Oven roasted Brussels sprouts are so easy to make and they are delicious with just a few easy ingredients!
I know these cruciferous veggies have a bit of a reputation and not everyone is onboard with their interesting flavor.
But, when I hear someone say they don’t like Brussels sprouts I can only imagine they either don’t like their veggies (a concept I can’t grasp, lol), or they’ve only had them over-cooked which results in a bitter and sulfurous disaster.
Knowing how to cook Brussels sprouts just right to bring out its earthy savoriness that’s kind of nutty and sweet makes all the difference. I’ve included some tips on how to do just that with my oven roasted Brussels sprouts.
This simple plant based recipe is perfectly roasted with simple spices and easy to make — and the flavor pairs well with just about anything your heart desires! I love it with salmon and/or rice, but I also crave this dish just on its own (hot or cold).
Are Brussels Sprouts Baby Cabbage?
These bulbous beauties resemble baby cabbages, and while they do come from the same plant species, the brassica oleracea, they are in fact different.
Brussels sprouts contain more calories and pack more punch as far as nutrients are concerned, with higher concentrations of Vitamin A and C, Potassium, Magnesium, Phosphorus, and Folic Acid but less sugar and calcium than cabbage.
And if you’ve seen how these two plants grow you know there’s a striking difference. Cabbage grows close to the ground like a big round head while Brussels sprouts grow in clusters on a tall stem.
So while they might seem like the mini-me’s of cabbage, they’re really just relatives.
Tips To Reduce Bitterness
The bitterness you find in cruciferous veggies aren’t popular and luckily there are ways to tone it down.
Farmers have done some of the work for us over the past 20 years or so by reducing the bitter compound found in Brussels sprouts called glucosinolates which act as their natural defense against hungry insects.
I don’t mind a little bitterness, and in fact it sometimes reminds me of wasabi, but I still prefer to reduce it as much as possible. Here are some tips to do that:
Blanch Your Sprouts
Blanching your sprouts is an often neglected step, and technically it’s optional but if you really hate the bitterness I’d recommend you don’t skip this.
Not only will it improve the flavor but it will soften the dense leaves to prepare it for cooking and enhances the beautiful rich green color.
Blanching is really easy. Just add them to boiling water for a couple of minutes, then drain and cool. I use a slow boil so I don’t completely destroy its nutrients.
Cut Them in Half
By cutting them in half you’ll be able to release a bit more glucosinolates from the center during the blanching process.
Select smaller Brussels sprouts that are dense and compact. They tend to be sweeter than your large ones. If you grow your own or have access to a farm that grows them, harvesting small Brussels sprouts after the first frost will lend itself to a sweeter flavor.
Don’t Overcook Them
This is the most important tip for your oven roasted Brussels sprouts, or any cruciferous veggies!
Overcooking them bring out the bitterness, and it usually results in an unappealing bowl of mush or burnt leaves. They only need to be cooked until fork tender.
How to Make Oven Roasted Brussels Sprouts
Here’s how I make my oven roasted Brussels sprouts with just a few simple ingredients.
- Cut your Brussels sprouts in half. If they are fairly large (remember, the small ones are less bitter) cut them into thirds. Then blanch for one to two minutes on a low to medium boil, drain and set aside to cool.
- Mix olive oil, salt, and black pepper together in a small bowl and add it to your cooled Brussels sprouts. Toss until fully covered.
- If you have a plastic container with a lid you can just shake them in there but hold onto the lid if you don’t want Brussels sprouts to pop open the lid and become confetti!
- Next, spread them out on a flat baking sheet with some parchment paper and bake at 450°F for approximately 14-18 minutes, give or take a few depending on your oven and altitude.
When it’s done just enjoy! It can be eaten on its own or as a side and you can certainly add other toppings to it like parmesan cheese.
This is my favorite way method because it’s simple and results in perfectly tender Brussels sprouts with a hint of sweet nutty flavor that isn’t overpowered by spices, making it easy to pair with other ingredients.
Now if you like a little bacon and with your Brussels sprouts, give my Brussels sprouts and bacon fried rice recipe a try!
Oven Roasted Brussels Sprouts Video
Simple Oven Roasted Brussels Sprouts
These oven roasted Brussels sprouts are beautifully tender and lightly seasoned for a simple but delicious flavor and texture! A perfect plant-based side dish.
Preheat oven to 450°F and boil a pot of water. Use enough water to cover all the Brussels sprouts.
In the meantime, trim off the end of Brussels sprouts and cut in half.Leave whole if they are small. Cut into thirds if they are extra large.
When water comes to a medium boil add Brussels sprouts and blanch for approximately 2 minutes. Drain then cool. Toss them around a bit so heat can escape from the center.
Move Brussels sprouts to a mixing bowl.
In a small bowl, add olive oil and mix in spices. Add to Brussels sprouts and toss until they are fully covered.
Spread Brussels sprouts onto a baking tray and bake at 450°F for 15 - 18 minutes.
Serve as a side dish or enjoy as is!
Serving Size 1 side dish
- Amount Per Serving
- Calories 133.27
- % Daily Value *
- Total Fat 7.27g12%
- Saturated Fat 1.04g6%
- Sodium 222.42mg10%
- Total Carbohydrate 15.34g6%
- Dietary Fiber 6.51g27%
- Sugars 3.74g
- Protein 5.77g12%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Nutrition information is an estimate. Your daily value may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
- You may need to adjust your cooking time by a few minutes or so as ovens and altitudes can cause it to vary.
- Brussels sprouts are generally in season between late-Fall and early-Winter.
- Purchase or harvest Brussels sprouts that aren't too big. Small to medium will have the best flavor and less bitterness.
- Blanching is optional but recommended to reduce bitterness. Do not over-blanch Brussels sprouts.
- Fresh is always better but frozen Brussels sprouts can also be used for this recipe. If using frozen, do not blanch.
- Serve with rice, seafood, or other meats.
- Also delicious cold or on its own.
- Use leftovers for omelettes, wraps, and fried rice.