Serves a Crowd

Roasted Brussels Sprouts With Bacon & Balsamic-Cranberry Glaze

October 19, 2018
17 Ratings
Photo by Julia Gartland
  • Prep time 10 minutes
  • Cook time 25 minutes
  • Serves 4 to 6 (or more if part of a big meal)
Author Notes

These are my family's favorite Brussels sprouts, hands-down. A few tricks make them especially delicious: starting with a rocket hot sheet pan so the bacon and sprouts cook at the same rate and get ultra crispy; and coating the cooked sprouts with balsamic-cranberry glaze. The cranberry sauce rounds out the sharp edges of balsamic vinegar and lends an addictive sweet-tart-tangy quality that's perfect with smoky bacon and the slightly bitter sprouts. (Taste the reduced balsamic before and after adding the cranberry sauce to understand the difference the cranberries make!) —EmilyC

What You'll Need
  • 2 pounds Brussels sprouts, rinsed and dried well, trimmed, and halved (or quartered if large)
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • kosher salt, to taste
  • 3/4 teaspoon Aleppo pepper, or lesser amount of red pepper flakes (to taste)
  • 1 large or 2 small shallot (about 4 ounces total) thinly sliced; about 1 cup in total
  • 4 ounces thinly sliced bacon, 1/4-inch-diced (pancetta can be substituted)
  • 6 tablespoons balsamic vinegar (an everyday variety)
  • 3 tablespoons of your favorite homemade cranberry sauce (or Ocean Spray canned cranberry sauce works well!)
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  1. Place an empty sheet pan on the bottom rack of oven. Heat to 450°F.
  2. In a large bowl, toss the Brussels sprouts (and any loose, unblemished leaves) with olive oil, 1 1/2 teaspoons salt, Aleppo pepper, shallot, and bacon (making sure to separate the cubes of bacon for better crisping).
  3. Carefully remove the heated sheet pan from oven. Add the Brussels sprouts mixture, using tongs to arrange the sprouts cut-side down. (Alternatively, toss the Brussels sprouts on a parchment-lined cookie sheet, arrange them cut-side down, and transfer the parchment from the cookie sheet to the heated sheet pan.) Roast until softened and deeply browned, about 20 to 25 minutes. (Check the sprouts halfway through roasting; if they're already deeply browned on the bottom, stir a few times and return to oven.)
  4. Meanwhile, in a small saucepan, bring balsamic vinegar to a simmer and reduce by half (note: this only takes 2 to 3 minutes, so don’t walk away!). Add cranberry sauce and butter, lower heat, and cook another 30 seconds to a minute (stirring constantly) until butter and cranberry sauce are well integrated; break up any whole cranberries with the back of your spoon.
  5. Pour the glaze over the Brussels sprouts on the sheet pan and toss well. Return the pan to the oven for another minute or two to set the glaze. Serve warm.

See what other Food52ers are saying.

  • Lisa F
    Lisa F
  • Jessie Chen
    Jessie Chen
  • ihaventpoisonedyouyet
  • Karl Rosaen
    Karl Rosaen
  • Tina Bee
    Tina Bee

Recipe by: EmilyC

I'm a home cook. I love salads. Two things you'll always find in my refrigerator are lemons and butter, and in my pantry good quality chocolate and the makings for chocolate chip cookies.

14 Reviews

Lisa F. November 29, 2022
Delicious! I definitely had to watch carefully and stir things around a bit (and even take some bits out early) because the bacon and brussel leaves that had come off browned before the rest of the sprouts did. But, it was worth it, because the dish was absolutely delicious!
llockhart December 25, 2021
Absolutely loved this recipe! Making it on repeat. My hubby and I have been trying to recreate a fav restaurants brussel sprouts dish and failed every time but this one is even better! Thank you and happy holidays!
sadenis December 2, 2021
Usually all the recipes I’ve tried from Food52 have been excellent. I followed this one to the letter except that I was only doing 4/10 of the recipe based on my small bag of sprouts. I cut down all the ingredients by the same fraction. It was over cooked and the shallots and bacon practically disappeared. Perhaps I should have used a smaller sheet pan so the ingredients were pushed closer? I did try to keep them closer to the center. We won’t be trying again. I love Brussels sprouts and am working on my Brussels sprouts disliking husband.
Jessie C. December 7, 2020
Would like to add more bacon next time but it was pretty good. I used lingonberry jam and it turned out fine :)
ihaventpoisonedyouyet December 8, 2019
This thanksgiving I was tasked with the side dishes and after searching through various brussel sprouts recipes I chose this. They were absolutely fabulous! Although the cranberry sauce had me going gaahhh while reading ingredients I followed the recipe as written and I would never not include it now. It adds a balance to the dish. Seriously, this is so delicious.
EmilyC December 8, 2019
What a nice note -- thank you! I feel the same way about the cranberry sauce. Every time I make it for guests, people give me the side-eye when I mention this ingredient, but it really works! Thanks for making it a part of your Thanksgiving!
lindamettler November 27, 2019
This is a fabulous recipe. I used pancetta instead of bacon, a fig balsamic vinegar, and rather than the cranberries, a fig balsamic jam. Outstanding.
EmilyC December 8, 2019
Thanks Linda! Love these tweaks!
Karl R. December 10, 2018
The recipe was a hit at thanksgiving so I made it again for a friendsgiving, a hit again! The glaze is so easy and tasty, feel like I'll be adapting that year round with different fruit preserves.

The second time I made it I had the oven at 500, took only about 15 minutes total and required a little bit more monitoring as some of the smaller pieces crisped quickly. I'd probably just do it at 450 next time per the instructions.
EmilyC December 10, 2018
Hi Karl: so glad to hear that this was a repeat hit! And yes to experimenting with other fruit preserves—great idea! (I’ll bet balsamic and fig preserves would be lovely here.) Thanks so much for your note!
Tina B. November 17, 2018
Horrible recipe. Doesn't say which level to put your pan on when you put it back and so I left it back on the bottom and it ruined the sprouts. Also, you say that the shallots should be 4 oz or a cup. 4 oz does not equal a cup.
EmilyC November 17, 2018
Sorry this didn’t work for you, Tina. I didn’t specify which rack because I’ve made this recipe on different racks of my oven, all with good results. (I usually put my sheet pan on a pizza stone, which makes it even hotter!) And the 4 ounces of shallots is weight, not volume.
Lynnht November 23, 2018
I made this tonight and everyone loved it. Thanks!!
I had a very large shallot and used half of it. (The recipe does say approx 4 oz AND that it is approx 1 cup. I had way less than 1 cup and it was fine.) I didn't use all of the balsamic cranberry glaze but I might have made too much. (I'm not great at exact measurements.)
Someone asked about cooking the bacon separately from the brussel sprouts, but I think the bacon cooking with it really upped the flavor!
EmilyC November 23, 2018
So glad that this was a hit at your table, Lynn! Thanks so much for trying it and your feedback!