Asian Brussels sprouts with soy sauce and honey become wonderfully caramelized when baked.
Ready in about 40 minutes and truly easy to make, it's the perfect side dish to Asian-style meat or fish!
When I was a kid, my Dutch-born dad used to make the simplest Brussels sprouts - boiled in salted water. The Dutch are wonderful people, but traditional Dutch cuisine is VERY light on seasoning. 🙄
Strangely enough, I actually loved those simply boiled sprouts, even as a kid. But these days, I'm looking for a bit more flavor when cooking vegetable recipes.
One of my favorite recipes that I make quite often is roasted Brussels sprouts with garlic and Parmesan. They are wonderful.
But there's something about these Asian Brussels sprouts. The combination of soy sauce, honey, and garlic makes for an especially flavorful dish. And the small amount of honey I add promotes beautiful and delicious caramelizing.
You'll only need a few simple ingredients to make this tasty side dish. The exact measurements are included in the recipe card below. Here's an overview of what you'll need:
Fresh Brussels sprouts: By far one of my favorite vegetables to make. Sometimes I make life easy by buying them pre-washed and cut in half. But it's not difficult to prep them yourself.
Avocado oil: This neutral-tasting oil has a high smoke point, making it very suitable for high-heat roasting.
Light soy sauce: I almost never use traditional soy sauce. I find it too salty. You can also use a gluten-free alternative and add salt as needed.
Honey: Just a little to balance out the other flavors and promote caramelizing. You can use sugar-free honey if you wish.
Minced garlic: Mince it yourself (the more flavorful option), or use the stuff that comes in a jar (the lazy option!).
Crushed red peppers: They don't make this dish very spicy. They just add an interesting layer of flavor.
Sesame seeds: I use them mostly for garnish.
Unlike the boiled vegetables of my childhood, these Asian Brussels sprouts are baked in the oven. Prior to baking them, I season them with a tasty sauce of soy sauce, honey, and garlic. The amount of honey I use is small, so the recipe is still low carb.
Scroll down to the recipe card for detailed instructions. Here are the basic steps:
Toss the sprouts with the remaining ingredients except for the sesame seeds.
Arrange them in a single layer, cut side down, on a parchment-lined baking sheet.
Roast for about 30 minutes at 400°F. Garnish with sesame seeds and serve.
To promote crispness, it's important that the sprouts are as dry as possible. This is a good reason to use bagged pre-washed sprouts that don't need washing.
Frequently asked questions
By baking them! In the oven, the sprouts become browned and crispy thanks to the natural sugars found in the vegetables. And if you add a bit of honey, like I do in this recipe, the caramelizing is even more pronounced, and happens faster.
Apart from baking them, my best tip for getting them crispy is to ensure that they are completely dry before you mix them with the sauce and bake them.
I don't recommend that. The frozen ones won't crisp up as well and might end up mushy. I highly recommend using fresh sprouts in this recipe.
Roasting them helps because it promotes caramelizing of the natural sugars found in the vegetable. It also helps that we add a bit of sweetness in the form of honey.
I love this recipe as is and almost always make it as written. But in case you'd like to vary the basic recipe, here are a few ideas for you:
- Melted ghee or refined coconut oil are good alternatives to avocado oil in this recipe. You can also use refined sesame oil.
- You can use maple syrup or brown sugar in place of honey.
- Try adding a teaspoon of fresh minced ginger.
This is a very forgiving recipe. So if you want to serve them with a main dish that requires a slightly different cooking temperature, you can usually place the sprouts in the same oven, and simply bake them for a shorter or a longer time.
Leftovers keep well in the fridge, in an airtight container, for 3-4 days. I gently reheat them in the microwave, covered, on 50% power.
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Asian Brussels Sprouts
- 1 lb. Brussels sprouts halved
- 2 tablespoons avocado oil
- 2 tablespoons low sodium soy sauce (or use a gluten-free alternative)
- 0.5 tablespoon honey*
- 1 teaspoon minced fresh garlic
- ½ teaspoon crushed red peppers
- 1 teaspoon sesame seeds
- Preheat your oven to 400 degrees F. Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper for easy cleanup.
- Place the Brussels sprouts in the pan. Using a large spoon or your hands, toss them with the oil, soy sauce, honey, garlic, and crushed red peppers.
- Arrange the seasoned Brussels sprouts, cut side down, in a single layer on the baking sheet.
- Roast them until browned and caramelized, for about 30 minutes. Garnish with sesame seeds and serve.