Almost 40% Of People Agree This Is The Go-To Salad For Barbecues

With warmer temperatures and longer days come picnics in the park, lazy days at the beach, countless ice cream cones and — last but certainly not least — lots of backyard barbecues. And while many consider a BBQ the chance to show off their grill skills with proteins like burgers, brats, and steaks, some might argue that the real star of any cookout isn't the meat, but rather the side dishes.

After all, no barbecue spread is complete without some fresh, flavorful salads to help cut the richness of most grilled proteins. However, picking which salad to bring to the potluck can be a challenge, as everyone has a different opinion on which barbecue side dish reigns supreme.

To get to the bottom of this cookout conundrum, we polled a group of BBQ enthusiasts and asked, "Which is your go-to salad for barbecues?" Among the favorites were creamy, mayo based classics and fresher, more veggie-forward options.

Two nostalgic side dishes fell to the bottom of the rankings

Surprisingly, two classic creamy BBQ side dishes fell to the bottom of the rankings. Macaroni salad (which is traditionally made with mayo, sweet pickles, celery, red onion, and red pepper) and Coleslaw (a barbecue staple made with shredded cabbage, and either a mayo- or vinegar-based dressing) tied for last place with just 12.46% of the total votes.

Coming in the middle of the pack, with 17.41% of the vote, was a versatile side dish: pasta salad. This cold dish can be made with a variety of pastas and toppings and tossed with a mayo-based dressing (as in this Southwest Pasta Salad Recipe) or a lighter olive oil and vinegar combination (like in this Balsamic Chicken Pasta Salad).

Receiving the second most votes for favorite go-to barbecue salad (with 19.97% of the total) was a classic leafy green salad, indicating that a high amount of cookout-goers crave a fresh and raw dish over something cooked.

Taking the top spot and earning the crown for the ultimate BBQ salad with a whopping 37.70% of the vote was a classic potato salad. This nostalgic dish, which is made with boiled or grilled potatoes and a range of toppings (from a traditional creamy dill sauce to a vegan avocado variation) was an overwhelming audience favorite, proving that some side dishes are perennial warm weather classics for a reason.