Every Ingredient in This Brussels Sprout and Crispy Quinoa Caesar Salad Will Boost Your Digestion

Photo: Stocksy/ Kelly Knox
On today's episode of “salads aren’t boring,” we’re sharing one of the best ways to spruce up a good ol’ Caesar salad recipe. And trust us, this simple salad is so much better when served warm.

You heard that right. Warm salad is the way to go when making this Brussels sprouts Caesar salad recipe. It stars shaved Brussels sprouts, a vegan “Caesar” dressing (no anchovies included), and crispy quinoa. Because sometimes, cold croutons and limp romaine won't cut it.

The Brussels sprouts of it all 

We recently learned why Brussels sprouts seem to taste so much better than they did decades ago. No, it's not just you—researchers have discovered ways to breed out specific compounds that make Brussels sprouts taste more bitter. As such, they’ve become more and more palatable over the years. But taste aside, Brussels sprouts are packed with nutrients that make the case for noshing on ‘em even more convincing. These nutrients include vitamins B1, B6, C, and K, as well as folate, fiber, and potassium.

Now, onto our first course. In a recent Instagram post by @munchinwithmaddie_, recipe developer Maddie Ireland shares her genius way to prepare a warm Brussels sprouts Caesar salad.


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A post shared by Maddie Ireland (@munchinwithmaddie_)

To make it, Ireland starts by shredding Brussels sprouts and parmesan cheese. (FYI: you can skip this or swap it out for plant-based cheese if you’re looking for a vegan version.) Then, she layers the sprouts on a baking sheet and drizzles some olive oil, salt, and pepper on top. Next, she spread a layer of cooked quinoa on a parchment-lined baking sheet and repeats the seasoning process (EVOO + salt + pepper) before placing both sheets in the oven to cook.

While it bakes away, Ireland then gets started on the “Caesar” dressing—which, BTW, is anchovy-free. For a dairy-free version of a classic Caesar dressing, Ireland combines tahini which adds a warm, rich, and creamy taste and texture, and additional flavoring ingredients like lemon and Dijon mustard. Finally, she tosses the cooked Brussels sprouts in the dressing and garnishes the dish with crispy, crunchy quinoa for added texture and shavings of parmesan cheese (which is, again, optional).

Although Ireland’s recipe is meant to be served warm, if that sets off your ick alarm immediately, you can always opt for the cold route, too. That said, she discloses the raw Brussels sprouts might be slightly harder to digest than the cooked version. This is due to raffinose, an indigestible fiber found in some vegetables that can produce gas and intestinal discomfort. Ultimately, the choice is yours, but this warm Brussels sprouts salad is sounding even better by the minute.

Warm Brussels sprouts Caesar salad recipe

Yields 2 servings


For the dressing:
1/4 cup tahini
Juice from 1/2 lemon
1 Tsp Dijon mustard
1 clove garlic, minced
2 Tbsp grated parmesan (*substitute for a dairy-free alternative)
Salt to taste
3 Tbsp water

For the salad:
1 pound brussels sprouts, ends trimmed and shaved
2 Tbsp olive oil
Salt and pepper, to taste

For the crispy quinoa:
1 cup cooked and slightly cooled quinoa
1 Tbsp olive oil
Salt and pepper, to taste

1. Preheat the oven to 400°F. Add shredded Brussels to a baking sheet. Drizzle with oil, salt, and pepper. Toss to combine and spread out in an even layer.

2. Add quinoa to a separate parchment-lined baking sheet. Drizzle with oil, salt, and pepper. Toss to combine and spread out in an even layer. Roast Brussels and quinoa for 20-25 minutes, stirring halfway. Quinoa should be slightly golden and crispy.

3. Meanwhile, mix together all the dressing ingredients in a small bowl. Toss slightly cooled Brussels with dressing. Garnish with the crispy quinoa and more shaved parm if desired.

Next on the menu? An anti-inflammatory salad:

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