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6 Brussels Sprouts Recipes That Taste Unhealthy, but Aren’t

6 Brussels Sprouts Recipes That Taste Unhealthy, but Aren’t

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You'll never believe these bacon- and cheese-loaded Brussels sprouts recipes are actually healthy.

A wise friend once told me, “If there are Brussels sprouts on the menu, order them,” and I couldn’t agree more. However, those tasty, crispy, savory Brussels sprouts dishes aren’t always super healthy, and they can rack up calories, sugar, and fats prety quickly if you're not careful.

The good news is, you can totally make a healthier version of your favorite gourmet sprouts recipes at home. You just have to make a few simple tweaks to amp up the nutrition, without compromising taste.

Eating healthy should still be delicious.

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Tossed With Brown Butter Vinaigrette

Yup—that’s right. Brown butter. This shaved Brussels sprouts salad tastes creamy and indulgent, thanks to the buttery vinaigrette, but it’s actually pretty good for you! You’ll want to slice Brussels and some fruit, like grapes, and sauté for a crispy texture.

“Set a stainless steel sauté pan on the stove. Add 3 tablespoons of butter. Allow to heat to a deep golden brown. The melted butter will start to give off a nutty aroma. Remove from heat and add 1 tablespoon of sherry vinegar to stop the cooking and season with salt for more flavor,” says Daisies owner and executive chef Joe Frillman.

Thinly slice some red onions and toast a handful of pecans until they’re shiny and fragrant. Let them cool. In the bowl with the shaved Brussels Sprouts, toss the sherry vinaigrette, salt, pepper, pecans, red onion and grapes until everything is combined. For a topper, add some cheese, like grated Parmigiano-Reggiano.

A Perfect Thanksgiving Side Dish

’Tis the season for cranberries, and this simple roasted Brussels sprouts dish is the perfect side for your turkey, says Chicago-based Julie Pappas, RD. You’ll need a pound of sprouts, 2 1/2 tablespoons olive oil, 3/4 teaspoon sea salt, a cup of walnuts, chopped, and 3/4 cup dried cranberries.

Place oil-coated Brussels in the oven at 400 degrees F for 15 minutes, toss, and then place back in for another 10-15 minutes, depending on desired crispiness, she says. Then, mix the rest of the ingredients together. The walnuts and cranberries add a nutty sweetness that feels super decadent, but is highly nutritious.

Love Brussels sprouts? Try making these recipes next:

Simply Roasted (But Crispy!)

The easiest way to enjoy Brussels sprouts that taste decadent but are actually good for you is by roasting them until they’re extra crispy. “My favorite easy way to do that is combine 2 cups of shredded Brussels sprouts (I usually buy them pre-shredded from Trader Joe’s) with 1 tablespoon of olive and 1/8 teaspoon of salt,” says NYC-based Natalie Rizzo, MS, RD.

Roast in the oven at 425 degrees for 15-20 minutes or until they start to crisp up and turn brown. “For an even saltier bite, sprinkle with shredded parmesan,” she suggests.

Put an Egg on Top

Take the simply roasted recipe from above and add an egg, says Rizzo. “Another way to make Brussels taste 'unhealthy' is to pair them with a runny egg, which offers some fat and protein,” she explains. You can make crispy Brussels in the oven and simply top with a fried egg, giving the dish that oozy, gooey, delicious texture and warmth. Add some spice, like cayenne pepper, sriracha, chili flakes, or miso for more flavor.

Stuff in a Taco

Swap lettuce for Brussels sprouts for a taco filling, which will increase the flavor profile and nutrition. “Top a breakfast taco with raw shredded Brussels, instead of lettuce. To do so, use a corn tortilla, top with a fried egg, some shredded Monterey jack, pico de gallo and shredded Brussels sprouts for crunch,” says Rizzo.

Plus, don’t assume you can’t eat these babies post-morning. You can enjoy tacos all day—plus, they’re a great way to get your kids to eat (and enjoy) Brussels sprouts.

Add Some Crunch

“Roasting with olive oil brings out a delicious flavor and pairs wonderfully with a feta and pumpkin seed mix,” says Elizabeth Shaw, MS, RDN, CLT, CPT. You can follow the simply roasted Brussels sprouts recipe, but then add an ounce or two of feta cheese and 1/4 to 1/2 cup of pumpkin seeds for some crunch, depending on how much you’re whipping up. The crunchiness makes it taste indulgent—but it’s actually good for you and adds in some healthy fats, fiber, and protein.

Crumble Bacon Bits

“Nitrate-free Bacon is also a great, more indulgent addition where a little bit can go a long way,” says Shaw. Take about 1-2 slices of bacon and cut into 1-inch pieces, and then cook the bacon in a large skillet over medium heat and stir until pieces are brown. About 3 to 6 minutes should do it, with the longer amount of time increasing crispiness. Include in a basic sautéed Brussels sprouts recipe for a delicious, savory addition.

Diet-Friendly Side Dishes to Complete Meal

Most people are hesitant to start a diet and make sure they are healthy. This is because they feel they will have very limited eating options and they won’t be able to follow such a strict diet. It is true that by following a diet you choose not to indulge in unhealthy or fatty food.

T his does not mean that there aren’t enough healthy recipes to make sure you can enjoy your diet while becoming healthier.

What Makes Brussels Sprouts So Good for You?

Brussels sprouts belong to the family of cruciferous vegetables (others include broccoli, kale, and cabbage,) and this is a super high-achieving family when it comes to nutrition.

These veggies are rich in fiber, Vitamin K for healthy bones, and Vitamin C for a strong immune system. The antioxidants in Brussels sprouts may calm inflammation in our cells and evenprevent cancer.

Like other cruciferous veggies, Brussels sprouts help maintain healthy blood sugar. Eating lots of them lowers your risk of developing diabetes.

Brussels sprouts also happen to be one of the best plant sources of omega-3 fatty acids, an important nutrient that’s usually found in fish.

2. Hippie Bowl

This colorful bowl has gut-friendly benefits apart from being a healthy detox food.


  • 1/2 cup uncooked quinoa, rinsed
  • 2 carrots
  • 4 radishes
  • 2 avocados, stone removed
  • 1 handful mixed baby lettuce
  • 2 small kale leaves, stems removed
  • 1/2 fennel bulb
  • 2 fried eggs
  • 4 tbsp golden sauerkraut
  • 2 tbsp tahini
  • 2 tsp olive oil
  • 2 tsp lemon juice
  • 1 pinch sea salt and black pepper
  • 2 tsp hemp seeds


  1. Add 1 cup of water to rinsed quinoa in a saucepan and add a pinch of salt to it. Bring it to boil and let it cook gently for about 15 minutes on low heat, or until you see small tails on the quinoa seeds. Set aside to cool in a large mixing bowl.
  2. Slice the carrots and the radishes. Slice the fennel very finely. Chop the kale after removing the stem. Cut the avocados into small cubes.
  3. Place all the cut and chopped ingredients, including the mixed baby lettuce, into the quinoa bowl.
  4. Drizzle with olive oil, lemon juice, salt and pepper and give it a good toss with your hands, followed by adding a generous tablespoon tahini and a couple of tablespoons sauerkraut.
  5. Top with a fried eggs and sprinkle some hemp seeds. Serve immediately.

Category Archives: Sides

Fried Brussels Sprouts with Pepper Jelly

Not a fan of Brussels sprouts? Then here’s the perfect gateway drug into liking these abhorred veggies. Trust me, they’re good and I’ve been able to turn Brussels sprouts haters into at least likers, if not lovers.

They have to be good, right? They’re fried. I would recommend serving Fried Brussels Sprouts with Pepper Jelly with a nice pork dish or chicken dish.

Fry the Brussels sprouts in sunflower oil until they are nice and crispy.

  • 1/2 lb. of fresh Brussels sprouts, halved
  • 3 TBSP pepper jelly
  • 2 tsp paprika
  • 1 TBSP salt
  • 1 tsp white pepper
  • 2 tsp black pepper
  • 3 cups oil for frying (I used sunflower)
  1. Rinse the halved Brussels sprouts in a colander. Dry with a paper towel, then toss with paprika, white pepper, black pepper and salt in a medium bowl.
  2. Heat oil in large pot or Dutch oven until temp reaches at least 400F (the temp will drop when you add the Brussels sprouts). NOTE: 425F is the smoke temp for sunflower so be sure not to exceed 425F. If using a different oil, be sure to check the smoke temp for your oil.
  3. Once oil is heated, set Brussels sprouts and 1/2 TBSP of pepper jelly in the oil. Flipping often to cook on all sides. You may have to work in batches.
  4. Using a slotted spoon, remove Brussels sprouts from oil and drain on a paper towel-lined plate.
  5. Once all Brussels sprouts have been fried, toss with remaining pepper jelly in a medium bowl then serve while still warm.

I highly recommend using sunflower oil for this recipe. It’s rich in polyunsaturated fat so not as unhealthy as other oils available.

Fried Brussels Sprouts with Pepper Jelly is a very simple recipe with minimal ingredients. The pepper jelly does a lot of the work when it comes to flavor since it’s sweet, acidic and spicy. Try this recipe on someone who claims not to like Brussels sprouts and turn them into a believer.

Healthy Pork Recipes

Pulled pork… Pork chops… Bacon?? To most people’s ears, they sound like foods you should avoid if you want to eat healthy. But the way you prepare them, and the foods you include alongside (or leave out), can do a lot to round out the nutrition profile of your meals, save calories, and promote satiety without sacrificing flavor. Langdon offers the following options.

DINNER: Slow-Cooked BBQ Pulled Pork Sandwiches with Coleslaw

Prep time: 15 minutes

Cook time: 3–4 hours on high, 5–6 on low

Serving size: 1 sandwich

Yields: 8 sandwiches


10 oz. no-sugar-added barbeque sauce**

8 Whole-grain artisan-style burger buns***


¼ cup avocado oil mayonnaise****

¼ cup full-fat plain Skyr or Greek yogurt

2 tsp. apple cider vinegar

*This specific brand is free of refined sugar, contains no artificial dyes, and is sweetened with stevia.

**We used Good Food for Good Organic Classic BBQ Sauce. It’s sweetened with dates and has 3g sugar per serving.

***We used Dave’s Killer Bread USDA Organic Burger Buns Done Right. They’re free of high-fructose corn syrup and bleached flour.


Step 1. Add the meat to a slow cooker, and cover with the Zevia ginger root beer. Cook on low 5–6 hours, or on high 3–4 hours, depending on when you want it finished.

Step 2. Add all of the slaw ingredients to a mixing bowl. Stir to combine. You can prepare the slaw the day before. The longer it sits in the fridge, the better it tastes!

Step 3. When the meat is finished cooking, transfer it to a large cutting board and shred with two forks. Transfer the shredded meat to a large mixing bowl, and toss it with the barbeque sauce.

Step 4. Serve on a warm burger bun with a scoop of slaw. Pickles and beer are optional (but encouraged!).

SIDE DISH: Crispy Bacon Brussels Sprouts with Whole-Grain Mustard Sauce

Prep time: 15 minutes

Cook time: 20 minutes


6 slices bacon (preferably with vitamin C added, or uncured/nitrate-free)

5 cups Brussels sprouts, halved and trimmed


3 tsp. apple cider vinegar


Step 1. Place a cast-iron skillet over medium-high heat. Cut bacon strips into small, ½-inch thick pieces, and add to the pan. Cook, stirring occasionally, until crispy.

Step 2. Transfer the bacon bits to a paper towel-lined plate. Discard most of the rendered fat, but leave 1 tbsp. in the pan.

Step 3. Add the Brussels sprouts, garlic, salt, and pepper to the pan. Cook until the sprouts’ edges are golden brown, and they’re fully cooked—approximately 10 minutes.

Step 4. While the Brussels sprouts cook, make the mustard sauce in a small mixing bowl, whisking together all the ingredients. When the Brussels are done, remove from heat. When they’re slightly cooled, toss in the mustard sauce and bacon bits, and serve warm.

DINNER: Pan-Seared Pork Chops with Spiced Apples

Prep time: 15 minutes

Brine Time: 45 minutes

Cook time: 50 minutes


2 bone-in pork chops, about 1-inch thick

Ghee (or high-smoke point oil of choice, like avocado oil or rendered bacon fat)

Black pepper and sea salt, to taste


2 tbsp. salt, or enough to generously coat the meat


1 Granny smith apple, peeled, cored, and diced


Head of broccolini, trimmed

1 tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil

1 tbsp liquid aminos (we used Bragg’s Liquid Aminos)


Step 1. Rinse the pork chops, and pat them dry. Mix the spices for the dry brine, and completely coat the chops. Keep in the fridge 45 minutes, or overnight if you have the time.

Step 2. Boil the potatoes until you can easily pierce them with a fork. Mash the potatoes, and add flavor with 1 tbsp. butter, garlic, salt, and pepper.

Step 3. Toss the broccolini in the olive oil, liquid aminos, garlic powder, salt, and pepper, and roast in a 350-degree oven for 30 minutes.

Step 4. Meanwhile, lightly coat a cast-iron skillet with the ghee, and place over high heat until smoking. Add the pork chops, and flip until all sides have a golden crust—about 5–7 minutes.

Step 5. Add the butter, garlic cloves, and fresh thyme to the skillet. Continue cooking and flipping frequently for an additional 5 minutes, or until the internal temperature of the pork reads 135 degrees Fahrenheit (medium doneness). Remove the chops from the heat, and let the meat rest 5 minutes before serving.

Step 6. Discard thyme sprigs and garlic cloves, but leave the remaining oils, thyme leaves, and brown bits on the skillet to flavor the apple.

Step 7. Add the diced apple and butter to the skillet and turn heat to medium-high. Stir and cook the apples until softened. Then add the spices, vinegar, coconut sugar, and maple syrup. Lower the heat to medium-low, and reduce to a syrup consistency, about 6 minutes. Serve the spiced apple over the pork chops, and with the mashed potatoes and broccolini on the side.

Dinners & Side Dishes

Did I just read one pan and paleo? Not only is this healthy, but it’s super easy too! It makes for an beautiful and colorful center piece when filling up the dinner table.

2. Roasted Brussels Sprouts, Cinnamon Butternut Squash, Pecans, and Cranberries

If you need an easy to prep side dish, then I’d highly recommend this one. It’s filled with flavor and super simple to make.

3. Crispy Roasted Rosemary Sweet Potatoes

I’ve always loved rosemary with baked or fried potatoes, so combining this aromatic herb with sweet potatoes is just taking it to a whole different level for me!

4. Honey Roasted Butternut Squash, Cranberries, and Feta

This dish makes for a great sweet and tangy side. Easy to assemble and definitely a taste bud pleaser.

5. Cranberry-Rosemary Stuffed Pork Loin

Now if you’re looking for a great main dish that just looks plain amazing, then definitely try this one out. While it’s aesthetically pleasing, it’ll probably end up being everyone’s favorite dish as well.

6. Roasted Sweet Potatoes and Brussels Sprouts

Again, just another easy way to amaze your guests with a tasty side dish. Super simple and delicious!

17 Brussels Sprouts Recipes That Will Set Your Thanksgiving Feast Apart

Green beans and mashed potatoes usually get the spotlight on Thanksgiving, but these Brussels sprouts recipes will convince you to give them another chance.

Of all the ill will directed toward leafy green vegetables, Brussels sprouts seem to get the brunt of the negativity. And why should they? They can be prepared so many ways, can get crispier than a potato chip, and can end up tasting the way you'd imagine fall tastes. In the never-ending quest to provide justice for this over-looked and underrated vegetable, incorporate Brussels Sprouts into your Thanksgiving menu this year. Whether you want something fall-inspired, crispy, fresh, salty, or sweet, these Brussels sprouts Thanksgiving recipes will be the perfect addition to your Turkey Day feast. And with all the delicious ways to prepare these good-for-you veggies, even the naysayers will find themselves asking for a second, or even third, helping. So step aside, mashed potatoes, candied yams, and green beans, because this Thanksgiving season it's all about the Brussels sprouts. (Oh, and some tasty Thanksgiving desserts, of course, if you manage to save room!)

These pan-roasted Brussels can be made on the stovetop to save precious oven space during Thanksgiving meal prep. The tangy bacon vinaigrette that accompanies this dish will be something you'll want to put on everything.

This sweet and sour, Chinese-inspired recipe will bring fresh and unique flavors to your Thanksgiving dinner table. And the bonus: They'll be ready in less than half an hour.

Take some of the stress out of cooking on Thanksgiving day by prepping the Brussels for this salad up to two days in advance. This recipe incorporates toasted hazelnuts, honey, and dried cranberries, adding the perfect hint of sweetness without it bing overpowering.

The maple flavor of these sprouts works perfectly in the fall. And the almonds will add the right amount of crunch. It'll take about 25 minutes to prep and another 25 minutes to cook, so this recipe will definitely do if you're in a pinch and a little bit of a rush come Thanksgiving Day.

Combine apple cider with dried cranberries to create a wonderfully crisp fall flavor for your sprouts. This recipe yields eight servings, takes 50 minutes to make from prep to service, and only includes five easy-to-use ingredients.

Make your classic Brussels sprouts more exciting by giving them their very own dipping sauce. This aioli only needs three ingredients to make, so it looks way fancier than it actually is.

Get the recipe at Delish.

When in doubt, cover your food in cheese. This ooey, gooey, cheesy recipe will instantly become a family favorite. It'll take about 25 minutes to prep, 1 hour and 10 minutes to cook, and will give you about eight servings (a little less if there's a cheese-lover in your house, though).

Get the recipe at Delish.

If you're looking for something to lighten up your meal, try incorporating your Brussels sprouts into a salad. A Caesar is a classic go-to salad that pleases everyone, and the addition of the sprouts will make timeless staple stand out.

Get the recipe at Delish.

If you're tired of turning on the oven and stove, try this Brussels Sprouts recipe that features the tasty veggie in all its raw glory. Garnish with pomegranate seeds for the perfect fall accent and pop of flavor.

Get the recipe at Delish.

The line for the oven on Thanksgiving day is like the line for the Matterhorn at Disneyland: seemingly endless. Grilling your Brussels Sprouts will free up some space and time in the oven, and you'll be able to char them perfectly. The best part? This recipe only requires 15 minutes of prep time and takes a quick 30 minutes to cook.

Get the recipe at Delish.

These Kung Pao Brussels only take 30 minutes to make, but bring a bold flavor profile to the table that's often absent from Thanksgiving meals. And with just a 10 minute prep time and 35 minute cook, how quickly you can bang out this recipe will more than make up for the myriad of ingredients required to pull it off.

Get the recipe at Delish.

This recipe can work with Fontina, Gruyere, or white cheddar, so you can choose whichever cheese you like best. It takes 1 hour and 15 minutes to cook, feeds six people, and is sure to become your family's go-to casserole dish.

Get the recipe at Delish.

This recipe one of the simplest ways to prepare sprouts. Using just five ingredients to enhance the flavor of your Brussels Sprouts, make sure you allow them to sizzle in the pan until they're golden brown to achieve that perfect caramelized taste.

Get the recipe at Delish.

Take out a little bit of your seasonal holiday aggression with this smashed Brussels recipe. Make sure to pat them dry after you give them a good smash so they can get super crispy in the oven.

Get the recipe at Delish.

After baking these Brussels, toss them with freshly grated parmesan and pop them back into the oven for a couple minutes to allow the cheese to get melty. The perfect combination of both hearty and fresh, this festive recipe takes only 45 minutes to make and is enhanced by that little extra drizzle of honey at the end.

Get the recipe at Delish.

Roasting your Brussels is a classic way to prepare the vegetable. You know what they say: if it ain't broke, don't fix it. Just toss your Brussels Sprouts in olive oil, spread on your tray, and pop them in the oven at 425 degrees for a quick 30 minutes.

Get the recipe at Delish.

These Brussels sprouts can be prepped in five minutes, and after that all you have to do is throw them in the oven for a little under half an hour. The hardest part of this recipe is waiting for them to be ready.

Get the recipe at Delish.


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9 Healthy Summer Side Dishes Your Family Will Love

1. Oven Sweet Potato Fries

French fries are a long-time classic side dish to pretty much any sandwich or burger. While typical french fries are, well, fried (and full of unhealthy fats), these sweet potato fries are baked and loaded with nutrients. Plus, they taste incredible, too!

2. Dairy-Free Farmer’s Market Risotto

The creamy, decadent, and healthy dairy-free farmers market risotto is an excellent side dish option for grilled chicken or fish. This particular recipe utilizes summer veggies, but you can customize the recipe for any season!

3. Strawberry, Avocado, and Spinach Salad

Salad is one of my absolute favorite side dishes, mostly because it’s so versatile! With so many different and delicious options, a salad never gets old. This strawberry, avocado, and spinach salad is bound to become one of your new favorite summer sides!

4. Cilantro Lime Basmati Rice

This yummy Chipotle copycat recipe only requires six ingredients, and it’s a whole lot healthier than the real thing. There’s no need to fret, though it tastes just as awesome! We’ve swapped out a few ingredients to make this recipe healthier, without sacrificing any flavor.

5. Old-Fashioned Potato Salad

Traditional potato salad recipes are loaded with mayonnaise, and therefore unhealthy fats. This old-fashioned potato salad will taste just as good as Grandma’s recipe, but it’s much healthier. It’s a great addition to burgers, pulled pork, and more!

6. Southwestern Brussels Sprout Coleslaw

Coleslaw is another all-time classic side dish that’s perfect for any picnic or cookout. Typical recipes contain loads of unhealthy fat and sugar. This healthy slaw uses avocado, honey, and lime juice instead of mayonnaise. Plus, it contains two of our favorite superfoods — kale and Brussels sprouts — for an extra punch of nutrients. Kick mayo-based recipes to the curb and bring this tasty coleslaw to the next family gathering instead.

7. Maple Baked Beans

I don’t remember a single family celebration that didn’t include a side of delicious baked beans. They go perfectly with barbecue, burgers, hot dogs — you name it! These homemade maple baked beans contain so much more flavor than unhealthy, processed beans from a can, too.

8. Instant Pot Corn on the Cob with Chipotle Sauce

Plain corn on the cob is good, but corn on the cob with chipotle sauce is the bomb! Because this recipe is made in the Instant Pot, it only takes five minutes to prepare! If you enjoy tangy and delicious recipes with just the right amount of spice, you’re going to love this corn on the cob!

9. Healthiest Greek Salad

I don’t know about you, but Greek salad is my favorite side to eat on pizza night! I try to fill up on the veggies first, so I don’t stuff myself with too much cheese and dough. It really works! I’ll tell you a little secret: This Greek salad recipe is so fresh and yummy that it makes me second guess eating the pizza altogether.

What do you think about these healthy summer side dishes? Are you looking forward to trying any? Did your favorite summer side dish make the list? Let us know in the comment section!

Also, if you aren’t already, be sure to follow us on Pinterest for more incredible recipes for any time of the year!

10. Vegan Creamy Roasted Red Pepper Soup

Vegans and non-vegans will definitely agree that a delicious, creamy soup can't be beat, especially on cold fall and winter nights. And there's no reason that those who follow a vegan eating pattern shouldn't have a creamy soup sans actual cream.

This roasted red pepper soup is a cinch to prepare and gets its creaminess from pureed white beans, which also add fiber and protein. Make it easy on yourself and use jarred roasted red peppers and canned tomatoes.

Vegans and non-vegans will definitely agree that a delicious, creamy soup can't be beat, especially on cold fall and winter nights. And there's no reason that those who follow a vegan eating pattern shouldn't have a creamy soup sans actual cream.

This roasted red pepper soup is a cinch to prepare and gets its creaminess from pureed white beans, which also add fiber and protein. Make it easy on yourself and use jarred roasted red peppers and canned tomatoes.