This recipe for Cacio e Pepe Brussels Sprouts with hazelnuts + ricotta is a simple preparation that is worthy of your dinner table whether you are eating alone or are serving guests. Based off of the pasta dish called Cacio e Pepe (cheese + pepper) – this recipe is a standout. Especially if you love toasted hazelnuts.
It seems that many people only serve brussels sprouts for the holidays. I’m not sure why – they are delicious! My family never ate them growing up and now I am in charge of making them at every holiday dinner.
While my normal preparation is olive oil, salt + pepper and a swirl of Sriracha – holiday dinners demand something extraordinary. It’s a lot of pressure being the official brussels sprouts maker in the family. There’s a lot on the line, for the brussels reputation and all.
So this is why I have taken a simple preparation and made it restaurant worthy. The secret is just good basic ingredients.
How to make Roasted Cacio e Pepe Brussels Sprouts with Ricotta + Hazelnuts
STEP 1: MIX
A simple blend of salt, pepper + Pecorino Romano cheese is all you need for these roasted brussels sprouts
STEP 2: ROAST
You’ll add the chopped hazelnuts in this step if you choose to use them.
STEP 3: SERVE
These roasted brussels sprouts can be served just like this – Cacio e Pepe Brussels Sprouts. No need to make them fancier.
HOWEVER, a dollop of ricotta and a sprinkle of hazelnuts make these elegant and delicious. Two options are below.
I offer two options for serving these Cacio e Pepe Brussels Sprouts:
#1. Plate them right off the roasting pan, sprinkling them with extra Pecorino and dig in.
#2. This is the fancier version – it has that WOW factor.
Serve the brussels sprouts on a small plate smeared with a dollop of fresh ricotta cheese. So build it like this – ricotta, 3 brussels, a sprinkle of the hazelnuts and cheese from the pan and finish with a drizzle of your best olive oil. It’s pure joy on a plate.
Enjoy your Brussels Sprouts! Who knew they could be so elegant!
Roasted Brussels Sprouts with chopped hazelnuts and parmesan. Add a dollop of ricotta cheese for an amazing side dish.
- 1 pound brussels sprouts sliced in half
- 4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil divided
- 1/4 teaspoon black pepper plus extra for serving
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/4 cup finely grated Pecorino Romano cheese plus extra for serving
- 1/2 cup whole hazelnuts roughly chopped
- Optional serving style*: a dollop of ricotta cheese per plate and drizzle of good olive oil
Pre-heat oven to 400°F.
Foil line a 9 x 13 baking sheet and grease it with 1 Tbs olive oil.
In large bowl, toss sliced Brussels sprouts with 3 Tbs extra virgin olive oil, kosher salt, black pepper and finely grated Pecorino Romano cheese. Toss until sprouts are evenly coated. Add roughly chopped hazelnuts, if using.
Place the mixture on the prepared + oiled baking sheet with cut side of the brussels sprouts facing down.
Roast for 15-20 minutes until tender.
Sprinkle with extra cheese and pepper. Best eaten immediately.
Option with Ricotta: *see notes
Fancy Ricotta Option: Spread a dollop of ricotta cheese on each serving plate, top with 3 brussels sprouts and the hazelnuts and cheese from the baking sheet. Drizzle each with a tiny bit of olive oil. This option will yield many more servings.