Grilled Crispy Mustard Brussels Sprouts Recipe

Photographs: Joshua Bousel

Finishing my brussels sprouts was never a problem growing up—no one in my family liked them. I can't even remember a time we made them. But now there's a different problem: I've grown very fond of them, and nobody else in my family has joined me. I tried sneaking Kenji's sprouts into the Thanksgiving meal, but even when bacon-laden, my family wasn't having any of it.

With the window to enjoy brussels sprouts quickly closing, I grabbed a bunch to grill up and enjoy solo.

How to fall in love with brussels sprouts: get them nicely browned and crisp. That slight crunch and mellowed bitterness is a winning combo. These particular sprouts got a dousing of mustard and oil before being grilled, then another toss in the sauce once they were cooked.

I tried to force these on my wife. Her take? The mustard was adding bitter to bitter, and if not eaten alongside some mashed sweet potatoes, she wouldn't have finished as much as she did. My reaction was quite the opposite; I felt the bitterness was just right and the mustard added a tang, in a good way. I guess when it comes to brussels sprouts, to each his own. (And I'm still left going it alone.)

Recipe Facts

Active: 25 mins
Total: 45 mins
Serves: 4 servings

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  • 1 pound brussels sprouts
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons Dijon mustard (I used Grey Poupon Country Dijon)
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper to taste
  • Type of fire: direct
  • Grill heat: high


  1. Rinse Brussels sprouts. Trim off stem and pull off dark outer leaves. Score an X into bottom of the sprout 1/4 inch deep, then split in half. Place brussels sprouts in a large microwave safe bowl with 1/4 cup of water. Cover with a paper towel and microwave on high for 4 minutes.

  2. Meanwhile, whisk together olive oil, mustard, salt, and pepper in a small bowl. Remove the brussels sprouts microwave and drain. Pour mustard sauce over sprouts and toss to thoroughly coat.

  3. Light one chimney full of charcoal. When all the charcoal is lit and covered with gray ash, pour out and spread the coals evenly over entire surface of coal grate. Set cooking grate in place, cover grill and allow to preheat for 5 minutes. Clean and oil the grilling grate. Using tong, place brussels sprouts on the grill, keeping the bowl nearby with the sauce reserved. Grill until browned and slightly charred on both sides, flipping half way through cooking, 4 to 5 minutes per side.

  4. Remove brussels sprouts to the bowl with reserved mustard sauce. Toss gently to coat and serve immediately.

Special equipment