Why You Should Half Brussels Sprouts Before Roasting Them

Brussels sprouts have made a comeback, and it's all thanks to the crispy, caramelized, sweet flavors that roasting brings out of them (via Chicago Sun-Times). A nicely roasted sprout puts its old preparation to shame, replacing the funky smell and slimy texture they used to be attributed to with something much more appetizing. With roasted Brussels sprouts appearing on the menus of 25% of restaurants serving American cuisine (via Tastewise), it's easy to get them prepared just right. However, roasting Brussels sprouts at home proves to be more of a challenge.

When preparing Brussels sprouts at home, you can sometimes end up disappointed with the outcome — and it's usually because they're not crispy enough. From trimming to tossing them, there are a few hacks for preparing Brussels sprouts yourself. However, if your goal is to get them as crispy as they are when you eat them in a restaurant, there is one critical step you must follow. In order to get that nice charred sear, you must increase the sprout's surface area. How do you do that? You simply cut it in half.

How it works

It might sound simple, but the execution requires a bit more explanation. By cutting the Brussels sprouts in half, the long way and through the core, you create a flat surface on either side of the divided sprout . This is the part of the Brussels sprout that you should place face-down on the cooking pan. Doing so will provide more surface area, which means more space for roasting, and more crispiness in each bite (via The Kitchn).

Whether they're small or large, once your Brussels sprouts have been cut in half and placed flat side down on a preheated cooking pan, they'll be ready to roast. Don't be afraid to dress them up with a generous amount of oil and your favorite seasonings either. You can add to their new and improved texture with a nice balsamic glaze, parmesan cheese, or even a generous topping of maple bacon.