Grilled Brussels Sprouts

October 27, 2009
3 Ratings
Author Notes

My husband turned me into a huge Brussels Sprouts fan with this fuss free, endlessly adaptable recipe. He varies it a little each time, but the result is always delicious. —kitchenwitchcookie

Test Kitchen Notes

Grilled Brussels sprouts? Yes, please, and thank you. We were drawn to this recipe because it approaches this fall-favorite vegetable in a way we'd never tried before. First, you blanch the sprouts in boiling salted water, and then you coat them in a mixture of olive oil, celery salt, onion and garlic powder, salt and pepper before charring them lightly on the grill. Another toss in the seasoned oil, and they're ready to eat.

Grilling the Brussels sprouts gives them a nice smokiness, and it really wakes up the flavors in the onion and garlic powders. Of the optional ingredients, we chose to add only the lemon zest and really liked the extra bit of perfume. Next time, we'd love to add in some crispy pancetta in place of the bacon (or leftover diced ham!).

Kitchenwitchcookie rightly insists that you blanch the sprouts for no more than 5 minutes—if you like your sprouts a bit firm, as we do, you can get away with a minute or two shorter. Take them too far and they'll fall apart on the grill. The easiest way to check their progress is to pull a Brussel sprout and give it a (careful, it's hot!) taste. When you drain them, they should be slightly firmer than you'd like—remember, they're going to keep cooking on the grill.

Now, a note about that blanching water: "Salted" means generously salted. We estimate about 1 tablespoon kosher salt (we use Diamond Crystal) per 1 quart water. This will help season the sprouts throughout as they cook.

If you don't have an outdoor grill (or if you're making these in the dead of winter), a grill pan will work just fine. Make sure you heat it up generously before adding the Brussels sprouts—they should sizzle as soon as they hit the pan. If they threaten to stick when you're trying to flip them, just give them another minute or so and they'll usually un-stick themselves.

We love serving this alongside any roasted or grilled protein—from chicken to fish—but this "side" could easily serve as a main, too. Top with some halved, soft-boiled eggs and plop a crusty loaf of bread alongside. Or toss the Brussels sprouts with hot pasta and lots of grated cheese. —The Editors

Watch This Recipe
Grilled Brussels Sprouts
  • Cook time 15 minutes
  • Serves 2
  • 12 small to medium Brussels sprouts
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, plus more as needed
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 3/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, plus more to taste
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon celery salt
  • 1 handful crumbled bacon (optional)
  • 1 teaspoon grated lemon zest (optional)
  • 1 tablespoon Parmesan cheese grated or shredded (optional)
In This Recipe
  1. First, clean the sprouts. Trim the cut ends back without interfering with the leaves, and peel any withered leaves off the bulb. Score the bottoms; one cut will suffice.
  2. Add the sprouts to a pot of boiling, salted water and cook for no more than five minutes. No more!
  3. Drain well, then drizzle with oil and toss in a bowl with the salt, pepper, onion powder, garlic powder, and celery salt.
  4. When the sprouts are nice and coated, place on a hot grill (but keep the bowl handy), turning every 4 minutes for a total of 12 minutes.
  5. Remove from the grill back to the seasoning bowl and toss to coat with any remaining seasoning.
  6. If desired, add any or all of the remaining three ingredients (bacon, lemon zest, and Parmesan cheese). Serve immediately.
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