Charred Brussels Sprouts and Leek Muchim With Coffee-Dijon Dressing Recipe

Marinate charred Brussels sprouts and raw leeks with a coffee-Dijon dressing for the ultimate Korean banchan-inspired salad.

Overhead of bowl filled with pa-muchim salad made with Brussels sprouts and leeks.

Serious Eats / Vicky Wasik, Video: Sunny Lee

Why This Recipe Works

  • Separating Brussels sprouts into individual leaves allows for quick charring without the risk of turning them to mush.
  • The roasted bitter aroma of brewed coffee echoes the flavors of charred Brussels sprouts and toasted sesame oil in the salad.
  • Scrunching and massaging the dressing into the leeks and Brussels sprouts helps to lightly wilt the vegetables, and evenly coat them with the vinaigrette.

What is Pa-Muchim?

This salad pays tribute to one of my all-time favorite Korean banchan, pa-muchim, a marinated scallion salad of raw shaved onions and scallions dressed with mustard, vinegar, gochugaru, and sesame oil. Pa-muchim is traditionally served as an accompaniment to samgyeopsal, or grilled pork belly; wrapped together in a lettuce leaf, pa-muchim’s acidity and underlying bitterness from mustard and raw onions balances the fat and smokiness from grilled pork.

This riff on pa-muchim uses Brussels sprouts leaves in place of scallions. The leaves are quickly charred in a hot cast iron pan to lightly wilt them and coax out their subtle bitterness. Once cooled, the Brussels leaves are tossed with thinly sliced raw leeks, which provide a heartier, longer-lasting crunch than sliced onions, and a coffee-Dijon dressing.

The Dressing

This dressing was a happy kitchen accident: I was making a batch of sesame mustard dressing and knocked my cup of morning coffee into the bowl, and I found that these two bold flavors worked beautifully together! With dueling bitterness, the Dijon acts as the soprano, while the coffee is the alto. They're balanced out by the addition of honey, cider vinegar, and nutty toasted sesame oil. To maximize the punch of the mustard, I recommend adding it to the vinaigrette right before dressing the salad, as it tends to lose some of its oomph if it sits in the dressing for an extended period of time.

When not used for this banchan, the coffee-Dijon is a dressing that should always be in your fridge; it works as a dipping sauce for fried chicken, it'll wake up sleepy Tuesday night roasted broccoli, and liven up a roasted pork loin with apples. The marinated charred Brussels sprouts and leeks can serve as a quick and easy everyday banchan for accompanying meat, poultry, and seafood dishes, but they'll also fit in nicely as part of a larger holiday meal. Every Thanksgiving table could use a little pop of bitter acidity to cut through and complement the rich, sweet, and savory elements of the meal.


Watch Now: How to Make Charred Brussels Sprouts Banchan

Recipe Details

Charred Brussels Sprouts and Leek Muchim With Coffee-Dijon Dressing Recipe

Active 10 mins
Total 15 mins
Serves 4 to 6 servings

Marinate charred Brussels sprouts and raw leeks with a coffee-Dijon dressing for the ultimate Korean banchan-inspired salad.


  • 3 tablespoons (45ml) honey

  • 3 tablespoons (45ml) toasted sesame oil

  • 2 tablespoons (30ml) brewed double-strength coffee or espresso

  • 2 tablespoons (30ml) cider vinegar

  • 1 garlic clove (5g), finely grated or minced

  • 1 tablespoon plus 2 teaspoons (25ml) fish sauce

  • 1/4 cup (32g) toasted sesame seeds

  • 1 1/2 teaspoons (6g) freshly ground black pepper

  • 3 tablespoons (45ml) vegetable oil

  • 1 pound (450g) Brussels sproutstrimmed and separated into individual leaves

  • 1/2 large leek, white and light green parts only, rinsed and sliced into thin 3- by 1/2-inch strips (5 1/4 ounces; 150g total)

  • 3 tablespoons (45ml) Dijon mustard


  1. In a large bowl, whisk together honey, sesame oil, coffee, fish sauce, cider vinegar, and garlic. Stir in sesame seeds and black pepper; set aside.

  2. In a large cast iron or carbon steel skillet, heat oil over high heat until just smoking. Carefully add Brussels sprouts leaves to the pan, spreading them into as even a layer as possible. Cook, stirring and shaking the pan occasionally, until leaves are charred in spots and bright green, 2 to 3 minutes. Working quickly, transfer Brussels sprouts to a rimmed baking sheet or large plate, spread in an even single layer, and set aside to cool to room temperature, about 5 minutes.

    Overhead of Brussels sprout leaves being charred in cast iron skillet

    Serious Eats / Vicky Wasik

  3. Once Brussels sprouts have cooled, add to bowl with dressing, along with leeks and Dijon. Using clean hands, scrunch, mix, and massage together until vegetables are evenly coated with dressing and slightly softened, about 30 seconds.

    Mixing pa-muchim salad together with Brussels sprouts and leeks

    Serious Eats / Vicky Wasik

  4. Divide salad between small individual serving bowls and serve. If not serving right away, salad can be refrigerated in an airtight container for up to 1 day; bring to room temperature before serving.

    Overhead of bowl of pa-muchim made with charred Brussels sprouts

    Serious Eats / Vicky Wasik

Special equipment

Large cast iron skillet

Make-Ahead and Storage

The dressed salad can be made in advance and refrigerated in an airtight container for up to 1 day. The dressing (without the Dijon mustard) can be made in advance and refrigerated in an airtight container for up to 3 days.

This Recipe Appears In

Nutrition Facts (per serving)
229 Calories
17g Fat
19g Carbs
4g Protein
Show Full Nutrition Label Hide Full Nutrition Label
Nutrition Facts
Servings: 4 to 6
Amount per serving
Calories 229
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 17g 22%
Saturated Fat 2g 10%
Cholesterol 0mg 0%
Sodium 621mg 27%
Total Carbohydrate 19g 7%
Dietary Fiber 4g 13%
Total Sugars 11g
Protein 4g
Vitamin C 48mg 240%
Calcium 101mg 8%
Iron 2mg 13%
Potassium 343mg 7%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
(Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)