Crispy Roasted Brussels Sprouts with Bacon and Maple Syrup
Are you looking for a roasted brussels sprouts recipe that may just change your life? The search is over. These candied brussels sprouts with bacon are what you’ve been looking for.
I have made this brussels sprouts recipe five times (FIVE TIMES) in the past few weeks, each time not getting a photo because they were gobbled up too quickly. By me.
And also, it’s not easy getting an appetizing picture of something that’s charred and in that particular shade of green. But they are so good. Like candy.
I can’t. stop. EATING. THEM.
When I was growing up, we never had brussels sprouts except at my great aunt Lida’s house. And they were everything that you’d expect in a detestable vegetable – soggy, bitter, and putrid green. I was a kid who’d eat ANYTHING, and I didn’t like these. This recipe is the anthesis to those. If you, too, grew up thinking sprouts were disgusting, please try them this way and reconsider.
How to Roast Brussel Sprouts with Bacon
The secret to perfectly crisped, chewy brussels sprouts?
Here are 3 important notes on how to roast brussels sprouts with bacon in the oven:
- remove the brussel sprouts’ outer leaves
- ensure brussel sprouts are cooked in a single layer
- partially cook bacon before adding to sprouts
To make these heavenly, sweet, sticky brussels sprouts, I pull off as many of the outer leaves as possible and roast them alongside the little sprout hearts.
The leaves char up much crispier that way, and it helps prevent the sprouts from coming out undercooked or soggy in the middle.
Now, here’s the thing, it really is imperative that these little love-bombs roast in a single layer, or they’ll just steam which creates ‘soggy’ brussels sprouts – instead of baking to crispy perfection.
Twice, I made them on a single large baking sheet, and they’re just not as good. Even if they obviously *fit*, you need the space between sprouts for hot air to circulate. It really is best to use two pans.
The bacon is partially cooked before it hits the oven, where it crisps up fully with a drizzle of maple syrup to make it completely and utterly salty-sweet addictive.
Can Brussels Sprouts be Roasted in Advance?
These sprouts are excellent roasted a day in advance and just reheated in a small casserole dish the next day (if you can refrain from eating them all).
Just pop them in the oven alongside whatever else you’ve got cooking, at whatever temperature it’s cooking at (I mean, not on broil or anything), until they’re heated through.
Check frequently and give them a stir every now and then.
The crispiest candied Brussels Sprouts with bacon and maple syrup
- 4 oz thick-cut bacon chopped
- 1 lb brussels sprouts
- 1/4 cup olive or grapeseed oil
- 3 tbsp pure maple syrup
- 1 tsp kosher salt
- Preheat oven to 450ºF (with convection, if you've got it). Partially cook the bacon in a frying pan or in the microwave (3-4 minutes on high covered with a paper towel) until it renders its fat but is not crisp.
- Pull off most of the outer leaves from the brussels sprouts and trim the tough stalk from the middle that remains. Toss leaves and sprouts with the oil, maple syrup, salt and bacon and arrange in a single layer on two parchment-lined baking sheets. Bake 8 minutes, give the pans a stir, remove any that are already charring to a serving platter, then bake 2-8 minutes more (really depending how large they are), until sprouts are crispy and leaves are charring (watch closely after 2 minutes, as the maple syrup burns quickly).