Oven roasted cauliflower is a super easy and delicious way to prepare cauliflower!

An entire head of cauliflower is brushed with a simple homemade garlic butter and baked until tender.

Roasting adds lots of flavor while this method produces a delicious side and is easy to make!

Whole Roasted Cauliflower in a pan

Roasting cauliflower as a whole head turns it into a side dish or main that not only looks impressive, it’s absolutely delicious too!

When roasted in the oven, cauliflower will caramelize to golden brown on the outside while still being perfectly tender crisp.

My mom has been making  whole roasted cauliflower for years and she always raves about it so I knew I needed to try it so see what the fuss was all about!

Now I know why, it’s so easy and so incredibly delicious!

The great thing about roasting cauliflower is that its very versatile.  While I love the combination of garlic and parmesan (with a hint of lemon), you can really season this with anything you like.  Simply brush with butter (or olive oil) season and bake.

My friend makes an incredible Indian spiced cauliflower and I think it’d be an amazing seasoning to try roasted whole!

If you’re short on time, you can create roasted cauliflower steaks out of it by cutting it up and roasting them flat (full instructions below)!

They’ll take much less time while still providing the same delicious flavor combo!

Whole Roasted Cauliflower being brushed with butter

I know you’ll love this recipe, nothing compares to taking such an easy dish filled with parmesan, butter, and garlic, then roasting it to crispy perfection.

What Kind of Meat Goes With Cauliflower?

Cauliflower is a mildly flavored vegetable that can be prepared a multitude of different ways from Mashed Cauliflower Potatoes to Cauliflower Rice.

Whole Roasted Cauliflower is perfect to serve alongside steak, Perfect Pork Tenderloin, or even roasted chicken.

While most often I prepare this dish as a side, it’s a great meatless meal or perfect to serve if you have vegetarian friends!

Whole Roasted Cauliflower in a cast iron pan

How Do You Make Cauliflower Steaks?

Oven roasted cauliflower steaks are a great way to change up this whole roasted cauliflower.

To create cauliflower steaks out of this recipe, you’ll want to adjust your baking time but the ingredients will remain the same.

Cutting cauliflower into steaks is easiest to do with larger cauliflower (so buy the biggest one you can find). Cut the steaks at least 3/4″ but I prefer a 1″ cut so they stay in tact better.

How to Roast Cauliflower Steaks

  1. Remove the leaves from the outside of the cauliflower. (Keep the stem intact to hold the cauliflower together but trim it a little bit)
  2.  Slice your cauliflower head into 1 inch thick steaks from top to bottom.
  3. Brush your cauliflower steaks with half of the toppings and roast them about 15-20 minutes at 400 degrees.
  4. Flip them, add additional reamining seasonings and roast about 10 more minutes or until tender crisp when pierced with a fork.

If you have already roasted your cauliflower and would like to cut it into steaks, follow the steps above but be sure to take extra care, as the inside of your cauliflower will be roasted and tender!

Keep in mind, cauliflower steaks will not always come out absolutely perfectly shaped, that’s just the way that cauliflower cuts up.

Whole Roasted Cauliflower on a plate

If you have leftover cauliflower, I have found that it keeps well in the fridge.

I love cutting it up and sprinkling it on salad, or even throwing it back in the oven to enjoy again the next day!

Another awesome option to use up any leftover cauliflower is to create a delicious Creamy Cauliflower Soup!

The roasting of this recipe, as well as the garlic and butter make the soup extra delicious!

Whole Roasted Cauliflower in a pan
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Garlic Parmesan Whole Roasted Cauliflower

An entire head of cauliflower is brushed with a simple homemade garlic butter and baked until tender.
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour
Total Time 1 hour 15 minutes
Servings 6 servings


  • 1 head cauliflower 1 ½ lbs
  • ¼ cup butter melted
  • 1 clove garlic minced
  • 1 teaspoon lemon zest
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons parsley chopped
  • 2 tablespoons parmesan cheese


  • Preheat oven to 375°F.
  • Trim leaves from cauliflower head. Place in a dutch oven.
  • Combine butter, garlic, lemon zest, salt, and pepper. Brush mixture on top of cauliflower head and cover with foil.
  • Bake uncovered for 45-55 minutes or until cauliflower is fork-tender.
  • Sprinkle parmesan cheese on cauliflower head and broil for 3-5 minutes or until cheese is melted and slightly brown. Garnish with parsley
4.70 from 20 votes↑ Click stars to rate now!
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Nutrition Information

Calories: 80 | Carbohydrates: 1g | Protein: 1g | Fat: 8g | Saturated Fat: 5g | Cholesterol: 21mg | Sodium: 197mg | Potassium: 60mg | Vitamin A: 360IU | Vitamin C: 11mg | Calcium: 28mg | Iron: 0.2mg

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

Course Side Dish
Cuisine American

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About the author

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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Recipe Rating


  1. I don’t usually comment on recipes I get, just jump to the recipe and see if I like it. Normally I rice it up and eat it raw, But I more or less used this recipe and it is AMAZING, thank you! Used garlic paste and grated lemon skin, that did it.

  2. Followed directions as written. Cauliflower was not cooked through after 30 minutes. I cooked it another 15 minutes. Finally had to finish broiling it and get it on the table as it was getting late for dinner. It was undercooked after 45 minutes. Not sure if it needed some liquid (water/stock) in the bottom of the pan or my cauliflower was too big and I should have cut it up in the pan before roasting? I probably could have cooked it for another half hour.2 stars

    1. Hi Tony, it is possible that your head of cauliflower was on the larger side. That would definitely result in it needing more time. But this recipe does call for it to be cooked 30 mins with tinfoil, and additional 15 without the foil, and then broiled at the end to finish off. So it does take close to an hour to fully cook.

  3. This is delicous. The seasoninings and especially the texture of the csauliflower (fully cooked, bur a little crispy)- yum!

    Mine did not brown well. First time to use this broiler, don’t believe it reached the right temper. It’s a keeper.5 stars

  4. The recipe says it takes 1 hour cooking time, but according to the instructions it says between 48-50 minutes. I just want to make sure that the instructions are correct: 30 minutes with foil, 15 minutes uncovered, and 3-5 minutes after the cheese is added. I have never made this before, but a lot of other recipes I’ve seen have a much longer cooking time. Thank you.