Roasted Cauliflower Salad (Keto, Vegan)
This roasted cauliflower salad is bursting with flavors with a combination of fragrant middle-eastern spices with tangy tahini lemon dressing and crispy nuts and seeds.
A nutritious salad to enjoy for a light lunch or to share with friends on a picnic or barbecue.
If you have been following this blog for a while, you know I am French and obsessed with middle eastern flavors. I grew up eating lots of Mediterranean recipes, including Moroccan recipes.
I simply can’t get enough of roasted cauliflower with spices. It is too good either in a salad or on its own as a side dish.
What’s A Roasted Cauliflower Salad?
Roasted Cauliflower Salad is a healthy middle-eastern inspired salad with oven-roasted cauliflower, chickpeas, and many Mediterranean flavors.
It’s a healthy summer side dish that marries well with couscous or plant-based kebabs.
How To Make Roasted Cauliflower Salad
Making this roasted cauliflowr salad is very easy. Start by gathering the ingredients for the roasted cauliflower, dressing, and base.
- Cauliflower – Split a medium cauliflower head into florets and cut the larger ones before roasting them.
- Olive Oil – Prefer locally-sourced extra-virgin olive oil.
- Spices: My prefered combination of spices is Cumin, Paprika, Cinnamon, Nutmeg, Garlic Powder, Salt, and Pepper
- Tahini Paste – For the dressing.
- Lemon Juice
- Garlic Cloves
- Baby Spinach Leaves – For the base of the salad.
- Almonds – Raw, unroasted. Sliced or slivered.
- Sunflower Seeds – Or other seeds.
- Parsley – Or any other fresh herbs you like such as cilantro or basil.
- Cherry Tomatoes
Cutting Cauliflower Florets For Roasted Cauliflower Salad
First, remove the cauliflower stem. This will naturally loosen the large florets from the cauliflower head. Then, break down the large florets into smaller pieces using the tip of a sharp knife.
Finally, resize all your florets to roughly the same size – think bite-sized pieces.
This will ensure that all the florets roast at the same speed.
To roast the cauliflower, place all the florets on a large baking pan lined with slightly oiled parchment paper.
If you were to place it on the pan, the cauliflower might stick to it.
Combine the spices and oil in a bowl and drizzle it on top of the florets.
Toss the cauliflower to distribute the spices evenly.
Place the pan in the oven preheated to 400°F (200°C).
Leave it to roast for about 15 minutes on the center rack of your oven. Toss again to flip the florets and place the pan in the oven again for another 10 to 15 minutes.
When the cauliflower is roasted, take the pan out of the oven and let it rest for 10 to 15 minutes to cool donw slightly.
This will avoid wilting the spinach when assembling the salad. If you prefer to not add spinach, you can assemble the salad straight away.
This roasted cauliflower salad is perfect with its tahini lemon dressing.
To make it, combine the tahini, lemon juice, water, cumin, salt, and pepper in a small mixing bowl.
Whisk the dressing ingredients with a small mixing with a handled whisk.
Adjust the thickness of the dressing with more water if needed.
Assemble the roasted cauliflower salad by placing the baby spinach leaves at the bottom of the serving bowls.
Place some roasted cauliflower florets on top of the spinach, halved cherry tomatoes, roasted almonds, and sunflower seeds.
Sprinkle your favorite fresh herbs, and drizzle your homemade tahini dressing.
Add a splash of freshly squeezed lemon juice.
You can serve this fragrant salad with lukewarm or cold roasted cauliflower. If you prepare this salad ahead to bring to a party, it is better to serve it cold.
Roast the cauliflower the day before, store it in the fridge and assemble the salad before serving. Always add the dressing at the last minute!
You can also serve it with Miso Tahini Dressing.
We all know that baby spinach leaves wilted fast after it has been blended with dressing.
That is why it is better to enjoy the salad within 12 hours after all the ingredients, dressing included, have been combined.
My tip is to store this salad for up to 3 days in the fridge to combine all the ingredients except the baby spinach leaves!
You can always carry the baby spinach leaves in a separate container and add them at the last minute along with the rest of the salad. Drizzle some extra lemon juice to serve, and enjoy!
More Vegan Salad Recipes
If you like vegan salads, I have more recipes for you to try!
Don’t forget to save this roasted cauliflower salad recipe on Pinterest for later!
Roasted Cauliflower Salad
- 1 medium head Cauliflower - broken into florets
- 2 tablespoons Olive Oil
- ¼ teaspoon Cumin
- ½ teaspoon Paprika
- ¼ teaspoon Cinnamon
- ¼ teaspoon Nutmeg
- ¼ teaspoon Garlic Powder
- ¼ teaspoon Salt
- ¼ teaspoon Pepper
Tahini Lemon Dressing
- ⅓ cup Tahini Paste
- ¼ cup Lemon Juice
- ¼ cup Water - to thin the sauce
- ½ teaspoon Cumin
- 2 Garlic Cloves
- ½ teaspoon Salt
- ⅛ teaspoon Pepper
For the salad
- 1 cup Baby Spinach Leaves
- ½ cup Almonds - Chopped roasted or sliced almonds
- ¼ cup Sunflower Seeds - roasted
- ½ cup Parsley - fresh, chopped
- 8 Cherry Tomato - halves
- Preheat oven to 200°C (400°F).
- Cut the cauliflower head into small florets.
- Place the cauliflower florets on a large baking sheet. Drizzle olive oil and season with cumin, paprika, cinnamon, nutmeg, garlic powder, salt, and pepper.
- Toss all the ingredients together to cover the florets evenly with the oil and spices.
- Roast for 15 minutes in the center of the oven. After 15 minutes, open the oven and stir the florets with an oven-proof spatula.
- Return in the oven for about 10-15 minutes or until the cauliflower florets are tender and browned on the outside.
- Remove from the oven and cool down for 10-15 minutes before assembling with the rest of the ingredients. If the florets are too hot, they may wilt the spinach leaves. You can serve the salad with lukewarm or cold roasted cauliflower. Both taste amazing.
- Meanwhile, prepare the tahini lemon dressing.
Tahini lemon dressing
- In a medium-size mixing bowl, whisk together the following ingredients: tahini, lemon juice, water, garlic, cumin, salt, and pepper. If the dressing is too thick to your liking, add more water, 1 tablespoon at a time, until it reaches your favorite dressing consistency.
Serve the salad
- In a large salad bowl or platter, add the baby spinach leaves, lukewarm or cold roasted cauliflower, halved cherry tomatoes, roasted sliced almonds, and sunflower seeds.
- Immediately drizzle the tahini lemon dressing over the salad.
- Sprinkle chopped parsley on top and toss a few times to combine the flavors.
- Serve immediately with fresh lemon wedges.
- Store the salad in the fridge for up to 3 days in an airtight container or on a salad bowl sealed with a silicone lid.
- Dressing can be made 24 hours before and store in a glass mason jar in the fridge. It will thicken in the fridge, so you may need to whisk in an extra splash of water to thin the dressing before serving.
- You can roast the cauliflower the day before, store in the fridge and serve it cold or rewarm in a saucepan for few minutes before assembling the salad.
- Always assemble the salad just before serving, especially if you serve the cauliflower lukewarm. This will avoid the baby spinach to wilted.