What can I use instead of Brussels Sprouts? The best substitutes for Brussels Sprouts are cruciferous vegetables like broccoli, cabbage, kale, and collard greens. Swiss chard, escarole, green beans, and peas make tasty alternatives if you need a green veg.
Brussels Sprouts may look like baby cabbages but are separate vegetables that grow on long stalks. They are full of vitamin C, fiber, and protein, and are delicious, especially when roasted, sautéed, or stir-fried, never overcooked to mushiness. Eat tender, earthy Brussels Sprouts raw in coleslaw or salads.
These are the eight best substitutes for Brussels Sprouts:
The Best Brussels Sprouts Substitutes
The best substitute for Brussels Sprouts is broccoli, another green vegetable available in the fall and winter months.
Also a cruciferous vegetable, broccoli is highly nutritious and full of antioxidants, micronutrients, vitamins, and minerals. It is antimicrobial, builds bone, and supports the immune system.
Like Brussels Sprouts, you can enjoy broccoli florets raw or cooked, particularly if you choose tenderstem broccoli, as it has a similar earthy, slightly bitter flavor.
Use broccoli instead of Brussels Sprouts raw in green salads, added to grain bowls, or as a crudité with dips.
Broccoli can replace Brussels Sprouts in soups, casseroles, and stir-fries. Roast broccoli florets with mustard and bacon to mimic a Brussels Sprouts side dish.
Replace Brussels Sprouts with an equal weight of broccoli.
Another excellent alternative to Brussels Sprouts is cabbage.
A cousin of Brussels Sprouts, cabbage is a hardy winter vegetable and a member of the cruciferous veg family.
Whether you choose red, pale green, or dark green cabbage, you’re in for a health boost: it’s high in folates, vitamins C and K.
Ranging in flavor from the bland whitish leaves to the peppery Napa cabbage, cabbage has the same earthiness as Brussels Sprouts.
Like Brussels Sprouts, cabbage is versatile: use it raw in green salads, coleslaw, or to bulk out tacos.
You can chop cabbage into stews, soups, and casseroles, boil it with corned beef, or ferment it as sauerkraut and kimchi. Slices of roast cabbage are a vegan feast.
Replace Brussels Sprouts with an equal amount of cabbage, choosing the greenest, freshest, most tender variety you can find and shredding it fine to mimic the flavor and texture of Brussels Sprouts.
Also part of the brassica family, kale is a healthy replacement for Brussels Sprouts.
Kale is exceptionally good for you: it contains vitamins A, C, and K, antioxidants, folates, minerals, protein, and fiber. It is extremely high in calcium, magnesium, and iron.
It has the same bitter, robust flavor as many other cruciferous veggies (such as watercress and arugula).
This flavor makes kale an intense addition to a smoothie, salad, or shredded into wraps – you’ll need to destem the kale and massage the leaves to tenderize them, as this green veg can be fibrous.
Kale is best in long-cooking dishes, where it will soften and take on the flavors around it. Use kale instead of Brussels Sprouts in curries, soups, casseroles, and stews.
Replace Brussels Sprouts with equal quantities of kale, especially if you want a bright green vegetable as a side.
Related to kale, collard greens make a delicious substitute for Brussels Sprouts.
One of the hardiest vegetables, collard greens are also brassica family members.
Their intense bitterness results from their high calcium content, with one portion giving you nearly a third of your RDA.
Like Brussels Sprouts, collard greens are packed with vitamin K, which is vital for bone health.
Add vitamins B and C, manganese, magnesium, and iron, and you have one of the healthiest veggies on your plate.
Collard greens need thorough washing and trimming, or they can be stringy and unpleasant.
They’re best slow-cooked in liquid to reduce their bitterness and tenderize: sautée them with ham or simmer them in soup, where they make a tasty replacement for Brussels Sprouts.
Use the same amount of collard greens as Brussels Sprouts for a delicious side dish alternative.
Swiss chard makes a beautiful, colorful alternative to Brussels Sprouts.
Although chard looks like spinach, it is related to beetroot and comes in reds, yellows, and rainbow shades like beets.
A nutritional powerhouse, Swiss chard has all the benefits of leafy green veg – it contains heart-healthy antioxidants, your entire RDA of vitamin K, vitamins A, C, and E, manganese, magnesium, iron, and potassium.
Swiss chard has a more delicate flavor than Brussels Sprouts, although it is still somewhat bitter and peppery. You can replace shaved Brussels Sprouts with baby Swiss chard leaves in salads.
Mature Swiss chard leaves are best sautéed, braised, steamed, or quickly wilted. It’s delicious in quiche, pasta, or stir-fries.
Because Swiss chard has a less intense flavor than Brussels Sprouts, you can use more of it. Also note that, like spinach, it cooks down a lot.
This leafy green is an ideal substitute for Brussels Sprouts.
Escarole is a bitter leafy green related to chicory or endives and is used regularly in Italian cooking,. The leaves are pale and frilly but should not be mistaken for lettuce.
Like other green leafy veg, escarole is rich in vitamins, minerals, and fiber and has high calcium levels, resulting in bitterness.
Replace Brussels Sprouts with a handful of escarole to add depth of flavor to salads or bite to stews, soups, and casseroles.
Escarole’s bitterness can be overwhelming, so you may want to use less of it than earthy Brussels Sprouts.
Green beans make a tasty and versatile replacement for Brussels Sprouts.
Also known as string beans and snap beans, green beans are high in vitamins A, C, and K, folates, magnesium, potassium, and fiber.
Although many families will have Brussels Sprouts and green bean casserole on the holiday menu, you can have the green beans if you prefer.
With their appealing crunch and grassy flavor, green beans make a suitable replacement for Brussels Sprouts when sautéed with bacon, maple syrup, and pecans, or choose oriental flavors like soy and garlic.
Blanch and dress beans, or braise them in the oven like you would Brussels Sprouts.
The great advantage of green beans is that they cook more quickly than Brussels Sprouts and are available all year round.
Replace Brussels Sprouts with the same amount of green beans when you need an addition to a stir-fry or a festive side dish.
If you’ve got very fussy eaters, serve green peas as an alternative to Brussels Sprouts.
Peas are traditionally a late winter or early spring vegetable and taste sweet and tender when fresh. They are very healthy and full of vitamins, copper, manganese, and phosphorus, even when frozen.
However, they contain double Brussels Sprouts’ carbs, so this is not a good substitute for low-carb and keto diets.
With their bright green color, ability to meld with most flavors, and versatility, peas are a welcome addition to any dish.
Quickly blanch and drain, then add them to grain salads instead of Brussels Sprouts, or blend them into dips, soups, casseroles, pasta, and pilaf.
Replace Brussels Sprouts with equal quantities of peas.