What To Eat With Brussel Sprouts

Brussel sprouts are a nutritious and versatile vegetable that contains an array of health benefits. Not only are they packed with fiber, vitamins, and antioxidants, but they can also complement a variety of other ingredients in a meal.

By knowing what to eat with brussel sprouts, you can enhance their flavor profile and create a well-rounded, satisfying dish. In this article, we will explore the best ways to pair brussel sprouts with other foods, discuss their nutritional benefits, and provide tips and recipes for you to try at home.

 what to eat with brussel sprouts

The Importance of Pairing Foods with Brussel Sprouts

Brussel sprouts can be a divisive vegetable due to their strong, bitter flavor. However, this flavor can be mitigated or even enhanced by pairing them with certain foods.

Pairing brussel sprouts with ingredients that have a complementary or contrasting taste, texture, and nutritional profile can create a more balanced and enjoyable meal.

For example, pairing brussel sprouts with sweeter ingredients like honey or roasted squash can help to balance out their bitterness. On the other hand, pairing them with salty or acidic ingredients like bacon or lemon juice can help to enhance their savory flavor.

Best Pairings for Brussel Sprouts

1. Protein-rich ingredients: Adding protein to your brussel sprouts can help to create a more satisfying and filling meal. Good sources of protein include grilled chicken or salmon, shrimp, chickpeas, or tofu. These ingredients will add a variety of flavors as well as texture to your dish.

2. Citrus fruits: Brussel sprouts can have a bitter taste, which can be balanced out with the zingy acidity of citrus fruits. Adding a squeeze of lemon, lime or grapefruit juice can provide a bright and refreshing contrast. You can also consider adding slivers of citrus zest to your brussel sprouts dish to add an extra layer of flavor.

3. Creamy sauces: Pairing brussel sprouts with a creamy sauce like hollandaise or tahini sauce can make a simple side dish feel like a fancy meal. The creamy texture and rich flavor can help to balance any bitterness in the brussel sprouts.

4. Roasted vegetables: Roasting vegetables along with brussel sprouts is an effective way to complement their taste. Roasting vegetables like sweet potatoes, carrots, and onions can add depth to the overall flavor of the dish.

5. Spices: If you’re someone who enjoys bold flavors, consider spicing up your brussel sprouts with curry powder, cumin, or paprika. These spices can help to enhance the sweetness and provide an additional depth of flavor.

what to eat with brussel sprouts

Health Benefits of Brussel Sprouts

Brussel sprouts are a nutrient-dense vegetable that can provide numerous health benefits. One of the biggest benefits is their fiber content, which can help to improve digestion, lower blood sugar levels, and promote a healthy gut.

Additionally, brussel sprouts are a good source of vitamin C, which can strengthen the immune system and protect against oxidative stress. They also contain phytonutrients like sulforaphane, which has been linked to reducing the risk of certain cancers.

Tips and Recipes for Cooking with Brussel Sprouts

1. Roasting: Roasting brussel sprouts in the oven is a popular and easy way to cook them. Simply toss them with olive oil, salt, and your preferred seasonings, then roast them in a 400°F oven for 25-30 minutes until they are crispy and golden brown.

2. Sauteing: Sauteing brussel sprouts in a skillet with some garlic and butter is a quick and delicious way to prepare them. Add some red pepper flakes for an additional kick of heat.

3. Salad: Shredded brussel sprouts can be used as a base for a hearty salad. Add some grilled chicken, cranberries, walnuts, and a citrus dressing for a well-rounded meal.

Brussels sprouts, a member of the cruciferous vegetable family, are a tasty and nutrient-dense vegetable. They are packed with vitamins C and K, fiber, and antioxidants, making them a great addition to any meal.

what to eat with brussel sprouts

Here are six delicious and easy-to-prepare food pairing options that perfectly complement Brussels sprouts:

1. Roasted Brussels sprouts with garlic and parmesan cheese: This non-vegetarian option is easy to make and bursting with flavor. Roast the Brussels sprouts in the oven until they are tender and crispy. Then, toss them with garlic and freshly grated parmesan cheese. The garlic adds savory flavor and the parmesan cheese is a great source of calcium and protein.

2. Brussels sprouts stir-fry with tofu: For a vegetarian option, try stir-frying Brussels sprouts with tofu. Sauté the Brussels sprouts with garlic and ginger until they are tender. Then, add cubed tofu and stir-fry until the tofu is golden brown. This dish is high in protein, fiber, and vitamins.

3. Grilled Brussels sprouts with balsamic glaze: Grilling Brussels sprouts brings out their natural sweetness and caramelizes their surface. Drizzle the grilled Brussels sprouts with a balsamic glaze and sprinkle them with salt, pepper, and freshly chopped herbs. The balsamic glaze adds tanginess and antioxidants to the dish.

4. Brussels sprouts salad with apples and walnuts: This vegetarian salad is both crunchy and delicious. Slice the Brussels sprouts thinly and combine them with chopped apples, walnuts, and dried cranberries. Drizzle with a tangy vinaigrette and enjoy! This salad is high in fiber, healthy fats, vitamins, and antioxidants.

5. Roasted Brussels sprouts with bacon and maple syrup: Brussels sprouts and bacon make an unbeatable combination. Roast the Brussels sprouts until they are tender and crispy, then toss them with crumbled bacon and drizzle with maple syrup. The bacon adds smokiness and the maple syrup provides a touch of sweetness.

6. Brussels sprouts and sweet potato hash: For a hearty breakfast or brunch, try making a sweet potato and Brussels sprout hash. Sauté diced sweet potatoes and Brussels sprouts until they are tender, then add scrambled eggs and cook until the eggs are set. This dish is high in protein, fiber, vitamins, and antioxidants.

what to eat with brussel sprouts

To cook Brussels sprouts to perfection, start by trimming the ends and removing any outer leaves that are damaged. Then, cut them in half or quarters, depending on their size. Roast or sauté them until they are tender on the inside and crispy on the outside. For added flavor, toss them with garlic, herbs, and spices.

Brussels sprouts can be incorporated into different meals in multiple ways. They can be served as a side dish, added to salads, roasted and seasoned as a snack, or even used in breakfast dishes like hashes and omelets. Be creative and experiment with different flavors and cooking methods to discover your favorite way to enjoy this nutritious vegetable.

In summary

Pairing brussel sprouts with the right ingredients can help to make a delicious and nutritious meal. Brussel sprouts are rich in fiber, vitamins, and antioxidants, and by incorporating them into your diet, you can boost your overall health. Experiment with different flavors and textures to find your perfect brussel sprouts pairing.


 1. What are some foods that pair well with Brussels sprouts?

Foods including bacon, nuts, cheese, fruit, and grains. For example, roasted Brussels sprouts with bacon and maple syrup make a delicious side dish. Adding toasted almonds or walnuts can also give the dish a nice crunch.

Cheese lovers may want to try adding Parmesan or feta to their Brussels sprouts. Additionally, Brussels sprouts can be paired with fruits like apples or pomegranates, and even grains like quinoa or farro for a hearty salad.

2. How should I season Brussels sprouts?

Brussels sprouts have a slightly bitter taste, so they are often roasted or sautéed with herbs and spices to enhance their natural sweetness. Some popular flavors include garlic, thyme, rosemary, and smoked paprika.

A simple seasoning of olive oil, salt, and pepper can also be used. You can also try marinating Brussels sprouts in a balsamic vinaigrette or honey mustard sauce to add sweetness and richness to the dish.

3. Should I use fresh or frozen Brussels sprouts?

Fresh Brussels sprouts are typically preferred over frozen ones because they have a better texture and taste. Frozen Brussels sprouts can be mushy and lack that satisfying crunch. However, if fresh Brussels sprouts are not available, frozen ones can still be used in recipes like soups or casseroles, where the texture may not matter as much.

4. How do I cook Brussels sprouts?

There are several ways, including roasting, sautéing, boiling, and grilling. Roasting is a popular method that brings out the sweetness of the sprouts while giving them a slightly crispy texture.

Start by tossing the sprouts in olive oil and seasoning them to taste, then roasting in a preheated oven at 400°F for 25-30 minutes, or until tender and lightly browned. To sauté, simply heat a pan with oil, add the Brussels sprouts, and cook for 10-15 minutes, or until tender.

Boiling is another option, but this method can sometimes make the sprouts mushy, so it’s important to watch them closely and remove them from the water once they are cooked to your liking.

5. Can I eat Brussels sprouts raw?

Yes,particularly if they are thinly sliced or shaved. This method can be used in salads or slaws, which can be a refreshing way to enjoy the vegetable. Raw Brussels sprouts have a slightly bitter taste which some people don’t like, so it’s important to dress them with a sweet or tangy dressing to balance out the taste.

6. Are there any foods that don’t pair well with Brussels sprouts?

Brussels sprouts can be paired with most foods, but they may not be the best option to serve with seafood or dishes that have a strong, bold flavor. For example, pairing Brussels sprouts with spicy or acidic dishes may be overwhelming to the taste buds.

Some people may also find that Brussels sprouts don’t pair well with dairy, so it’s important to experiment with different flavors and find what works best for you.


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