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Crispy Gochujang Brussels Sprouts (Dairy-Free, Vegan Option)

These vegan gochujang brussels sprouts can be made mild or spicy, but however you pull them together, they’ll be crispy, sweet, and tangy. With just 7 ingredients and one bowl required, you can whip up a batch of these dairy-free gochujang brussels sprouts in under half an hour!

About this recipe

Easy Korean Side Dish: One thing I’m always looking for is new Korean-inspired sides to add to my favorites list. These gochujang brussels are crunchy, savory, salty, and satisfying, whether you have gochujang on hand or not.

East Meets West: These dairy-free gochujang brussels sprouts are based on the Korean-American mashup dishes I made during my years living in rural Korea. While finding brussels sprouts for sale in Seoul was a rarity, I never passed up the opportunity to bake some in my toaster oven. If only I’d had access to an air fryer back then!

Ingredients

Brussels Sprouts: these strange-looking vegetables are a member of the cancer-fighting brassica family, which includes mustard greens, broccoli, and cauliflower. Their ill-gained reputation for being stinky comes from the same sulfur-containing cancer-fighting properties.

Lard or Sesame Oil: whichever you use, both options are a high heat-safe fat that will work with the high temperature to crisp up the brussels in a pseudo-fry.

Gochujang Paste: this hot ingredient is the key to great kimchi as well as spicy gochujang brussels sprouts, and to balancing out the other strong flavors in this Korean side dish.

Honey or Maple Syrup: either of these is a fantastic way to get a bit of sweetness into your dish without going overboard. Another more Korean-style alternative would be brown rice syrup.

Rice Vinegar: this small quantity of the mildly sweet rice vinegar helps balance out the overall flavor of the crispy gochujang brussels, and cut through the fried outsides.

Fresh Raw Garlic: using minced fresh cloves of garlic adds umami flavor to the brussels sprouts that really complements the gochujang.

How to make low histamine brussels sprouts: step-by-step instructions

Step 1. Preheat the oven to 425°F (220°C), then wash the brussels sprouts and dry them thoroughly. Chop off the bottoms just enough to peel off individual leaves, then take off any leaves that look like they would easily pull off.

Step 2. Chop the remaining sprouts in halves, thirds, or fourths, so that each piece is a similar size (see photo in ingredients section), then put them with all the leaves into a mixing bowl.

Step 3. Wash and mince your cloves of garlic, then add them to the mixing bowl of brussels sprouts along with the lard or oil, gochujang, sweetener, vinegar, and salt. Before adding everything to the brussels, if your sprouts are still cold from the fridge or freezer, put all the ingredients in a bowl separate from the brussels and mix them together before proceeding to the next step (cold veggies can unevenly harden some of the ingredients).

Step 4. Toss together all the ingredients (except the sesame seeds, of using) until evenly coated, then pour them onto the baking tray in a single layer and put them in the oven. Do NOT clean the mixing bowl, yet.

Step 5. Bake for 7 minutes on convection mode, then move them around and turn the tray to ensure even baking. Cook for 4-6 more minutes, until crispy and browned in spots, but not burnt. If some of your little leaves start to look in danger of burning, you can quickly remove those with tongs and return the tray to the oven for the rest of the time.

Step 6. Once you’ve removed the tray from the oven, immediately transfer the sprouts back into your mixing bowl and toss with sesame seeds. Try one bite and add extra salt as needed, then serve and enjoy!

Recipe notes & tips

Don’t Burn the Brussels! Keep an eye on your brussels sprouts during the last minute or two of cooking, because that’s when they’re crisping up the most (or possibly burning).

Customizing the Heat Level: While these gochujang brussels sprouts may look spicy, it actually depends more on how hot your gochujang is. In Korea there are 5 different grades of heat at which gochujang is sold, so the heat in a level 1 paste will be barely detectable compared to a level 5. So if you’re new to cooking with gochujang, I suggest starting with just the 2 tablespoons the first time you make these (and trust me, you’ll wanted make them again & again!).

Using an Air Fryer: If you’d prefer air fryer gochujang brussels sprouts, simply follow the same instructions, but at 375°F (190°C).

What to serve with gochujang brussels sprouts

Homemade Crispy Brussels Sprouts Recipe Card

If you like the recipe, I really appreciate a review or comment!

Yield: 4 servings

Crispy Gochujang Brussels Sprouts (Dairy-Free)

Crispy Gochujang Brussels Sprouts (Dairy-Free)

Dairy-free, gluten-free crispy gochujang brussels sprouts, with a caramelized sweetness and a kick of umami heat.

Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 25 minutes

Ingredients

  • 1 pound brussels sprouts, sliced
  • 2 Tablespoons lard (vegan alt. refined sesame oil)
  • 2 Tablespoons gochujang
  • 1 Tablespoon honey (vegan alt. maple syrup)
  • 1 Tablespoon rice vinegar
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 Tablespoon toasted sesame seeds (optional)

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 425°F (220°C), then wash the brussels sprouts and dry them thoroughly. Chop off the bottoms just enough to peel off individual leaves, then take off any leaves that look like they would easily pull off.
  2. Chop the remaining sprouts in halves, thirds, or fourths, so that each piece is a similar size (see photo), then put them with all the leaves into a mixing bowl.
  3. Wash and mince your cloves of garlic, then add them to the mixing bowl of brussels sprouts along with the lard or oil, gochujang, sweetener, vinegar, and salt. Before adding everything to the brussels, if your sprouts are still cold from the fridge or freezer, put all the ingredients in a bowl separate from the brussels and mix them together before proceeding to the next step (cold veggies can unevenly harden some of the ingredients).
  4. Toss together all the ingredients (except the sesame seeds, of using) until evenly coated, then pour them onto the baking tray in a single layer and put them in the oven. Do NOT clean the mixing bowl, yet.
  5. Bake for 7 minutes on convection mode, then move them around and turn the tray to ensure even baking. Cook for 4-6 more minutes, until crispy and browned in spots, but not burnt. If some of your little leaves start to look in danger of burning, you can quickly remove those with tongs and return the tray to the oven for the rest of the time.
  6. Once you've removed the tray from the oven, immediately transfer the sprouts back into your mixing bowl and toss with sesame seeds. Try one bite and add extra salt as needed, then serve and enjoy!

Notes

Don't Burn the Brussels! Keep an eye on your brussels sprouts during the last minute or two of cooking, because that's when they're crisping up the most (or possibly burning).

Customizing the Heat Level: While these gochujang brussels sprouts may look spicy, it actually depends more on how hot your gochujang is. In Korea there are 5 different grades of heat at which gochujang is sold, so the heat in a level 1 paste will be barely detectable compared to a level 5. So if you're new to cooking with gochujang, I suggest starting with just the 2 tablespoons the first time you make these (and trust me, you'll wanted make them again & again!).

Using an Air Fryer: If you'd prefer air fryer gochujang brussels sprouts, simply follow the same instructions, but at 375°F (190°C).

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