Smashed Brussel Sprouts in the air fryer have a pleasantly crispy texture and bright tang of balsamic vinegar. They're a delicious addition to a pork chop dinner or any other time you're looking for a perfect side dish.
A sprinkle of parmesan cheese brings a unique flavor you're gonna love in under 20 minutes!
Do you ever have trouble getting your kids (or husband) to eat their veggies? That's because vegetables can be rather, well...ho-hum. Bor-ing....
I can say, though, that these air fryer smashed Brussel sprouts are so completely tasty, I've venture to say they're even kid-friendly!
They’re crispy-crunchy, so you likely won’t have many texture issues. Additionally, they taste just amazing. Parmesan, balsamic vinegar, salt, pepper…there’s a lot to love about this simple recipe.
Why you'll love this recipe
Versatile – While this is definitely not a whole meal, air fried brussel sprouts are great as an appetizer, side dish, or snack. I love pairing them with pepperoni pizza chicken for a meal the whole family enjoys.
Fast to make – You know I love my quick recipes. These sprouts are ready in 20 minutes and far more healthy, efficient, and economical than running to a fast food restaurant.
Simple – This recipe only requires 6 ingredients, and they’re all common ones you’ll find at any grocery store…or already have as pantry staples.
Oh, and for a tasty brussel sprout dipping sauce, you've gotta try this smoky chipotle mayo!
See recipe card for quantities.
- Brussel sprouts – you’ll need about a 12 oz bag for this recipe, though if you want to make multiple batches, get more! If you have extras, make these maple balsamic Brussels sprouts.
- Olive oil - even though we're air frying these, we need a little fat to crisp them up.
- balsamic vinegar - for a hint of tang.
- shredded parmesan – freshly shredded is best if you can swing it!
If you need to swap something out, here are ideas for you.
- Cheese - Use nutritional yeast as a parmesan cheese alternative.
- Vinegar - use red or white wine vinegar.
- Oil - use avocado oil or coconut oil
- Use steam in bag brussels sprouts
How to make smashed brussels sprouts in the air fryer
It's easy when the air fryer takes care of the cooking for you, making this a simple and quick recipe.
Step 1: Microwave brussels sprouts. In a large microwave-safe dish, place the uncooked Brussels sprouts add ¼ cup of water, and cook for 4 minutes at high temperature. Remove for the microwave and let them cool for 5 to 10 minutes
Step 2: Smash them! Place the Brussel Sprout on a cutting board, and with the bottom of a flat pan or dish, give the sprouts a little smash. You can also use a flat pancake turner, but I find the pan to be a fun way to take out my frustrations. 😉
Step 3: Sprinkle with parmesan cheese. Place the smashed sprouts in a large bowl. Add the olive oil, balsamic vinegar, grated parmesan, salt, and pepper. Mix gently until the Brussels sprouts are well coated.
Step 4: Crisp in the air fryer. Place sprouts in the air fryer basket in a single layer. Cook for 6 minutes at 400˚F, flipping them halfway by either shaking the basket or using tongs.
If you’d like to experiment a little, try adding or switching out certain ingredients. Some ideas for you are:
- red chili flakes (great for adding spice)
- garlic powder
- add bacon (can you really go wrong?)
- other kinds of grated cheese (Asiago or pecorino romano work well)
- A dash of lemon juice
No air fryer? You can make a similiar version in a regular oven with this oven roasted version of brussels sprouts on my site!
I often use the Cuisinart version because it works well and it looks pretty on the countertop. Hey, if it's gonna take up real estate in the kitchen, it can make a contribution, too!
You can keep leftover brussels sprouts in an airtight container in a fridge for up to 4 days. I wouldn’t freeze them or they'll get soggy and no one want's soggy brussels sprouts...
If you want to keep 'em as crispy brussels sprouts, reheat them in the air fryer rather than the microwave.
Steamable frozen sprouts or brussels sprouts cooked in the microwave are also fine in this recipe.
Check for two things. First, make sure you didn't crowd the basket and the sprouts were in a single layer. Also, you do need to use the oil to help them get nice and crispy. Enjoy!
Looking for other recipes like this? Try these:
If you make these air fried Brussels sprouts, leave me a comment or review! I'd love to hear from you.
Air Fryer Smashed Brussels Sprouts
- 12 ounces fresh Brussels sprouts
- 1 Tablespoon olive oil
- 1 Tablespoon balsamic vinegar
- 3 Tablespoon grated parmesan
- Salt and black pepper to taste
- To smash the Brussels Sprout, you need to microwave them. In a large microwave-safe bowl, place the uncooked Brussels sprouts add ¼ cup of water, and cook for 4 minutes at high temperature.
- Remove for the microwave and let them cool for 5 to 10 minutes. Place the Brussel Sprout on a cutting board, and with the bottom of a flat pan, give the sprouts a little smash. You can also use a flat pancake turner, but I find the pan to be very effective (and therapeutic).
- Place the smashed Brussels sprouts in a large bowl. Add the olive oil, balsamic vinegar, grated parmesan, salt, and pepper.
- Mix gently until the Brussels sprouts are well coated.
- Place in the air fryer basket in a single layer. Cook for 6 minutes at 400˚F, flipping them halfway by shaking the basket or using tongs.