High in vitamin C and K, cauliflower is a versatile vegetable that you can easily incorporate into your meals. World’s Healthiest Foods says that when selecting this piece of produce at the grocery store, you’ll want to find heads that have a creamy white color, avoiding cauliflower with spots or that are dull looking. If when cutting you find discoloration, simply trim these brown sections off before advancing in your preparation of any of the following 8 delectable recipes.
1. Linguine with Cauliflower and Brown Butter
When you’re adding cauliflower to your pasta, skip your traditional tomato sauce and follow Martha Stewart‘s example by tossing the pasta and vegetable in browned butter instead. It yields 4 servings.
- ¾ cup packaged croutons or 3 slices stale bread
- 6½ tablespoons butter
- 1 medium cauliflower (2½ pounds), cut into florets
- Coarse salt and ground pepper
- 1 pound linguine
- 10 fresh sage leaves or ½ teaspoon dried sage
- 1 shallot, minced
- ¾ cup chopped fresh parsley
- ½ cup freshly grated Parmesan, plus more for serving
Directions: Place croutons in a plastic bag and crush to coarse crumbs with a rolling pin. (If using bread, grind in a food processor and toast in a dry skillet until golden, 2 to 3 minutes, shaking skillet frequently to toast evenly.)
In a large skillet, melt 1½ tablespoons butter over medium-low heat. Add cauliflower florets and ¼ teaspoon salt; sauté for 15 minutes. Add ¼ cup water; cook until cauliflower is tender when pierced with a sharp knife, about 3 to 4 minutes.
In a large pot of boiling salted water, cook linguine until al dente, about 10 minutes. Drain pasta, reserving ½ cup pasta water. In pasta pot, melt remaining 5 tablespoons butter over medium heat. Stir in sage and shallot; cook until butter is golden brown, 3 minutes. Add pasta, cauliflower, parsley, and Parmesan; season with salt and pepper. Toss to combine. Add reserved cooking water if pasta seems dry. To serve, sprinkle with breadcrumbs and more Parmesan.
2. Roasted Cauliflower with Fresh Herbs and Parmesan
Cooking Light says that you can use any combination of fresh herbs that you’d like when preparing this roasted cauliflower recipe, but tarragon, thyme, and parsley are a particularly tasty combination. This recipe yields 8 servings.
- 12 cups cauliflower florets (about 2 heads)
- 1½ tablespoons olive oil
- 1 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley
- 2 teaspoons chopped fresh thyme
- 2 teaspoons chopped fresh tarragon
- 3 garlic cloves, minced
- ¼ cup (1 ounce) grated fresh Parmesan cheese
- 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon pepper
Directions: Preheat oven to 450 degrees Fahrenheit. Place cauliflower in a large roasting pan or jelly-roll pan. Drizzle with oil; toss well to coat. Bake for 20 minutes or until tender and browned, stirring every 5 minutes. Sprinkle with parsley, thyme, tarragon, and garlic. Bake 5 minutes. Combine cauliflower mixture, cheese, and remaining ingredients in a large bowl; toss well to combine.
3. Garlic Cauliflower Mash
Turn your cauliflower into George Stella’s “mashed potatoes” using this recipe from the Food Network. Serve your mock potatoes as a side for any meat dish, and for variation, try using rosemary to season the cauliflower. It makes about 4 servings.
- 1 medium head cauliflower
- 1 tablespoon cream cheese, softened
- ¼ cup grated Parmesan
- ½ teaspoon minced garlic
- ⅛ teaspoon straight chicken base or bullion (may substitute ½ teaspoon salt)
- ⅛ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- ½ teaspoon chopped fresh or dry chives, for garnish
- 3 tablespoons unsalted butter
Directions: Set a stockpot of water to boil over high heat. Clean and cut cauliflower into small pieces. Cook in boiling water for about 6 minutes, or until well done. Drain well; do not let cool and pat cooked cauliflower very dry between several layers of paper towels.
In a bowl with an immersion blender, or in a food processor, puree the hot cauliflower with the cream cheese, Parmesan, garlic, chicken base, and pepper until almost smooth. Garnish with chives, and serve hot with pats of butter.
4. Cauliflower Steaks with Herb Salsa Verde
In this Food & Wine recipe, Alex Guarnaschelli explains that cauliflower can easily take on a “meaty” feel in recipes, depending on how you prepare it. Guarnaschelli has taken this route, preparing her “steaks” with a salsa verde. It yields 2 to 4 servings.
- ¼ cup chopped flat-leaf parsley
- 2 tablespoons chopped cilantro
- 2 tablespoons chopped tarragon
- 1½ tablespoons capers, drained and coarsely chopped
- 6 cornichons, chopped
- 1 small garlic clove, minced
- 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
- 1 tablespoon grainy mustard
- ⅓ cup extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 large head of cauliflower
- Kosher salt
- Freshly ground pepper
- 2 tablespoons canola oil
- ½ cup dry white wine
- ½ teaspoon finely grated lemon zest
- 4½ tablespoons fresh lemon juice
- 1 teaspoon red wine vinegar
Directions: In a large bowl, whisk the parsley with the cilantro, tarragon, capers, cornichons, garlic, mustards, and olive oil. Cut the cauliflower from top to bottom into four ½-inch-thick steaks. Generously season them with salt and pepper. In a very large skillet, heat the canola oil until very hot. Add the cauliflower in a single layer and cook over high heat until browned, 2 to 3 minutes. Carefully turn the steaks, add the wine, and cook until it is evaporated and the cauliflower is easily pierced with a knife, 3 to 5 minutes.
Transfer the cauliflower to a platter and sprinkle with the lemon zest. Stir the lemon juice and vinegar into the salsa verde and season with salt and pepper. Spoon the sauce on the cauliflower and serve.
5. Cauliflower Crust Pizza
Paula Deen has swapped out traditional crust for one made of cauliflower in this pizza recipe. You can adapt the crust to almost any pizza recipe of your liking, or add Italian seasonings to the crust for an even more flavorful dinner. It serves 4.
- Nonstick spray
- 2½ cups grated cauliflower (about half a large head)
- 1 large egg, lightly beaten
- 1 cup shredded part skim mozzarella
- 2 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese
- Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
- ¼ cup homemade or store bought tomato sauce
- ½ cup shredded part skim mozzarella cheese
- 1 cup grape tomatoes, sliced in half
- 2 cloves garlic, sliced
- ¼ teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
- ¼ cup basil leaves, for garnish
Directions: Heat oven to 425 degrees. Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper. Grate the cauliflower using a box grater until you have 2 cups of cauliflower crumbles. Place in a large bowl and microwave for 7 to 8 minutes, or until soften. Remove and let cool. Mix in the egg, mozzarella, Parmesan cheese, and salt and pepper. Once combined, pat into a 10-inch round on the prepared pizza pan. Spray lightly with nonstick spray and bake for 10 to 15 minutes, or until golden.
Top the pizza with the sauce, mozzarella, cherry tomatoes, garlic, and red pepper flakes. Bake in the oven until melted and bubbly, another 10 minutes. Top with basil before serving.
6. Cauliflower with Sweet Potatoes
Instead of making your cauliflower into a “potato” dish, you could pair it with sweet potatoes using Bal Arneson’s Cooking Channel recipe. Robustly flavored with Indian spices, it serves 4.
- 2 tablespoons grapeseed oil
- 1 onion, chopped
- 1 tablespoon grated fresh ginger
- 1 tablespoon coriander seeds
- 1 tablespoon cumin seeds
- 1 teaspoon turmeric
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 tomato, chopped
- 1 large sweet potato, peeled and cut into 1-inch chunks
- 1 small head cauliflower, cut into bite-size florets
Directions: Place the oil in a large nonstick skillet and heat over medium-high heat. Add the onion and ginger, and cook for 4 minutes. Stir in the coriander seeds, cumin seeds, turmeric, and salt and toast for 15 seconds, and then add the tomatoes and sweet potatoes, and cook until they are tender, about 12 to 15 minutes. Add the cauliflower and stir well to combine. Place a tight-fitting lid on the pan and cook until the cauliflower is crisp-tender, about 5 to 8 minutes.
7. Cauliflower Casserole
AllRecipes.com‘s casserole is a cheesy cauliflower dish that gets a pop of color from the addition of bell peppers. Cornflakes give the dish a nice crunch, and it yields about 8 servings.
- 1 head cauliflower, separated into florets
- 1 cup sour cream
- 1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
- ½ cup crushed corn flakes
- ¼ cup finely chopped green bell pepper
- ¼ cup finely chopped red bell pepper
- 1 teaspoon salt
- ¼ cup grated Parmesan cheese
- Paprika (optional)
Directions: Preheat oven to 325 degrees Fahrenheit. Grease a 2-quart baking dish. Place a steamer insert into a saucepan and fill with water to just below the bottom of the steamer. Cover and bring the water to a boil over high heat. Add the cauliflower and steam until crisp-tender, about 5 minutes. Drain, and set aside.
Combine sour cream, cheddar cheese, corn flakes, bell peppers, and salt in a medium bowl. Stir in the cauliflower and transfer to the prepared baking dish. Sprinkle Parmesan cheese and paprika over the top of the dish. Bake uncovered until heated through, 30 to 35 minutes.
8. Curried Cauliflower
The next time you need an easy side for a steak dinner or want to give your rice or couscous dish a hint of spice, make Southern Living‘s curried cauliflower. On its own, it serves 4.
- 1 teaspoon curry powder
- ¼ teaspoon dried crushed red pepper
- 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
- 2 (10-ounce) packages fresh cauliflower florets
- 1 medium onion, chopped
- ¾ teaspoon salt
Directions: Cook curry powder and red pepper in hot oil in a large skillet over medium heat, stirring often, 1 minute. Add cauliflower, onion, and salt, and cook, stirring constantly, 2 to 3 minutes or until onion is crisp-tender. Reduce heat to low; add 6 tablespoons water. Cover and cook, stirring occasionally, 8 to 10 minutes or just until cauliflower is tender.