Cauliflower and Brussels Sprout Gratin

Dinner, Sides


Everyone, please meet my go-to. You all have a go-to, right? Let’s first discuss what constitutes as a go-to….Well, it’s usually one of those super easy, simple meals that you know will be a crowd pleaser. And best of all, a go-to is something you can make sans recipe and probably, if your life depended on it, with your eyes closed and one hand tied behind your back.

You see, me and this dish have a history. A long history that first started with me making it as a side dish to a roast lamb on Easter. (This dish won against the lamb, by the way.)  And then it made a dinner at a pot luck dinner with some supper club friends. And then I served it to some friends along side a salad for a light, vegetarian dinner.


And so many other times that’d I bore you if I told you all of them. This dish is great for many reasons, but I was initially smitten with it because I found out I could make it the night before and bake it off when I needed it.

It’s a flexible dish that can act like the main performance or step back and be cute side-kick to something more impressive. It has no ego. And since it’s full of cheese, it feels great in the winter. It’s also a great left-overs meal, and this is a person not too keen on eating the same meal over and over again, but with this dish it seems like all I want to do is make and repeat.

Brussels Sprouts




Cauliflower and Brussels Sprout Gratin

Adapted from Ina Garten from Barefoot In Paris

Print this recipe!

3/4 head of cauliflower, cut into large florets
3/4 lb of brussels sprouts, trimmed, and quartered lengthwise through core
1 teaspoon of kosher salt
4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) unsalted butter, divided
3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
2 cups hot milk
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
a pinch of grated nutmeg
3/4 cup grated Gruyere cheese, divided
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1/4 cup fresh bread crumbs

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.

Prepare a large bowl filled with ice water and ice. Cook the cauliflower florets in a large pot of boiling salted water for 5 to 6 minutes, until tender but still firm. Drain. Throw the cooked cauliflower into the bowl of ice water to stop them from cooking any further. Bring the pot back up to a boil and put in the quartered brussels sprouts and cook for 3-4 minutes. The cauliflower should be completely cooled. Drain them and set aside. After the brussels sprouts are done, throw them in the bowl of ice water and ice.

Meanwhile, melt 2 tablespoons of the butter in a medium saucepan over low heat. Add the flour, stirring constantly with a wooden spoon for 2 minutes. Pour the hot milk into the butter-flour mixture and stir until it comes to a boil. Boil, whisking constantly, for 1 minute, or until thickened. Off the heat, add 1 teaspoon of salt, the pepper, nutmeg, 1/2 cup of the Gruyere, and the Parmesan.

Pour 1/3 of the sauce on the bottom of an 8 by 11 by 2-inch baking dish. Place the drained cauliflower and brussels sprouts on top and then spread the rest of the sauce evenly on top. Combine the bread crumbs with the remaining 1/4 cup of Gruyere and sprinkle on top. Melt the remaining 2 tablespoons of butter and drizzle over the gratin. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Bake for 25 to 30 minutes, until the top is browned.


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Leave a Reply

  • Reply socha November 23, 2011 at 3:32 pm

    Nice! I have all the ingredients, *except* Gruyere cheese…can I substitute with mozzarella or gouda or something else I might randomly have on hand? I’m not a big cheese person, so any insight on this rather complicated topic for me would be great.
    Thank you!

    • Reply Adrianna November 23, 2011 at 3:41 pm

      Oh I bet gouda would be delicious! Or all cheddar would work beautifully too!

  • Reply Mikki S. February 16, 2011 at 12:31 pm

    That looks AMAZING!!!! Can’t wait to try it!!! 🙂

  • Reply Linda Baker November 23, 2010 at 4:19 pm

    Do you think broccoli could be substituted for the brussel sprouts?

    • Reply Adrianna November 24, 2010 at 7:13 am

      Hmm…you can try it. I’m not exactly sure if broccoli can hold up for being baked that long. I say sub it out and then check on it at the 20 minute mark to make sure it’s not overcooked.

  • Reply vivian November 8, 2010 at 3:16 pm

    I made this on Sunday to test for inclusion in our Christmas Eve dinner. Even though we thought we didn’t like Brussels sprouts, everyone liked it a lot. My older daughter said she could eat the whole thing by herself. The crisp tender vegetables, crunchy topping, and creamy sauce are perfect together. Carrots would be a great addition as well for some more colour. Thnks very much!

  • Reply Sherry=) December 24, 2009 at 6:12 pm

    I also just realized that I used Smoked Gruyere cheese when I made this……YUMMY!

  • Reply Sherry=) December 23, 2009 at 10:51 pm

    I made this for the first time tonight…WOW…this is a keeper recipe for sure!!
    I am making it for Christmas dinner….but I’m going to have bit more crumbs and cheese on top…Thank You!!

  • Reply Kevin November 29, 2009 at 8:15 am

    Nice gratin!

  • Reply Adrianna November 19, 2009 at 2:06 pm

    Reidamus, I’ve made a few times the night before and it worked out great! Makes life SO much easier. One thing, though: I took along the bread crumbs and cheese separately in ziplock bags and added them right before I baked them in the oven. This way it ensures that the bread crumbs don’t get soggy. Good luck! Tell me how it goes.

  • Reply Reidamus November 18, 2009 at 11:20 pm

    Definitely bringing this to the table for Thanksgiving! Quick question: if I want to prepare it the night before and then transport/bake it once I get to the host’s house for the big turkey dinner, do I just prepare it as you said and then refrigerate it until it is time to bake??

  • Reply Denise November 16, 2009 at 4:09 pm

    Well this is a lovely way to get people to eat their veggies! Wow.

  • Reply Adrianna November 16, 2009 at 1:20 pm

    HollyT, I love when that happens! Please report back!

  • Reply Ellen Lee November 16, 2009 at 10:58 am

    Can’t wait to try this!

  • Reply HollyT November 16, 2009 at 6:48 am

    I just glanced in my frig: brussel sprouts, check; cauliflower, check. I will be making this for dinner tonight. Thanks for the inspiration!

  • Reply cakebrain November 16, 2009 at 2:15 am

    oh my. I love brussels sprouts and cauliflower! what a great combination for a gratin! I’ll have to make this soon!

  • Reply Deborah November 15, 2009 at 7:06 pm

    This sounds like a wonderful go-to recipe! I’ve never had the combo together, but they sound like they were made for each other!

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