How to Trim and Cut Brussel Sprouts

Oct 24, 2017 | Blog

A close cousin of cabbage, Brussel sprouts are produced in cooler weather. Frankly speaking, not many people out there know about the health benefits of this vegetable. It’s a great source of vitamins, minerals, and other health beneficial nutrients. Despite what naysayers have to say about this vegetable, they can taste great too. Truthfully speaking, it’s hard to convey how dynamic this vegetable is.

Of course, you should know how to cook them well because they can be cooked in a variety of different ways. Like everything else in life, the prep up should be up to the mark. In this way, you can be sure that things are heading in the right direction. At first, you will have to obviously trim them the right way. But, what’s the best way to trim Brussel sprouts? Have your thoughts suddenly slow down? Well, don’t worry! We will get to it right away.

Trimming Brussel Sprouts

Remember, this will not be a rush job. At the same time, it won’t take a ton of your time. So, don’t look to cut corners over here. Your best bet would be to work with one Brussel sprouts at a time. Over here, you will be cutting them to discard the stem ends. Simply rinse and repeat. Basically, you will be mimicking the first step of cutting and throwing away the ends of the stem.

Once this is done, you will discard discolored or loose outside leaves. Some of them will actually fall on their own. Don’t go too deep. You will have to simply get rid of the first layer. Again, do this one Brussel sprouts at a time. Of course, if you want to mellow down the flavor, you are free to go past the first layer.

Peeling the Outer Leaves and Cutting Brussel sprouts

Image from

So, why do we have to peel the outer leaves? Here’s the thing that you need to know over here. The outer leaves are born tough by nature so they will take longer to cook. When you let the Brussel sprouts spend too much time under the heat, they can get overly roasted. As a result, they may not taste their best.

Coming back to the trimming part, place the Brussel sprouts on the cutting board and slice them in half from top to bottom. Remember, no two Brussel sprouts are of the same size. So, you might want to cut them again in half. The goal is to get them to a bite-ready size. Also, similar sized Brussel sprouts will help in cooking them evenly. So, you might have to cut one more time depending on the size of the Brussel sprouts.

Brussel Sprouts Shopping Tips

Not all Brussel sprouts are the same. So, you will need a mindful approach while shopping for them. While getting them, look for those that have vibrant and dark green outer layers. Avoid the ones with too many yellow or browned leaves. Also, the stem ends should not be brown or dried out. Try not to get them loose to ensure their long life.

A stalk of Brussel sprouts will outlast all the varieties of loose ones out there any day of the week because they can stay fresh for long. Furthermore, avoid the ones that have a significant amount of surface gashes. If you plan to prep them ahead of time, don’t make the mistake of doing it way ahead of time. Ideally, you should trim them one or two days in advance and store them in an airtight container inside the refrigerator.

Brussel Sprouts Cleaning Tips

While this article is about trimming, it’s only half the job done. You will also have to clean them well. So, let’s get to the cleaning part of Brussel sprouts. To clean them, you need to rinse the Brussel sprouts in cold water. You might also want to scrub each of the sprouts individually.

This will help you get rid of the dust and dirt particles lingering in them. As a general rule, do not clean them as soon as you get them home, unless you plan to cook them the same day. So, avoid washing or cleaning them until you are ready to cook them because the moisture can lead to premature decay.

Brussel Sprouts Storage Tips

To ensure that they stay fresh for long, you have to store them well. Don’t worry; you will only need a plastic bag over here. Get the store-bought Brussel sprouts and keep them in a plastic bag without trimming or washing them. As you may have already guessed by now, the plastic bag needs to be placed in a refrigerator. Isn’t that the norm with most vegetable storage? Yes, it is. Brussel sprouts are no different over here. Remember our article on storing celery, very similar right?

The refrigerator can keep the vegetable fresh for a couple of weeks. Of course, there’s nothing stopping you from storing them longer than a week or two, but longer storage can make them taste less sweet. You might also miss out on the satisfying crunch. Not to forget the fact that the ones you bought could have been already preserved in a store’s refrigerator for several weeks. Therefore, you should prepare them closer to the purchase date.

Final Words

Before we leave, here’s a word of advice for you. Try them fresh from a garden, and you will surely love them to the core. Even if you hated them in the past, the hate will melt down and make way for a new and healthy relationship. Yes, you might develop affection towards them. Where there are Brussel sprouts, there’s a rewarding meal for sure as long as you don’t suck at your job.

Yes, perfectly cooked Brussel sprouts can convert the most adamant sprouts hater into a big-time fan. They turn out sweet, crispy, mildly-flavored, and tasty as well. Believe it or not, it can make your heart sing. Moreover, it’s always pleasant to remember your first attempt at trimming, cleaning, and cooking Brussel sprouts. So, get to know some of the Brussel sprouts recipes and give this creative vegetable a shot.



Billy StewartBilly Stewart

Founder of

My dad is a true mans man, and has owned a number of grills. Ranging from gas to charcoal. Growing up with him allowed me to see what different types of rubs, spices, brines, etc went into making the best BBQ. Although my dad was a truck driver, and I had a degree in Information Technology I knew that I wanted to do something about grilling and our recipes.  That’s where Barbeque Smoked comes in.


Submit a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Follow Us