The Best Crispy Roasted Cauliflower

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This recipe has the secrets to PERFECT roasted Cauliflower with tons of flavor! I’ve never been this excited about a simple veggie before.

No fancy ingredients needed; cauliflower, salt & pepper, and a great technique (plus a few tips) make the most delicious cauliflower!

Crispy Roasted Cauliflower in a white bowl

Hands Down the BEST Roasted Cauliflower

Cauliflower is an easy side with a mild flavor but this recipe is a game-changer. This recipe takes a humble veggie (that I actually love anyhow) and turns it into an amazing side dish.

If you’ve done much cooking, you know that brown bits in a pan have lots of flavor. Following the recipe (and tips below) ensures your cauliflower gets lots of browning and caramelization which makes for tons of flavor.

ingredients for Crispy Roasted Cauliflower on a wooden board

Ingredients

We’ve kept them super simple, not a lot is needed as this veggie can stand on its own!

CAULIFLOWER: Fresh is best. For this recipe, preparation is important. Cauliflower should be very dry (no water from washing!) for the best results.

Break the cauliflower into large florets and then cut each floret into large pieces with a knife so each piece has a flat side. The flat side will go onto a preheated pan and brown perfectly!

OIL: Any light flavored oil works. Great options are olive oil, vegetable oil, or avocado oil.

SEASONINGS: I most often make this with salt and pepper. Simple, but good! If you’d like to add some garlic, use garlic powder as fresh garlic can burn at high temperatures.

raw cauliflower pieces on a wooden board

How to Roast Cauliflower

  1. Preheat oven & baking sheet (per recipe below).
  2. Make sure cauliflower is dry, it will steam instead of roast if it’s wet!
  3. Break off large florets and use a knife to cut a flat edge.
  4. Mix florets, seasonings, & oil in a large bowl, then place florets flat side down on a baking sheet.
  5. Roast without turning, until crispy. Serve warm.

Raw Cauliflower on a baking sheet

 

The Secrets to Perfect Roasted Cauliflower

Dry Cauliflower: When moisture is in the cauliflower from washing it, the cauliflower will steam. Buy prewashed florets or wash them the day before cooking if possible. Otherwise, shake it very well or even spin it a little at a time in a salad spinner until dry.

Cut a Flat Side: The flat side of each floret will go onto the pan and this will help it reach a deep golden brown color. Generously Oil the cauliflower for best results.

High-Temperature: Cooking at a high temperature (425°F) ensures lots of color, which makes for lots of flavor. The key to caramelization is ensuring that the outside has a chance to brown before the inside overcooks.

Preheat the Pan: Place the empty pan in the oven to preheat while you prepare the cauliflower. Setting the florets on a hot pan ensures they crisp and brown beautifully.

Do Not Stir or Flip: Just like when you make fried mushrooms, it takes some time to develop a nice crust. Let the underside of the cauliflower get a nice crust without stirring it.

Crispy Roasted Cauliflower on a baking sheet

Crazy for Cauliflower

Did your family love this Crispy Roasted Cauliflower? Be sure to leave a rating and a comment below! 

Crispy Roasted Cauliflower in a white bowl
5 from 9 votes
Review Recipe

Crispy Roasted Cauliflower

Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 20 minutes
Servings 4
Author Holly Nilsson
Oven-roasted cauliflower turns out crispy & caramelized every time! With just 4 simple ingredients, this healthy side dish can be enjoyed all year long.

Ingredients

  • 1 head cauliflower clean & dry
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil or as needed
  • salt and black pepper to taste
  • ½ teaspoon garlic powder optional

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Instructions

  • Preheat oven to 425°F. Place a baking sheet in the oven to preheat while you prepare the cauliflower.
  • Break off large florets of cauliflower and use a knife to cut a flat edge.
  • Place the cauliflower in a large bowl or container with a lid. Add oil and seasonings and shake very well to coat. If the head of cauliflower is extra-large, it may need extra oil.
  • Remove the hot baking sheet from the oven and place the cauliflower, flat side down, on the heated baking sheet.
  • Place in the oven and roast 15-20 minutes without turning the cauliflower.
  • Serve warm.

Recipe Notes

Dry Cauliflower: Moisture from washing will cause this dish to steam. Buy prewashed florets or wash them the day before cooking if possible. Otherwise, shake it very well or even spin it a little at a time in a salad spinner until dry.
Cut a Flat Side: The flat side of each floret will go onto the pan and this will help it reach a deep golden brown color. Generously Oil the cauliflower for best results.
High-Temperature: Cooking at a high temperature (425°F) ensures lots of color, which makes for lots of flavor. The key to caramelization is ensuring that the outside has a chance to brown before the inside overcooks.
Preheat the Pan: Place the empty pan in the oven to preheat while you prepare the cauliflower. Setting the florets on a hot pan ensures they crisp and brown beautifully.
Do Not Stir or Flip: Just like when you make fried mushrooms, it takes some time to develop a nice crust. Let the underside of the cauliflower get a nice crust without stirring it.

Nutrition Information

Calories: 99, Carbohydrates: 7g, Protein: 3g, Fat: 7g, Saturated Fat: 1g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g, Monounsaturated Fat: 5g, Sodium: 43mg, Potassium: 434mg, Fiber: 3g, Sugar: 3g, Vitamin C: 69mg, Calcium: 32mg, Iron: 1mg

(Nutrition information provided is an estimate and will vary based on cooking methods and brands of ingredients used.)

Keyword best Roasted Cauliflower recipe, how to make roasted cauliflower, roasted cauliflower, Roasted Cauliflower recipe
Course Side Dish
Cuisine American
Crispy Roasted Cauliflower in a pan with text
Crispy Roasted Cauliflower in a bowl with text
Crispy Roasted Cauliflower in a white bowl with text
Crispy Roasted Cauliflower in a bowl and a pan with text
About the author

Holly

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Holly is a wine and cheese lover, recipe creator, shopping enthusiast and self appointed foodie. Her greatest passion is creating in the kitchen and making deliciously comforting recipes for the everyday home cook!

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