Perfect, crispy-on-the-outside, tender-on-the-inside air fryer Brussels sprouts are easy to make and delicious, with or without oil.
This easy Brussels sprouts recipe is one of my favorite ways to use my air fryer! Brussels sprouts cook up like a dream in the air fryer in half the time that it takes to roast them in the oven.
Tips for perfectly crispy results
You have some options when you're making this recipe, and this section includes tips on how to get the best results.
To make perfect air fryer Brussels sprouts, it's crucial that you slice your sprouts into ¼" thick pieces. This thin width helps them cook faster and increases surface area, which lets them get even crispier on the outside.
Do you need to soak them before cooking?
You have the option to soak your Brussels sprouts before you cook them in your air fryer.
If you prefer softer Brussels sprouts, soak the slices in water for 10 minutes. Then, drain them, pat them dry, and proceed with the recipe below.
Because Brussels sprouts have so many layers, soaking gets water inside the veggies, so they are basically steaming as they air fry, softening the middles more.
Whether you need to soak or not is up to you! I prefer a bit more texture, so I usually skip the soaking.
Halving or multiplying the recipe
If you want to make Brussels sprouts for one in your air fryer, you can halve this recipe with no problems. It works like a charm!
Your Brussels may cook more quickly in a less-crowded basket, so just keep an eye on them during the last few minutes of cooking.
You can also double the recipe and still cook everything up in one batch, but if you want to make more than twice as many, I'd definitely do this in batches.
If you crowd your Brussels sprouts in the basket, the ones in the middle won't get crispy. Because a crowded basket can hinder air circulation, doubling the recipe may mean it takes longer to cook.
If the Brussels sprouts in the middle of the basket aren't to your liking when doubling this recipe, give the basket a thorough shake. Then, cook for 1-2 minutes at a time, shaking each time you stop, until they're all cooked through.
How to make Brussels sprouts in the air fryer
Like I said above, this is my absolute favorite way to make Brussels sprouts! It's fast and flavorful, and the texture is perfection.
Measure out two cups of the sliced Brussels. You can opt to soak them in water for 10 minutes at this point, if you want them softer. If you soak, just drain them and pat them dry with a paper towel before seasoning and cooking.
Now, toss them with oil, balsamic vinegar, and salt, making sure all of the Brussels sprouts get coated in the seasonings.
Air fry, shaking once, and you've got perfect Brussels sprouts in under 15 minutes!
How to make them oil-free
I see you, oil-free friends! You can make these Brussels sprouts oil-free with just one small tweak.
When I first shared that I was working on this recipe on Instagram, someone asked about ditching the oil, so I tested an oil free version for you, as well.
It's easy! Just replace the tablespoon of oil with a tablespoon of maple syrup, and you're in business.
I can't promise that oil free air fryer Brussels sprouts will be exactly as crispy as if you use oil, but I can guarantee that they will be delicious.
How to serve
Serve these up as a side dish with your favorite plant-based protein and a starch. They're terrific with BBQ Tofu and my cauliflower mashed potatoes or with beans and rice or quinoa.
Need to add some oomph to your next salad? Air fryer Brussels sprouts to the rescue! Check them out in this warm Brussels sprout salad.
I've also been tossing them with cooked pasta, a bit of olive oil, and sautéed peppers and onions for a quick, easy, and freaking delicious pasta dish. Even my kid loves it! "Dad! Try this pasta! It's SO GOOD!" he said. And my heart grew three sizes.
You can also pile these crispy Brussels sprouts on top of a grain bowl, if that's more your speed. Start with quinoa, rice, or any other whole grain. Then add beans, tofu, or nuts/seeds. I like to top off this kind of bowl with a great sauce, like my blender coconut curry sauce.
How to store them
If you do have any leftovers, they will keep in an airtight container in the refrigerator for three to four days. You can serve leftovers warm or cold.
To reheat, either pop them into the microwave or the air fryer. In the air fryer, you can reheat these at 350° F for five to seven minutes, and they'll get crispy again!
Air fryer Brussels sprouts recipe
- 2 cups Brussels sprouts - sliced lengthwise into ¼" thick pieces (see notes)
- 1 tablespoon olive oil OR maple syrup - See note.
- 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
- ¼ teaspoon sea salt
- In a bowl, toss together the Brussels, oil or maple syrup, vinegar, and salt.
- Cook at 400F for 8-10 minutes, shaking (and checking their progress) after 5 minutes and then at 8 the minute mark. You're going for crispy and browned, but not burnt!
I made these yesterday as I had some brussels sprouts I wanted to use up. Easy recipe. I used maple syrup in place of the olive oil. We ate them as a snack watching a movie. Great! I will definitely be making these again.
I have a philips air fryer and cooked them for 8 min.
Clean up was really easy too.
Thanks for the recipe
You are very welcome, Maria! Thank you for coming back to rate and leave such a lovely comment.
I’m always looking for lighter chicken recipes. This looks like a good one to try!
I love brussels in the air fryer. I do put mine in the Instant Pot first on Manual and press 0, Quick release. Perfect when browned in the Air Fryer. Crunch outside, just perfect texture inside!
Oh I bet they cook up so quickly that way!
I’ll have to try this because I made the recipe as directed and the sprouts were too hard for my liking inside, even after six frying for another 5 minutes, which got the crispy bits too burnt and ruined the whole thing. And yes, I did slice in 1/4 pieces. Seems to me you have to cook the sprouts a little first or they don’t get done.
This recipe looks awesome!!! Since I don’t use grain flour, do you think almond or coconut flour would work well as a substitute? Thanks!
I haven't tested it with either of those, so I can't say for certain. Let me know how they work, if you give it a try!
Question! Do you have a spot on your site where you have other frozen fake meats (Gardein) items that you make in the air fryer?
I don't have a post on making frozen vegan meats, but I do have a YouTube video on cooking frozen food like that in the air fryer. Here's a link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ruOR5s3zH6I&t=70s
Do you preheat the air fryer to 400?
I never preheat my air fryer.
Has anyone tried it without the balsamic and used a different kind of vinegar I’m allergic to balsamic but this recipe sounds awesome
I think rice vinegar would work great in place of the balsamic!
I used just regular white vinegar and its delicious! However, I put my air fryer on 360 and it was too high
Oh interesting! What sort of air fryer do you have?
I added a hint of sesame seed oil and a few sesame seeds as well tasted delish ??
Very tasty! I added bacon for an extra meaty goodness
Perfect! And delicious. This will be my go-to Sprouts recipe from now on. I am going to try a few of the things other commenters mentioned, such as the garlic
Enjoy it, and have fun mixing up the flavors!
Can you use frozen spirits?
I haven't tried with frozen, but I have done frozen cauliflower and okta in the air fryer with great success, so I don't see why not. If you do it definitely report back!
I added a touch of tahini to this just because I love my plant fats! Really good, even though I did burn mine a little. Thank you so much for this recipe:)
What a great idea! I love tahini, too.
This is my go-to Brussels sprouts recipe! I make it exactly as written and I love it. Thank you!
I'm so glad to hear it, Megan! Enjoy those sprouts! :D
Worked perfectly! Thank you!
Needs about 5 minutes longer but very good flavor and crispy!
Thank you for taking the time to comment on and rate the recipe, Julie. I'm glad you dug it!
These came out perfect!
Thank you so much, Tish! And thank you for taking the time to comment and rate!
Absolutely delicious! I bought halved sprouts from Walmart and followed the recipe to a T. Cooked for 8 min shaking them at 4min mark.
Thank you, Michelle! I'm so glad you enjoyed them. Your comment is making me crave Brussels! :D
I have not done this yet and before I do I want to know when do you wash them?
Wash before you start everything.
I tried Brussel sprouts a couple of time in past but never liked them but ,.... Made them with oil, followed your recipe and absolutely love them. Thanks for sharing .
Oh I love that! Welcome, Brussels sprouts convert!
After reading several comments, I wonder if branching the sprouts for three minutes would help. I will try and post the results.
I just did it with the bag of SHAVED brussel sprouts they were awesome..
Followed the recipe the rest of the way.
What a great idea! I bet they were super crispy!
These air fryer recipes look deelish! I don't have an air fryer. Which one do y'all recommend?
I have a Phillips air fryer and live it! I literally use it every day!
Which model do you have?
Big Boss. I love it.
I have a Big Boss as well!! I love it!! My boyfriend has a Phillips, but the Noss is so much better!! And you can do an entire chicken in it!! Great Brussels!!
Amy Katz from Veggies Save The Day
I still need to try making this recipe! We usually have Brussels Sprouts at Thanksgiving, so I think it will be awesome to cook everything in the air fryer and Instant Pot. People will be so amazed!
You'll love it! We do a Field Roast with root veggies in the IP for holidays, and I love the idea of air fryer Brussels to go with!
This was really good! I might try frying at a slightly lower temp for slightly longer, as the middles were still (barely) on the tough side. My maple syrup wasn't looking too fresh, so I used honey instead... And then I had a bunch of left over garlic from the main....so I stuck the whole cloves in with the sprouts....So good its almost wrong for something that healthy to be so yummy!
Ooh adding whole garlic cloves sounds great. I'm glad you dug this dish!
mine got burnt around 8 minutes but the sprouts themselves weren't cooked through (too tough). any suggestions?
Interesting. And you sliced them in half? If they were really big, maybe try slicing into thirds!
They were big so I sliced them in half and then in half again. The only thing I didn't mention early is that I only used 1 tsp instead of a tablespoon. I wonder if not enough oiled caused them to burn; I tried googling but didn't find anything on that.
Hmm. So I'd say slicing in quarters might be part of the problem, but it should work with less oil if you follow the no oil directions. If you cut the oil, you need to up the other liquid. Did you do that?
I did 1 tsp of oil and 1 tsp of vinegar before. Was a smaller serving size as it is just me. Will try again only doing halves with more oil.
Do you think the amount of brussels sprouts in there affects cooking? As I'm experimenting I'm not eager to have an entire pound go bad.
Ooh yeah. Less in the cooker sometimes does mean it cooks faster.
Anyone try microwaving the sprouts to cook the middle then transferring to the air-fryer? Do you think that would work?
I was wondering the same thing! I air fried my brussels sprouts and while they were crisp and tasty, the insides were still a bit chewy and not as soft as I'd like. I'm going to try microwaving them for a few minutes before I try this again. When I roast them in the oven or stir fry them, I usually microwave them for about 3-4 minutes first and they come out perfect.
Mine also were burning at 9 minutes and still hard. Will throw them in microwave even though I’ll lose the crunch.
I'm sorry to hear that! If you have bigger sprouts, slicing into thirds instead of halves has been very effective for me. Sprouts can vary so much in size!
I try to avoid microwaving vegetables since the nutrients get damaged
In the microwaves.
Just found this recipe so am going to try it today , after reading the comments I think I will steam my sprouts for about 10 min then toss in oil etc and air fry. I’ll update how it turns out
How would these cook using frozen Brussels Sprouts? The fresh ones aren't always in season but we sways have frozen veggies on hand.
That's a good question! I haven't tried this using frozen. If you do it, let me know what happens! They'd definitely cook, but not sure about whether you'd have to adjust the time or about how crispy the results would be.
Oh my god. These are amazing! The perfect texture and "char". I love brussels sprouts!
I'm so glad to hear it! They're my new favorite side dish for sure!