Brussels Sprouts and Pancetta

As I promised here is the first of some of our family Thanksgiving recipes: Brussels Sprouts and Pancetta. I have changed it a little from the original way that my aunt showed me, but it is just to save some time and dishes; something very valued on Thanksgiving day.


  • 3 oz. pancetta
  • 3 cups fresh Brussels sprouts; quartered lengthwise
  • olive oil
  • salt and pepper
Serves 4. Double or triple for large Thanksgiving parties!

First pre-heat the oven to 375°F. You are going to want two racks in the oven, one low and one in the middle. Line a large baking sheet with aluminum foil and grease with olive oil. I like to use the spray olive oil to save time and calories. Spread a single layer of pancetta on the tray. It doesn’t all need to fit flat. Place on the lowest rack for 3 minutes.

Those 3 minutes are just enough time to rinse and dry your Brussels sprouts.

Remove pancetta from the oven and set aside.

Cut the bottoms off of the Brussels sprouts and discard. I like to quarter mine for more delicious browning surface area, but if you are in a rush you can simply cut them in half.

Combine cut Brussels sprouts with pancetta. I cut the crispy pancetta with kitchen shears before adding it to the mix to help ensure bacon in every bite! Place the mix back on the same baking sheet and drizzle or spray with a little olive oil. Lightly salt and pepper and then return to the oven for 15-18 minutes, removing once to turn sprouts, until nicely browned. (May take longer if you have some large Brussels sprouts.)

Since it isn’t Thanksgiving yet, I served mine over some bow-tie pasta with a little bit of chicken broth and garnished with some fresh parmesan cheese. It was a little ode to a dish that one of my childhood friend’s mom used to make us as an after school snack, only she used broccoli. Though you can’t see the broth, it’s there. It’s not supposed to be like a soup, but more like a sauce so there is just a little, but it makes a yummy difference.