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I'm Crystal Vaughn

a classically trained chef taking holistic plant-based nutrition on a grand adventure through North America. When I’m not creating in our traveling kitchen, you can usually find me on my yoga mat or a hiking trail.

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As you are planning your holiday meals here is a great addition to the table!  I am always working on Brussels sprout recipes and this method is my current favorite for cooking them.  The sprouts get nice and crispy on the bottom and fresh and green on top.  The cranberries give them a great pop of color and flavor.  I toss them with a sweet and tangy dressing and top them with pecans. 

 I hope you all have a wonderful (and healthy) holiday! 

Warm wishes,


Roasted Brussels Sprouts with Cranberries and Pecans
Serves 4


1 lb. Brussels sprouts
1 1/2 tbsp olive oil, divided
2/3 cup fresh or frozen cranberries
1/4 cup pecan pieces, toasted
1/2 tbsp lemon juice
1/2 tbsp maple syrup
1/2 tbsp Dijon mustard (I use stone ground)
salt, to taste
pepper, to taste


 1. Preheat oven to 375°.  Heat a large cast iron skillet on the stove top over medium heat.

2. Trim and halve the Brussels sprouts. Toss them with 1 tbsp olive oil and a pinch of salt and pepper.

3. Once the skillet is heated add the Brussels to the pan and place cut side down.  Heat for 3 to 4 minutes.

4. Spread the cranberries over the sprouts and move them to the oven, without stirring.  Cook them for 10 to 12 minutes until they are bright green on top and browning on the bottom. 

5. In a small bowl stir together 1/2 tbsp each olive oil, lemon juice, maple syrup and Dijon mustard with a pinch of salt and pepper.

6. Remove the skillet from the oven and toss with the dressing.  Top with the toasted pecans.


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I love Brussels Sprouts.  I think it is so great that they are showing up on more Thanksgiving menus.  Here is a recipe that would be a great addition to your holiday spread.


My favorite Brussels are served at a restaurant in Dallas, The Porch.  They are so delicious and I just can't get enough of them but when I would cook them at home they would always fall a bit short.  I have been trying to replicate this recipe for some time now. 


The Porches Brussels Sprouts come out looking like they are almost burnt.  At first glance you may be skeptical but once you bite into them you are totally convinced.  Best. Brussels. Ever.  They are slightly sweet but also have this vinegary tang.

I was having trouble finding the spot of perfectly roasted and caramelized but not overdone.  After trying and tweaking my recipe for years I finally came up with a method that worked for me.  I cut the Brussels in smaller pieces, I add flavor before, during and after I cooking and I leave them in for longer than used to feel comfortable.


I highly recommend you try this recipe.  The sweetness of the maple syrup and tartness from the apple cider vinegar plus the crunch of toasted hazelnuts will definitely make your mouth happy. 

What are your favorite methods for cooking Brussels Sprouts?  Any tips or tricks you use to make them come out perfectly?  I would love to hear from you in the comments below! 

Roasted Brussels Sprouts with Hazelnuts
Serves 6-8


2 lbs Brussels Sprouts

3/4 cup hazelnuts, chopped

5 tbsp maple syrup, divided

5 tbsp apple cider vinegar (or coconut vinegar)

Sea salt, to taste

Black pepper, to taste


1. Trim the bottom of the Brussels if it has turned brown.  Slice them from top to bottom in three or four sections depending on size.

2. Toss the  Brussels with 2 tbsp of maple syrup, apple cider vinegar and a pinch of salt and pepper.

3. Bake for 25 minutes at 400°.

4. Remove from oven and toss with 1 tbsp each of maple syrup and apple cider vinegar.

5. Bake for another 20-25 minutes.  Until the Brussels are browned and crispy.

6. Toast the hazelnuts in a small saute pan for 10 minutes.  Stirring occasionally until lightly browning.

7. Toss with 2 tbsp maple syrup, 2 tbsp apple cider vinegar and a generous pinch of salt and pepper.

8. Stir in the toasted hazelnuts.

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