Brussels Sprouts with Toasted Almonds

Here is one of the easiest ways to prepare brussels sprouts—parboiled for a few minutes, and then sautéed in butter with onions, and tossed with lemon juice and toasted almonds. So good!

The trick to delicious brussels sprouts is to not overcook them. The minute they are overcooked they turn bitter. Cooked just right brussels sprouts are still a little crunchy and have a wonderful nutty flavor to them.

Brussels Sprouts with Toasted Almonds

From the recipe archive, first posted 2005

Brussels Sprouts with Toasted Almonds Recipe

  • Prep time: 15 minutes
  • Cook time: 15 minutes
  • Yield: Serves 6-8


  • 1 lb fresh brussels sprouts, trimmed of ragged or old-looking outer leaves
  • 4-6 Tbsp butter
  • 1/2 onion, chopped
  • Salt and Pepper
  • 1 teaspoon lemon juice or 1 Tbsp Meyer lemon juice, fresh squeezed
  • 1/4 cup toasted slivered almonds


1 Bring 2 quarts of salted water (1 Tbsp of salt) to a rolling boil. Add the brussels sprouts and parboil them for 3 minutes or until just tender. (You could also steam them if you prefer.) They should be almost cooked all the way through (split one in half to test). Remove the sprouts with a slotted spoon to a bowl of ice water for a minute to shock the brussels sprouts and help them retain their bright green color. Remove them from the ice water and cut the sprouts into halves.

2 Heat 2-3 Tbsp of butter in a large sauté pan on medium heat. Add the chopped onions and cook until translucent, about 4-5 minutes. Add 2-3 Tbsp more of butter and the brussels sprouts halves. Increase the heat to medium high and cook for several more minutes. Salt and pepper to taste, while the brussels sprouts are cooking. Do not overcook! Overcooked brussels sprouts are bitter and are the main reason why some people don't like them.

3 Remove the pan from the heat, stir in the lemon juice and half of the toasted almonds. Add salt and pepper to taste. Place in serving dish and garnish with the rest of the toasted almonds.

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Golden-crusted Brussels sprouts from Heidi of 101 Cookbooks

Showing 4 of 50 Comments

  • rickfle

    Don’t forget – never cover the sprouts (or broccoli or cabbage)- while cooking. That way they won’t get sour.

  • lynn

    “Don’t forget – never cover the sprouts (or broccoli or cabbage)- while cooking. That way they won’t get sour.”

    How can you steam if you don’t cover?

  • Elise

    In my experience, the bitterness comes from overcooking, not from anything else. I cook these vegetables all the time covered. You just have to be more careful not to overcook them, given that when they are covered it’s harder to tell what’s happening. That said, my father just recounted a story to me of visiting the kitchen of a chef in a fancy Beverly Hills restaurant many years ago. The chef always covered his steamed or boiling vegetables with a kitchen towel, not a metal cover. He claimed that it helped keep the vegetables from losing their color.

  • Nina

    Brussels being my native town, I am bound to like brussels sprouts – and I do, in different states of doneness ;o)
    I have never tried them with lemon and almonds, though. I usually season with nutmeg (plus a little bit of a sauce made of butter, flour and vegetable stock). But I don’t know a lot of variants to prepare brussels sprouts, so I am going to give this one a try soon. Thanks!

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