Unfortunately, Brussels sprouts are the type of food that strikes horror in the hearts of picky eaters, adults and children alike. Let’s be honest, we get it. When prepared badly, Brussels are anything but appetizing. When you sauté a few Brussels sprouts without much seasoning, you’re bound to chow down on some bitter, hard, green balls of no thank you. However, if you really take the time to cook Brussels sprouts right, and employ some great sauces and techniques, this vegetable can become down right addictive and craving satisfying. In this Brussels sprouts recipe, we add bacon to help us get there. Don’t worry, we promise, the smoke of the bacon, the heat of the red pepper flakes, and the crunch of the almond will win over even the most stubborn veggi-phobe.
120 calories, 5 g fat (1.5 g saturated), 310 mg sodium
4 strips bacon, chopped into small pieces
2 cloves garlic, peeled
1 tsp red pepper flakes
1 lb Brussels sprouts, bottoms trimmed, cut in half
Salt and black pepper to taste
2 Tbsp sliced almonds
How to Make It
- Heat a large skillet or sauté pan over medium heat.
- Add the bacon and cook until crispy, about 5 minutes.
- Remove to a plate lined with paper towels.
- Discard all but 1 tablespoon of the rendered bacon fat.
- Add the garlic, pepper flakes, Brussels sprouts, and a pinch of salt to the skillet.
- Sauté until the sprouts are lightly browned on the outside and tender—but still firm—throughout, 10 to 12 minutes.
- Add the almonds and sauté for another minute or two.
- Season with salt and pepper.
Eat This Tip
Keep Vegetables Vegetarian:
Like all of our recipes, this dish is adaptable. To make this dish vegetarian and vegan-friendly, feel free to cut out the bacon all together. You can either add in sautéed pieces of your favorite soy sausage option, or leave it out entirely and just add more nuts. For those allergic to nuts, remove them entirely and add pumpkin or sunflower seeds. To keep the salty crunch that the bacon provides, roast the seeds in olive oil and Himalayan sea salt, or even a bit of soy sauce to give them a salty crunch.
This recipe (and hundreds more!) came from one of our Cook This, Not That! books. For more easy cooking ideas, you can also buy the book!
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