Pan Roasted Brussels Sprouts with Fish Sauce & Lime

Pan Roasted Brussels Sprouts with Fish Sauce & Lime from

Update: Click here for more fabulous Brussels Sprouts Recipes.

I affectionately stock my pantry with simple ingredients that, even in the smallest amounts, bring magic to my dishes. It’s those surprise “ah-ha” moments after a bite that gives me the craving to make each morsel more memorable. Fish sauce is one of my magic ingredients that I love adding to liven up the flavor and umami of a dish. It’s not such a secret that I’m in love with fish sauce. My Vietnamese heritage is rooted in this amber-colored, liquid gold ingredient.

Todd is just as enamored with fish sauce as I am. When he’s not looking, I’ll see him sneak a drizzle or two of fish sauce in his scrambled eggs. Ah-hah! That’s why his scrambled eggs are so amazing. This makes me super proud and obviously, his secret is now out. Sorry sweetie!

A few years ago, we wrote about our Ultimate Umami Burger and Umami Turkey Burgers, which was received with some trepidation by some readers. But after making it, they returned to tell us that the magic of a few drizzles of fish sauce in the meat patty made all the difference from a good burger to a fabulous one.

Pan Roasted Brussels Sprouts with Fish Sauce & Lime from

Now, I’m moving on to my next dish, which is one of my all time easiest and most wonderful fish sauce recipes. The lucky vegetable for today is brussels sprouts. Brussels sprouts recipes are not new to our arsenal of recipes. You name it, we’ve made it. Roasted brussels sprouts, braised and baked are year long favorites on our table.

These mini-green globes cooked in any form are the highlight of my meals. Todd can easily brighten up my day with a platter of warm oven roasted brussels sprouts.

But over the years, I’ve made my own version on the stove top that’s super easy when I’m too impatient to wait for the oven to heat up. Pan roasted with a super caramelized crust, these roasted brussels sprouts are magical because of the touch of fish sauce and splash of fresh lime juice.

 Pan Roasted Brussels Sprouts with Fish Sauce & Lime from

With only 3-4 ingredients, I can easily make these brussels sprouts a complete dinner. The best part about this recipe is that it’s a base for many more wonderful dishes. You can add fresh minced cilantro, chiles or peanuts. Even toss in some chopped shallots while cooking the brussels sprouts for an added touch of sweetness.

What ever you decide to add, it’s the fish sauce that flavors these pan fried brussels sprouts to a magical and savory addiction. Don’t be afraid of fish sauce! If you’ve ever wanted to cook with fish sauce but were afraid and not know where to start, this is one recipe that will encourage you to see and taste the benefits of fish sauce.

What Brand of Fish Sauce? There are so many different brands of fish sauce, but three that I recommend that have a wonderfully round, balanced and umami flavor are listed below. Every fish sauce is different, and some are saltier than others, so add a little bit at a time to season your dish to your desired taste.  My recommendations: Flying Lion, Red Boat, Three Crabs.

have fun!


Note on cooking times: Brussels sprouts can very tremendously in size, ranging from the size of a large egg to as small as a 5-cent coin. Make sure to adjust your cooking times depending on the size that you end up cooking. Also, try to select all the same sizes for consistent cooking. 

Brussels sprouts vary in size! Guide to brussels sprouts sizes | @whiteonrice

More of our Brussels Sprouts Recipes for you

Pan Roasted Brussels Sprouts with Fish Sauce Recipe

Yield: Serves 2-4

Total Time: 20 min

Fish sauce brands vary on their level of saltiness. So add the fish sauce a teaspoon at a time, till the flavor works for you. You can also add fresh minced cilantro, mint, herbs, chiles or peanuts to this recipe. This recipe is great on it's own and it's adaptable to other of your favorite ingredient additions too.
Note on cooking times: Brussels sprouts can very tremendously in size, ranging from the size of a large egg to as small as a 5-cent coin. Make sure to adjust your cooking times depending on the size that you end up cooking. Also, try to select all the same sizes for consistent cooking.


  • 1 pound Brussels Sprouts
  • 2 Tablespoons Vegetable Oil
  • 2-3 teaspoons Fish Sauce
  • fresh Lime Juice
  • fresh cracked Black Pepper, to taste


  1. Wash and trim ends of brussels sprouts. Cut them in half or quarters, depending on their size for even cooking. If you have a mix of very large and small brussels sprouts, make sure to cut them around the same size so that they cook evenly.
  2. Reserve the loose brussels sprouts leaves and cook them if you like alongside the brussels sprout halves.
  3. Heat large heavy bottom skillet, on medium heat. Add vegetable oil.
  4. Add brussels sprouts and lay cut side down on pan. Brown the brussels sprouts till they are golden and slightly crisp on the cut side.
  5. Turn heat to low and stir brussels sprouts so that they cook evenly. You want them to cook slowly and get the rich color and caramelize on all sides. This should take about 5-10 minutes.
  6. If the pan is too dry, add additional one teaspoon of water or oil at a time. But do not make the batch too watery or oily.
  7. When brussels sprouts are cooked and tender, add 2 teaspoons of fish sauce first. If you want more flavor, add additional teaspoon of fish sauce.
  8. Stir and cook for about 30 seconds or 1 minute till the fish sauce is mixed well.
  9. Remove from heat and add to bowl. Drizzle with fresh lime juice and/or fresh cracked black pepper right before serving.
  10. Serve warm
Recipe Source:

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Recipe Note for Salt: All recipes containing salt are based on kosher or sea salt amounts, not table salt. If using table salt, reduce the amount used to taste.


{ 23 comments… read them below or add one }
  1. Steve-Anna

    Oops! I accidentally commented on the wrong post – I made these:

    I’ll try this one next!!

  2. Steve-Anna

    These were a hands down hit for Thanksgiving this year – thank you! I upped the amount of parsley a bit, and more or less doubled the whole recipe for a larger number of people.

    Sending love from Tucson, as always, and Happy Holidays! xoxo

  3. Kate

    Made this as written to the delight of everyone in the family, even the 3-year-old, who declared, “Bussel pouts oh my favewit!”

  4. Kirsten

    Due to my four-year-old’s fascination for peeling brussels sprouts, we’ve been eating a lot of them lately. This recipe was declared “the best yet” by Grandpa. Thanks for a great easy dish!

  5. Joy @ OSS

    Would love to try this Asian spin on brussels sprouts. I love them this time of year.

  6. Linda | The Urban Mrs

    You definitely answer my challenge. I’ve been having hard times eating brussel sprouts, but I think I now found my favorite recipe.

  7. Chelsea

    Oh my goodness, this sounds amazing! That roasty rich deep fish sauce flavor sounds perfect with brussels sprouts. This is officially on my make-ASAP list.

  8. Kiran @

    LOVE fish sauce! So pungent but as soon as it hits a hot wok, the taste transforms to something that is hard to describe, except pure deliciousness 🙂

  9. Rachael @ Tokyo Terrace

    I love the addition of fish sauce to brussels sprouts! What a fabulous idea. I’ve been playing around with a recipe that uses pineapple tossed in with charred brussels sprouts- I bet that would taste great here! Beautiful photos and words as always.

  10. dervla @ The Curator

    I’m embarrassed to say i haven’t cooked with fish sauce yet. And now that you’ve added it to brussels sprouts – well, I’m sold 🙂

  11. Diem

    Just made this for dinner tonight…so good. I usually roast them in the oven with bacon bits, but this is a great alternative and I love the addition of fish sauce! My husband is anti fish sauce, but loves Vietnamese food. Go figure. I keep telling him there’s fish sauce in a lot of Vietnamese food, but he’s in denial. I just omit the fact that I do add it to food when I cook and he’s none the wiser. I love when he raves about something with fish sauce in it 😉

  12. Abbe@This is How I Cook

    I love Vietnamese flavors and I love brussel sprouts. And I’m going to look and see what brand of fish sauce I’ve been buying. Good ideas for my tummy.

  13. Katie

    I love what fish sauce does to vegetables. A little bit will add so much complexity and Umami. I agree that if a dish is lacking in depth, a few glugs of Fish Sauce will do the trick. Beautiful photographs. Thanks for sharing.

  14. Eliza B

    Looks beautiful! I love brussel sprouts. And I’ve had some fish sauce sitting in my fridge for a few weeks that I need to find a use for- good to know they work well in eggs.

  15. Stefanie @ Sarcastic Cooking

    It took me a while to even learn about fish sauce, but you are so right. It is such an important staple in my kitchen. Just a few dashes on a burger is my favorite use for it. I love the addition of the acidity from the lime, this sounds simple and perfect!

  16. Cathy/ShowFoodChef

    I forget about fish sauce – reading this made my mouth water. A must try!

  17. LisaR

    Yum! I love using fish sauce – it smells so awful before you cook it, and I’m always in awe of how it actually works in a dish. Like magic. Stinky magic.

  18. Gerry @ Foodness Gracious

    Sprouts are awesome little veggies and I still love them even though my om would boil them for 2 hours and then serve them. I like to roast them now and I always have fish sauce in the fridge so I’ll be trying this for sure next sprout outing!

  19. Jesse

    i adore brussel sprouts but my husband can’t get past their smell. next time he’s away these are happening! thanks for sharing. xoxo

  20. saVUryandsweet

    Have you tried the Momofuku brussel sprouts? Seriously a punch of Viet in the mouth. Delicious. Kathy has a recipe posted here: I find that 25 mins is too long, gets a bit mushy for me – I think I’d cut it to like 10 minutes? But watch the oven until they’re just done enough for your liking. I had a blind taste test between Red Boat and Squid, and I preferred the Squid – most likely because it’s what I was raised on. But the Red Boat is definitely smooth and clean, and is it just me or are there porky notes in it?

  21. Joanne @ Fifteen Spatulas

    Can’t wait to try this tonight! I have a huge bag of brussel sprouts in the fridge (trying to get myself to eat more veggies) and the fish sauce sounds great. I think I’m in the minority but I don’t mind the stink LOL. It adds such great flavor!

  22. @FreshTartSteph

    On it! RT @WhiteOnRice: Pan roasted Brussels sprouts with fish sauce & lime. Don’t fear the fish sauce. , new recipe

  23. Averie @ Averie Cooks

    I love Brussels sprouts and I actually crave them, and broccoli, too. My house stinks, but I don’t care. I love making them! Yours, with that golden sear on them, are just picture-perfect!

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