Cauliflower is one of those vegetables I didn’t grow up eating and never even tried until a few years ago. Because I’m so new to it, I have no idea how to season cauliflower, much less which flavors make it taste the best. So I’ve been gathering some recipes and doing some taste testing to find the tastiest flavors to recommend!
How to Season Cauliflower – 3 Different Ways
#1. Try It Basic
If you’re going to bring cauliflower into your life, it seems to make the most sense to learn how to season cauliflower with a few basic ingredients. With a few things you probably have in your kitchen, you can take raw cauliflower from gross to tasty in no time!
- 1 medium head of cauliflower, cut into florets
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 teaspoon fine sea salt
- 1/2 teaspoon freshly-cracked black pepper
- 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
1. Heat oven to 400°F. Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper* or grease with cooking spray.
2. Spread the cauliflower out evenly on the baking sheet. Then drizzle with the olive oil, and sprinkle evenly with the salt, pepper and garlic powder. Toss gently to evenly coat the cauliflower.
3. Bake for 25-30 minutes, until soft and lightly golden. Serve immediately.
It may seem like a simple recipe and that’s because it is! But don’t let simplicity fool you, these make for a great side dish that won’t overpower the main course. Read more about the recipe from Ali with Gimme Some Oven.
Looking for a type of seasoning that will keep you going back for more? The blend of garlic and onion with the smokey flavors from the paprika and chili powder make this cauliflower hard to stop eating. This mix of flavors has been a favorite and I would definitely call it a crowd pleaser.
What You’ll Need:
- 1 head cauliflower
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 1 1/2 teaspoons paprika
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1 teaspoon onion powder
- 1/4 teaspoon chili powder
- 1 teaspoon cumin
- 1/4 teaspoon pepper
- 1 teaspoon salt
- Preheat the oven to 425 degrees. Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper if desired. You can do it without parchment, I just think it makes cleaning up easier.
- Rinse the cauliflower cut the florets off, placing them in a large bowl.
- Drizzle the olive oil over the florets, and add the seasoning. Toss together with your hands or a spoon.
- Spread evenly over the prepared cookie sheet. Bake at 425 degrees for about 30 minutes or until the edges are browned and crisp. Stir once or twice during the cooking time.
- Season with more salt and pepper if desired.
If you want to check the helpful tips of how to season cauliflower like this, run over to Kelly’s blog (the pretty bee) to make some for dinner tonight!
#3. Ciao (Down) with Italian Flavor
Something about roasting cauliflower really makes it so easy to snack on or the perfect side to a meal. Kate from Cookie+Kate gets that too. So much so that she’s developed four different ways to show you how to season cauliflower. I’m here to tell you that all the flavors are delicious! But the one that really speaks to my tastebuds is her Italian seasoned roasted cauliflower.
- ¾ cup (about 1 ½ ounces) finely grated Parmesan
- 1 teaspoon finely chopped fresh Italian parsley, for garnish
- Finely grated lemon zest, for garnish
- Red pepper flakes (omit if sensitive to spice), for garnish
1. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit and line a large, rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper for easy cleanup.
2. To prepare the cauliflower, use a chef’s knife to slice off the nubby base, then quarter it into four even wedges. Slice off just the inner core areas, leaving the rest intact. Cut across each piece to make ½″ wide slices, then use your fingers to break apart any florets that are stuck together.
3. Place the cauliflower on the prepared baking sheet, drizzle with 2 tablespoons olive oil, and sprinkle with the salt and some pepper. Toss until the ingredients are evenly distributed and the cauliflower is lightly coated in oil, adding another drizzle of oil only if necessary.
4. If you’re making the Italian version, arrange the cauliflower in an even layer and bake for 15 minutes. Remove from the oven, toss, and then sprinkle the Parmesan over the cauliflower (try to concentrate the cheese on the actual florets, more than on the pan). Return to the oven and bake until the cauliflower is deeply golden on the edges, about 10 to 20 more minutes. Sprinkle the cauliflower with parsley, lemon zest, and red pepper flakes (if using).
These are some of my favorite ways of how to season cauliflower but share with us some of your favorites! We’d love to hear.