Delicious brussels sprouts with bacon are cooked with sage and maple syrup to create the ultimate side dish. Brussels sprouts are often viewed as a Christmas vegetable, but we can enjoy this dish with roast dinners all year around. The addition of bacon and maple syrup give this controversial vegetable a well deserved face lift, and might be just enough to persuade self declared sprout haters to turn over a new leaf. It’s a Christmas miracle!
The best brussels sprouts side dish
I have had my fair share of brussels sprouts through the years, and it hasn’t always been pleasant. Luckily, I have figured out how to really bring out the best of brussels sprouts, and here are the reasons why this is by far the best way to ever make brussels sprouts
It’s dead easy: Literally can’t mess this one up. Put it in a pan, stir it occasionally while it cooks for a few minutes, and you’re done. Voila!
You can make it ahead: If you’re cooking this as one of a dozen side dishes, you can make your life easier by making this dish earlier in the day, and simply heating it in a saucepan or microwave before serving. The bacon might not be as crisp as it could have been, but at least all the food will be served warm at the same time.
Bacon: The bacon isn’t just there for the sake of bacon. It brings saltiness, crispiness, a cool extra texture and a great umami flavour.
Maple syrup: By adding a bit of maple syrup at the end of the cooking time, you will get a hint of that amazing maple flavour, but it will also create a nice, slightly sweet coating around the sprouts. The combination of maple syrup and bacon is sweet salty perfection, bringing the brussels sprouts to life.
How to make brussels sprouts with bacon
Start by preparing your brussels sprouts. Make sure to trim off any rough ends or bad leaves, and wash off any dirt. I like to cut them into quarter or halves depending on their size. Heat up some oil in a frying pan on medium heat, and saute the brussels sprouts for 3-4 minutes until they are warm on the outside. Then, add diced streaky bacon.
Cook while stirring occasionally until the bacon and brussels sprouts have cooked through, about 5-10 minutes. Then, add dried sage and maple syrup and cook for another minute.
Tips for really crispy bacon! If you love your bacon extra crispy to the point where it’s almost black, I would suggest cooking the diced bacon first until it has the consistency you want. Then, cook the brussels sprouts following the instructions above, and combine the bacon and sprouts at the end. This way, you get perfect bacon without over cooking the brussels sprouts.
Leftover brussels sprouts
Leftovers can be stored in the fridge for up to 3 days. You can either reheat the leftovers in the microwave, or you can serve them cold. Leftovers can also be frozen for a few months. Thaw in the fridge overnight, then reheat until piping hot. Keep in mind that reheating frozen leftovers will make the bacon a bit less crispy and the brussels a bit more soggy. I suggest using leftovers in a casserole or with pasta.
More delicious side dishes
- Honey sriracha brussels sprouts
- Oven roasted green beans
- Kale salad with apples and cranberries + tahini dressing
Brussels sprouts with bacon and maple syrup
- 200 g brussels sprouts trimmed and washed
- 100 g streaky bacon diced
- 1 tbsp maple syrup
- 1 tsp dried sage
- 1 tsp olive oil or cooking spray
- Quarter the brussels sprouts and dice the streaky bacon.
- Heat the oil in a pan on medium heat, and add the brussels sprouts. Cook for 3-4 minutes until they have warmed slightly, then add the bacon. Stir to combine, and cook until the bacon is starting to crisp up and the brussels sprouts have softened, about 5-10 minutes.
- Add dried sage and maple syrup, and stir to incorporate the ingredients thoroughly. Serve the brussels sprouts warm as a side dish.