How to Store Brussels Sprouts
Whether you like Brussels sprouts or not, they are vegetable that is rich in folic acid (great for pregnant women) and vitamin C. It is also known that people who consume cruciferous vegetables, like Brussels sprouts, have less risk of some cancers, including colon, breast, lung, ovarian and bladder cancers. While you can only store fresh Brussels sprouts for a limited amount of time, you can freeze them to enjoy all year long.
Remove some any yellow or wilted outer leaves. Just pinch them off with your fingers.
Wrap the Brussels sprouts in a plastic bag and place them in the crisper of your refrigerator. Do not wash them first. Brussels sprouts will keep for about five to ten days in normal refrigerator temperatures. However, if you can store Brussels sprouts like the professionals can--in 32 degrees F with a relative humidity of 95 to 100%--then they will store for up to five weeks. Keep in mind that, in general, the longer the storage, the stronger the flavor, which may not be preferred.
Freeze Brussels sprouts by first washing and then cooking them in boiling water for three to five minutes. Drain, cool and package in a freezer bag. Be sure as much air is removed as possible before sealing the bag. Store for up to a year.
Brussels Sprouts Pests & Diseases
Greenish-gray with a white coating, aphids are an enemy of Brussels sprouts. Although they usually consume leaves, cabbage aphids also burrow into sprouts to feed. Natural predators, like ladybugs, will kill the aphids, but not completely. The area near the sprouts should be kept free of weeds and removing the leftovers of the crop after harvest will destroy the aphids' habitat. The leaves of Brussels sprouts infected with downy mildew may be yellow and mottled or covered in fluffy gray patches. Thriving under damp, cool conditions, this fungal disease spreads quickly. Keep sprouts vigorous to protect against both conditions, allow for room between each plant to reduce humidity and avoid watering at night. Fungicides will also control these diseases. Worms and caterpillars prey on Brussels sprouts. The white, yellow or brown wireworm feeds on the sprouts' seeds. Imported cabbageworms, which are actually a type of caterpillar, also feed on Brussels sprouts, but can be picked off one by one.
- University of California Davis: Aphids
- University of Kentucky: Wireworms
- University of California Davis: Imported Cabbageworm
- University of California Davis: Armyworms
- Royal Botanic Gardens & Domain Trust: Phytophthora root rot - fact sheet
- Royal Horticultural Society: Club Root
- University of California Davis: Brussels Sprouts