Growing up I was told Brussels Sprouts were the worst vegetable, vile in fact. It wasn’t until I was in my 20’s brunching in NYC that I realized why children of the 90’s grew up with this notion. They were cooking them wrong. I would bet money that our parents and grandparents were boiling or steaming Brussels sprouts. Brussels sprouts NEED to be roasted, even better paired with bold flavors such as sweet roasted grapes, salty bacon, and a sweet and tart balsamic glaze. This holiday inspired side dish is done in under 30 minutes using only 5 ingredients
*This post is sponsored by Roland Foods https://rolandfoods.com/, as always, all thoughts and opinions are my own. Thank you for your support!
Have you ever roasted Brussels sprouts only to have them come out soft and mushy. Don’t worry I have been there before as well. Below is my guide to getting crispy Brussels every single time.
Brussels sprouts roast best in a high temp oven (MINIMUM 400 degrees Fahrenheit), any lower and you will end up steaming, and ultimately not crisping them. If you really want to get a crispy exterior on both the top and bottom my suggestion is to crank the oven up to 425-450 degrees..
In order to get crispy roasted Brussels sprouts, they need a generous amount of oil. Good rule of thumb, for every pound of Brussels use about 1 tbsp to 1 1/2 tbsp of oil. Make sure they are thoroughly coated. I like to season them in a large bowl and then lay them out on a sheet pan. Typically, I roast in olive oil (not EVOO), you shouldn’t have to worry about the smoke point, however if you do use a neutral oil such as avocado oil.
Truth is, Brussels sprouts don’t like to share the oven. When you add too much to the oven you risk excess moisture which will result in steaming not roasting. When roasting Brussels, put them in the oven on their own. Also, don’t overcrowd the pan, make sure there is space in between each sprout
Place the sprouts cut side down on the baking tray. Cut side down = more surface area touching the pan = crispier Brussels sprouts.
Believe it or not, the pan you use to roast does make a difference. I like using Nordic Ware pans, they are super durable and get a good crisp on roasted vegetables, not to mention they are a breeze to clean. Good rule of thumb is the darker the pan the crispier the Brussels, however you also need to reduce the cook time as well. Darker pans cook faster. Whichever type of pan you choose absolutely DO NOT use a silicone baking sheet, and avoid glass pans.
If you have an electric oven where the heat source is on top and not on the bottom, do not cook the Brussels on the bottom rack. The top or middle rack are good options. Similarly, if you have a gas stove where the heat source is at the bottom, cook your Brussels on the bottom rack.
Wet sauces need to be added after the sprouts are done roasting. This includes honey, balsamic glazes, and anything else that would add moisture.
No special tools needed here, just a sheet tray to roast everything on. As I mentioned above I like using Nordic Ware pans, especially the half tray size. That size should give you enough room to roast the Brussels and the grapes on the same tray without overcrowding the pan. In the event that you do not think you have enough room separate the grapes from the Brussels and bacon, and toss together after roasting.
Prep the Brussels Sprouts – Clean and dry the sprouts. On a cutting board cut the bottoms off and slice longways in half. Some leaves will fall off, no worries either discard or throw them on the pan, they will get extra crispy.
Lay out the Ingredients – Place the Brussels sprouts and grapes on the sheet pan. Drizzle 1 tbsp of olive oil and a heavy pinch of salt, toss to coat. Lay them out evenly flipping the sprouts cut side down, remember the more surface area that is touching the pan the crispier they will get. Evenly disperse the cut bacon. Sprinkle on the fresh thyme.
Roast until Crispy – Roast in a 425F degree oven for 20-25 minutes. You will know that they are done when the Brussels Sprouts are brown and crispy (not burnt), the roasted grapes are wilted and some have begun to burst open, and the bacon has rendered down.
Finish with the Glaze – Drizzle desired amount of balsamic glaze over the hot roasted grapes and Brussels sprouts, I use approx. 1 tbsp, but feel free to add more or less. Toss to coat and serve immediately.
These balsamic roasted grapes and Brussels sprouts can be stored in an air tight container for 2-3 days. When ready to reheat, lay out on a sheet tray and bake at 350 until the Brussels Sprouts regain some of their crispy texture again.
Looking for more Brussels Sprouts recipes? Check out the below!