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What Carbs to Serve with Meat?

Choose the best options that will get to your goals faster!

As delicious as a meaty meal can be, pairing it with a side containing carbs is somewhat natural. However, when we say carbs, we instantly think of bread, and even though that might be the case in some carb-meat combos, it still doesn’t necessarily mean that it is the best or only option. What are the best carbs to serve with meat in the vast sea of possibilities? 

Since there are too many options, it is often hard to decide which choice would be the best for you to make, especially if you are watching your weight and are physically active. To make things easier for you, in the following paragraphs, I will share some ideas of which carbs to serve with meat so that you can get the energy you need and combine the best way to make the most of your protein-carb meal. 

Best Carbs to Serve With Meat

Sweet Potatoes

Sweet potatoes are known as a very healthy substitute for regular potatoes. They are full of beta-carotene, which helps people to avoid cancer. You will also ingest some vitamins that will help your skin’s glow.

Tasting earthy, sweet, and somewhere between potato and pumpkin, they are not only healthy but also incredibly delicious. 

Moreover, they are versatile and pairable with various types of meat such as chicken breast or fish. A plate of baked and seasoned sweet potatoes will enrich your meal and boost your energy. 

sweet potato slices

Sweet potatoes are rich in carbohydrates and nutrients your body needs after a workout, which is why they are considered a post-workout superfood. After working out, having a meat protein and sweet potato carbs combination will help you replenish your body and energize it. 

Related: How Much Protein-Rich Food Do You Need to Eat?

Honey Gold Potatoes

Honey gold potatoes are an excellent pair for a meaty meal, especially if you watch your weight and have an active lifestyle. Honey gold potatoes are rich in vitamins E and A, are an excellent energy booster, and therefore a great pre-workout meal. 

Ideally, a plate of roasted meat combined with baked honey-gold potatoes about 40 minutes before your workout will give you all the energy you need for your exercise session, leaving you energized and full long after. 


Quinoa is one of the best decisions to improve overall health and maintain a fit line if you work out regularly. 

quinoa pilaf with chicken and vegetables.

Combining your meaty meal with a nice plate of quinoa after your workout is one of the best ways to round up your exercise session. It is not only rich in dietary fibre, carbs, and nutrients; quinoa is also rich in protein, and it helps in the protein synthesizing process, which is why it is excellent to have after your training. 

Kidney Beans

Though they are high in carbs, meaning they will provide you with the energy you need during your workout, kidney beans are also rich in fibre and protein, slowing down the digestion process. Therefore having kidney beans before your workout might be something you would want to avoid. 

Kidney beans are a very healthy option, but leave them for after your workout, as you will benefit from them more that way. The kidney bean and meat combination will replenish your body with the energy you have spent during your exercise session. Also, after you have worked out, you can afford to slow down and get a bit sleepy, so having a plate of kidney beans with your meaty meal after your workout, can also help you sleep better. 


carbs to serve with meat
Roasted spicy chickpeas

Known as an incredibly healthy food option, and being very versatile, offering you a number of cooking possibilities, chickpeas are an excellent pair for your meaty meal. 

You can have them both before and after your workout, but you will reap more benefits if you have them afterwards. Your body needs the proteins and carbs from the chickpeas to get back your energy from the workout. 

The protein and carbs combination in the chickpeas is ideal for helping your body get to normal and replenish itself after a workout, especially a more intense one. 

Read More: Is It Better to Work Out Hungry or Full?

Taro Root

Tasting like potatoes, the taro root is an incredibly healthy potato substitute. However, be warned that the taro root is poisonous if eaten raw; therefore, make sure you thoroughly cook it before pairing it with your meat place. 

The taro root is immensely beneficial for cholesterol regulation and blood sugar management. It is also fibre-rich and incredibly helpful with constipation or acid reflux.

Taro root works best as a pre-workout food paired with meat and will work perfectly as an energy booster. It is very satiating and nutritious without causing any bloating or stomach heaviness. 


Last on this list, but not least, carrots are an incredibly healthy pair for a meaty meal. They contain just enough carbs to keep you in shape and a sufficiently low amount so that you can burn them without risking them turning into fat deposits. 

Carrots are an excellent meat paring option to have before your workout and afterwards. If you have carrots and meat before training, you will be energized while feeling light like a feather during your workout. 

On the other hand, if you have carrots and meat after working out, you will reap all the nutrients from the carrot and bounce right back. Carrots are rich in vitamin A which is essential for you to have radiant skin and boosted immunity. 

Who is the author? Laura is a frequent traveller who enjoys kickbox and hiking. She is especially curious about nutrition and cooking, and that’s why she started the blog juliescafebakery.com

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