A bowl of Brussels sprouts with a spoon
Photography, Johann Headley

Sautéed Brussels Sprouts With Cinnamon and Sumac

Jennifer Emilson's use of fragrant sumac makes her Brussels sprouts dish bright and flavourful.

Oh, Brussels sprouts. An unsavoury (and unwarranted!) reputation precedes them, but loyal fans have long sung the praises of this healthy veg – roasted, sautéed, shaved or otherwise.

Jennifer Emilson’s take on Brussels sprouts in The Lemon Apron Cookbookcoming out November 1, is all about the seasonings. The addition of fragrant sumac – a tangy spice popular in Middle Eastern cuisine that also grows in Canada – makes the Brussels sprouts bright and flavourful, and her instructions to only cook them until “fork-tender” will ensure they’re not soggy.

A bowl of Brussels sprouts with a spoon

Sautéed Brussels Sprouts With Cinnamon and Sumac

These sauteed Brussels sprouts have cinnamon and sumac to make them flavourful.
Course Side Dish
Cuisine American, Canadian
Servings 4


  • 2 tbsp pine nuts
  • 1 lb Brussels sprouts root end trimmed and halved
  • 2 tbsp butter or olive oil
  • ½ tsp ground cinnamon
  • ½ tsp sumac
  • ½ tsp salt
  • ¼ tsp pepper
  • 2 cloves garlic minced
  • 1 tbsp grated lemon zest
  • 1 tbsp lemon juice
  • olive oil for drizzling


  • In a large nonstick sauté pan over medium heat, toast the pine nuts, stirring occasionally to avoid charring, until golden and fragrant, about 5 minutes (but keep an eye on them). Transfer to a bowl.
  • In the same pan over medium-high heat, add ⅓ cup of water and the Brussels sprouts, cover tightly, and cook until just tender, about 8 to 10 minutes, depending on their size, stirring once to keep them from scorching on the bottom. Add the butter, cinnamon, sumac, salt, and pepper. Cook, uncovered, for 3 minutes, stirring often. If the water has evaporated before the sprouts are fork-tender, add another tablespoon or two.
  • Stir in the garlic and lemon zest and juice, and cook until the Brussels sprouts are fork-tender or are still firm but offer little resistance when pierced with a knife, about 30 seconds. Larger Brussels sprouts may take more time, of course, so you may want to add another teaspoon of butter and 1 to 2 tablespoons more water. Taste and adjust any seasonings. Finish with a drizzle of olive oil. Sprinkle the pine nuts on top and serve.
Keyword brussels sprouts

A green cookbook on a cream background

Excerpted from The Lemon Apron Cookbook: Seasonal Recipes for the Curious Home Cook by Jennifer Emilson. Copyright © 2022 Jennifer Emilson. Cover and interior design by Lisa Jager. Cover and interior photography by Johann Headley. Published by Appetite by Random House, a division of Penguin Random House Canada Limited. Reproduced by arrangement with the Publisher. All rights reserved.