Tender and flavorful sauteed Brussels sprouts with bacon recipe will be your new favorite side dish! The sprouts are topped with crunchy bread crumbs, and savory hickory smoked bacon.
Brussels sprouts, love them or hate them? Sometimes just hearing those two words can make you cringe, but it doesn’t have to be that way! It seems that many kids and adults have taste aversion when they hear that those adorable baby cabbage looking veggies will be served on the menu. However, have you noticed that lately they have become popular?
I’ve seen recipes for Brussels Sprouts pop up all over the internet. They are crying out to be eaten and respected, and I think it’s because chefs have finally figured out how to make them taste good!
I remember being a curious little girl at the grocery store and when no one was looking, I grabbed one little sprout, for some reason it looked so cute, like a tiny head of cabbage. I took one sniff and thought, not bad. I took a small bite from the raw veggie and spat it out immediately! Ewww, what was I thinking! The sprout was tough and tasted bitter. I was not a fan. I honestly don’t believe I have had any desire to make a Brussels sprout dish since then.
Fast forward a couple of years, when I was in culinary school my chef instructor showed us how to cook properly and flavor these unappreciated yet healthy veggies. Let me show you what I did to make a flavorful and surprisingly satisfying sautéed Brussels sprouts with bacon recipe.
If you are eating Brussels sprouts whole, leaves and stems, the key is the precook step. The stems are pretty tough, so a quick blanch in salted boiling water tenderizes the stem of the sprout. You then can roast or saute the precooked sprouts to add a little extra flavor and texture, so it’s not just a bland, uninteresting vegetable.
I then like to add more flavor by sauteing some savory shallots and smoky bacon and tossing it with the sautéed Brussels sprouts. The icing on the cake is some quick and crunchy stove top breadcrumbs that I add to the Brussels sprouts right before serving.
If you have slices of bread at home, especially day old bread, you can make homemade breadcrumbs in a skillet in less than 5 minutes! Just a little bit of oil or butter and a sprinkling of salt and seasonings can make any veggie a bit tastier! When I told my husband, Jason, that I was making Brussels sprouts for dinner, he strongly declared that he didn’t like them, but he’s a good hubby and will, at least, try anything I serve him. Jason took one bite said, “Whoa, I like these!” (slam dunk for the Mrs.!) I’m sure the bacon and toasty breadcrumbs didn’t hurt, wink.
With Thanksgiving quickly approaching, oh my! I plan on serving up these Brussels Sprouts and a couple of other side dishes like my sweet potato casserole recipe. What side dishes are you planning on making for the big foodie day that is called Thanksgiving?
How long should Brussels Sprouts be cooked?
When preparing Brussels sprouts, try to select them at a consistent size, about 1 1/2 inches long. Peel away any discolored outer leaves, and trim the stem to no shorter than 1 inch long, and then halved through the stem. Larger Brussels sprouts about 2 1/2 inches long should be cut into quarters. You can now either boil them for 6 to 8 minutes, or steam them for 7 to 9 minutes. The timing will vary depending on the size of the sprouts. This recipe calls for 5 to 6 minutes (my sprouts were on the smaller side). I always check 1 to 2 minutes before to see if the sprouts are tender in case they are done cooking sooner. You can also peel the leaves off and saute them dry in a pan for a nutty flavor if you don’t like eating the stem. (Source: Cook Illustrated, The Science of Good Cooking)