Braised Brussels Sprouts with Pancetta, Pecans and Parmesan

Ever since roasting or braising of brussels sprouts became popular, this veggie has gained a lot of attention.  Prior to it being boiled (to death) these little balls of mini cabbage were not pleasantly taken to.  They certainly have earned their place on the table now, especially when prepared with pancetta or bacon, seared to a golden crust and topped with toasted nuts and a soft melting cheese.

When selecting your brussels sprouts always look for tightly closed sprouts.  I prefer those on the smaller size as cut in half they cook quickly becoming tender on the inside as well.   I find that the larger ones do have a tendency to be bitter but if only larger sprouts are available, I will cut those in quarters.  I vary my preparation year to year depending on whether or not my oven has room to roast them or use the stove top for quick sauté and braising.  Sometimes I’ll use a stronger cheese to top them like gorgonzola or smoky Gouda but with my menu this year, I’ve opted to use shaves of parmesan that will lightly flavor and soften.

They are best served hot.  To prep ahead for this dish I’ll have my nuts toasted ahead of time and set aside.  The brussels sprouts can be trimmed and lightly drizzled with olive oil and kept in the refrigerator until needed.  On a side note, I’m always excited to learn new things.  If you happen to grow your own brussels sprouts, David at The Gastronomic Gardener braises the large leaves as greens.  Talk about using every part of the plant!

Braised Brussels Sprouts with Pancetta, Pecans and Parmesan 

¼ cup diced pancetta

2 lbs. fresh Brussels sprouts, stem cut off and trimmed of outer leaves

2 medium shallots, chopped fine

2 cloves garlic, minced

1 cup turkey stock or low sodium chicken broth

2 tablespoons butter

Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper to taste

½ cup pecans, toasted and chopped

Shaved Parmesan Cheese

In a large skillet, sauté the pancetta until crisp over medium heat.  Remove and set aside.  Add in the Brussels sprouts and allow to sauté until golden before turning.  Do not cook over high heat to avoid burning.  If pancetta did not release enough fat, add a bit of olive oil.   Add in the shallots and garlic and continue to cook a few minutes until the shallots are soft.  Pour in the turkey stock and allow to simmer for about 10 minutes or until a knife inserted in the sprout feels tender.  Finish by adding in the 2 tablespoons of butter and the pancetta.  Salt and pepper to taste.  Remove to a warmed bowl and top with the toasted pecans.  Serves 8-10.

These brussels sprouts are part of my Thanksgiving Countdown.  If you’d like to share your favorite veggie recipes for Thanksgiving, please use Linky Tools below.

Powered by Linky Tools

Click here to enter your link and view this Linky Tools list…

34 thoughts on “Braised Brussels Sprouts with Pancetta, Pecans and Parmesan

  1. One reason I grew sprouts was to be able to cook them with some homemade bacon! Yours is a lovely dish! Funny how proper prep can turn a dreaded childhood nemesis into one of my favorites.

    1. Homemade bacon?! That must be so good! My father always had a garden every summer but he didn’t grow brussels sprouts so the first I had it was served to me at a party boiled and bitter!

  2. What a wonderful creative way to serve brussel sprouts. I never buy them b/c I just don’t know how to prepare them to make them tasty for my kids. I think they’ll like your recipe with the pancetta and shaved Parm cheese.

    Oh, I updated my warm kale salad recipe, I forgot to mention your site! I don’t know where my mind is! sorry! 🙁

  3. Linda I see you using your turkey stock…great addition to this brussels sprouts…looks delicious with the pancetta and parmesan…and the crunchiness of the pecans…great side dish.
    Hope you are having a wonderful week 🙂

  4. Oh, yum this recipe sounds good! I used to hate brussel sprouts until I realized that those soggy preparations were no way to treat a nice brussel sprout. Long live saute and how bad could these be with pancetta and parmesan? I’m there!

  5. Very nice. I like that you used shaved parmesan here – nice chunky pieces and the toasted nuts, well, I just can’t get enough… I find they add such great flavour to dishes. Love your bowl and particularly your serving spoon – gorgeous!

  6. Oh Linda, you know this will be going on in my kitchen this week. I love brussel sprouts. I may carmelize mine with garlic and use the rest of your ingredients….God I love this blog and that my BF is the creator!!! You ROCK woman!!! I made your Spaghetti Squash recipe last week and it is to DIE for, simply perfect with no modifications and will be on my holiday table as well as a few friends who tried and loved (Lisa and her brother Eric).

  7. I’ve always loved Brussels Sprouts, although they’re easy to wreck. I remember having some which had been boiled so much once they were almost yellow :/

    To be honest, I always boil them each year – thanks for sharing this recipe, I think I’m going to be adventurous and roast them up this year!

  8. I love Brussel Sprouts, and also use the greens, shredded and lightly fired/steamed, when I grow them I hate the thought of waste!
    The combination of sprouts and nuts is a combination made in heaven 🙂

  9. I love Brussels sprouts, but I agree that the mushy overcooked ones can easily scare people for the rest of their lives. Brussels sprouts and bacon (or pancetta) are my favourite combination. Parmesan, I imagine, can only make them better!

  10. I never received an email notification of this post and just now noticed it. (Wait for it.) I love this recipe, so much so that I had scheduled a very close “relative” for Friday. This was bound to happen. Yours is so much better that I’ll hang onto mine for another time. Besides, it’s kinda nice having a completed blog entry “in the hole,” so to speak, for a rainy day. No matter what, Brussels sprouts and pancetta/bacon are a match made in heaven!

    1. Well, I hope you like this version and I so do know that many times I see a post from another blogger that is similar to what I was about to post!! I’ll be looking foward to seeing yours fairly soon!!

  11. We love Brussels sprouts here – even our little girls do (which all of their friends think is really weird). I thought that we had tried just about every good Brussels sprouts recipe out there, but I don’t have this one. We’ll have to give this a try over the holidays. Thank you for sharing.

  12. Oh, this is very similar to the recipe I’m making for Thanksgiving…but with bacon instead of pancetta! Your photos are making hungry…mmmmmmm.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *