This Thanksgiving Cauliflower is probably the easiest and my new favorite way to prepare cauliflower. A slow-baking whole cauliflower, nicely browned with a crunchy side and a melting, flavorful heart.
Honestly, if it's your first time making whole roasted cauliflower before, you need to do it now. I have no doubt that you will succumb to the delicious flavors of this casserole dish!
This Thanksgiving Cauliflower is so easy to make, and it looks impressive enough that your guests will think you spent hours in the kitchen preparing this dish. It’s healthy, has great flavor, and is super simple! Plus, it only takes 50 minutes from start to finish. It's the perfect side dish for any holiday dinner.
You will need these simple ingredients to make this Thanksgiving Cauliflower
- White wine
- Pomegranate seeds
- Pumpkin seeds
- Dijon mustard
- Onion powder
- Garlic powder
- Olive oil or melted butter
- Salt and Pepper
Extra garnish: Parmesan Cheese, sour cream, maple syrup.
Quantities in the recipe card
How to make the Thanksgiving Cauliflower; step by step
Combine sauce ingredients in a small bowl and mix well until blended.
Cut off the outer leaves of the cauliflower and cut off the stem from the rest of the head, then place the cauliflower in a large ovenproof pan.
Pour this mixture over the cauliflower and rub it over the cauliflower with your fingertips until it is completely coated
Cover and bake for about 40 minutes, or until tender.
Remove the lid, and continue cooking for another 5 minutes
Once your cauliflower is perfectly roasted, remove it from the oven. Sprinkle those roasted pumpkin seeds and pomegranate seeds on top for a delightful crunch and burst of color. Finish it off with some fresh parsley for a burst of freshness.
1. Choose a Fresh Cauliflower: Start with a fresh, firm whole head of cauliflower. Look for one that is white or creamy in color, with compact florets and no brown spots. The leaves should be green and vibrant.
2. Properly Prep the Cauliflower: Remove the leaves and trim the stem, so the cauliflower sits flat in your baking dish. Rinse it under cold water and pat it dry to ensure the sauce adheres well.
3. Flavorful Sauce: The sauce is the key to the cauliflower's taste. Don't skimp on it. Whisk the sauce ingredients thoroughly to combine flavors and adjust the seasonings to your preference. You can also add herbs like thyme or rosemary for extra aroma.
4. Even Sauce Distribution: When coating the cauliflower with the sauce, make sure it's evenly spread, covering every nook and cranny. A basting brush can be helpful for this.
5. Roasting Time: Keep a close eye on the cauliflower as it roasts. Cooking time may vary depending on the size and freshness of the cauliflower.
6. Adjust Spices: Feel free to adjust the spice blend in the sauce to your taste. If you like it spicier, increase the red pepper flakes. If you prefer a milder flavor, reduce them.
7. Garnish Creatively: The garnishes add both flavor and visual appeal. Be creative with your choices. Consider toasted nuts, different seeds, fresh herbs, or even a drizzle of balsamic reduction.
8. Serving Presentation: Place the Whole Roasted Cauliflower on a beautiful serving platter or board for a stunning presentation. It will be the star of your Thanksgiving table.
1. Turkey: Roast or prepare your turkey as the traditional main dish. The turkey's savory and meaty goodness pairs perfectly with the cauliflower's flavors.
2. Mashed Potatoes: Creamy mashed potatoes are a classic side dish that pairs wonderfully with the flavors of the roasted cauliflower. The creamy texture of the potatoes complements the cauliflower's roasted goodness.
3. Homemade Gravy: A rich and savory gravy drizzled over both the cauliflower and mashed potatoes will tie everything together beautifully. You can make a traditional turkey gravy or a vegetarian/vegan version, depending on your dietary preferences.
4. Cranberry Sauce: The sweet-tart flavor of cranberry sauce adds a delightful contrast to the savory cauliflower. Homemade cranberry sauce is fantastic, but store-bought options work well too.
5. Green Bean Casserole: The green bean casserole is a classic Thanksgiving side dish loved by many. The creamy mushroom sauce and crispy fried onions complement the cauliflower and turkey beautifully. It's a comforting and familiar addition to your Thanksgiving meal
Refrigeration: If you have any leftovers, allow the cauliflower to cool to room temperature. Place it in an airtight container or wrap it tightly with plastic wrap. Store it in the refrigerator for up to 3-4 days.
Freezing: While cauliflower can be frozen, it may lose some of its texture and flavor after thawing. If you want to freeze it, wrap the whole cauliflower tightly in plastic wrap and then in aluminum foil. Label it with the date and place it in the freezer. It can be frozen for up to 2-3 months.
Cauliflower should not be washed until it is going to be cut up and used. After the cauliflower has been cut up as shown below, soak it in saltwater or vinegar water to help force any insects out that are lodged within the floret
What can I substitute for white wine in the sauce?
If you prefer not to use white wine, you can substitute it with chicken or vegetable stock in the cauliflower recipe. It will provide a similar depth of flavor without the alcohol.
Absolutely! You can prepare the sauce and coat the cauliflower in advance, then refrigerate it until you're ready to roast it. Just make sure to roast it shortly before serving to retain its freshness and crispiness.
Other Festive Easy Recipes
- 1 medium cauliflower head
- ¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
- 2 tablespoon Dijon mustard
- ¼ cup dry white wine
- 1 small red onion finely chopped
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1 teaspoon onion powder
- 1 teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon ground black pepper
- ½ teaspoon red pepper flakes
- 3 tablespoon pumpkin seeds roasted
- 3 tablespoon pomegranate seeds
- Fresh parsley to taste
- First things first, preheat your oven to 375°F (190°C). While that's heating up, remove the leaves from the cauliflower and trim the stem so it sits flat. Rinse the cauliflower and pat it dry gently.
- In a small bowl, combine the extra virgin olive oil, Dijon mustard, dry white wine, finely chopped red onion, garlic powder, onion powder, salt, black pepper, and red pepper flakes. Give it a good whisk until everything is well incorporated. This sauce is where the magic happens – it's packed with flavor that will infuse the cauliflower with deliciousness.
- Now, place your cauliflower on a baking sheet, a large oven-safe skillet, or a Dutch oven. Drizzle the sauce over the cauliflower, making sure it gets into all the nooks and crannies. You can use a brush to help spread it evenly.
- Cover and pop your sauced-up cauliflower into the preheated oven and let it roast for about 40 minutes. Uncover and cook for another 5 minutes.You want it to become tender cauliflower and develop a beautiful golden brown crust. You can check for doneness by inserting a knife or fork – it should go through with ease.
- Once your cauliflower is perfectly roasted, remove it from the oven. Sprinkle those roasted pumpkin seeds and pomegranate seeds on top for a delightful crunch and burst of color. Finish it off with some fresh parsley for a burst of freshness.
- A Cauliflower roast that's sure to be a huge hit at your next Thanksgiving dinner. This delicious side dish recipe not only looks fantastic on your table, but it also has a wonderful flavor.