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A sidechain is a separate blockchain which runs in parallel to Ethereum Mainnet and operates independently. It has its own consensus algorithm (e.g. Proof of Authority, Delegated proof-of-stake, Byzantine fault tolerance). It is connected to Mainnet by a two-way bridge.

What makes a sidechain particularly exciting is that the chain works the same as the main Ethereum chain because it's based on the EVM. It doesn't use Ethereum, it is Ethereum. This means if you want to use your dapp on a sidechain, it's just a matter of deploying your code to this sidechain. It looks, feels, and acts just like Mainnet – you write contracts in Solidity, and interact with the chain via the Web3 API.


You should have a good understanding of all the foundational topics and a high-level understanding of Ethereum scaling.

Pros and cons

Established technology.Less decentralized.
Supports general computation, EVM compatibility.Uses a separate consensus mechanism. Not secured by layer 1 (so technically it’s not layer 2).
A quorum of sidechain validators can commit fraud.

Use Sidechains

Multiple projects provide implementations of sidechains that you can integrate into your dapps:

Further reading

Know of a community resource that helped you? Edit this page and add it!

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