Paleo Roasted Brussels Sprouts with Bacon

2013-02-19
As a child, I was afraid of brussels sprouts.  I love cabbage in the form of my Mom’s coleslaw, steamed cabbage with corned beef at Easter, and could eat a gallon of sauerkraut, but brussels sprouts for some reason just did not appeal to me.  It seems that these days, though, we see brussels sprouts more and more in restaurants and home kitchens alike.

Roasting any vegetable is a fantastic way to get a delectable depth of flavor while using an easy and healthy preparation.  Brussels sprouts are one of those veggies that benefit greatly from roasting.  Just add your favorite spices, a little sea salt… and you have a versatile vegetarian side dish.  However, if you eat meat… bacon loves brussels sprouts.  The crunch and saltiness of the bacon elevates the texture and flavor of the brussels sprouts immensely.

The amount of olive oil is a guesstimate.  The key is not adding too much.  I invested in a glass olive oil container with a metal spout (like you see at Italian restaurants) to make for easy drizzling.  It was barely an “investment” because it was less than ten dollars.  You don’t want to soak vegetables in oil, because if you do, no amount of time in the oven can make them tender yet crisp.  Also, the timing is important.  I roasted these brussels at a pretty low temperature (per instructions on the bag), but I kept an eye (and nose) on them.  The size of the brussels sprout will mean a difference of at least ten minutes.  So if you are hand-picking them at the grocery store, go for the little ones… they will be more tender anyway  If somehow you can only find large ones, cutting them in half will both shorten the cooking process as well as ensure that each sprout is seasoned well.

I served these with my Paleo Italian Baked Cod.  They paired extremely well with the delicate fish and the buttery crumb topping.  I also served these with my Paleo Pecan Crusted Citrus Chicken.  They are so versatile, but stand alone as a great snack or small meal!

Ingredients

  • 2 lbs brussels sprouts
  • 2-3 tbs organic olive oil
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 1/2 tsp onion powder
  • ground black pepper and sea salt, to taste
  • 4-5 pieces of center cut bacon, cooked and crumbled

Instructions

  • 1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees
  • 2. If brussels sprouts are large, cut them in half
  • 3. Line a baking pan with aluminum foil
  • 4. Place brussels sprouts in a large roasting pan and lightly drizzle them with olive oil (2-3 tbs)
  • 5. Gently toss brussels sprouts to coat them evenly in the olive oil, then season them with garlic powder, onion powder, cayenne pepper, sea salt, and pepper
  • 6. Bake for 35-40 minutes, stirring occasionally
  • 7. Brussels sprouts should be slightly brown and tender, but not mushy
  • 8. Cook bacon in either the microwave or on the stovetop until crispy
  • 9. Crumble pieces over brussels sprouts in the roasting pan and stir until evenly distributed
  • 10. Enjoy!