Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Brussels Sprouts - roast 'em to love 'em

We know Brussels Sprouts have a bad reputation. Often they are boiled to death and take on an aggressive cabbage aroma and flavor. It's not the Brussels sprouts' fault. We just need a better way to cook them. Enter roasting. We blogged about vegetable roasting last year and we mentioned Brussels sprouts but you probably didn't seriously consider them. It's not on most people's list for most desirable vegetable. You should try them. They get sweeter and their flavor mellows when they are roasted. They are very nutritious like most of their cabbage-family relatives.

When you shop for Brussels sprouts, look for bright green ones. If they have yellowing leaves, they have been hanging around too long. They should be firm and try to get sprouts that are all the same size; they will roast more evenly. Use them within a few days because they will start to yellow if stored too long.

When you are ready to roast, preheat your oven to 375-400° F. Trim them up by slicing off the tough stem end. Rip off any bruised or damaged leaves. Cut the sprouts in half. Place them on a rimmed baking sheet and toss with 1 Tablespoon olive oil per pound of sprouts. Sprinkle lightly with salt and pepper. Roast them for 20-30 minutes. You want them to get well-browned in spots but be careful not to overcook them.

You can serve them as is. You can squeeze on a little bit of lemon juice. You can toss them with some sliced roasted red peppers, like in the photo. You can toss in some chopped nuts like almonds, walnuts, or pecans. The sweetness of the nuts complements the sprouts nicely.

Try a new vegetable - give roasted Brussels sprouts a chance!


  1. All we are sayin' give sprouts a chance!;)

    Given I'm Paleo this month, I'll try this recipe with bacon grease in place of the olive oil - that should add a nice salty/savory touch. Topped with nuts, of course.

    Would Lemon juice still be a good addition before serving?

  2. Lemon juice would still be a good addition. Acid is a great counterpoint to the richness of the bacon.