along with a grilled cheese sandwich, but very few people order it by itself.

At Applebee’s, overlooking the Tomato Basil Soup would be a big mistake!

The soup has a creamy and thick texture with tomato and basil flavoring, and it’s a great way to fill you up if you’re hungry.

At 220 calories, this soup is made from tomato puree, cream, tomato paste, sugar, and basil.

Though not particularly big, the soup tends to, as my grandmother would say, “stick to your bones,” making it a great option as a side.

8. Garlic Mashed Potatoes

Some people will eat potatoes in any way, shape, or form, and if you’re one of these people, garlic mashed potatoes are a great choice!

At 260 calories, the mashed potatoes are fairly plain.

They don’t include bacon, cheese, gravy, or any other option that many people enjoy eating with their mashed potatoes.

However, you can customize your potatoes to add some of these ingredients.

Otherwise, the ingredients are simple: potatoes, milk, margarine, salt, garlic, and parsley.

These mashed potatoes include the skin in some parts and can be somewhat clumpy.

So depending on your preferences, be prepared for some slight texture changes.

7. Loaded Mashed Potatoes

While the regular Garlic Mashed Potatoes might be somewhat plain, the Loaded Mashed Potatoes are full of extras that will make you happy that you chose the loaded version.

A little more calorie-heavy than the regular Garlic Mashed Potatoes, the 440-calorie Loaded Mashed Potatoes include sour cream, bacon, and Cheddar cheese.

While the only customization option is adding or removing some of the portions of the toppings, with three different toppings, this gives you quite a bit of customization power.

6. Breadstick

Sometimes, no matter what you do, you can’t seem to quench your craving for carbs.

Applebee’s understands this, and to accommodate, they allow you to add a breadstick as a side.

The single breadstick is served without dipping sauce or any extras, and it’s just a plain old breadstick.

But, for some reason, we can’t seem to get enough of them.

At 180 calories per breadstick, the side is made from flour, salt, yeast, garlic powder, parsley, oregano, and basil and is covered in the same garlic butter as the green beans.

Though not customizable, most Applebee’s restaurants will let you add more than one breadstick to your order with a small upcharge.

5. Basket Fries

Similar to the Onion Rings, Applebee’s Basket Fries taste like many fast food french fries.

Though they aren’t necessarily unique, they are still incredibly delicious.

The 640-calorie fries are made from potatoes, vegetable oil, and salt.

They are seasoned with salt, garlic, and soybean oil. In addition, you can choose from BBQ sauce and ketchup to dip these fries in.

What makes Applebee’s fries particularly good is that they have just the right amount of salt on them.

4. 4-Cheese Mac And Cheese

Applebee’s 4-Cheese Mac and Cheese is similar to mashed potatoes in the fact that you don’t think they’ll fill you up, but they are very filling.

Applebee’s 410-calorie Mac and Cheese is made with macaroni pasta, milk, American cheese, Cheddar cheese, Colby cheese, Asiago cheese, and sliced bacon.

The smoky bacon pairs very well with the cheesy pasta and adds a small amount of salt to make the side even more flavorful.

You can’t go wrong with this as a side to any Applebee’s meal.

3. Chicken Tortilla Soup

Some people may disagree with rating the Chicken Tortilla Soup so highly, but Applebee’s Chicken Tortilla Soup is so good that it outshines most of their other sides.

The soup plays into the “Tex-Mex” flavor that Applebee’s often plays into and combines a thick chili-type soup with a light vegetable soup that’s unique.

At 280 calories, the soup is less filling than the Tomato Basil and French Onion soups but tastes better than both.

This soup is made from chicken meat, diced tomatoes, onions, zucchini, corn, green peppers, red peppers, garlic, salt, and tortilla strips layered on top.

2. Crunchy Onion Rings

While Applebee’s Onion Rings are similar to most other restaurants’ onion rings, the item is so popular and a fan favorite.

The 540-calorie side typically comes with five onion rings but might have more or less, depending on the size of the rings.

While you can’t customize your onion rings, you can choose your dipping sauce.

Dipping sauce options vary depending on location but typically include BBQ sauce and ketchup.

1. Waffle Fries

While regular French fries and onion rings are typical fare at many American restaurants, Applebee’s Waffle Fries fall into a different category.

The fries, cut with a special blade to give them their famous shape, are perfectly fried and salted, giving them a nice golden color on your plate.

The extra crispiness of Applebee’s Waffle Fries also makes them perfectly suited to dip in whatever sauce you choose – though ketchup is the best choice for this side.

At 770 calories, the Waffle Fries pair with every single item on Applebee’s menu, regardless of the flavor or time of day.

If you’re going to get a side at Applebee’s, we recommend trying their delicious Waffle Fries at least once!


With many different options to choose from, you are sure to find a side on the Applebee’s menu that pairs well with your meal, regardless of the flavor, texture, time of day, or occasion.

While most sides at Applebee’s are delicious and worth trying, the Basket of Waffle Fries is a must-have!

For more information about Applebee’s, check out the articles below.

About the Author

Ben Parsons is a content writer who has experience in the retail food industry, including restaurant work. In his spare time, he loves reading and spending time outdoors in the White Mountains of New Hampshire.


November 29, 2022