The cauliflower craze is real y’all! And I proudly jumped on the bandwagon when cauliflower tacos, gnocchi, and pizza crust started popping up, proving to me once again that Trader Joe’s never ceases to raise the bar. That being said though, there is a certain beauty in eating whole ingredients as they are. I’ve definitely been one to convert cauliflower into new shapes and textures too, but at the end of the day, roasted cauliflower is still my favorite way to eat cauliflower. Roasting any vegetable can bring out flavor notes that other cooking methods like steaming won’t and cauliflower is no exception. And an added bonus to roasting vegetables is that many of their nutrients are easier for the body to absorb as compared to in their raw state.
However, you can’t just throw vegetables in the oven at the last second and hope all goes well. With any vegetable, and especially cauliflower, there is an art to roasting that requires patience and self-editing. Here are my two tricks to the perfect roasted cauliflower:
- Low and Slow: Cooking the cauliflower at a lower temperature over a longer period of time allows the cauliflower to cook more evenly. At a higher temperature, the smaller pieces can become charred and the larger pieces come out underdone at the expense of salving the smaller bits that often make for the best bite when cooked correctly. If you let the cauliflower take its time, it will turn that ideal shade of golden brown rather than white with blackened edges.
- Don’t Be Heavy-handed with the Olive Oil: We all love olive oil, and when used in moderation, it brings out the nutty flavor of cauliflower really well. But, as I have learned, you have to be careful with the things you love. Drowning cauliflower in olive oil only makes for soggy veggies, which defeats the point of roasting. And the beauty of cauliflower is that it can absorb flavor much better than a more fibrous vegetable like broccoli or asparagus.
So, with these tips in mind, here is my go-to method for perfectly roasted cauliflower:
Prep Time: 5 min
Cook Time: 40 min
Calories: 354 cal
- 1 10 oz bag of cauliflower florets (ain’t nobody got time to chop a full head of cauliflower)
- 2-3 tbsp olive oil
- 1 clove minced garlic
- 2-3 sprigs of rosemary
- generous pinch of S+P
- Preheat an oven to 375 degrees. While the oven heats up, take the cauliflower florets and break up any larger pieces, either by hand or by slicing into slabs. The key here is to have florets that are more equal in size to ensure that they cook more evenly.
- Measure out the olive oil and stir together with the minced garlic.
- Lay out the pieces onto an uncreased baking sheet and drizzle the olive oil over the the florets. Then, shake the baking sheet a couple times to not only ensure that each cauliflower piece gets evenly coated, but also to ensure that the baking sheet gets well-greased from any excess olive oil. *You can also coat the cauliflower with olive oil in a separate bowl but you risk losing olive oil that gets stuck to the bowl rather than on the baking sheet.*
- Take a generous pinch (about a teaspoon each) of salt and pepper and sprinkle over the cauliflower.
- Finally, top the cauliflower with a couple sprigs of fresh rosemary.
- Place the cauliflower in the oven and allow to cook for 35-40 min, checking at 30 min to make sure none of the pieces are burning.
- Once removed, serve immediately as a side or on its own! (You can’t go wrong if you choose to sprinkle a little fresh parmesan on top too!)