Cocoa, cookies, cake and repeat. 

The holidays are all about enjoying time with loved ones, and for many of us, there’s no better way to do that than with delicious (and decadent) food. At nearly every gathering we go to, we’re confronted by sweets galore, but all this sugar can leave us feeling bloated, sluggish or even less cheerful.

Fortunately, CARTI’s The Hope Bistro is stepping in to help. Executive chef Coby Smith is sharing an easy-to-follow recipe for roasted holiday vegetables that will help us savor the season and protect our overall well-being.


Roasted Holiday Vegetables


  • 1 lb. brussels sprouts, trimmed and halved

  • 1 head cauliflower, trimmed and cut into 1/2 inch pieces 

  • 2 large carrots, sliced into 1/2 inch pieces

  • 1 tbsp. maple syrup

  • 1 tsp. minced fresh thyme

  • 1 tsp. minced rosemary

  • 1/2 tsp. salt

  • 1/2 tsp. pepper

  • 4 strips bacon, sliced 1 inch thick

  • 1/2 cup cranberries, fresh or frozen

  • 1/4 cup pecans

  • 4 cloves garlic, sliced

  • 1 medium red onion, quartered

  • 3 tbsp. balsamic fig glaze


  1. Preheat your oven to 425 degrees. Add the brussels sprouts, carrots and cauliflower to a large baking sheet lined with parchment paper.

  2. Add the maple syrup, thyme, rosemary, salt and pepper and toss well. 

  3. Spread the vegetables out in an even layer, then sprinkle the raw bacon over the top.

  4. Roast the vegetables for 20 minutes. 

  5. Remove the pan from the oven and add the cranberries, pecans, garlic and red onion. 

  6. Mix everything and return the pan to the oven for another 20 minutes, until the veggies are golden and the bacon is crispy.

  7. Place the vegetables on your favorite serving dish and drizzle with the balsamic fig glaze. 


From peanut butter balls to toffee, there are endless opportunities for us to indulge before the year is out, but no one wants a sugar crash. The Hope Bistro, located at CARTI Cancer Center in Little Rock, provides fresh, healing food to help cancer patients, their families and our community stay healthy during the holiday season and all year round.