A super easy, super tasty little plant-based appetizer to serve alongside some cocktails. You won’t believe how tasty these humble ingredients can become! Slow-roasted cauliflower, tender soft on the inside, crispy on the outside, dipped into the herby, slightly vinegary chimichurri sauce is an absolutely scrummy combo.
Chimichurri is an Argentinian sauce traditionally served with steak. The idea is that the vinegar cuts through the fat in the steak, but I find this slightly tangy sauce also works really well with roasted cauliflower which can sometimes be a little bland and in need of a flavour boost.
Since cauliflower is not fatty like the steak, I have toned down the vinegar part of this sauce so that it just provides enough tang without it being overly tart. The result, I think, is absolutely delicious! Obviously since it is just vegetables with a herby sauce, it’s also supremely healthy but it’s so deliciously moreish that you won’t even notice that you’re guzzling down such a healthy option!
This dish is very easy to make but requires a little forethought as you need to pop the cauliflower in the oven for about 45 minutes. This is one of those dishes you can make effortlessly when friends come over – it is literally a case of chopping the cauliflower into florets, rubbing them with some oil and salt and pepper and then leaving them in the oven while you get on with lighting candles and choosing your outfit! The sauce takes seconds to make in the blender and since it's all blended together, you don't need to be too careful painstakingly picking the coriander and parsley leaves off the stems - just do it vaguely and chop with whatever bits of stalk you have then throw it into the blender.
If you’re lucky enough to have some leftover (or hold some back…), it keeps well in the fridge and works wonders in salad dressings and with pasta, or dolloped on top of a plate of stew or with a toastie.
There are two ways you can serve these: either as a bowl of cauliflower already mixed with the sauce and give everyone a little fork or cocktail stick to eat with, or you could just serve the roasted cauliflower pieces on a platter with the bowl of sauce for people to add as much sauce as they like. I have found both work well and, either way, it gets demolished in seconds! I have also been known to eat my way through a whole bowl of it on my own whilst watching a movie!
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So could this be the ultimate winning recipe? It tastes divine, takes hardly any effort to make, and is actually good for you too! That’s a win-win in my book!
Recipe Card 📖
Roasted Cauliflower with Chimichurri Sauce
- 1 head of cauliflower cut into bite-sized florets
- 1-2 tbsp olive oil
- salt and pepper to taste
- 1 jalapeno chilli roughly chopped
- 1 garlic clove roughly chopped
- ½ tbsp red wine vinegar
- ¼ tsp salt
- 20 g coriander (cilantro) roughly chopped
- 20 g flat-leaf parsley roughly chopped
- 40 g extra-virgin olive oil
- ¼ tsp ground cumin
- Pre-heat the oven to 180°C. Line a baking tray with baking paper or a silicon mat.
- Put the cauliflower florets in a bowl with the olive oil and salt and pepper and mix with your hands to ensure the oil covers all the bits of cauliflower. Then pour them onto the lined baking tray. Put the cauliflower in the oven for 45 minutes, turning the florets half way through the cooking time.
- Just before the cauliflower is cooked, put the chimichurri ingredients into the blender and whizz until it becomes a smoothish sauce, preferably with some bits of herbs still distinguishable. (As the herbs take up a lot of space in the blender jug and they are very light, I do find I need to use the tamper stick to push them down while it is blending. If your blender doesn’t come with a tamper stick you might need to just stop and start the blending a few times, pushing down the herbs in between each time).
- Serve the cauliflower on a board with the bowl of chimichurri, or in a bowl with the chimichurri mixed into it. Enjoy!
- If you’re lucky enough to have some sauce leftover, it keeps well in the fridge for a few days and can be served dolloped on top of a plate of stew or pasta or as a flavour bomb alongside a toastie. I often dilute it with more olive oil to use as a salad dressing too!
If you like this recipe, you may like these other delicious vegan and gluten-free recipes too:
I’d love to know how you get on with this recipe. Let me know what you think in the comments section below and please give it a star rating too! Thank you!