One of my partner’s favorite all-time vegetables is Brussels sprouts, much to our kids’ dismay. Don’t get me wrong: I enjoy a good sprout just as much as anyone.
(In fact, one of my favorite dishes is the Brussels sprouts plate made with the house hot sauce, sherry vinegar, and pecan brittle crumbs at local joint Reilly Craft Pizza & Drink. If you’re EVER in Tucson, you need to try these!)
However, when you’ve got kids, preparing Brussels sprouts in a way that satisfies both their picky tastes and your mature adult palate can be a challenge.
If you know me, then you know I love my 6-quart Crock-Pot just as much as the next person, but I had never prepared Brussels sprouts in them! Typically, I’d pan-fry or saute my sprouts in one of several sauces or marinades — but on this particular day, my 6-month-old was being especially fussy and needed my undivided attention. The Crock-Pot seemed like the best solution.
Luckily, adapting my favorite Brussels sprouts recipe to the slow cooker was a no-brainer. I simply added 1/2 c. of water to my traditional marinade, turned the Crock-Pot to low, and let this magical machine do its work.
Balsamic and dijon is one of my favorite flavor combinations! Sweet and tangy, this simple sauce brings complex flavor to any vegetable dish — Brussels sprouts or otherwise. For some people, however, it may pack too hard of a punch. In this case, I recommend simply adding a tablespoon (or two) of your sweetener of choice; honey or maple syrup are great options.
If you’ve got a variety of sprout sizes (like I often do, since I pull from the bulk bin!), feel free to slice and dice ’em as you wish. I opt to leave the tiny Brussels sprouts whole, while halving — even sometimes quartering — the extra large ones.
Pro-tip: chopping into similarly sized chunks will also ensure even cooking, which is critical if you’re hands-off with your Crock-Pot and don’t have all day to stand there and stir.
All in all, Brussels sprouts aren’t among the most well-loved vegetables… but as a member of the nutritionally potent cruciferous family, they’re worth a place in your family’s diet. Not only are Brussels sprouts a good source of protein, iron, and potassium, but they also offer many other nutritional benefits that can boost your overall health.
So whip out your Crock-Pot and get started! (Bookmark this page so you can easily find it because, let’s face it, you’re gonna be dreaming about these Brussel sprouts later.)
Crock-Pot Balsamic & Dijon Brussels Sprouts
Total Time: 10 minutes prep, 3 hours cooking
- 1 1/2 – 2 lbs. of Brussels sprouts
- 2 tbsp. Dijon mustard
- 4 tbsp. Balsamic vinegar
- 1 tbsp. brown sugar
- 1/2 c. water
- Salt, to taste
- Wash, de-stem, and chop your Brussels sprouts.
- In a small bowl, mix the remaining ingredients to create your marinade.
- Place Brussels sprouts in Crock-Pot and pour in marinade. Stir to thoroughly combine.
- Cook on low for 3 hours.
- Serve and enjoy!