To celebrate the always tried and true scratch-cooking approach and handmade dishes, Cheddar’s Scratch Kitchen, held a recipe contest encouraging local DFW guests to submit their best homemade side dish recipes for a chance to be added to the Cheddar’s restaurants menu in the Dallas/Fort Worth metroplex.

During this past summer (May 7 – July 2), guests did, in fact, submit their favorite home-cooked side dish recipes to Cheddar’s. In speaking with chief-resident, Chef Craig Green, there were more than 400 recipes submitted! From those 400, all were cooked in-house and taste tested one at a time (I am full just thinking about it). Fast forward to this fall, a panel composed of Cheddar’s culinary and management team along with Dallas Food Nerd and other fellow foodies helped choose one side dish to be featured on the menu of all 11 DFW-area Cheddar’s restaurants for the next six weeks.

Here were the finalists and side dishes we tried out and scored:

Greater Green Bean CasseroleGreater Green Bean Casserole


Amazing Baked Beans
Amazing Baked Beans


Steamed Cabbage
Steamed Cabbage (with bacon!)


The winner was Lisa Grant and her Amazing Baked Beans! Lisa’s side dish debuted on the Cheddar’s menu on November 10th and on top of becoming a local Cheddar’s celebrity, she also received a $250 Cheddar’s gift card. Although I was slightly partial to the cabbage (old man soul paired with a fascination towards anything bacon), I really enjoyed the baked beans and glad it made the cut.

Lisa’s Amazing Baked Beans” will remain on the Cheddar’s menu for the next month or so. If you happen to stop by, I recommend their newest location next to Nebraska Furniture Mart. (Pro tip: it is so new that Google, Apple or Waze maps will not know how to get you there, try searching for Nebraska Furniture Mart in The Colony instead.)


New Name, Same Great Food
You also may be wondering.. “wasn’t it just called, Cheddar’s?“. You would be right! All Dallas-area Cheddar’s Casual Cafés converted to Cheddar’s Scratch Kitchen during the month of May 2015. The new name is to highlight its handmade menu, an important element that has been there since they first opened their doors in Arlington, Texas in 1979, 36 years ago.

I remember when I moved to the DFW area about a decade ago and this being my first restaurant I visited. Being a college student at the time, I enjoyed it for three reasons: quality food that tastes like home, well priced and can even compete with local drive-thru prices at times, as well as hearty portions that always end with leftovers.

Here are a few bonus pictures to show exactly what I mean:

My favorite. Fall off the bone ribs paired with broccoli cheese casserole.
My favorite. Fall off the bone baby back ribs paired with their famous broccoli cheese casserole. Oh boy.


The best dessert, you may need something bigger than a spoon!
The legendary, made from scratch, monster cookie! You may need something bigger than a spoon!!


Chicken fingers
I’m very picky about my chicken tenders. They’re usually too “bready” or not enough. These are hand breaded and just flaky enough to eat with or without sauce and be enjoyed just the same.


As you can see, those same values still hold true today. Personally speaking, with this location being in my neighborhood, I will return since I can never turn down good food, good prices, with great people.

For more information on their new side menu item and more, visit or stop by your nearest location.


(Disclaimer: The sampling menu was complimentary, but opinions are my own.)