Roasted Cauliflower Salad with Lemons & Feta | We are not Martha
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Roasted Cauliflower Salad with Lemon, Pomegranate, and Feta

Stop hiding cauliflower in your smoothies and let it act as the star with this Roasted Cauliflower Salad with Lemon, Pomegranate, and Feta with Tahini Dressing. 

Bird's eye view of roasted cauliflower salad on a white platter topped with roasted lemons, pomegranate arils, crumbled feta, parsley, and tahini dressing with recipe title at top

Back in 2014, I claimed it was going to be the year of cauliflower (victoriously stealing the title from kale) and predicted that cauliflower would be everywhere by year’s end. I guess it was kind of true? But I had NO idea that cauliflower would hold on to the title for so long and that here in 2019, its fans would still be crazed and obsessed. But I can’t say I blame them. While I used to think cauliflower was super boring, there came a point when I could no longer ignore the fact that it has much to offer. It’s almost like a blank slate that you can mold into healthy versions of the junk food of your dreams, from pizza crust to mashed “potatoes” to rice to smoothies to gnocchi. Heck, I’ve even seen cauliflower grilled cheese (please note, a mention on my blog does not equal an endorsement LOL). But if you roast cauliflower? It actually takes on a life of its own and doesn’t need to be morphed into an alternative food. It’s proud to be cauliflower and doesn’t want to hide under your junk food disguises anymore. Own it, cauliflower!

Once roasted, you can eat that cauliflower all on its own or use it in a variety of simple dishes that let the cauliflower’s flavor shine. In this roasted cauliflower salad, I incorporated just a few other ingredients, including roasted lemons, pomegranate arils, feta cheese, pine nuts, parsley, and a super simple tahini dressing.

ROASTED CAULIFLOWER SALAD WITH LEMONS, POMEGRANATES, AND FETA RECIPE

Cauliflower is packed with nutrients, antioxidants, and fiber and is low in both calories and carbohydrates. Basically, it’s the kind of vegetable you really want to be incorporating into your diet. But you do not have to go the franken-food route! Cauliflower’s mild taste makes it great for morphing into other foods or hiding in treats, but roasting it brings out a glorious caramelized nutty flavor and lets it proudly stand on its own.

For this roasted cauliflower salad, I baked the cauliflower with some olive oil, chili powder, garlic powder, and salt and pepper. I also roasted some lemon slices.

Collage showing roasted cauliflower on a baking sheet and lemon rounds on a baking sheet before being roasted

And then I arranged the cauliflower on a platter with pomegranate arils, feta cheese crumbles, toasted pine nuts, chopped parsley, and a quick tahini dressing. Oh, and those gorgeous caramelized roasted lemons, of course. Which by the way, you can actually eat. I kept them whole for aesthetic purposes, but if you’re going to eat, definitely cut them smaller as you dig in.

Head-on view of roasted cauliflower salad on white platter topped with roasted lemons, feta, pomegranate arils, chopped parsley, pine nuts, and tahini dressing

Though I’m calling it the ultimate side dish, I will proudly admit that I ate this roasted cauliflower salad for dinner one evening when my husband was out of town. I will also sadly reveal that my husband doesn’t love cauliflower. Which I think is a total travesty. Sure, I can hide it in other foods and he’ll never know he’s eating it (muhahaha), but I also want to make this cauliflower salad for him one evening and have him reevaluate his disdain. I might have to serve it as a side to something a bit more carnivorous though!

Close-up overhead view of roasted cauliflower salad with pomegranate arils, crumbled feta, parsley, roasted lemons, pine nuts, and tahini dressing on a white platter

But for me, this salad can act as a star and dare I say it, but the roasted cauliflower almost acts like meat. It has a rich caramel flavor with a little bit of kick from the chili powder, which pairs perfectly with the saltiness of the feta cheese, the brightness of the lemons, the sweetness of the pomegranate arils, and the nuttiness of the tahini dressing and pine nuts. There really isn’t one ingredient I would take away or one ingredient I would add to this roasted cauliflower salad. It feels like true harmony!

Bird's eye view of roasted cauliflower salad on a white platter topped with roasted lemons, pomegranate arils, crumbled feta, pine nuts, parsley, and tahini dressing

I recently visited my sister and her family in Chicago (for my regular readers who don’t know, yes! they recently moved and I miss them terribly, but am so lucky that Chicago is just a quick trip away) and discovered that my sister regularly eats cauliflower for breakfast. In an effort to “keep up with the Joneses” during my visit, I partook in this experience and guess what? I liked it! If you start your day with cauliflower, I really think you can only expect good things to come. And now I feel bad for making fun of my sister for eating broccoli for breakfast during our summer vacation because it really is quite brilliant… Especially with a side of hardboiled egg, avocado, and everything bagel seasoning.

OK, I didn’t actually mean to write what feels like my love letter to cauliflower, but it is what it is and I’m proud of it. I hope you love this dish as much as I do!

Do you have any loving words to leave for cauliflower? Do you think it will retain its title of top vegetable trend in 2019 or is there a new veggie in town about to take over?

If you’re looking for more meals that feature cauliflower, check out my Sheet Pan Curry Chicken Thighs or this Cauliflower Casserole from The Cozy Apron.

5 from 5 votes
Roasted Cauliflower Salad with Lemons, Pomegranate, and Feta -- Stop hiding cauliflower in your smoothies and let it act as the star with this Roasted Cauliflower Salad with Lemon, Pomegranate, and Feta with Tahini Dressing | wearenotmartha.com
Roasted Cauliflower Salad with Lemon, Pomegranate, and Feta Cheese
Prep Time
10 mins
Cook Time
30 mins
Total Time
40 mins
 

Stop hiding cauliflower in your smoothies and let it act as the star with this Roasted Cauliflower Salad with Lemon, Pomegranate, and Feta with Tahini Dressing. 

Course: Side Dish
Cuisine: American, Eclectic, Mediterranean, Middle Eastern
Keyword: Cauliflower, salad
Servings: 6 servings
Author: Sues
Ingredients
  • 1 head cauliflower, cut into small florets
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 2 tsp chili powder
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp pepper
  • 1 lemon, thinly sliced
  • 1/3 cup pomegranate arils
  • 1/4 cup crumbled feta cheese
  • 3 Tbsp pine nuts, lightly toasted
  • 3 Tbsp chopped parsley
Tahini Dressing
  • 1/4 cup tahini
  • 3 Tbsp freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 2-4 Tbsp warm water
Instructions
  1. Pre-heat oven to 425 degrees and line two baking sheets with foil.

  2. In a large bowl, toss together cauliflower florets, olive oil, chili powder, garlic powder, salt, and pepper.

  3. Spread cauliflower in a single layer on a baking sheet. Place sliced lemons in a single layer on the second baking sheet.

  4. Bake cauliflower for 25-30 minutes, tossing it once halfway through the cooking time, until it's turning golden. Bake lemons 18-24 minutes, flipping after 12 minutes, until they are nice and caramelized.

  5. Remove from oven and let cool slightly before arranging cauliflower on a platter and topping with pomegranate arils, crumbled feta cheese, pine nuts, and chopped parsley. Top with roasted lemons and drizzle tahini dressing over the salad.

Tahini Dressing
  1. In a medium bowl, whisk together tahini, lemon juice, minced garlic, and salt. Whisk in 2 Tbsp water. If dressing is too thick, continue whisking in water, 1 Tbsp at a time until you reach desired consistency.

Roasted Cauliflower Salad with Lemons, Pomegranate, and Feta -- Stop hiding cauliflower in your smoothies and let it act as the star with this Roasted Cauliflower Salad with Lemon, Pomegranate, and Feta with Tahini Dressing | wearenotmartha.com #cauliflower #salad #pomegranate #roastedveggies

5 Responses to "Roasted Cauliflower Salad with Lemon, Pomegranate, and Feta"

  1. Cliona Keane says:

    This is such a vibrant recipe! So healthy and such an interesting way to enjoy cauliflower. The perfect blend of winter veg and fresh flavours.

  2. I don’t love cauliflower but this recipe has me wanting to give it another try. This roasted cauliflower looks full of flavor and color.

  3. Valentina says:

    This flavor combination is brilliant — and so beautiful. And yes, the cauliflower craze seems to be as prevalent as ever. 🙂

  4. Brian Jones says:

    What sort of animal hides cauliflower in a smoothie 😉

    I love cauliflower, definitely my favourite winter vegetable, it is so versatile. You have wonderful flavours going on here and I look forward to try it.

  5. Lucy Parissi says:

    This plateful of goodness looks more than appealing. I love the flavours you’ve packed into this recipe.

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