Roasted Brussels Sprouts, Goat Cheese, and Cranberries over Barley

Due to the fact that I am a college student, cooking in a tiny rented kitchen from the 1920s, I do not have all of the kitchen tools that say, Martha Stewart- or any adult living on their own would have. I am completely fine with this reality because I have most of the necessities one would need for efficient cooking- cutting boards, a few pots and pans. I recently got a potato peeler!

This week was a big week because I decided to invest in my first cast iron skillet! I kept stumbling upon recipes that require skillets, so when I found one at the groccery store it quickly ended up in my cart. And of all the recipes I have been eager to make with a skillet, this recipe takes the cake.

I have only had brussels sprouts a few times in my life. My mom never cooked brussels sprouts growing up, so I am assuming my dad was not a fan of these little green vegetables. After making this recipe however, I don’t know what’s not to like! Mixed with warm goat cheese, sweet cranberries, and natural barley, these brussels are the perfect complimentary flavor- savory, without a bite of bitter. You are going to love this fall-time medley of food. Give it a try! Whip out that old skillet of yours and shake things up a bit. You have nothing to lose and a whole lot to gain!


  • 1 cup dry Barley
  • 3 cups water
  • 1 pound Brussels sprouts
  • 1 Tablespoon olive oil
  • Salt
  • 2/3 cup fresh cranberries (or 1/3 cup dried cranberries)
  • 1/3 cup crumbled goat cheese
  • 1 tablespoon maple syrup, or more to taste
  • 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar, or more to taste


  1. Add 1 cup of dry barley to 3 cups of water in a medium sized saucepot. Bring the water to a boil and then reduce to a simmer. Let simmer for 30-40 minutes, or until the barley is soft and the water is absorbed.
  2. While the barley cooks, preheat your broiler.
  3. Rinse the brussles sprouts and remove the tips, all browning/discolored leaves, and slice in half.
  4. Heat a 12-inch cast iron skillet on medium-high heat on the stovetop. Allow it to sit for a few minutes until hot. *
  5. In a medium-sized bowl combine the sprouts, olive oil, and salt. Toss well so that the Brussels sprouts have a fine coating of oil.
  6. Once the skillet is hot, quickly arrange the brussels sprouts so that the center of each sprout- the flat side- is face down. This method of roasting allows for the heat to get trapped in the layers of the sprout and steams them. Cook for 2-3 minutes.
  7.  Add the cranberries to the pan and place the entire pan in the oven. Use oven mitts! The pan will be very hot.
  8. Broil the Brussels sprouts and cranberries for about three minutes. The tops should be lightly browned and the bottoms caramelized.
  9. Combine the warm barley, sprouts, cranberries, goat cheese, maple syrup, and balsamic vinegar in a large bowl. Mix well to evenly distribute the syrup and vinegar.
  10. Season with salt as desired, serve, and enjoy!

Notes and Tips!:

  • Yield: Serves two.
  • Optional: add toasted almonds to this dish!
  • A quick and easy test to determine whether your skillet is hot enough: Sprinkle a few drops of water on the skillet while heating it up. If the water quickly sizzles away, your skillet is hot enough!
  • If you don’t have/ don’t like Goat cheese, try Gorgonzola! Vegan, omit the cheese!
  • Use a cast iron skillet for the oven! Non-stick skillets are not designed to be used in the high temperatures of the oven- they can emit toxins at the extreme temperatures.
  • If you have leftovers, store them in an airtight container.  This recipe will keep for a few days and can easily be microwaved for later meals!
  • Source: Cookie + Kaite
  • Other dishes you might like!: Terriyaki Tofu and Pineapple Bake; Roasted Eggplant with Tomatoes, Mint, and Goat Cheese; Sweet Potato Pizza with Caramelized Onion, Goat Cheese, and Kale

Quinoa and Parmesan Kale Patties

I have somewhat of a theme going on- patties. I just noticed this, and I’m not sure what it is about a good patty, but I am definitely a fan! It all started out with the Quinoa Burger, and then there were the Crispy Black Bean Fritters with Creamy Cilantro Dipping Sauce. And here we are at take three with these fantastic Quinoa and Parmesan Kale Patties!

The best thing about this meal is that there are two best things. 1) This meal is extremely healthy for you! Kale and quinoa are loaded with phytochemicals and nutrients that your body needs and craves. That alone is reason enough to go buy the ingredients right now. 2) These little guys are delicious and can be dressed up beautifully with avocado slices, lime, cilantro, salsa, or soy sauce! Your whole family is going to love them. I’ve been munching on them the last few days, warming up a patty whenever I get hungry, and I promise you it’s worth it. Get some more greens in your diet, Try these Quinoa and Parmesan Kale Patties and do something new. Sometimes mixing it up is just what you need!



  • 1 cup quinoa
  • 2 cups water
  • 4 eggs, whisked
  • 1/3 cup Parmesan cheese
  • 3 spring onions, thinly sliced
  • ¼ teaspoon garlic powder
  • ½ teaspoon sea salt
  • 2-4 Kale leaves
  • 1 cup breadcrumbs*
  • 1 teaspoon olive oil
  • Optional toppings: avocado, cilantro, lemon juice, salsa, garlic oil, Braggs Amino Acid Spray, Soy sauce


  1. Combine 1 cup of dry quinoa with 2 cup of water in a medium sized saucepan. Bring to a boil, cover, and reduce to a simmer. Simmer for about 20 minutes, or until the water has been absorbed.
  2. Prepare the kale by rinsing 2-4 large leaves, and then cutting the leaf from the stem. Chop or tear the leaves into bite-sized pieces and place them in a steamer basket. Fill a large pot with 2-3 inches of water and heat at medium-hot heat. Place the streamer basket in the pot, over the water. Cover the steamer basket with the pot lid and steam for 3-5 minutes.
  3. In a large bowl, combine the cooked quinoa, eggs, parmesan, sliced onions, spices, kale, and breadcrumbs. Mix well so that the moisture from the eggs is evenly absorbed.
  4. Heat 1 teaspoon of olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat.  Using your hands or a ¼ measuring cup, scoop batter onto the frying pan in the shape of patties.
  5. Cook each patty for 5-7 minutes on each side.
  6. Serve warm and top with slices of avocado slices, salsa, soy sauce, cilantro, Braggs Amino Acid spray, or lemon juice if desired.

Notes and Tips:

  • If you’re gluten free, use gluten free breadcrumbs! I used Italian flavored.
  • These patties keep well! Store them in an air-tight container, microwave 2 for 1 minute, and enjoy!
  • I tried these patties with avocado slices, sprinkled cheese, salsa, soy sauce, and Braggs (not all at the same time!) and each combination was delicious!
  • Source: Yummy Supper
  • Want more kale in your life? Try these Baked Kale Chips or this Sweet Potato Pizza with Caramalized Onion, Goat Cheese, and Kale!