Must-Have Thanksgiving Dish: Balsamic Roasted Brussels Sprouts with Mustard Vinaigrette from Cooking After Five

For the month of November, we have asked some of our favorite food bloggers to share recipes for their must-have Thanksgiving dishes. Join us to see what will be on their tables this year and for years to come.


Balsamic Roasted Brussels Sprouts with Mustard Vinaigrette by Nicole from Cooking After Five


Balsamic Roasted Brussels Sprouts with Mustard Vinaigrette from Cooking After Five


For a holiday laced with tradition in the form of sweet potato casserole, football games, and circling around the table sharing what we’re thankful for, there had always been something missing at our meal: Brussels sprouts. For no apparent reason, we somehow settled into the habit of not serving them, so several years ago I decided to arrive with a little surprise of balsamic roasted Brussels sprouts with mustard vinaigrette.


I’d been cooking seriously for about five years, had started a food blog, and finally felt compelled to contribute something to the table. I was also mindful of everyone’s interest in eating well, and especially the needs of several family members with gluten and lactose allergies. I’d hoped, at best, that a few people would pick at the Brussels sprouts and maybe shove them around on their plate, but to my surprise it was the first side dish to be eaten in its entirety. The biggest draw—aside from its health benefits to counteract the butter-laden mashed potatoes and pumpkin pie—was tasting new flavors amidst old favorites, and ultimately, starting a new tradition.


Balsamic Roasted Brussels Sprouts with Mustard Vinaigrette


Brussels sprouts are delicious when roasted with only olive oil, salt, and pepper, but the balsamic vinegar deepens their flavor. To keep this dish lactose-free, omit the Parmesan cheese.


Serves 4


For the Brussels sprouts:
1 ½ pounds Brussels sprouts
3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
Sea salt
Freshly ground black pepper
Parmesan cheese, for garnish (optional)


For the vinaigrette:
2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
2 teaspoons lemon juice
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
½ cup extra-virgin olive oil


1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

2. Cut the stems off each Brussels sprout and halve lengthwise. Discard any tough outer leaves and place in a bowl.

3. Add the olive oil, balsamic vinegar, and a good sprinkling of salt and pepper. Toss together with your hands until the Brussels sprouts are evenly coated, then spread on a baking sheet.

4. Roast for 35 minutes, tossing occasionally, or until the Brussels sprouts are caramelized and golden brown.

5. While the Brussels sprouts roast, make the dressing. In a small bowl, combine the mustard, lemon juice, salt and freshly ground black pepper. Gradually whisk in olive oil.

6. Toss the Brussels sprouts in a medium bowl with 3 tablespoons of the dressing; save the remaining dressing for another use. Scatter with shards of Parmesan cheese (if using). Serve warm or at room temperature.


Nicole Gulotta is a philanthropy professional by day and gourmet home cook by night. In addition to her full-time job, she writes Cooking After Five, a food blog dedicated to eating, entertaining, and wine tasting in California

(recipe and image by Nicole Gulotta/Cooking After Five)


What is your must-have Thanksgiving dish?