Roasted Brussels Sprout Pasta
on Feb 25, 2021, Updated Oct 12, 2023
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This roasted brussels sprout pasta puts a nutritious fall-winter vegetable front and center rather than just keeping it as a side. With lemon, garlic and pecorino cheese, this pasta dish is packed with flavor. The best part is that it’s easy. You can multi-task while the sprouts roast in the oven and cook the pasta. This is a fantastic weeknight dinner recipe.
Table of Contents
Why You’ll Love This Recipe
You can turn brussels sprouts into a main dish instead of always eating them as a side dish. This vegetable deserves to be the star of the meal. And pasta is just the way to do that with plenty of fresh lemon and garlic.
If you’re looking for an simple vegetarian dinner, this pasta is it. Whenever I make noodles, I like to balance them out with a lot of vegetables. This recipe calls for a pound of brussels sprouts, which is enough to cover an entire sheet pan. Then you get bites that are a combination of orecchiette and sprouts.
Roasting brussels sprouts is quick and easy and making pasta is too. So it just makes sense to pair both in the same recipe. While the sprouts roast in the oven, you can heat the water and simmer the pasta. Then you will be ready to sauté garlic in olive oil and put everything together after that.
This is what you need:
- Brussels sprouts: If possible, always look for the freshest sprouts you can find that have tightly packed leaves. But if you have brussels sprouts that are starting to wilt just a little, they will work, too. Just pull off those less than perfect outer leaves. Use a sharp knife to trim the stem ends and thinly slice them lengthwise.
- Orecchiette: I like this ear-shaped pasta because it is closest to the size and shape of sliced brussels sprouts. Basically then end up spooning with the pasta.
- Garlic: For simple pasta recipes without a long ingredient list, minced garlic cloves are an absolute must.
- Lemon: You will need the zest and juice for the recipe. Lemon in pasta is such a simple way to add brightness and acidity. It also works well with garlic and olive oil. They are one of my favorite ingredient power trios.
- Pecorino: This hard sheep’s milk cheese is salty and stronger that Parmesan, but you can substitute with Parmesan cheese if you want.
- Red pepper flakes: Lately, I have been using red pepper flakes whenever I make pasta to add some heat and spice.
- Salt & pepper: It’s important to season the sprouts before roasting them. Then you will need salt and pepper to season the pasta too.
- Parsley: Always one for fresh herbs, I stir chopped parsley into the finished dish.
- Olive oil: For the best flavor, I prefer using extra-virgin olive oil.
How To Make Brussels Sprout Pasta
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F with a baking pan on the center rack.
1. Toss the sliced brussels sprouts with olive oil, salt and pepper. You can do this in a large mixing bowl. Carefully spread the sprouts across the preheated sheet pan.
2. Roast the brussels sprouts. It will take 15-20 minutes for them to get brown and crisp on the edges. About halfway through roasting, use a spatula to toss them around and flip them over.
3. Cook the orecchiette until al dente in a large pot of salted boiling water. Check the cook time on the package instructions to coordinate simmering the pasta while the brussels sprouts roast.
4. Warm olive oil in a large skillet and sauté the garlic, red pepper flakes, salt and pepper. Give the mixture 30 seconds to 1 minute to become fragrant.
5. Stir in the cooked pasta and lemon juice, coating it in the garlic and olive oil. You can use a slotted spoon or spider to transfer the orecchiette directly from the pot to the skillet. If you don’t think you can time this, then go ahead drain the pasta.
6. Stir in the brussels sprouts, lemon zest, pecorino and parsley. Taste to see if the pasta needs more seasoning. Top with additional cheese and parsley as desired before serving.
Since this pasta already has lots of vegetables, instead of a cooked veggie side dish, I serve it with a salad. My go-to options for pasta include a basic arugula salad with lemon vinaigrette or an Italian chopped salad.
Leftovers & Storage
This pasta is best served warm. If you do end up with leftovers, you can store them in an airtight container in the refrigerator up to 2 days. The brussels sprouts will lose their crispness. Either eat leftovers cold like a pasta salad or warm them in a skillet with a little olive oil on the stove over medium heat.
Have all your ingredients sliced and ready. This recipe goes quickly. Do all your prep before your start cooking.
Follow the recommended cook time on the package for al dente pasta and then figure out your plan from there. As mentioned, you can cook the pasta while the brussels sprouts are in the oven, but the sprouts will need a head start because the noodles won’t need as much time. Plan out your cooking to stagger and overlap the steps where needed.
Taste the pasta to see if it needs more salt and pepper. This isn’t about making the dish taste salty. When you have the right amount of seasonings, they bring out all the other flavors, so once you have the sprouts, lemon and pecorino stirred into the orecchiette, taste it.
Omit the cheese or sprinkle the final dish with nutritional yeast.
Yes. Chickpea pasta or another alternative pasta would be great with roasted brussels sprouts.
More Pasta Recipes
More Roasted Brussels Sprout Recipes
Crispy Roasted Brussels Sprouts
Lemon Brussels Sprout Farro
Honey Sriracha Roasted Brussels Sprouts
Sautéed Brussels Sprouts
Shaved Brussels Sprout Salad
Brussels Sprout Caesar Salad
Brussels Sprout Apple Salad
Roasted Brussels Sprout Pasta
For brussels sprouts
- 1 pound brussels sprouts, bottom stemmed trimmed and thinly sliced lengthwise
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
- 8 ounce orecchiette
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- Pinch of red pepper flakes
- 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
- 1 lemon, juice and zest
- 1/4 cup grated pecorino cheese (about 1/2 ounce), plus more for serving
- 1 tablespoon chopped parsley, plus more for serving
- Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F with a sheet pan on the center rack.
- Stir the brussels sprouts with olive oil, salt and pepper in a large bowl. Carefully spread them across the preheated pan.
- Roast for 15-20 minutes until brown and crisp at the edges using a spatula to flip and toss them about halfway through cooking.
- Cook the orecchiette in a large pot of salted boiling water until al dente according to package instructions. (You can start this while the brussels sprouts are roasting. Keep in mind that the pasta will take less time than the sprouts to cook.)
- In a large skillet, warm the olive oil over medium heat. Add the garlic, red pepper flakes, salt and pepper sautéing until fragrant, about 30 seconds to 1 minute.
- Stir in the pasta and lemon juice, coating them in the garlic, spices and olive oil.
- Stir in the roasted brussels sprouts, lemon zest, pecorino and parsley.
- Top with additional cheese and parsley as desired before serving.
Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.