Cauliflower roasted to crispy perfection in an easy spice blend and then tossed with a zesty lemon salad - great for feeding a crowd too. Salads can definitely be part of your diet in the winter. It's just about finding something hearty and warming to top the lettuce with and this Roasted Cauliflower Salad with roasted chickpeas definitely ticks all the boxes.
There are probably not many people out there that can say that cauliflower is their favourite food in the world, but I am a firm believer that roasting it totally changes the flavour - for the better. It takes on herbs and spices really well when coated in a little olive oil and it gets perfectly crispy when roasted.
Roasted cauliflower is a delicious vegan and gluten free salad topping in winter time. Even when roasted it has a hint of creaminess to it with every bite. If you are really not a fan of cauliflower, then you could roast some broccoli instead to top this salad.
Why you will love it
- Low calorie
- budget friendly
- A new way to enjoy cauliflower
- Ready in 20 minutes
- Cauliflower - Cauliflower heads should be firm to the touch with tightly closed florets. Make sure there are no brown patches. Soft heads are starting to spoil, so should be rejected.
- Chickpeas - This makes the salad protein packed. We used a can of cooked chickpeas, but you could soak them and cook them yourself.
- Paprika and cumin - This is what gives the cauliflower loads of flavour. A nice mixture of smokiness, with a little spice.
- Lettuce - You can use any lettuce for this recipe, but we love butterhead and rocket as it's a nice mixture or crunch and flavour (the rocket has a intense peppery flavour).
- Avocado - This adds a real creaminess to the salad. Make sure that your avocado is nice and ripe.
- Onion - We used red onion for a pop of colour. If you find it hard to digest raw red onion, then you could sauté it a little first.
- Lemon - This adds a real freshness to the salad. How much you will need will really depend on how juicy your lemon is.
- Sumac - If you haven't heard of sumac before, then you are missing out. It is made from the dried and ground berries of the wild sumac flower. It has a a tangy spice with a sour, acidic flavour, that is kind of like lemon juice.
A full ingredients list with measurements is in the recipe card below.
Step by step
One: Put the cauliflower florets and drained chickpeas in to a large bowl with 1 tablespoon olive oil, salt, pepper, paprika, cumin and dried parsley and toss the cauliflower so it is coated. Spread evenly on to a baking sheet.
Two: Put in a preheated oven at 190°C/375°F/Gas 5 for 20 minutes.
Three: In a large bowl, add the lettuce, avocado, red onion, rest of the olive oil, some salt and pepper, lemon juice and sumac and mix well.
Four: Divide the lettuce mixture in to two bowls and then top with roasted cauliflower and chickpeas.
How to adapt
We didn't want to just have cauliflower as a topping, as there needed to be a bit of a protein boost. Keeping it vegan we went with chickpeas and we all know they are best when roasted too. Have you tried snacking on our Roasted Chickpeas?
You can just throw them on the baking tray with the cauliflower and roast them all at the same time in the same spices. Not got any chickpeas? Swap them for another canned bean, or even some sweetcorn.
You could also swap half the cauliflower for broccoli, as that is delicious roasted too and more popular than cauliflower usually.
The roasted cauliflower and chickpeas that top this salad are really hearty and filling, but you could always sprinkle with some nuts and seeds on top if you want something extra.
If you aren't vegan, then I would highly recommend crumbling some feta over this salad just before serving. Feta and cauliflower go really well together. Add some extra colour with a sprinkle of pomegranate too.
How to cut cauliflower
Firstly, you need to pull the leaves off of the cauliflower base. Then, cut off the lower part of the stem and cut the head of cauliflower into four quarters and then slice each quarter into 8 pieces.
You want as many flat surfaces as possible on each floret of cauliflower, as the flat surfaces caramelise the best. Caramelisation is the key to giving the roasted cauliflower the best flavour.
I always think a simple, quick and easy olive oil and lemon juice dressing is the way to go for a light salad. We added some sumac to it as well, as it has a lemon flavour that just boosts the flavour from the lemon juice.
If you wanted a creamier dressing, then mix a tablespoon of tahini in to the lettuce. Creaminess and still keeps it vegan. I sometimes like to top the salad with a dollop of homemade hummus too.
What to serve it with
We think this is perfect as a light meal as it is, and it is protein packed with the chickpeas. However, if you are looking for something to serve it with, then we have some suggestions for you:
- Honey and Lime Chicken
- Perfect Roast Chicken
- Creamy Dill Salmon
- Parmesan Chicken Bites
- Paprika Chicken Skewers
- Lemon, Garlic and Herb Prawns
- Easy Roast Potatoes
- Lemon and Rosemary Salmon
- Easy Homemade Flatbread
If you have leftovers of this salad, then you can store it in an air tight container for up to 2 days. We would recommend only dressing it just before you are serving, otherwise it can get soggy.
• This salad is vegan, but if you aren't vegan then some crumbled feta on top is a good addition.
• You can use any seasoning you like on the cauliflower and chickpeas. A curry powder blend is a nice alternative.
• Not a fan of cauliflower or chickpeas? You can swap the cauliflower for broccoli and the chickpeas for another bean (but it won't get as crispy).
• Make the dressing creamy by adding a tablespoon of tahini to it. Or, you could add a spoonful of homemade hummus before serving.
More Cauliflower recipes
If you’ve tried this cauliflower salad recipe, let us know how you got on in the comments below.
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Roasted Cauliflower Salad
- 0.5 head Cauliflower - chopped
- 120 g (0.75 cups) Chickpeas - tinned, drained
- 1 tablespoon Olive oil - for the cauliflower
- 1 tablespoon Olive oil - for the dressing
- 0.5 teaspoon Paprika
- 1 pinch Sea salt and black pepper - for the cauliflower
- 1 pinch Sea salt and black pepper - for the dressing
- 0.5 teaspoon Cumin
- 0.5 teaspoon Dried parsley
- 100 g (2 cup) Butterhead lettuce
- 50 g (2 cup) Rocket (arugula) - (arugula)
- 0.5 Avocado - sliced
- 0.5 Red onion - thinly sliced
- 1 Lemon - juice only
- 2 tablespoon Sumac
- Preheat your oven to 190°C/170°C(fan)/375°F/Gas 5.
- Put 0.5 head Cauliflower and 120 g Chickpeas (drained) into a large bowl with 1 tablespoon Olive oil, 1 pinch Sea salt and black pepper, 0.5 teaspoon Paprika, 0.5 teaspoon Cumin and 0.5 teaspoon Dried parsley and toss so it is coated. Spread evenly onto a baking tray.
- Put into the oven for 20 minutes.
- In a large bowl, add 100 g Butterhead lettuce, 50 g Rocket (arugula), 0.5 Avocado, 0.5 Red onion, 1 tablespoon Olive oil, 1 pinch Sea salt and black pepper, juice of1 Lemon and 2 tablespoon Sumac and mix well.
- Divide the lettuce mixture into two bowls and then top with roasted cauliflower and chickpeas.
- This salad is vegan, but if you aren't vegan then some crumbled feta on top is a good addition.
- You can use any seasoning you like on the cauliflower and chickpeas. A curry powder blend is a nice alternative.
- Not a fan of cauliflower or chickpeas? You can swap the cauliflower for broccoli and the chickpeas for another bean (but it won't get as crispy).
- Make the dressing creamy by adding a tablespoon of tahini to it. Or, you could add a spoonful of homemade hummus before serving.
This so colorful....love salad in summers and looks super healthy.... definitely gonna be my dinner salad
This recipe definitely makes me feel hungry, healthy and happy! I love roasted cauliflower and chickpeas, so I'll definitely be trying this one out! Thanks for sharing!
This is one of our favorite salads! The crispy chickpeas with the perfectly roasted cauliflower are soooo good together!
This looks SOOOO good! I absolutely love this, I'm gonna try it this week, but it has literally all my favorite ingredients so I'm sure it's awesome!
This Cauliflower Salad looks so amazing! I love the combo of chickpea, cauliflower, and avocado! YUM!
Cauliflower is magical, as I always say and I love it roasted! Great salad you got there! Thank you for the inspo.
I loved the earthy flavor of the roasted cauliflower and the little crispy bits of the garbanzos! This is a delicious salad!
This looks amazing! Adding this to my dinner line up for the week!
This looks absolutely delicious! So healthy but so filling! Can't wait to try it.
Roasted cauliflower and hummus sound so good together.
Super looking forward to making this, looks delish! Will be hunting for cauliflower at the store today!
This salad and your pictures are stunning. I'm loving roasted cauliflower this summer and I can't wait to make this salad.
Helen of Fuss Free Flavours
Roasted cauliflower really is one of the best ways of having it. The flavour is delicious and can convert a disliker. Love the idea of this salad, with chickpeas it is full of good nutrition and flavour.
Heidy L. McCallum
I have an entire head f cauliflower and have been looking for something new to make. I think this may well have been what the DR. ordered. I really love what you have done here with this Roasted Cauliflower salad and think the family will be very pleased. Saving the recipe also so I will have it on hand for the next time!!!
Have a great day!
Shashi at SavorySpin
I so agee - roasting cauliflower definitely changes its flavor for the better! And we are both featuring recipes with roasted cauliflower today - your salad has me drooling!
I have roasted broccoli before, but not cauliflower. I have to try that.