If you think you don’t like Brussels sprouts but you haven’t tried them roasted, stick with me, kid. Because you are, quite possibly, about to discover your new favorite vegetable.
Roasted Brussels sprouts are truly delicious. Tossed with olive oil and some salt then baked until browned, crispy in parts, and super tender in the middle (I’m talking artichoke-heart tender), a well-roasted Brussels sprout is a thing to behold. As opposed to boiling, roasting brings out Brussels’ sweetness (hellooo caramelization) which helps negate any naturally occurring bitterness. After a good roasting session, I find myself picking them off the cookie sheet, one at a time, and popping them in my mouth – for me, they’re just as addicting as potato chips.
Ready to do this?! Here’s How to Roast Brussels Sprouts!
Step 1: Select Your Brussels Sprouts
This one can be tricky, because sometimes you’ve a hankering for Brussels and you’re pretty much stuck with what’s at the store. But if you have the choice, I suggest going by this criteria to get the best sprouts.
- On the stalk. If you can find Brussels sprouts on the stalk, you’re in luck. It may be a little unwieldy in the cart and you may feel like a caveman waving it around, but your Brussels sprouts are going to be fresher this way. And the fresher the Brussels sprout, the sweeter it is. (I’ve seen some people break their sprouts off of the stem right at the store. This is one way to avoid Caveman club syndrome, but I’m not sure how the produce manager feels about it).
- Smaller is better. If, like me, you rarely find Brussels sprouts on the stalk in your store, your next best bet is to select the smaller ones over large. Again, the smaller sprouts tend to be sweeter.
- You want them to feel firm when you squeeze them. If they’re soft and the stems are particularly brown, you may want to skip them altogether.
My selection of sprouts for this story were, admittedly, a little on the rough side. They were pre-cut and the ends were looking pretty brown. Plus, I was stuck a wide variety of sizes. That said, the end product was still pretty amazing, but then again, roasted Brussels sprouts are probably my favorite veggie ever.
A good quantity is 1 1/2 pounds. It fills up a standard-size baking sheet without crowding it, and feeds a family of four or so as a side.
Step 2: Prepare Your Brussels Sprouts
This step take a little time, but once you get into the swing of things, you’ll be done before you know it.
First, give the sprouts a precursory cleaning. Just place them in a colander and rinse them well.
Cut off the ends
Now, grab a cutting board and a sharp knife. It’s time to chop! One by one, cut the brown end off of the sprout. Not too much! Just a millimeter or so off the end. If you were lucky enough to find Brussels sprouts on the stalk, just break them off of the stalk and rinse them off. No need to do any additional trimming.
Peel (a little)
Now, remove any outer leaves that are shriveled or have brown spots. I usually find myself removing one or two outer leaves.
Cut larger ones in half
If you have any sprouts in the bunch that are larger than the others, cut them in half so that all your sprouts cook evenly.
Put the trimmed and peeled sprouts back in the colander. Rinse thoroughly and shake off excess water.
Step 3: Cook!
Heat your oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.
Roll the rinsed Brussels sprouts onto a rimmed baking sheet. If they’re looking crowded and/or there are too many to fall into a single layer, use two baking sheets.
Drizzle on some olive oil. Don’t be skimpy! I use 2 tablespoons olive oil per 1 1/2 pounds of sprouts.
Toss the sprouts with your hands until the oil is well-distributed, then sprinkle on some kosher salt or sea salt. I start with 1/4 teaspoon for this quantity, but I like ’em salty. If you’re not sure, just add a couple of pinches then you can add more after they’re roasted if you like. Roll them around a little bit more to distribute the salt.
Now roast them!
Bake them for 30-40 minutes, checking in and rolling them around or flipping them with a turner about every 10 minutes or so, until they’re well-browned and tender. Roasted Brussels sprouts aren’t great when they’re undercooked, so really go for it.
Step 4: Finish them off
Remove them from the oven. Taste and add additional salt if you like. And serve!
Or, you can dress them up a bit first. Transfer them to a serving plate and try these topping suggestions:
- Toasted hazelnuts, dried cranberries, and a drizzle of balsamic vinegar
- Toasted walnuts, lemon zest, a pinch of crushed red pepper flakes, and a squeeze of lemon juice
- Fresh pomegranate arils, crumbled feta cheese, and a drizzle of pomegranate molasses
- Or smother in Dijon vinaigrette (our favorite – go heavy on the mustard!)
That’s it! Now you know how to roast Brussels sprouts. I hope you and your family love them as much as we do!
How to Roast Brussels Sprouts
- 1 1/2 pounds Brussels sprouts
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt or sea salt (plus more to taste)
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Rinse sprouts well in water. Cut any brown ends off of the bottom of the sprouts, and, if any outer leaves are looking shriveled or browned, peel off the leaves and discard them. Cut larger sprouts in half - your goal is that they're all roughly the same size so that they cook evenly. Rinse again and shake off excess water.
- Pour sprouts into a rimmed baking sheet. Drizzle with olive oil. Toss with your hands until well-coated. Sprinkle on the salt and toss lightly again.
- Bake, rolling or turning them every 10 minutes so that they brown evenly, until tender and browned, 30-40 minutes.
- Remove from oven and add additional salt if desired (I like them best when they're nice and salty!) Serve.