These spicy Mexican chipotle brussel sprouts will convert even the pickiest brussel sprout haters in your home! Packed with tender brussel sprouts, smokey charred corn, and the zest and spice of chipotles in adobo and fresh lime - you will forget you are eating a huge serving of veggies! This 25 minute side is delicious hot, room temperature or cold, and we love versatility over here!
These tangy and spicy brussels sprouts are the perfect accompaniment to Mexican-inspired favorites, including pollo asado tacos, chipotle chicken tinga, and even biscuit taco pockets! If you love brussels sprouts, you'll definitely want to try my red lobster inspired soy-glazed sprouts, and sweet and spicy calabrian chilli sprouts, too!
👩🏽🍳Why This Recipe Works
A delicious way to get your veggies in! These smokey brussel sprouts are packed with so much flavor and balance that you may forget that you're eating old fashioned sprouts. Charred corn adds to the vegetable servings, too!
A one-skillet side! You do not need to pull out multiple pots and pans to make this easy side dish. One skillet is all you need - which means less dishes!
Easily customizable! You can up the heat or tone it down to your taste with the easiest customizations - perfect for kids and adults alike!
- Brussels sprouts: Frozen or fresh brussels sprouts will work for this recipe. If using frozen, you will want to blanch them prior to sauteeing them.
- Chipotles in adobo: These peppers add a smoky flavor, a little bit of spice, and savory notes with adobo sauce. Chipotles are smoked jalapeño peppers, with a slight kick without being overwhelmingly spicy.
- Frozen corn: Frozen corn is a fantastic option for this side dish, as it is available all year-round with a higher yield than removing corn kernels from the cob. If available in your local store, I recommend using fire-roasted corn kernels for an extra layer of smokiness.
- Cotija cheese: Cotija cheese is dry, crumbly Mexican cheese that is somewhat of a crossover of feta and parmesan cheese. It adds a layer of savory saltiness to the brussels sprouts.
- Fresh lime: I recommend using fresh lime over bottled lime juice as you get the 2 for 1 use of lime zest and juice.
A full list of ingredients with measurements is located on the recipe card, below.
- Frozen corn: You can use fresh or canned corn in place of frozen fire-roasted corn. If using canned corn, be sure to drain and rinse the kernels and avoid using the creamed variety.
- Cotija cheese: Substitute cotija cheese with crumbled feta or queso fresco.
- Heavy cream: Half and half cream, or sour cream will work in place of heavy cream.
- Crunchy: For some extra texture, top with toasted pepitas!
- Air fried: Air fry the brussels sprouts and then toss with the remaining ingredients, for a crispy twist on the sprouts!
- Mild: Reduce the amount of chipotle chiles to keep these sprouts on the mild side.
⏲️ Step-by-Step Instructions
Prep Work Before Cooking
Collecting all your ingredients - This will make cooking so much easier. Gather all the spices you will need, and keep them nearby.
Prep the vegetables - Remove the tough root at the bottom of the brussels sprouts, and slice them. Finely dice the onion, and mince the garlic.
Heat a large skillet over medium heat, with 2 tablespoon of olive oil. Add the diced onion and garlic, and sauté until the onion is translucent.
Add the sliced brussels sprouts and frozen corn to the skillet, and let the brussels sprouts sear and soften. [photos 1 & 2]
Once the brussels sprouts have charred slightly and have softened, add the adobo sauce, chipotle peppers, heavy cream, ground cumin, oregano and lime juice and zest to make the Mexican chipotle sauce. Combine well, and cook through for 2 minutes. [photo 3]
Remove the skillet from the heat, and top with crumbled cotija cheese and cilantro to garnish. [photo 4]
💭 Expert Tips
To get the best char: Leave the brussels sprouts alone in the skillet. Moving them around too much will prevent them from getting nice color, and they will be more likely to steam.
Taste for salt at the end: Adobo sauce has a good amount of saltiness to it, as does cotija cheese. I recommend tasting for salt after adding all the components to avoid over salting the sprouts.
🍽 Make Ahead & Storage
- The brussels sprouts can be made 2-3 days in advance, and stored in an airtight container in the fridge.
- Leftover or pre-made brussels sprouts can be eaten cold, room temperature, or reheated in a skillet or the microwave.
- If the sauce has dried out, add a touch more cream when reheating.
⭐ Recipe FAQs
There are two reasons why your sprouts are not getting a nice color on them - you may have overcrowded your pan, or did not leave the brussels sprouts alone in the pan.
In general, you can freeze brussels sprouts. I would not recommend freezing this recipe specifically, as the sauce is cream based. The chipotle cream sauce will not heat up as well after being frozen.
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Mexican Chipotle Brussel Sprouts
- 1 lb Brussels sprouts
- 1 Onion finely diced
- 4 cloves Garlic finely minced
- 16 oz Frozen fire-roasted corn
- 1 cup Heavy cream
- 1 tablespoon Adobo sauce
- 2 Chipotle peppers in adobo
- ¼ teaspoon Ground cumin
- ¼ teaspoon Dried oregano
- 1 Lime zested and juiced
- 2 tablespoon Honey
- ¼ cup Cotija cheese crumbled
- Cilantro to garnish
- Sea salt to taste
- Heat a large skillet over medium heat, with 2 tablespoon of olive oil. Add the diced onion and garlic, and sauté until the onion is translucent.1 Onion, 4 cloves Garlic
- Add the sliced brussels sprouts and frozen corn to the skillet, and let the brussels sprouts sear and soften.1 lb Brussels sprouts, 16 oz Frozen fire-roasted corn
- Once the brussels sprouts have charred slightly and have softened, add the mexican chipotle sauce ingredients. Combine well, and cook through for 2 minutes.1 cup Heavy cream, 1 tablespoon Adobo sauce, 2 Chipotle peppers in adobo, ¼ teaspoon Ground cumin, ¼ teaspoon Dried oregano, 1 Lime, 2 tablespoon Honey
- Remove the skillet from the heat, and top with crumbled cotija cheese, and taste and season with salt. Garnish with cilantro to finish.¼ cup Cotija cheese, Cilantro, Sea salt
- To get the best char: Leave the brussels sprouts alone in the skillet. Moving them around too much will prevent them from getting nice color, and they will be more likely to steam.
- Taste for salt at the end: Adobo sauce has a good amount of saltiness to it, as does cotija cheese. I recommend tasting for salt after adding all the components to avoid over salting the sprouts.