You should give a try to this Air Fryer Brussels Sprouts with Bacon. A recipe that stands out for its simplicity and flavor. With no preheating required and customizable crispiness, this dish offers a perfect blend of rich bacon and earthy sprouts, outshining other recipes with its quick prep and versatile dietary appeal.
If you’re on the lookout for a quick, yet utterly satisfying meal, this air fryer brussels sprouts with bacon recipe is a must-try. With just brussels sprouts, bacon, salt, and black pepper, you’ll whip up a dish that’s not only easy to prepare but also packed with nutrients and taste.
It’s the perfect choice for a quick lunch or dinner. Taking only 5 minutes of prep time and 15 minutes of cooking, this recipe uses common ingredients to create an extraordinary meal.
Whether you’re cooking for yourself or making an extra serving for someone special, you’ll love how this dish combines simplicity with sophistication.
Let’s dive into the convenience and deliciousness of this modern, quick-fix culinary delight.
🥰 Why You Will Love This Recipe?
- Quick and Easy Preparation: With minimal prep time and a total cook time of about 20 minutes, this recipe is ideal for busy individuals who want to enjoy a delicious and nutritious meal without spending hours in the kitchen.
- Versatile Dietary Fit: This dish is both gluten-free and keto-friendly, making it a great option for those following specific dietary guidelines. Its nutritional profile also appeals to health-conscious diners looking for a tasty way to include more vegetables in their meals.
- Customizable to Taste: Whether you prefer your brussels sprouts extra crispy or slightly softer, this recipe allows for easy adjustments to texture. Plus, the option to add a squeeze of lemon or a dash of vinegar lets you tailor the dish to your flavor preferences.
- Convenient Leftover Use: The recipe provides a smart solution for using up leftover ingredients, ensuring nothing goes to waste. Whether you have extra brussels sprouts or bacon, there are plenty of creative ways to incorporate them into this dish or others throughout the week.
- Satisfying Flavor Combination: The savory richness of bacon paired with the nutty, slightly bitter taste of brussels sprouts creates a mouthwatering flavor profile that’s hard to resist. The added bonus of being able to customize the seasoning means every bite is as delicious as the last.
- Efficient Cooking Method: Using an air fryer not only speeds up the cooking process but also yields a healthier result by reducing the need for excess oil. The air fryer’s ability to evenly crisp the ingredients ensures a perfect texture every time.
🏆 Expert Tips. What to Pay Attention On?
- Choose Your Brussels Sprouts Wisely: Look for small to medium-sized brussels sprouts that are firm and bright green. They tend to be sweeter and roast more evenly. Before cooking, trim the ends and remove any yellow or damaged leaves to ensure even cooking and optimal flavor.
- Cut for Consistency: To promote uniform cooking, cut your brussels sprouts into halves or quarters, depending on their size. This ensures that they cook at the same rate, resulting in a mix of crispy and tender textures throughout the dish.
- Space Them Out: Avoid overcrowding your air fryer basket. Brussels sprouts need room for the hot air to circulate fully around them, ensuring they become crispy all over. Cook in batches if necessary, depending on the size of your air fryer.
- Get the Bacon Right: Use quality bacon and cut it into small pieces before cooking. This not only ensures that it cooks quickly but also distributes its rich, savory flavor evenly throughout the dish.
- Season to Perfection: Don’t shy away from seasoning. While the bacon adds saltiness, adjusting the seasoning with a little extra salt (if needed) and a generous amount of black pepper can elevate the flavors. Taste and adjust before serving.
- Preheat Your Air Fryer: If your air fryer requires preheating, don’t skip this step. Cooking in a preheated air fryer ensures that your brussels sprouts start crisping up the moment they hit the basket.
- Shake or Stir: Halfway through cooking, give the basket a good shake or use a spatula to stir the brussels sprouts. This helps them to brown evenly and get crispy on all sides.
🥘 Ingredients and Substitutes
- Brussels Sprouts are the star of the show, offering a nutty and slightly bitter taste that becomes wonderfully crispy and caramelized when roasted. If you find yourself out of brussels sprouts, broccoli florets make a great alternative, providing a similar texture and ability to crisp up, though with a slightly different, more mild flavor profile.
- Bacon adds a smoky, savory depth that complements the earthiness of the brussels sprouts. It renders fat, which helps to crisp up the vegetables. In its absence, diced pancetta or turkey bacon can stand in, offering that necessary fat and a similar salty, meaty flavor, though the turkey bacon is leaner and will provide less fat.
- Salt enhances the overall flavor of the dish, bringing out the natural tastes of the brussels sprouts and bacon. If you’re looking to reduce sodium, a dash of soy sauce or a sprinkle of kosher salt (which has a larger grain and less sodium by volume) can be used sparingly to season the dish without overdoing it.
- Black Pepper adds a slight heat and complexity, balancing the richness of the bacon and the earthiness of the brussels sprouts. For a different kind of heat with an aromatic twist, try a pinch of crushed red pepper flakes or a dash of cayenne pepper, which can offer a subtle warmth or a spicy kick, respectively.
👩🍳 Step-by-step Directions
Wash the Brussels sprouts thoroughly and then let them dry.
In the meantime, cut the bacon into not-too-small cubes so they won’t burn during cooking. Place the Brussels sprouts and bacon in the air fryer basket and season them with salt and pepper to taste.
Mix well and bake at 400°F (204°C) for 12 minutes.
Halfway through, remove the basket and stir well, then let it finish cooking.
Serve while warm as a side dish with your favorite steak.
🍽️ Serving Suggestions
- With a Drizzle of Balsamic Glaze: Enhance the natural sweetness of the brussels sprouts with a balsamic reduction. The tangy, sweet glaze contrasts beautifully with the smoky bacon, adding a gourmet touch to this simple dish.
- On a Bed of Quinoa or Farro: For a heartier meal, serve your brussels sprouts and bacon over a bed of cooked quinoa or farro. These grains add a nutty flavor and satisfying texture, making for a balanced, filling meal.
- Topped with Shaved Parmesan: A sprinkle of shaved Parmesan cheese right before serving adds a salty, umami flavor that pairs perfectly with the crispy vegetables and savory bacon. The cheese melts slightly, creating a delightful texture.
- Alongside a Creamy Dip: Offer a side of creamy garlic aioli or a tangy yogurt-based dip to dip or drizzle over your brussels sprouts. The creaminess of the dip complements the crunch of the vegetables and the richness of the bacon.
- With a Poached or Fried Egg on Top: For a brunch-worthy twist, top your serving of brussels sprouts and bacon with a poached or fried egg. The runny yolk adds a luxurious, creamy texture that binds all the components together deliciously.
- As a Side to Grilled Meats: Pair this dish with grilled chicken, steak, or fish. The smokiness from the grill matches the bacon’s flavor, while the lightness of the brussels sprouts balances the meal.
♻️ Answering Your Questions:
Can I Make This Recipe Without an Air Fryer?
Absolutely. If you don’t have an air fryer, you can still enjoy this dish by using your oven. Preheat it to 400°F (around 200°C) and spread the brussels sprouts and bacon on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Roast until the brussels sprouts are crispy and the bacon is cooked through, typically around 20-25 minutes. Just remember to toss halfway through for even cooking.
How Do I Store Leftover Brussels Sprouts and Bacon?
Leftovers can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. To reheat, simply spread them out on a baking sheet and warm in a preheated oven at 350°F (around 175°C) for 5-10 minutes, or pop them back in the air fryer for a few minutes until heated through and crispy again.
What Can I Do With Leftover Brussels Sprouts?
If you have raw brussels sprouts left over, consider using them in other recipes throughout the week. They’re great shredded in salads, sautéed with garlic for a side dish, or roasted with other vegetables. Cooked leftovers can be added to grain bowls, omelets, or reheated as a quick side for another meal.
📋 Recipe Card:
Air Fryer Brussels Sprouts With Bacon
- Wash the Brussels sprouts thoroughly and allow them to dry.2 cup Brussels Sprouts
- Cut the bacon into cubes that are not too small to prevent burning. Place the Brussels sprouts and bacon in the air fryer basket.1 cup Bacon, 2 cup Brussels Sprouts
- Season with salt and pepper according to taste and mix well.Salt, Black Pepper
I highly recommend reading the entire recipe to find more tips and notes about this recipe. Read Full Recipe ⇑
- Adjust Cooking Time for Size: The size of your brussels sprouts can affect cooking time. Smaller sprouts may cook quicker, so start checking for doneness a few minutes early to ensure they don’t overcook.
- Even Bacon Pieces: For even cooking, try to cut your bacon into pieces that are roughly the same size. This promotes uniform cooking and ensures that every bite has a perfect balance of crisp bacon and brussels sprouts.
- No Preheating Needed for Some Air Fryers: Depending on your air fryer model, you might not need to preheat it before adding your brussels sprouts and bacon. Check your manufacturer’s instructions for guidance.
- Use a Spritz of Cooking Spray: If you notice the brussels sprouts sticking to the basket, a light spritz of cooking spray can help. Just be sure it’s a type that’s safe for use in air fryers.
- Shake the Basket for Even Crisping: Don’t forget to shake the basket halfway through cooking. This simple step helps to ensure that all sides of the brussels sprouts get nicely browned and crispy.
- Customize Your Crispiness: If you prefer your brussels sprouts with a softer texture, reduce the cooking time slightly. For extra crispiness, let them cook a bit longer, but keep an eye on them to prevent burning.
- Acidity Brightens Flavors: A squeeze of lemon juice or a dash of vinegar over the finished dish can add a bright, acidic contrast to the rich flavors of the bacon and the earthiness of the brussels sprouts.
- Making Ahead: While best served fresh, you can prep the brussels sprouts (trim and cut) and bacon (cut into pieces) ahead of time. Store them separately in the refrigerator until you’re ready to cook, making the recipe even quicker to put together.