Brussels sprouts can be really great or really terrible. I honestly don’t feel like there’s much of an in-between. It’s true, there are dozens of flavor combos that elevate this humble vegetable, like mustard, balsamic, crushed pecans, and bacon. But without a solid foundation for those ingredients to sit on…your poor spouts will only be *blah* at best. Which is why I bring you- my Charred Brussels Sprouts.
Just a handful of ingredients and a few minutes of your time, you’ll quickly realize charred Brussels sprouts are THE way to go. Once you’ve gotten the basics down you can play allllll day long with endless flavor combos based on the season or other side dishes you might be serving. Heck. These charred Brussels sprouts just might become the main dish!
4 servings per container
- Amount Per Serving% Daily Value *
- Sodium 67mg 3%
- Amount Per Serving% Daily Value *
- Potassium 9mg 1%
- Total Carbohydrate 10.5g 4%
- Dietary Fiber 4.3g 18%
- Sugars 2.5g
- Protein 3.9g 8%
- Calcium 3%
- Iron 8%
* The % Daily Value tells you how much a nutrient in a serving of food contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
Charred Brussels Sprouts Pan Fried VS Oven Roasted
It’s important to note that there’s not a right answer here. Both pan and oven charring Brussels sprouts yield amazing texture and flavor. Once you’ve tried both, you’ll probably swear by one or the other. And hey, that’s the best part of this whole cooking gig- at least for me. I GET TO figure out what I love most and then repeat it. You GET TO do the same.
What’s the deal with charring anyway? How does it work? According to Bruno Xavier (processing authority at Cornell’s Food Venture Center) it boils down to this, “Chemically speaking, char is formed by heating organic matter without the presence of oxygen, in a process known as pyrolysis.” For an in-depth read and tons of tips on achieving the perfect char, for both vegetables and meat, I think you’ll find this article worth the read!
Let’s start with what these two methods have in common and what they both require. Space. It doesn’t matter if you’re pan frying or oven roasting… the more you crowd your sprouts the more those suckers will steam instead of crisp up. This holds true for all vegetables.
Size. In both of these circumstances size matters. If you have an assortment of sprouts, some larger and some smaller, I recommend leaving the small ones whole and slicing the larger ones in half. The goal here is to have everything cook at an even rate so you don’t end up with some crispy and some mushy.
Personally, I like the control that pan frying charred Brussels sprouts gives me. I can start with bacon, remove, and use that same fat to fry my sprouts. I can control which ones I turn over and when. Some sprouts might need more time than others and I can easily remove what needs to be removed and keep sizzling what needs to keep sizzling! Much harder to do in the oven.
However, oven roasting (I recommend 425f / 218c) is a bit easier. So when I’m stressed, running short on time, already have a stovetop filled with pots and pans, or am sitting on the patio with hot wings on the grill… oven roasting certainly becomes my preferred method. Nothing like having one oven rack loaded with sprouts and another loaded with herb roasted potatoes.
Let Me Know
Do my charred Brussels sprouts sounds like something you’d try? Maybe you have a favorite seasonings or add ins you’d like to share? I’d love to hear how you season your sprouts in the comments! That way, we can all learn together 🙂
While you’re at the sharing and commenting, please Save to Pinterest or Share on Facebook. I need all the support I can get to keep on growing this dream of mine. A place where practical beats perfect- and simple, delicious food is a lifestyle. A place where together, we can begin filling homes and tables with joy.
Hugs, because handshakes are awkward~