Grilled Brussels Sprouts
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Grilled Brussels Sprouts are guaranteed to become your new favorite summer side dish! The sprouts are seasoned with a delicious combination of spices and finished off with lemon zest and parmesan cheese.
They’re easy to make in just 20 minutes and delicious served with a dipping sauce or on top of a salad!
Thank you to the California Farm Water Coalition for sponsoring today’s post!
Table of contents
Allow me to introduce you to your new favorite vegetable to toss on the grill, brussels sprouts! While typically brussels sprouts are thought of as a fall and winter vegetable, due to the many micro-climates of California, you can find fresh brussels sprouts year-round. Hello summer brussels!
In the winter, my favorite way to cook brussels sprouts is over high heat in a cast iron skillet on the stove. I took this exact same method and transfered it to the grill and it worked perfectly!
The key to getting crispy grilled brussels sprouts is allowing them to grill over high heat, untouched, for 6 minutes. Not touching the brussels sprouts is the most important part of this step! It allows them to get a nice crispy char on the cut side of the sprouts, before flipping them to finish cooking on the other side.
The brussels sprouts are seasoned before you toss them on the grill with salt, pepper, garlic and onion powder, as well as my secret ingredient, dry mustard powder. After they finish on the grill, toss them with some lemon zest and parmesan cheese for a bright, citrusy, salty flavor.
Once the sprouts are off the grill, you can dip them into this Harissa Tahini Sauce for an epic appetizer, or toss them on top of a salad for a delicious side dish or main course. You can also serve them as a side dish at a summer BBQ or tossed with pasta and olive oil for a delicious Italian dinner. No matter how you serve them, I guarantee that you’re going to fall in love with this new, easy way to eat brussels sprouts!
- For the grilled brussels sprouts
- Fresh brussels sprouts – when selecting the sprouts at the grocery store, try to find sprouts that are all the same size, so that they’ll cook evenly on the grill.
- Olive oil
- Kosher salt
- Coarse ground black pepper
- Onion powder
- Garlic powder
- Dry mustard powder – this may also be labeled as ground mustard or powdered mustard at the grocery store. They’re all the same thing and you can use them interchangeably.
- Lemon zest – I highly recommend using a grater or zester to zest the outside of a lemon right before preparing this recipe, so you’ll have fresh lemon zest to finish off the dish!
- Parmesan cheese – I recommend fresh shredded parmesan cheese whenever possible for the best flavor.
- For the salad
- Romaine lettuce hearts
- Parmesan cheese
- Sliced almonds – or the nut of your choice, pine nuts or pistachios would also be great on this salad.
- Apple – for this recipe, I used a pink lady apple. You’ll want an apple that’s crisp and doesn’t brown too quickly when diced. Honeycrisp and Fuji apples are also great choices.
- Lemon Vinaigrette Dressing – I love this 5 minute homemade dressing recipe to pair with this salad. The zesty lemon flavor pairs perfectly with the brussels sprouts, tossed in lemon zest. You could also use your favorite store bought lemon or vinaigrette dressing for a quick and easy option.
- Prepare the brussels sprouts. Slice the stem end off of the brussels sprouts, then slice them in half lengthwise. Remove any loose outer leaves from the sprouts, then place them in a large bowl. Add olive oil, salt, pepper, onion powder and garlic powder to the bowl. Toss the sprouts to coat them in the seasoning.
- Grill the brussels sprouts. Preheat a grill over high heat. Once the grill is hot, oil the grill grates, then place the sprouts, cut side down on the hot grill for 6 minutes. Close the grill and do not open it, or flip the brussels sprouts, until the 6 minute timer is complete. After 6 minutes, open the lid of the grill and flip the brussels sprouts. Continue cooking for another 4-6 minutes.
- Finish the brussels sprouts. Remove the brussels sprouts from the grill and place them back in the bowl that you seasoned them in. Add the lemon zest and parmesan cheese and toss to coat the sprouts. Either serve immediately as an appetizer or side dish, or add them to a salad.
How to serve the brussels sprouts
- As an appetizer – these grilled brussels sprouts are the perfect summer appetizer! They have the beautiful charred flavor from the grill and with a drizzle of lemon juice, they taste light and zesty. For even more flavor, dip them into one of my favorite sauces! Here are a few ideas to start with.
- Harissa Tahini Sauce – this is the sauce on the side of the sprouts throughout this recipe post. I honestly couldn’t recommend this combination any more! It’s a match-made in grilled veggie heaven!
- Chimichurri Sauce – I’m always a fan of drizzling a little chimichurri over grilled veggies.
- Vegan Avocado Ranch Dip – if you’re looking for something on the creamy side, you can never go wrong with this homemade ranch dip, made even creamier with the addition of avocado!
- Creamy Cashew Chipotle Sauce – if you’d like a sauce with a spicy kick, this creamy chipotle sauce is just what you’re looking for!
- On a salad – I originally made the sprouts to go on a salad, but then I ate them all before they made it on the salad! Seriously, they’re that good! So, I made some more and added them to the salad and it was delicious! The salad is delicious for lunch as an entree, but it could also be served as a side dish at your next BBQ.
- To prepare the salad, chop romaine lettuce hearts and add them to a large mixing bowl. Toss with lemon vinaigrette dressing. Top with parmesan cheese, almonds, diced avocado, diced apples and grilled brussels sprouts.
- As a side dish – fresh off the grill, these brussels sprouts are the perfect side dish to go with a main dish from the grill or smoker. Try them as a side with any of these main courses.
- Tossed with pasta – toss the brussels sprouts with cooked angel hair pasta, a drizzle of olive oil and lemon juice. Add a sprinkle of parmesan cheese on top for a delicious dinner made in less than 30 minutes!
Frequently asked questions
- Do you need to soak or blanch the sprouts before grilling them? For this recipe, you do not need to soak or blanch the sprouts. I actually tried this method and was more impressed by the flavor and texture of the brussels sprouts, cooked straight on the grill. Not to mention, it saves time and an extra step in the recipe!
- Do you need to cut the sprouts in half before grilling them? Yes! This is how you get that beautiful char on the cut side of the sprouts, while still cooking the sprouts all the way through.
- How do you cook brussels sprouts so they are not bitter? The center of the brussels sprouts contain the flavor compounds that contribute to a bitter flavor. This is another reason why we slice the veggies in half, to release those compounds during the cooking process. Also, grilling the sprouts until they have a nice char on the outside will cook out the bitter flavor and leave you with crispy, salty, perfectly flavored brussels sprouts!
- Should you place the sprouts directly on the grill grate? Yes! The sprouts need to cook directly on the grill grate for that beautiful charred look and flavor. Be sure to oil the grill grates before adding the brussels sprouts to the grill. This will prevent them from sticking when it’s time to flip them. If you’re worried about the sprouts falling through the grill grates, grill them on a large piece of non-stick foil. The grill marks will still come through the foil and clean-up is a breeze!
- Can you make this recipe vegan? Yes, simply omit the parmesan cheese to make this recipe vegan. Replace the parmesan with a sprinkling of flaky sea salt at the end to give the dish that delicious salty finish!
Fun facts about brussel sprouts
Thanks to the California Farm Water Coalition, I was able to take a virtual tour of Ocean Mist Farms, a grower of brussels sprouts in Southern California. I spoke with Adrian, who manages the farm, and learned more about how they grow one of my favorite vegetables. Here are some of the fun facts that I learned.
- All of the brussels sprouts at Ocean Mist Farms are hand-harvested. That means each and every brussels sprout is hand picked off the stalk before making it’s way into your kitchens!
- Brussels sprouts on the stalk mature before the sprouts on the top of the plant. Because of this, they are harvested separately, generally 1-2 weeks apart.
- The brussels sprouts plants will grow between 12-30 feet tall, depending on the time of season and the temperature.
- Brussels sprouts are more frost-resistant than other crops they grow, meaning they can plant them in more regions for a year-round growing season.
- Ocean Mist Farms now controls their irrigation system through an app on their phones. Just like smart devices at our house, farmers have gotten smarter in the fields to regulate their water usage. Having this app available means they’re able to monitor their water usage even when they’re not in the fields, so each crop gets the perfect amount of water.
More brussels sprouts recipes
Now that you know more about these delicious little vegetables, here are a few more must-try brussels sprouts recipes!
Grilled Brussels Sprouts
- 1 pound brussels sprouts
- 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 teaspoon ground black pepper
- 1 teaspoon onion powder
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1 teaspoon dry mustard
- 1 teaspoon grated lemon zest
- 1 tablespoon Parmesan cheese, fresh shredded
- Preheat a grill over high heat and oil the grill grates.
- Cut off the stem end of the brussels sprouts and slice them in half lengthwise.
- Remove any loose outer leaves from the sprouts and add them to a large bowl.
- Add the olive oil, salt, pepper, onion powder, garlic powder and dry mustard powder, toss the sprouts to coat in the seasoning.
- Place the sprouts, cut side down, on a hot grill for 6 minutes. Do not touch the sprouts during this cooking time.
- After 6 minutes, flip the sprouts and continue cooking for an additional 4-6 minutes.
- Remove the sprouts from the grill and place them back in the bowl that you seasoned them in at the beginning of the recipe.
- Add the lemon zest and parmesan cheese, toss to coat.
- Serve immediately as a side dish, with a dipping sauce as an appetizer, or on top of a salad. (Dipping sauce recommendations and salad recipe instructions below.)
- To serve the brussels sprouts on a salad, you’ll need:
- 2 romaine hearts (chopped)
- ¼ cup parmesan cheese (freshly grated)
- ¼ cup sliced almonds
- ½ avocado (diced)
- ½ red apple (diced)
- ⅓ cup lemon vinaigrette dressing
- How to prepare the salad:
- Chop the romaine hearts and add them to a large mixing bowl.
- Toss the chopped romaine with the lemon vinaigrette dressing.
- Top with the parmesan cheese, almonds, diced avocado, diced apples and grilled brussels sprouts.
- If serving the sprouts as an appetizer, I recommend the following dipping sauces:
- This recipe can be made vegan by omitting the parmesan cheese. Replace the parmesan with a sprinkling of flaky sea salt at the end to give the dish that delicious salty finish!
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