I made this amazingly fresh and satisfying salad for a friend’s birthday and I was unbelievably surprised how well the flavors of cheese, bacon, brussel sprouts, and the sweet and tart dressing balance each other out and are flat out delicious! My husband and I love brussel sprouts, but cooking them whole or halved can get boring and I was looking for a new way to eat these. A raw preparation was definitely not at the top of my mind since I’ve become so used to cooking them in my cast iron pan like my recipe of ‘Roasted Brussel Sprouts‘. However, I found so many burrata and brussel sprout salad recipes online and realized that for my taste, something major was missing – that was bacon!! Bacon makes everything better, yes. However, this salad REALLY is complete with the added salty-crispiness added by the cooked bacon.
Share this salad with your loved ones – if you are vegetarian, you can substitute the bacon for crispy tortilla chips (which you can buy from the supermarket as ready-to-go salad topper strips), or you can also add toasted sliced almonds for that extra crunch!
10-15 slices of bacon
1 red onion, finely sliced
5 tablespoons good quality extra-virgin olive oil, divided, plus extra for drizzling
2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
1 pound Brussels sprouts
1/2 cup Parmesan cheese shavings
2 tablespoons lemon juice, plus extra to taste
1 teaspoon honey
Kosher salt, to taste
freshly cracked black pepper, to taste
2 balls burrata cheese (or good buffalo mozzarella), room temperature
Heat a sauté pan over medium-high heat and add one tablespoon of olive oil. Add onions and cook until browned and beautifully caramelized (about 10 minutes, stirring occasionally).. Remove from pan and set aside in a bowl. Add balsamic vinegar and let it sit for 5-10 minutes to soak in the flavor.
In a separate pan, cook bacon until crispy (but not burnt). Set aside for later once cooked.
Meanwhile, wash the brussel sprouts and remove outer leaves. Trim off the bottom nubs with a knife and cut each brussel sprout in half. Using either a mandoline (careful not to cut your hand!) or with a sharp knife, cut the sprouts into paper thin strips. trim nubs and halve sprouts. Using a mandoline or sharp knife, cut sprouts paper-thin. (An awesome shortcut is to use the slicing insert on a food processor to skip this step and save yourself a lot of time!).
Transfer shaved leaves to a mixing bowl. Add onions and mix until evenly combined.
In small bowl, whisk together the remaining 3 tablespoons of olive oil, 2 tablespoons of lemon juice, 1 tablespoon of honey and salt and pepper, to taste. Taste the dressing and adjust honey/lemon juice/salt/pepper as needed to reach the balance you want. It’s ok if it’s a little salty and tart as it will even out when tossed with the sprouts.
Toss slaw with enough vinaigrette to moisten. Taste and adjust seasoning with extra salt, pepper and lemon juice as needed. Let sit at least 10 minutes so sprouts can absorb the flavors.
Put the marinated slaw in your serving bowl. Place burrata balls on the side in the serving bowl (so that your guests can take as much (or little) cheese as they want), and season the cheese lightly with salt and pepper and the last tablespoon of olive oil. Add in cooked, crispy bacon on top of the slaw.