Roasted asparagus and brussels sprouts are drizzled with a sweet balsamic vinegar glaze to make a delicious and simple side dish. This side dish is perfect for springtime when asparagus is in season and is also great for the fall when brussels sprouts are in season!
I love taking advantage of locally grown produce when it's available! In Northern New York, we have a very long, cold and snowy winter. Spring usually doesn't show up until mid-may and gardens don't get planted until June.
It's always a sure sign of spring though, when locally grown asparagus starts showing up in the grocery store! Asparagus is a perennial vegetable, and is one of the very first crops harvested in upstate NY.
Asparagus is a versatile vegetable that can be roasted, sautéed, fried, air fried, steamed or added to savory baked dishes. It pairs really well with brussels sprouts, which is why I've added brussels sprouts to this dish.
Everyone needs a good asparagus recipe in their back pocket, and this is an easy recipe to keep on hand!
You only need 6 common ingredients to make this roasted brussels sprouts and asparagus recipe!
- Asparagus - Asparagus is a spring vegetable that is in-season and readily available in most grocery stores from March through June, depending on your region. Asparagus can be roasted, grilled, steamed, fried and eaten raw. When preparing fresh asparagus, you will cut off the woody ends opposite of the asparagus tips. You will only need one bunch asparagus for this recipe.
- Brussels sprouts - Brussels sprouts look like cute little baby cabbages. Like asparagus, fresh Brussels sprouts can be roasted, steamed, sautéed, fried and eaten raw. When eaten raw, they are usually shaved thin and tossed into a salad or coleslaw.
- Balsamic vinegar - Look for a high quality balsamic vinegar. Your higher quality vinegars may have a slightly higher price point, come in a glass jar, have no unnecessary additives and be sold at specialty food stores.
- Brown sugar - The brown sugar will be added to the balsamic glaze to help sweeten it up. Sometimes balsamic glaze is made with maple syrup, but we're sticking with brown sugar in this recipe!
- Extra-virgin olive oil - The extra virgin olive oil is lightly drizzled on the vegetables before they go into the oven. A good substitute for olive oil in this recipe would be avocado oil.
- Kosher salt - Kosher salt crystals are much larger and more course than table salt. If you do not have kosher salt and want to use fine, table salt or sea salt, then you'll need to use half the amount of salt that the recipe calls for.
*See recipe card for quantities.
- Large, rimmed baking sheet - Use your largest, rimmed baking sheet for this recipe! I use my Nordic Ware Big Sheet Baking Pan which measures 19.5" x 13.5".
- Cutting board and chopping knife
- Small saucepan
- Measuring cups and measuring spoons
Step 1: Preheat your oven to 400°F.
In a large bowl, toss your prepped and cut brussels sprouts in 1 tablespoon of olive oil and a sprinkle of kosher salt. Lay the brussels sprouts out on a rimmed, large baking sheet in a single layer. Leave some space between the vegetables so that they aren't crowded together. Try to keep them to one side of your baking sheet though. We want to leave room for the asparagus. Transfer the baking sheet to the hot oven and roast the brussels sprouts 15 minutes.
To save on cleanup time, you can line your baking sheet with parchment paper or aluminum foil.
Step 2: Remove the baking sheet from the oven and add the washed and prepped asparagus spears to the baking sheet. Lay them in a single layer. Top the asparagus with a drizzle of olive oil (about 1 tablespoon) and a sprinkle of salt. Return the vegetables to the oven and continue roasting for another 15 minutes.
Step 3: While the asparagus is roasting, make your balsamic glaze.
In a small saucepan, bring the balsamic vinegar and brown sugar to a boil over high to medium heat. Once boiling, turn the heat down to low and let the mixture simmer until it has reduced down to about ½ cup.
Once reduced, remove the glaze from the heat and set it aside.
Step 4: Remove the roasted vegetables from the oven, transfer them to a serving platter and drizzle with the sweet balsamic glaze. The vegetables should still be bright green, fork tender and have brown, caramelized, crispy edges. For best flavor, serve immediately.
Variations and substitutions
If you want to swap out the asparagus, then you need to read my post on the 12 Best Asparagus Substitutes first.
There are also a few different ways that a roasted asparagus and brussel sprouts recipe like this is commonly made! Here are some popular variations:
- Add cheese - Parmesan cheese and feta cheese are both common additions.
- Add citrus - A squeeze of lemon juice or lemon zest would also be delicious add-ons.
- Add bacon - Crispy bacon pieces are commonly paired with both asparagus and brussels sprouts. Brussel sprouts are often cooked in bacon grease and asparagus is often served wrapped in bacon.
- Add seasoning - Roasted garlic cloves and black pepper would add some kick to this recipe.
Store leftovers in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. Reheat in the microwave for 1-2 minutes.
This recipe is a delicious side dish for anytime of the year. It can be served on a regular weeknight, for Mother's Day brunch or even on your Thanksgiving dinner table. It would also pair well with any of these main dish recipes:
- When preparing asparagus, cut 1-2 inch pieces off of the bottom of the stalks. This section of the asparagus is tough and lacking flavor and is often referred to as the "woody ends."
- To save yourself loads of time, look for brussels sprouts that are already washed, peeled and cut in half.
- If you can't find ready-to-cook brussels sprouts, then you will have to prep the sprouts yourself by cutting off the bottom section where the sprout was attached to the stalk, peel off the dirty, dry, yellow outer leaves and then cut it in half. This can be a tedious task but it is well worth it!
- Don't overcrowd your vegetables on the baking sheet. Roasted vegetables need room around them for heat to circulate. Without space, the vegetables will not roast and instead will steam. If your baking sheet isn't large enough then use two baking sheets.
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