Roasted pomegranate Brussels sprouts is a simple, vegan side dish recipe with the slightly sweet, tangy flavors of pomegranate seeds, plus a toss of pomegranate molasses and chopped walnuts, that you can make in the air fryer or oven.
I've been hooked on roasting Brussels sprouts since I first made balsamic Brussels sprouts and grapes.
If you aren't a fan of Brussels sprouts, roasting is next level. It's my favorite way to enjoy those yummy little cabbages and leave those water-logged boiled ones of my youth in the rearview mirror.
There is no end to the combinations of spices and flavors you can add to that sheet pan of sprouts.
Table of Contents
Why You'll Love This Recipe
- You only need six simple ingredients (including salt and pepper).
- Add this easy yet elegant side dish to your holiday menu.
- A great side dish with no added oil suitable for vegans, plant-based, or anyone wanting delicious sprouts.
- Fresh Brussels sprouts are usually any time of year, but you can use frozen.
- Make crispy roasted Brussels sprouts in the oven or air fryer.
Ingredients, Notes, and Substitutions
Brussels sprouts. Or is it Brussel sprouts? I'm never sure. No matter how you spell it, grab a bag, rinse them, cut down the stems if they are long, peel away any discolored outer leaves, and cut them in half.
Pomegranate. Fresh pomegranate arils (seeds) add crisp nuggets with a burst of tart sweetness. I can't offer a great substitute, but dried cranberries are the best.
Pomegranate Molasses. It adds a sour-sweet flavor and amazing flavor. If you find pomegranate syrup at the grocery store, check that it doesn't have added sugar. If you can't find pomegranate molasses, I have a handy list of pomegranate molasses substitutes.
Walnuts. In addition to crunchy pomegranate seeds, I like the slightly bitter flavor of walnuts for this recipe. Pistachios, pine nuts, chopped pecans, or almonds are also great options.
Please see the recipe card at the bottom of this post for the complete list of ingredients with measurements plus recipe instructions.
- Create a pomegranate glaze by mixing it with a little maple syrup. Brush it over the roasting sprouts during the last few minutes of cooking. Do the same for a balsamic maple glaze.
- Add a little lemon juice to mellow out the sweet flavor of pomegranate molasses.
Step 1: Preheat the oven or air fryer. Cut Brussels sprouts in half and place them in a large bowl. Toss them with salt and pepper.
Step 2: Roast them in a single layer with the cut side up in the air fryer basket or on a large baking sheet lined with parchment paper.
Step 3: Add the pomegranate seeds, walnuts, and pomegranate molasses.
Step 4: Mix well and serve warm.
Crispy Brussels sprouts rely on two things - high heat and low moisture. This means preheat the oven or air fryer before adding the sprouts and never soaking or thawing frozen sprouts before cooking.
Air Fry sprouts at 375 F for 10 minutes and shake after 5 minutes. Note - Different brands of air fryers may require differences in cooking time, so check your sprouts frequently.
Bake sprouts at 425 F for 17-25 minutes. Toss them after the first 10 minutes of baking. I usually line the baking tray with parchment paper, but it's optional since there isn't any oil to make a mess.
Roasting Frozen Brussels Sprouts
If you roast frozen Brussels sprouts, you can skip cutting them in half (they're frozen).
Bake: Preheat the oven to 450 F, then spread the sprouts over the baking tray. Bake for 15 minutes, undisturbed. Then sprinkle them with salt and pepper, toss them, and continue baking for another 5-10 minutes.
Air Fry: Preheat the air fryer to 390 F. Air fry for 10 minutes. Add the salt and pepper and shake the sprouts. Continue air frying for another 8-10 minutes until they are crispy brown.
Serving tip: Heat the serving bowl before adding the roasted sprouts. This helps keep them warmer for longer.
This is a great side dish for any holiday table and complements traditional Thanksgiving dinner menus or a Christmas feast.
Frequently Asked Questions
Place leftover Brussels sprouts in an airtight container and keep them in the refrigerator for 4 days. Reheat them in the air fryer or oven.
If you want crispy Brussels sprouts, start with dry sprouts. Never soak or let the sprouts get water-logged. Gently rinse them and make sure they are dry before roasting them. Also, you want the oven temperature high enough to evaporate moisture and crisp your veggies quickly. Don’t be afraid to ramp up the heat.
Although I stand by sprouts for this recipe, roasted cauliflower is the best substitute. The flavor goes well with pomegranate, and you can prepare it in the same way, oven-roasting or air frying as desired. For more info, check out my recipe for roasted cauliflower and Brussels sprouts.
Recipes with Brussels Sprouts
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Roasted Pomegranate Brussels Sprouts
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- 1 pound brussels sprouts - trimmed and halved
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon black pepper
- ¼ cup chopped walnuts
- 2 tablespoons pomegranate molasses
- ½ cup pomegranate seeds
- Trim the stems from the end of the Brussels sprouts and remove any loose or discolored leaves. Cut them in half lengthwise. Place them in a bowl and toss them with salt and black pepper.
- Air fry or bake, following the directions below.
- When the sprouts are done, place them in a bowl, then add the pomegranate seeds, walnuts, and pomegranate molasses. Toss the ingredients. Serve warm.
How to Air Fry Brussels Sprouts
- Preheat the air fryer to 375 degrees F.
- Place the sprouts in an even layer in the air fryer basket. Start with the cut sides upwards.
- Set the time for 10 minutes. Shake the sprouts after 5 minutes and continue cooking for another 2-5 minutes until they are crispy brown. Use a fork to check the tenderness of the middle of the sprouts.
How to Bake Brussels Sprouts
- Bake sprouts at 425 degrees F for 17-25 minutes. Toss them after the first 10 minutes of baking.
- Recipe time is for oven-baking. Oven and air fryer times will vary depending on the true temperature differences of your appliance.
- To air-fry frozen Brussels sprouts, leave the sprouts whole and preheat the air fryer to 390 degrees F. Air fry for about 14 minutes in total. After 9 minutes, shake the sprouts and add salt and pepper. Continue cooking for another 5 minutes.
- To bake frozen Brussels sprouts, preheat the oven to 450 degrees F, then spread the sprouts over the baking tray. Bake for 15 minutes, undisturbed. Then sprinkle them with salt and pepper, toss them, and continue baking for another 5-10 minutes.
- Pomegranate syrup (unsweetened) can be substituted for pomegranate molasses. If you can't find that, use balsamic vinegar or white balsamic condiment.
- Store leftover Brussels sprouts in an airtight container and keep them in the refrigerator for 4 days. Reheat them in the air fryer or oven.
- Try this recipe using cauliflower or a combination of cauliflower and Brussels sprouts. Yummy!
- Quickly rinse Brussels sprouts and dry them as much as possible. Never soak them in water. Excess moisture is the main reason they become soggy and don't crisp.
Nutritional information is an estimation only.