Brussels Sprouts

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Lawn & Garden

Despite their reputation as the enemy of dinner tables, Brussels sprouts are actually a great source of vitamins and nutrients such as vitamin A, folacin, potassium, calcium, and fiber. They are also low-fat and high in protein. While they may not be everyone’s favorite, they are worth trying. This article will cover growing and selecting Brussels sprouts, as well as their health benefits.

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Brussels sprouts are cabbage-type heads, nestled in large green leaves.

Brussels sprouts are small, cabbage-like heads that grow 1-2 inches in diameter on a tall stem surrounded by large green leaves. They belong to the cole family and are similar to cabbage in their growing habits and requirements. They are the most cold-tolerant of the cole family vegetables and are easy to grow in a home garden. They are also known as Brassica oleracea or Gemmifera Group.

If you want to learn more about Brussels sprouts, try cooking them, growing them in a vegetable garden, or asking gardening experts.

Growing Brussels Sprouts

Brussels sprouts take time to grow and require regular maintenance, but they are hardy vegetables and some are even disease-resistant. They grow best in fertile soils and are frost-tolerant. They do well in cooler weather with day temperatures under 80 degrees Fahrenheit and night temperatures 20 degrees Fahrenheit lower. If they develop in hot weather, they may not form compact heads but instead will remain loose tufts of leaves.

Brussels sprouts are typically grown from transplants, planted when they are four to six weeks old. If the transplants are leggy or have crooked stems, plant them deeply so they won’t grow top-heavy. In areas with a long cool period, seeds can be sown directly in the garden in the fall for winter harvest.


Brussels sprouts are often grown from transplants.

To harvest Brussels sprouts, start from the bottom and remove leaves and sprouts as the season progresses. It takes almost three months for Brussels sprouts to grow from transplants, and they can be harvested between 75 to 90 days after transplanting. There are different types of Brussels sprouts with unusual names, such as Jade Cross Hybrid, Long Island Improved, and Diablo. Choosing Brussels sprouts based on color and the head is important. When preparing Brussels sprouts, make sure they are bright green and have firm heads. For more information on Brussels sprouts, you can learn how to cook them, grow them in your vegetable garden, or get gardening tips.

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Cholesterol

0 mg

Sodium

10 mg

Carbohydrates

6 g

Fiber

3 g

Sugars

2 g

Protein

3 g

How to Select Brussels Sprouts

When choosing Brussels sprouts, look for fresh, firm heads with a bright green color and tightly compacted leaves. Avoid sprouts with yellowed, wilted, or loose leaves. Smaller heads are better as they are more tender and flavorful. Pick sprouts of similar size to ensure even cooking. Store them in a cardboard container or plastic bag, loosely closed, in the refrigerator for up to two weeks.

How to Prepare and Serve Brussels Sprouts

Before cooking, dunk the sprouts in ice water to remove any bugs and rinse them under running water. Remove any loose or wilted leaves and trim the stem ends slightly. Cut an “X” in the bottoms of the sprouts to ensure even cooking. Steaming is the best cooking method as it preserves more nutrients and minimizes odor. Overcooking Brussels sprouts can cause them to lose valuable vitamin C, so cook them until they are just tender. They can be served with a squeeze of lemon or a mustard sauce for added flavor.

Health Benefits of Brussels Sprouts

Brussels sprouts are a member of the cabbage family and are packed with fiber, vitamin A, folacin, potassium, and calcium. They are also high in protein, accounting for more than a quarter of their calories. Although their protein is incomplete, it can be made complete by pairing them with whole grains. Brussels sprouts can help fill you up without filling you out, as they are low in fat and calories. They also contain indole and vitamin C, which are anti-cancer agents.

The table below shows the nutritional values of Brussels sprouts. It is a good source of Vitamin A, Vitamin C, and dietary fiber. There are 7 grams of carbohydrates and 2 grams of protein in Brussels sprouts. In addition, it is low in cholesterol and sodium, but high in potassium. Carotenoids, which are essential for eye health, are also present in Brussels sprouts.

If you want to learn more about Brussels sprouts, you can read about cooking them, growing them in your vegetable garden, and how they fit into your overall nutrition goals. However, it is important to note that this information is solely for informational purposes and should not be used as medical advice. Always consult with your physician or other healthcare provider before making any changes to your diet or exercise routine.

FAQ

1. What are Brussels sprouts?

Brussels sprouts are a type of vegetable that belong to the same family as broccoli, cabbage, and kale. They resemble mini cabbages and grow on a stalk.

2. Where did Brussels sprouts originate from?

Brussels sprouts were first cultivated in Belgium in the 16th century. They were later introduced to other parts of Europe and eventually made their way to North America.

3. How do you cook Brussels sprouts?

There are numerous ways to cook Brussels sprouts, including roasting, sautéing, boiling, and steaming. You can also add spices, herbs, and other ingredients to enhance the flavor.

4. Are Brussels sprouts healthy?

Yes, Brussels sprouts are very healthy. They are low in calories and high in fiber, vitamins, and minerals. They also contain antioxidants and anti-inflammatory compounds.

5. What do Brussels sprouts taste like?

Brussels sprouts have a slightly bitter taste and a mild nutty flavor. Some people may find them unpleasant, while others enjoy their unique taste.

6. How do you choose Brussels sprouts at the grocery store?

Look for Brussels sprouts that are firm, bright green, and without any yellowing or browning. The smaller sprouts are usually sweeter than the larger ones.

7. Can you freeze Brussels sprouts?

Yes, you can freeze Brussels sprouts. First, blanch them in boiling water for 3-5 minutes, then cool them in ice water. Pat them dry and store in an airtight container or freezer bag.

8. How long do Brussels sprouts last in the fridge?

Brussels sprouts can last up to a week in the fridge if stored properly. Keep them in a plastic bag with some ventilation holes. Do not wash them until you are ready to use them.

9. What are some popular dishes that include Brussels sprouts?

Roasted Brussels sprouts with bacon, Brussels sprouts gratin, and Brussels sprouts salad are some popular dishes that include Brussels sprouts as a main ingredient.

10. Can you eat Brussels sprouts raw?

Yes, you can eat Brussels sprouts raw. They are a great addition to salads and slaws. Just make sure to slice them thinly to make them easier to chew.

11. What are some alternatives to Brussels sprouts?

If you don’t like Brussels sprouts, you can try other cruciferous vegetables such as broccoli, cauliflower, or kale. You can also try roasting or sautéing them with different spices and herbs to enhance their flavor.

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