Quick and colorful 1-pan cauliflower side roasted to perfection with simple seasonings and herbs. Enjoy as a holiday side or add protein for a cozy entrée.
Can we talk for a second about how close the holidays are?
Today is two weeks until Thanksgiving and yesterday was six weeks until the new year.
Not that I’m counting or anything.
To be honest, I haven’t even fully acknowledged that it’s November, let alone the side I’m going to bring to Thanksgiving Day dinner at my parents’.
Luckily, I hope this Tri-Colored Roasted Cauliflower Salad can help us with our holiday dish scramble.
It’s the perfect side dish to add some cozy color to any plant-based plate!
You just need one pan, three heads of cauliflower, the perfect neutral, high-heat cooking oil, and your favorite fresh herb to bring this salad to your dining room table.
So you might be thinking, but Lauren, this salad is just cauliflower.
Ok, good catch, friends, but may I counter by asking, is there anything better than roasted cauliflower?
…Didn’t think so.
That’s what I thought.
And if that’s the case, then why not bake a big sheet pan of it with all the colors of the wind and serve it as a gorgeous side salad?
There’s something about eating their tender velvety florets that’s right . up there with chocolate and peanut butter on my comfort foods list.
Tossed with fresh herbs and drizzled with a lemon tahini dressing, it’s downright unbeatable.
My inspiration for this side came from none other than the Whole Foods Salad bar.
Yeah, you know, the section where you “brown box” all the amazing smells and colors.
I’ve been loitering around the bar all too much since moving this fall, too tired out from home improvement to even consider cooking.
Well, they serve a roasted cauliflower blend with parsley that caught my eye.
So, of course, I loaded my brown box to the brim with roasted cauliflower and a left a tiny corner for “other” less notable veggies.
This recipe begins with…cauliflower!
And as with most veggies, I think cauliflower tastes better in all of the colors.
My commitment to this recipe title is staggering, because, friends, I drove for 30 minutes today just to find three colors for use in this roasted salad today.
Now, I’m hoping you won’t have to drive all over northern Virginia (or wherever home is) to find three shades of cruciferous veggies.
You can use any color of cauliflower you are able to find for this recipe, including plain ole’ white cauliflower!
The yellow and purple varietals of the cauliflower are a little harder to come by, and even harder to find local or organic.
The salad will taste exactly the same using regular white cauliflower, but if you can find the different variations they take this dish from delicious to diva.
The special ingredient for the best tri-colored roasted cauliflower is Thrive® Algae Oil!
In case you haven’t already heard me mention it, Thrive Algae Oil is an everyday cooking oil made from algae, an ancient ingredient that’s making a major comeback.
Thrive contains the highest level of good, heat-stable, heart-healthy monounsaturated fat and the lowest level of saturated fat compared to any other cooking oil in your arsenal.
I like to use a higher temperature (425°) to roast cauliflower in this recipe, and Thrive has your baking and cooking covered with a high smoke point (up to 485°).
And you don’t have to worry about your oil affecting the flavor of your dish – Thrive is completely neutral!
Drizzle it on your colorful cauliflower, season with a pinch of sea salt and black pepper, and bake for 25-30 minutes.
You want your roasted cauliflower to be fork-tender, velvety, and well-browned on the outside without being totally fall-apart and mushy.
Once your cauliflower is nicely roasted, add it to a bowl with fresh herbs and a big squeeze of lemon.
If using purple cauliflower, you’ll notice with delight that the squeeze of lemon will turn it from purple to pink (my two favorite colors as a kid) in places!
I used cilantro in my version for a hint of fresh green.
The Whole Foods version used fresh parsley; lots of fresh parsley (TOO MUCH PARSLEY)!
I’m weird about fresh parsley.
You know how some people say that cilantro tastes like soap?
Well, that’s kind of how parsley tastes to me sometimes.
If you’re a parsley person, feel free to use it here, or if you’re a cilantro person like me, use it too.
I like to leave my cilantro roughly chopped here as opposed to minced for more of a robust flavor and rustic look.
Enjoy this Tri-Colored Roasted Cauliflower Salad as colorful side dish, or make it an entree by serving over grains or nestled beside your choice of protein.
Make sure you have plans for it, because the florets are way too easy eat straight from the baking sheet dipped in hummus or guacamole.
I like to eat mine as a side for dinner and then over kale and quinoa with lemon tahini for lunch the next day!
The beauty of this salad is that it can be served warm or chilled– straight from the oven or straight from the fridge- depending on the occasion.
It’s gorgeous as a side for a dinner party and festive and fun as part of your holiday spread.
If you make this Tri-Colored Roasted Cauliflower Salad, let me know!
Be sure to leave me a comment, rating, and review so I can use your feedback to create more yums.
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Quick and colorful 1-pan cauliflower side roasted to perfection with simple seasonings and herbs. Enjoy as a quick side or add protein for a cozy entrée.
TRI-COLORED ROASTED CAULIFLOWER SALAD
- 3 small heads of cauliflower, any color, washed and broken into florets
- 1 TBSP Thrive®Algae Oil
- Himalayan sea salt, to taste
- black pepper, to taste
- handful of cilantro, stems removed and roughly chopped
LEMON TAHINI DRESSING
- 1/4 cup runny tahini
- 2–4 TBSP lemon juice
- 1/4 cup filtered water
- pinch of Himalayan sea salt
- pinch of black pepper
- Preheat oven to 425°F and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
- Add cauliflower florets to the pan and spread out so the florets aren’t overlapping too much (this may require you to use two baking sheets).
- Drizzle with Thrive® Algae Oil and season with Himalayan sea salt and black pepper. Lightly toss to coat, then bake for 25- 30 minutes, until cauliflower is lightly browned and fork tender, but not mushy.
- Remove from the oven and allow to cool slightly, then transfer to a large bowl and toss with fresh cilantro and a big squeeze of lemon.
- To make the lemon tahini, whisk together the tahini, lemon juice, water, Himalayan sea salt, and black pepper with a fork until smooth. Add more water as needed in 1 Tablespoon increments to reach desired consistency.
- Serve the roasted cauliflower salad with a drizzle of lemon tahini before serving. Serve warm or chilled.
- Store leftover cauliflower salad in the fridge for 3-5 days. Lemon tahini dressing keeps in the fridge for up to one week.
- Category: Entree, Side
- Method: Oven-Bake
- Cuisine: Vegan, Gluten-Free, Oil Free-Option
This post is brought to you by Thrive® Algae, but all words and eats are my own. Thanks for supporting the sponsors that keep me hungry!