I think the reason sweet doesn't work with most beer is that the beers are intended to be dry and any residual sweetness on the palate is generally unwelcome. For me, the exception here is estery/phenolic beer like Belgians and hefeweizens. Even though the beers are typically dry, the fruit and spice compliments desserts pretty well. Apple spice cake or gingersnaps paired with a dubbel or dunkelweizen is pretty damn good. I'd imagine dried fruit would match up pretty well, also. Sweet isn't horrible with English ales to me, but I'd still prefer a salty snack with them.
Otherwise, the tried and true work well. Pretzels, nuts, cheese, bread and meats all go well with most lagers and ales. I particularly prefer cheese with bitters and milds. I think the lower carbonation is creamier and less prickly, which works well with the cheeses I like. Chocolate, particularly dark chocolate, plays nice with porters, stouts, and brown ales.