• 2 tbsp. olive oil
  • ¼ red onion (less than ½ cup), chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 cups brussels sprouts, sliced in half
  • 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
  • squeezes of lemon juice, plus some zest for the end
  • 6-8 oz. mini whole wheat pasta shells (or gluten-free)
  • 1/4 cup pecorino cheese, shredded (dairy free cheese if needed)
  • a few pinches of red pepper flakes


  1. In a large skillet add 1 tbsp of olive oil and onions. Cook until onions are just soft (3-4 minutes), add the minced garlic and cook for 30 second. Turn off the heat and remove the onions from the pan.
  2. In a small bowl, toss the brussels sprout halves in balsamic vinegar, and 1 tbsp olive oil, salt and pepper.
  3. eat more olive oil and the butter. When the pan is screaming hot add the brussels sprouts, cut side down. Without moving them, let them cook for about 3-4 minutes, until they develop a nice char (check and reduce heat & time if they’re burning).
  4. Flip them over and add a good squeeze of lemon to deglaze the pan. Toss them around a bit. Reduce heat to low, and add a few tablespoons of water. Cover and let them steam until tender (approx. 4-5 minutes).
  5. Boil shells in a pot of salted boiling water until al dente.
  6. Toss together the shells, onions, brussels sprouts, more lemon juice, and most of the pecorino. Taste and adjust seasonings. Finish with remaining cheese, lemon zest and red pepper flakes.

Serves 2

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