Perhaps one of the biggest secrets of the food industry is that roasted Brussels sprouts are incredibly tasty and a far cry from the unsavory boiled version that gave them their bad reputation. And nutritionally, these baby cabbages are supercharged. Brussels sprouts are anti-inflammatory, anti-carcinogenic, and alkalizing. They help restore digestive regularity and relieve constipation. And in contrast to the many summer vegetables you might be missing, they’re seasonal from September to March (in many regions), with the ability to boost immunity during cold winter months.
Brussels sprouts create a stunning presentation when roasted to a perfect golden brown. This recipe takes those decadent roasted vegetables up another notch with a pop of vinegar, which brightens the flavor, cutting through any bitterness. Crispy bacon and toasted nuts lend a bit of crunch, if desired. Arrange this side on a rectangular platter when entertaining, and serve with roasted chicken, turkey, pork, or your favorite protein.
Brussels Sprouts with Balsamic Vinegar
1 pound Brussels sprouts, trimmed and halved
Extra-virgin olive oil
Salt and pepper
¼ cup balsamic vinegar
- Preheat the oven to 450 degrees Fahrenheit.
- In an 11 x 7 baking pan, coat the Brussels sprouts with oil, and salt and pepper to taste. Spread in a single layer.
- Roast in the upper third of the oven, stirring once halfway through, until the sprouts are brown on the edges and tender, about 25 minutes total.
- Pour the balsamic vinegar into a sauté pan over medium-high heat. Bring to a boil. Add the roasted Brussels sprouts, stirring to coat. Cook for 3 to 5 minutes.
- Roasted Brussels Sprouts. Prepare and roast the Brussels sprouts through step 3. Enjoy without the reduced vinegar for a simplified flavor profile.
- Brussels Sprouts with Balsamic Vinegar and Shiitake Bacon. Make the Brussels sprouts in vinegar as directed. Then, toss with crispy, shiitake bacon.
- Brussels Sprouts with Balsamic Vinegar and Toasted Pecans. Toast chopped pecans in a pan until fragrant, and let cool. Combine with the cooked Brussels sprouts in vinegar, saving some pecans for garnish. Serve immediately, so the pecans don’t get soggy.
When you boil the vinegar, it will reduce or thicken. This enlivens the flavors and creates a smooth, less watery consistency. Monitor this process, so the vinegar doesn’t thicken too much or burn.
Brussels sprouts contain a healthy combination of vitamins and minerals, such as vitamins A, C, and K, as well as iron, manganese, and potassium.
If you’ve ever bitten into an overcooked sprout, you may have been scarred for life! However, fun, diverse flavors, like reduced balsamic vinegar and that infused by the roasting process itself, will not just make them more palatable—they’ll be downright delicious! The moral? Don’t give up on your greens (even after a bad experience); just give them a makeover.