One of my favorite side items to make is brussels sprouts. I cook them many ways, when I’m feeling lazy I just roast them with some olive oil and salt an pepper. Sometimes lazy cooking tastes great! But, my favorite way to enjoy them is on the grill. Pretty much anything can have its flavor improved on the grill, and I try to do a lot of my cooking there. These smoky grilled brussels sprouts will definitely have you putting them on the menu anytime you’re firing up the grill.
How are they smoky and grilled?
Your “go-to” set up on almost all charcoal grills should be a two-zone fire. That is to say, put all or almost all of your charcoal on one side of the grill, and leave the other side just warm from radiant heat. The exception to this maybe if you’re just grilling hot dogs or hamburgers. Even in that situation though I would have a “safety zone” where I could move the meat away from flare-ups. My safety zone would be smaller than half the grill, but the premise is the same.
The two-zone fire method gives you a ton of options when grilling or smoking. First, you can cook thicker cuts of meat without excessive charring. Secondly, there’s a safety zone to place food to avoid flare-ups, and third, you can bring a lot more smoke flavor into the equation. That’s what makes these sprouts shine.
Preparing them and cooking indirectly
Brussels take a bit of prep work, but won’t take much time. For these, I simply cut off the bottom core, then roughly chop the brussels. I then put them in a resealable bag (a mixing bowl will do fine,) and added olive oil and my seasonings.
Shake shake shake, shake shake shake, shake your brussels, shake your brussels (anyone else humming KC and the Sunshine Band right now?) Anyway, shake them up to evenly distribute the oil and seasonings, then make a loose pouch out of aluminum foil. Dump the brussels sprouts in the pouch, scrunch it up (leaving the top open) and head to the grill.
Add a couple of chunks of your favorite wood to the charcoal and place the brussels sprouts on the cool side. Allow to cook for 20 minutes, stirring every 3-4 minutes. Remove when some of the leaves have that delicious char and the sprouts are tender.
Finishing them off
They are delicious just as they are. If you want to take them to the next level, drizzle some really good balsamico on them and then shave some Parmigiano Reggiano over the top. Outstanding.
As always, enjoy!
- 1 pint brussels sprouts
- 2 TBS olive oil
- 1/2 tsp chipotle chili powder
- 1 tsp granulated garlic
- 1 tsp kosher salt or to taste
- 1/2 tsp black pepper or to taste
- Remove stems from sprouts, then coarsely chop. Add to a plastic bag or mixing bowl, and add other ingredients. Toss to evenly coat.
- Make a foil pouch. Add sprouts to pouch and "scrunch up sides. Place on cool side of grill. Allow to cook for 20 minutes, stirring every 3-4 minutes. Remove when some char has developed and sprouts are tender.