These pan-fried Brussels sprouts with bacon and dried cranberries are an easy and delicious side your family will love!
An unexpected favorite.
I’m sure I’m not the only one who grew up thinking that Brussels sprouts were the end-all of nasty green veggies. (Well, maybe second to lima beans.) But, of course, like any normal kid, I’d never actually tried them! In fact, I’m pretty sure the first time I tasted Brussels sprouts was during a Hanukkah meal at a friends house.
I was pretty sure I wouldn’t like them, but I knew I needed to be a big girl and try some, just to be polite. My husband was served some before me, and even though I was almost positive he wouldn’t like them, to my surprise I heard him exclaim, “Mm! These are really good! Sorta like mini cabbages.”
And he was right. They’re pretty dang tasty!
A little sweet & a little sour.
Since that fateful night, I’ve had Brussels sprouts quite a few times, mostly boiled, with lots of butter. While I’m definitely a fan of lots of butter, I’m also a fan of finding as many different ways to make something delicious as possible.
This past Thanksgiving my mom brought over a bag of fresh Brussels sprouts that she’d found on sale. She knew that I liked them (now), so she handed them to me to “make something good” out of them. And as every real foodie knows, two things that make just about everything delicious are bacon and cranberries.
The bacon adds a sweetness, and the cranberries add the perfect amount of tang to go with the Brussels sprouts. Just what I was looking for in my new favorite side dish!
Easy pan-fried Brussels sprouts.
As you all probably know, I’m a huge fan of everything easy. So I strove (strived?) to make this dish as simple as possible. One pan, three ingredients, fry, mix, enjoy!
Some things to note on this recipe, most store-bought bacon and dried cranberries contain things that paleo, GAPS, and low-carb eaters should not be consuming: sugar. So be careful when you’re sourcing your bacon and craisins, make sure they don’t contain anything you wouldn’t want to be eating! Unless you’re interested in cheating, that is…
Brussels sprout goodness.
In case you didn’t know, Brussels sprouts are in the Brassica family of veggies. This makes them brothers (or sisters) of broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage, kale, bok choy, and collards. While foods in this family can be eaten raw, their much better for your body if they’re steamed or cooked in some sort of way before consuming.
Brussels sprouts are high in disease-fighting antioxidants and nutrients like vitamins K, C, A, folate, calcium, potassium, magnesium, and phosphorus.
In the recipe card I’ve linked to some of the products from my affiliate partners that I like to use. Purchasing through these links won’t cost you anything extra. Thanks!
Pan-Fried Brussels Sprouts with Bacon & Dried Cranberries
Free from grain, gluten, eggs, dairy, and sugar.
- 1 pound Brussels sprouts
- 1/2 pound nitrate-free, organic bacon
- 1/2 cup dried cranberries
- salt & pepper, to taste
Preheat a cast iron skillet over medium heat. Add in bacon and fry until crispy, but not burnt. When done, remove bacon to a cooling rack. Do NOT drain out grease.
Halve or quarter Brussels sprouts and add to the bacon grease. Fry until lightly browned and fork tender (about 15 minutes). Turn off heat.
Crumble bacon and add into the Brussels sprouts, along with the dried cranberries. Season with salt and pepper, to taste. Serve immediately, or cold.
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Check out some of my other favorite side dishes!
- Creamy Potato Salad with Bacon and Chives
- Chipotle-Style Cilantro Lime Cauli-Rice
- Homemade Cider & Elderberry Cranberry Sauce
- Garlic Parmesan Colcannon