Brussels Sprouts Salad with Citrus Vinaigrette

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Shredded Brussels Sprouts make the base of this delicious and refreshing recipe that will reignite your passion for salad! This Brussel Sprout Salad recipe is both hearty and light, studded with toasted almonds, tart dried cherries, and smoky crispy bacon pieces. The fresh citrus vinaigrette brightens all the flavors and makes for one very special side dish that may just steal the show!

This recipe was originally published Nov 30, 2016; Updated Feb 11, 2022.

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Raw Brussel Sprout Salad will turn heads

We sure do love our Brussels sprouts around here! If you love these cruciferous little cabbages as much as we do, then you must give some of our cooked and roasted Brussels Sprout recipes a try.

But here, we’re shaving (and shaking) things up a bit by using raw Brussels sprouts. That’s right. There’s no cooking involved here. When you shred (aka shave) raw Brussels sprouts into thin shreds, they make a crunchy, fresh, and hearty base for salads, similar to kale or cabbage.

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A Brussel Sprout salad to feed a crowd

This raw Brussel Sprout Salad recipe makes a large batch, perfect for holiday dinners or other entertaining. But you can also make it for a smaller dinner. When serving 4 to 6 people, we recommend either cutting the recipe in half, or making the full recipe with the intention to enjoy the leftovers in the coming days. This salad stores well in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. Add some cooked chopped chicken and you’ll have yourself a delicious and well-balanced easy leftover lunch.

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Ingredients to make Brussels Sprouts Salad

Gather these fresh ingredients to make this stunning salad with homemade citrus vinaigrette:

Brussels Sprout Salad Ingredients:
  • Brussels sprouts – you’ll need 1 1/2 pounds of raw Brussels sprouts. Or, to make this recipe faster, you can simply pick up two 10-ounce bags of pre-shredded (aka shaved) Brussels sprouts; may sub thinly sliced kale or shredded cabbage
  • Bacon – crisp-cooked pieces of bacon add so much depth of flavor to this special salad, but you can simply omit this ingredient for a vegetarian salad
  • Red onion
  • Dried unsweetened cherries – or use dried cranberries or raisins
  • Almonds – you could also use cashews or any nut of choice; omit for nut-free or use sunflower seeds instead
  • Goat cheese – use a soft and crumbly goat cheese; omit the cheese for a dairy-free or Whole30 Brussels sprout salad
Homemade Citrus Vinaigrette Ingredients:
  • Avocado oil or olive oil
  • Orange – you’ll need 1/3 cup of orange juice, or the juice of 1 medium orange, as well as 1 teaspoon of fresh orange zest
  • Lemon – use 3 tablespoons of lemon juice, or the juice of 1 medium lemon
  • Shallot – or substitute 1 tablespoon minced garlic
  • Dijon mustard – you can also use yellow or whole grain mustard
  • Pure maple syrup – or you can use honey
  • Fresh thyme – or sub any any fresh herb of choice, such as basil, rosemary, tarragon, or oregano; alternatively, you can use 1/2 teaspoon of dried herbs
  • Fine sea salt and black pepper

Brussels Sprouts Salad with Citrus Vinaigrette 1

How to make shaved brussel sprout salad

This recipe for Brussel Sprout Salad is as simple as can be:

  1. Combine the salad ingredients: In a large bowl, toss together the shaved Brussel sprouts, red onion, bacon, dried cherries, and almonds.
  2. Make the citrus vinaigrette: Whisk together the oil, orange juice and zest, lemon juice, shallot, mustard, maple syrup, thyme, salt, and pepper. You can make the vinaigrette up to 3 days ahead.
  3. Toss the vinaigrette with the salad: Wait until just before serving to toss the vinaigrette with the salad ingredients. Add the goat cheese just before serving.

the easiest way to shred brussels sprouts

Sure you can thinly slice raw Brussels sprouts yourself. We’ve done this and it can be done! Just know that you’ll get a little bit of an arm workout with this method. A far easier way to shave Brussels sprouts is to place them in a food processor with the shredder blade attachment and whirl away until those Brussels are thinly sliced. An even easier method is to pick up a few bags of pre-shredded Brussels sprouts, which are available near the bagged salads in many grocery stores.

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A match made in salad heaven: Brussels Sprouts + Citrus Vinaigrette

Our easy homemade citrus vinaigrette not only adds amazing flavor to this Brussels Sprouts Salad, but it’s also quite versatile. Use it as the dressing for any salad, or even as a marinade for chicken, turkey, pork, or seafood. The fresh citrus juices, tangy mustard, and fragrant herbs provide an awakening pop of flavor that really brings the shaved Brussels sprouts to life.

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when to serve shaved Brussels Sprouts Salad

This salad has all the makings of a great holiday side dish, but you can also serve it as a main-dish salad with some added protein for any night of the week.

  • holiday menus – Thanksgiving, Christmas, Hanukkah (skip the bacon, depending on beliefs), New Year’s celebrations, and Valentine’s Day
  • potlucks and picnics
  • entertaining – your foodie friends will love these flavors
  • weeknight dinners – just added grilled chicken breast or a grilled pork chop for a hearty main-dish salad

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Can shaved brussels sprout salad be made ahead?

Since this salad features a hearty base of shaved Brussels sprouts, it’s a good candidate for making ahead. Here are some prep steps you can get out of the way up to 3 days prior to serving this salad:

  1. Shred the Brussels sprouts – they will keep, pre-shredded in the fridge for up to 3 days
  2. Cook and crumble the bacon – and store it in an air-tight container in the fridge for up to 3 days
  3. Toast the almonds – store them in a covered container at room temperature for up to 3 days
  4. Make the vinaigrette – keep it in a covered container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. Stir it again before adding to the salad.

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5 Nutritious ingredients in brussels sprouts Salad

Not only is this salad full of great flavors and textures that will keep you coming back for more, but it also packs a punch of good-for-you nutrients. Here are some shining ingredient stars in our Brussels sprouts salad:

  • Brussels sprouts – high in fiber (just 1/2 cup provides 6 grams), as well as heart-healthy minerals and vitamins, this cruciferous veg can help tame inflammation, improve blood flow, and even help your liver rid your body of toxins a little faster
  • Dried cherries – research shows that dried, unsweetened tart cherries may have cholesterol- and triglyceride-lowering benefits for your heart
  • Almonds – keep the skin on almonds to get the fiber benefit from these tasty nuts. A great source of antioxidant vitamin E, almonds can protect your cells from oxidative damage
  • Citrus – the orange and lemon citrus juice and zest in the vinaigrette are great for skin health, as well as warding of kidney stones and inflammation
  • Avocado oil or olive oil – these low-processed oils have an optimal ratio of heart-healthy omega-3 fatty acids

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Recipe

Brussels Sprouts Salad with Citrus Vinaigrette

The best shaved Brussels Sprout Salad you’ll ever eat! Thinly shredded Brussels stand in for lettuce and get adorned with toasted almonds, dried cherries, crisp bacon, and an easy citrus vinaigrette. Perfect as a holiday side dish or as a main-dish salad when paired with cooked chicken.

Prep: 20 minsCook: 15 minsTotal: 35 mins

Servings: 14 servings 1x

Ingredients

For the Salad: 

  • ⅔ cup sliced or chopped almonds*
  • 6 slices bacon (6 oz)
  • 1 1/2 lbs (24 oz) raw Brussels sprouts, shredded** (can also use two 10-ounce bags of pre-shredded / shaved Brussels sprouts) or substitute thinly sliced kale or cabbage
  • 1 cup thinly sliced red onion
  • ⅔ cup dried unsweetened cherries (may substitute cranberries or raisins)
  • 4 oz. soft goat cheese, crumbled***

For the Citrus Vinaigrette:

  • 1/2 cup avocado oil or olive oil
  • Zest and juice of 1 medium orange (about 1 teaspoon zest and 1/3 cup juice)
  • Juice of 1 medium lemon (about 3 tablespoons)
  • 1 small shallot, minced (may substitute 1 tablespoon minced garlic)
  • 2 teaspoons pure maple syrup
  • 2 teaspoons fresh thyme (or 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme)
  • 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • Fine salt and black pepper to taste

Instructions

  1. Start by toasting the almonds: Place a small skillet over medium heat. When hot, add the almonds and cook, stirring often, until they are golden and give off a toasted aroma, 6 to 8 minutes. Transfer the almonds to a plate to cool.
  2. Wipe the same skillet clean and place it over medium-high heat. When hot, add the bacon and cook until crisp, 2 to 3 minutes per side. Remove the bacon to a paper-towel lined plate. Let cool, then roughly chop into pieces and set aside. 
  3. In a large bowl, combine the shredded Brussels sprouts, red onion, dried cherries, chopped bacon, and almonds.
  4. In a small bowl or jar with a tight-fitting lid, mix together the vinaigrette ingredients.
  5. Before serving the salad, re-stir and pour the vinaigrette over the salad; toss well to coat. Add the goat cheese and toss gently to miss. 

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Notes

*For nut free, substitute sunflower seeds for the almonds

**If starting with whole, raw Brussels sprouts, we recommend using a food processor with the shredding blade to shave them all quickly. Or, you can thinly slice the trimmed Brussels sprouts with a knife. Just know you’ll get a little arm workout with this method.

***Omit the goat cheese for a dairy-free or Whole30 Brussel Sprout Salad recipe

For a faster recipe, use any pre-made citrus vinaigrette in place of the homemade vinaigrette, such as Primal Kitchen Honey Mustard Vinaigrette, Cilantro Lime Vinaigrette, or Lemon Turmeric Vinaigrette.

The salad ingredients and dressing can be prepped up to 3 days ahead and stored in separate containers; toss together before serving. Add the goat cheese just before serving. Salad leftovers can be stored in the fridge for up to 3 days. 

Nutrition Information

  • Serving Size: 1/13 of recipe (~3/4 cup)
  • Calories: 180
  • Fat: 14 g
  • (Sat Fat: 3 g)
  • Sodium: 121 mg
  • Carbohydrate: 11 g
  • (Fiber: 6 g
  • Sugar: 6 g)
  • Protein: 5 g

Dietary

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