Brussel sprouts are members of the brassica genus, including broccoli, cauliflower, kale, collards, kohlrabi, radishes, mustard greens, turnips, etc. These healthy vegetables are loaded with vitamins, minerals, and high levels of antioxidants. They help protect against cardiovascular disease, reduce the risk for diabetes, and promote a healthy digestive system. Therefore, if you are looking for the best seasoning for Brussel sprouts, you will find the best tips in this guide.
When it comes to cooking, seasoning is key: use any variety of herbs that you like, but be sure not to overpower the delicate flavor of Brussels sprouts.
This article aims at explaining how to season Brussels sprouts for various cooking methods;
Seasoning for Brussel sprouts
Seasoning for steamed Brussels sprouts
With the right seasonings, steamed Brussels sprouts taste delicious. The first step in preparing them is washing and trimming off their leaves if there’s some on them. Then cut each into halves or quarters depending on its size. It is recommended to cook brussels sprout pieces separately so as not to overcook them.
The following spices go well with steamed Brussels sprouts:
- Garlic powder – 2 teaspoons per quart of water
- Cayenne pepper – 1/4 teaspoon per quart of water
- Paprika – A pinch per quart of water
- Herbs and spices such as pepper, salt, onion, garlic, thyme, bay leaf, oregano, parsley, rosemary, basil, and dill also work great when added during the last minutes of boiling time.
Follow these steps
- Add a little bit of olive oil before adding water.
- Add enough water until all ingredients fit into one cup of liquid.
- Bring water to boil, and then cover the pot. Cook for a maximum of 15 minutes over medium-low heat, stirring occasionally.
- You may need longer times if using larger pieces. Remove from heat once tender but still crisp. Sprinkle with additional garlic powder, cayenne pepper, paprika, basil, dill, fresh ground black pepper, sea salt, or whatever else suits your fancy, and serve as desired.
- Additionally, steamed brussels sprouts may benefit from an optional drizzle of balsamic vinegar. Just take advantage of its sweet flavor by sprinkling a tablespoon of balsamic vinegar onto cooked sprouts. Generally, the best seasonings for steamed Brussels sprouts are the same used for other cooked veggies:
Roasted Brussels sprouts seasoning
If you want to make roasted Brussels sprouts, preheat the oven to 425°F. Wash and trim off leaves if needed. Cut brussels sprouts in half lengthwise. If necessary, remove the outer layer of skin by rubbing between palms.
Coat slices evenly with olive oil and sprinkle with salt, crushed red pepper flakes, black pepper, dried sage, and garlic powder for seasoning. Toss gently to coat thoroughly, arrange halved sprouts on a prepared pan, and roast 15–20 min, turning halfway through roasting time. Serve hot.
The best toppings for roasted Brussels sprouts include grated Parmesan cheese, crumbled bacon bits, chopped walnuts, julienned carrots, shredded lettuce, homemade pesto sauce, or even hummus.
Additionally, you could mix up these two simple recipes:
1) Roast Brussel Sprouts: Omit the parmesan and toss with brown sugar, honey, cinnamon, and nutmeg. Do this after sprinkling with breadcrumbs.
2) Mix Up Brussels Sprouts With Cheese And Bacon Bits. Combine equal parts of shredded sharp Cheddar cheese and crumbled bacon bits. Season lightly with salt and freshly cracked black pepper and toss with sliced shallots and lemon juice.
3) Spread mixture onto a large plate and top with sliced raw Brussels sprouts tossed with extra virgin olive oil & balsamic vinegar. Makes an excellent side dish.
4) For those who prefer savory dishes: Topping ideas include feta cheese, thinly sliced prosciutto, sunflower seeds, sesame seeds, smoked salmon, olives, avocado, tomato, grilled chicken breast strips, capers, diced hard-boiled egg, minced chorizo
How to cook brussels sprouts
For a delicious meal, follow this brussels sprout cooking method;
- Wash and trim off any yellow bottoms, tough stems, and loose leaves. Slice stem ends so they will sit flat when cut across.
- Thinly slice crosswise at least 1/8 inch apart. Place them upright in a skillet filled with about 2 inches of boiling salted water, ensuring there is room around each piece. Cover tightly and steam for 5 minutes then drain well.
- Heat fat in a skillet. When hot, add as many brussels sprouts as can be held comfortably in single layers without crowding, working in batches if necessary.
- Reduce heat slightly and saute uncovered for 4 minutes or just long enough to soften slightly and caramelize edges. Turn carefully with tongs and continue cooking for three more minutes covered, shaking skillet frequently to prevent sticking.
- Add butter and stir until melted. Transfer to a warm serving platter. Repeat procedure for remaining brussels sprouts.
- Sprinkle individual servings with seasonings such as salt, pepper, cayenne, or paprika. Or serve whole cooked brussels sprouts dressed with vinaigrette.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQS)
How do you make Brussels sprouts taste better?
Brussels sprouts are best eaten before their bitter flavor develops. If your recipe calls for steaming them first, then blanching or microwaving helps keep the bitterness down because it stops the formation of oxalic acid. Steaming also preserves nutrients like vitamin K and folate, which help protect against cancer. Boiling causes loss of nutrients and makes them more rigid.
To make them taste better, try adding fresh herbs, sweet spices, vinegar, and citrus juices. Also, try roasting them instead of steaming them. They’re great roasted on the grill, either alone or mixed into salads. Serve with maple syrup, molasses, honey, or apple sauce. You may want to use another vegetable along with the brussels sprouts, especially during the fall and winter months.
What goes well with Brussels sprouts?
Brussels sprouts go perfectly with creamy soups and stews, hearty mushroom dishes, sandwiches, burgers, pizza toppings, Asian food, potato gratins, meatloaf, veggie loaves, or wraps.
Some ideas include baked potatoes, mashed potatoes, pasta salad, green beans, broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage, squash, carrots, parsnips, turnip greens, kale, spinach, Swiss chard, beetroot, romanesco, snow peas, zucchini, tomatoes, and corn. Therefore, seasoning for Brussel sprouts will require you to know the right spices to use.
Selecting the right seasoning for Brussel sprouts is essential. Although some people find Brussel sprouts bland, it’s evident that they aren’t flavorful unless appropriately seasoned. So choose from any spice blends available, but remember that too much of anything will overpower the delicate nature of this delicious root vegetable.
You may also want to check the best seasoning for broccoli.
Below is also one of the helpful YouTube videos that you may want to check. It is about Roasted Brussel Sprouts Recipe and can be helpful as well: