This shaved brussels sprout salad recipe is an excellent fall and winter side dish. You can make it It's an easy way to get fresh, green vegetables on the table during colder months.
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Yes you can eat raw brussels sprouts! So let's shave them and make them into a salad! They're hearty and crunchy and filling and satisfying. We'll also get a little fancy and add mâche to soften things up and play with the textures.
My shaved brussels sprout salad is easy to make, using just a few ingredients. It's endlessly versatile—switch out the nuts and cheeses to suit your whims.
This salad is a study in textures! I like the contrast between the sturdy shaved brussels sprouts and the softness of the mache with their varying colors of green, then the cheese and walnuts come in with heartiness and crunch.
- Shaved brussels sprout salad ingredients
- How to shave brussels sprouts for salads: 3 methods
- How to make Shaved Brussels Sprout Salad
- Recipe variations and substitutions
- When to serve a shaved brussels sprout salad
- More Brussels Sprouts Recipes
- This shaved brussels sprout salad is perfect for fall and winter!
Shaved brussels sprout salad ingredients
I've chosen a few fun and funky ingredients for my version of a shaved brussels sprout salad. Scroll down for substitutions in case you can't find these at your market.
- Brussels sprouts: Choose firm brussels sprouts that are green all over. If they are starting to turn yellow, they are going bad.
- Manchego cheese or parmesan cheese: Manchego is a Spanish cheese that has a firm texture that stands up to grating and won't go soggy in your salad. If you can't find it, use parmesan instead.
- Raw walnuts: You can buy halves or nuts that are already chopped. Choose raw nuts because we are going to roast them briefly to wake up the flavor.
- Mâche or watercress: Mâche is a pretty little soft leafy green, sometimes called Lamb's Lettuce. Be sure to rinse it well, as it grows in sandy soil.
- White wine vinegar or white balsamic vinegar: You want a vinegar with a subtle sweetness.
- Tarragon: Tarragon has an anise flavor and therefore can be divisive. I love it in this salad because it stands up to the strong wintery flavors of the brussels sprouts and walnuts.
- Olive oil, kosher salt, freshly ground black pepper: Round out the components of the dressing.
How to shave brussels sprouts for salads: 3 methods
There are 3 standard ways to shred brussels sprouts. For all 3 methods, you'll want to trim the bottom stem off and remove any bad leaves before you shave them.
- Use a sharp chef's knife and slice by hand. The old-fashioned way. Just takes a little elbow grease and carefully guard your fingers.
- Shave the brussels sprouts in the food processor. This is the fastest and easiest! Use the slicing blade just like you would for carrots or potatoes.
- Use a mandoline slicer. This might be faster than using a knife, depending on your knife skills. Always be sure to use the guard and/or a protective glove when using a mandoline because they are SHARP!
How to make Shaved Brussels Sprout Salad
Step 1: Chop and toast the walnuts
Coarsely chop the walnuts (or buy them chopped already!) and toast them lightly in a dry skillet. Just until you begin to smell the aroma and they release their oils. Set aside to cool.
Step 2: Shave the brussels sprouts
Use a good chef's knife to cut bottom stems from sprouts. You just want to use the leafiest part of the sprout. Thinly slice brussels sprouts using the method of your choice: knife, mandoline, or food processor until they are shredded thinly.
Sift through shaved brussels sprouts with your fingers, breaking them up into little ribbons and removing any bits of core.
Step 3: Grate the cheese and combine ingredients
Grate cheese finely - using the smaller holes of a box grater. Combine shredded brussels sprouts, mache, and walnuts in a large bowl.
Step 4: Make the dressing and finish the salad
In a small food processor (or separate bowl with a lid), combine vinegar, oil, chopped tarragon, kosher salt and cracked pepper. Blend or shake vigorously to emulsify ingredients.
Gradually mix the salad dressing into the shaved brussels sprout mixture. Top with a little more cheese and nuts and serve.
Recipe variations and substitutions
- If you can't find Manchego cheese use parmesan.
- Use watercress in place of mâche.
- If you don't like walnuts, try pecans or hazelnuts.
- Throw in some dried cranberries or dried cherries!
- If you just don't have time or don't have the gumption, you can buy raw brussels sprouts that are already shaved.
- Add bacon bits or even grilled chicken to make this brussels sprout salad a meal.
You can make this up to one day ahead. Just prepare the shredded brussels sprouts, salad dressing and other components separately, then assemble once you are ready to serve.
Yes, raw brussels sprouts are safe to eat. But just biting into one can be hard to do! That's why we are using shredded brussels sprouts in this salad. It lightens up their texture so they are easier to eat, yet still pleasantly crunchy.
Yes you can! Just be sure to trim the hard stem off the bottom before you put them in the food processor. This is really the fastest way (and safest for your fingers!) to shred brussels sprouts.
When to serve a shaved brussels sprout salad
- Serve it as a Thanksgiving side dish or at Christmas dinner. It's hearty but not heavy, and a great fresh element to have on the table that doesn't take up oven space.
- The raw brussels sprouts are a great complement to heartier meat entrées like Boneless Leg of Lamb or Cast Iron Skillet Steak.
- Makes a great potluck dish because all of the elements can be made ahead and you just assemble the salad when you get to the party.
- I love a shaved brussels sprouts salad in January. It makes me feel like I'm cleaning out my gut after all of the rich foods I ate during the holiday season.
- Perfect for a light lunch during fall and winter alongside soups like Tuscan White Bean Soup or Corn Chowder.
More Brussels Sprouts Recipes
- For the quickest, easiest side dish, try Crispy Pan Fried Brussels Sprouts with Garlic and Hazelnuts.
- Can you put brussels sprouts in a dip? Yes, you can and you should. Make this Creamy Brussels Sprouts Dip and find out how good it can be!
- Roasting brussels sprouts for a long time makes them melty inside. You'll find out all about it when you make Honey Roasted Brussels Sprouts.
This shaved brussels sprout salad is perfect for fall and winter!
- Just 6 ingredients! (Because we know that olive oil, salt and pepper don't count...)
- Uses seasonal vegetables which always taste better!
- Definitely not heavy, but hearty enough to satisfy your cold weather cravings.
- A great way to get your green vegetables during the winter.
- Cheese and walnuts add protein, making it filling enough to be a light meal on its own.
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Shaved Brussels Sprout Salad
Brussels Sprouts Salad
- 1 lb Brussels sprouts
- 3 oz Mache rosettes or watercress
- ¾ cup manchego cheese or parmesan
- 1 cup walnuts toasted and chopped
- ⅓ cup white wine vinegar or white balsamic
- ¼ cup olive oil
- 2 tablespoon chopped tarragon
- kosher salt to taste
- cracked black pepper to taste
- Coarsely chop walnuts (or buy them chopped already!) and toast them lightly in a dry skillet. Set aside to cool.
- Cut stems from brussels sprouts and thinly slice, starting at the rounded end, working your way toward the core or stem. Once you start getting to the hard stem, stop slicing. You just want to use the leafiest part. Sift through sliced brussels sprouts with your fingers, breaking them up into little ribbons and removing any bits of core.
- Grate cheese finely - using the smaller holes of a box grater.
- In a small food processor (or separate bowl with a lid), combine vinegar, oil, tarragon, kosher salt and cracked pepper. Blend or shake vigorously to emulsify ingredients.
- Combine sprouts, mache, and walnuts in a large bowl.
- Gradually mix dressing into salad - your hands work as the best kitchen tool for this task. Top with a little more cheese and walnuts and serve.
- If you're going to shave the brussels sprouts by hand, you'll need a good, sharp chef's knife. I use my Global knife. It has a very comfortable handle, and since it's one piece of seamless stainless steel, it's lighter weight and easier to grip and use.
- When using a food processor to shave the brussels sprouts, you need a reliable one that can stand up to their sturdy texture. I have a KitchenAid food processor that never lets me down.