This Roasted Cauliflower Salad with Lentils is delicious both with and without greens! Serve it as is as a hot side or for lunch or dinner with greens as a cold salad. The salad is dressed with a simple lemon sherry vinaigrette.
What Makes This Recipe Great
I came up with this recipe when I wanted to make a quick dinner one day and had some cauliflower I needed to use up in the fridge and leftover sundried tomatoes. I served it as a simple hot main, and the next day I ate the leftovers mixed with greens as a salad. Both are amazing but adding the greens really makes it a complete meal.
- Roasting a cauliflower gives it so much amazing flavor. There are a lot of ways to cook cauliflower but roasting is by far my favorite. It adds amazing flavors and it's so easy to do because you just throw it in the oven and wait.
- This salad can be served both with and without lettuce. Without lettuce, it's actually really delicious served as a hot side! You can serve it the same way you would this Spicy Garlic Miso Roasted Eggplant or this Miso Roasted Broccoli.
- Cauliflower - The star of the show. Any size works, make sure you pick a firm one that doesn't have any yellow or dark spots.
- Onions - Yellow or red onion work best in this recipe. Shallots can be sued too if necessary.
- Spices - There are lots of spices in this recipe besides salt and pepper to make the cauliflower extra flavorful while roasting. There are dried oregano, parsley, and thyme, garlic powder, smoked paprika, chili powder, and ground cumin.
- Lentils - I'm using canned brown lentils to save time but you can cook your own. Homecooked is always better but using canned lentils or beans is always a huge timesaver when you don't have the time or energy to cook.
- Fresh herbs - Fresh parsley is perfect for this dish. Chives would also be a great choice, even cilantro if you're a fan
- Sundried tomatoes in oil - These add a ton of flavor and saltiness to the salad. Sometimes I rinse them, sometimes I don't, it's up to you. Some might have oil that is very salty so keep that in mind and take a bite before you throw them in your salad unrinsed.
- Greens - This salad is greens optional, which is the best kind of salad in my opinion. If you don't add any, you can serve the cauliflower as a hot side. I like to add a mix of greens to make it more fun but any greens work.
This salad is super simple and versatile. Below are the instructions on how to make the base for the salad - the roasted cauliflower with brown lentils, and sun-dried tomatoes. Any other veggies you add are up to you, there are so many choices! (More about that in the recipe card.)
Vinaigrette: All you need to do is mix extra virgin olive oil, lemon juice, and sherry vinegar in a bowl or a glass and set aside until ready to use. I do this while the cauliflower is roasting.
- Chop your cauliflower into small florets, roughly chop the onion into big chunks and add to a large sheet pan. Use two pans if necessary. Mix together all the spices in a small bowl (oregano, thyme, parsley, garlic powder, smoked paprika, chili powder, ground cumin, sea salt, and pepper). Sprinkle the spice blend over the cauliflower and toss to coat.
- Roast the cauliflower in the oven at 400F (200C) for 20 minutes, toss, and roast for another 20 minutes.
3. After you take the cauliflower out of the oven, top it with cooked brown lentils, sun-dried tomatoes, fresh parsley, and drizzle with some of the lemon sherry dressing.
4. Toss everything and serve! You can serve it on its own or with greens and other veggies as a big salad. I like adding lettuce, tomatoes, cucumber, and my favorite Quick Pickled Red Onions.
As with any other salads, the greens and other veggies are best stored separately from the dressing. Store both in airtight containers in the fridge, ideally separately, for 2-3 days. I recommend this because greens tend to wilt down very easily after you add dressing.
Yes, for sure! I use sun-dried tomatoes in oil because they're easier to use and have more flavor in my opinion. If you have dried ones, you just have to soak them in hot water for about 30 minutes to soften them up.
Try these two recipes: Smoky Za'atar Roasted Cauliflower with Yogurt Dip, Za'atar Roasted Cauliflower Steaks. You can make half or quarter the recipe to make a smaller batch with just your leftovers. The steaks can be made into florets too!
It keeps in the fridge for 3-4 days. I recommend storing the cauliflower with lentils, sundried tomatoes, and fresh parsley separately from any other veggies. Greens are best added right before serving.
Yes, totally! Fresh chives are great and cilantro also works if you're a fan. A mix of dill, mint, and chives would also be delicious.
More Salads You Might Enjoy
Below are four of my favorite fall and winter salads I've shared. The cajun roasted cauliflower salad, roasted eggplant salad, and radicchio salad are all fully vegan. The rest can be made vegan with small adjustments!
- Cajun Roasted Cauliflower Salad
- Delicata Squash Baby Kale Salad with Balsamic Fig Vinaigrette
- Za'atar Roasted Eggplant Lentil Salad with Sundried Tomatoes
- Persimmon Salad with Goat Brie and Pomegranate Seeds
- Radicchio Clementine Salad with Sherry Vinaigrette
This cauliflower salad is delicious served both hot and cold. Skip the greens and serve it as a hot side or keep them for a fresh salad, perfect for lunch or dinner.
- 1 head cauliflower, cut into small florets, core removed
- 2 yellow onions, peeled and cut into quarters
- 2 tbsp avocado oil (or other high heat cooking oil)
- 2 tsp dried oregano
- 2 tsp dried thyme
- 1 tsp dried parsley (optional)
- 1 tsp garlic powder
- 1 tsp smoked paprika
- ½-1 teaspoon chili powder
- ½ tsp ground cumin
- ½ tsp sea salt
- freshly cracked black pepper to taste
- 1 can brown lentils, drained and rinsed
- 1 cup fresh parsley, chopped
- 1 cup sun-dried tomatoes, drained, rinsed, and chopped
- ½ cup extra virgin olive oil
- Juice of 1 lemon
- 1 tbsp sherry vinegar (optional, sub more lemon juice)
Make it into a salad (pick your favorites)
- mixed greens, cherry tomatoes, chopped cucumber, sliced red onion, pickled red onion, capers, hemp hearts, feta cheese, soft goat cheese
- Preheat the oven to 400F (200C).
- Spread the cauliflower florets and onion on a large baking sheet, use two if necessary. Drizzle with avocado oil and toss to coat.
- In a small bowl mix together the dried oregano, thyme, and parsley, garlic powder, smoked paprika, chili powder, ground cumin, sea salt, and black pepper. Season the cauliflower evenly with the spice blend and toss.
- Roast the cauliflower in the preheated oven for 20 minutes, toss, and roast for 20 more minutes.
- To the pan with the roasted cauliflower add the brown lentils, parsley, and sun-dried tomatoes, and toss.
- Dressing: While the cauliflower is roasting, mix together the olive oil, lemon juice, and sherry vinegar in a bowl or a glass. Drizzle half of it over the roasted cauliflower. Reserve the remaining half for serving.
- Make it into a salad: Layer all your favorite salad ingredients into bowls and top with 1-2 cups of the roasted cauliflower lentil mix and drizzle with the remaining dressing.
Lentils: I’m using canned lentils to save time but you can cook your own lentils too. ½ cup dry brown or black lentils should be enough.
Salad ingredients: I'm not adding measurements for the vegetables for the salad because that's based on preference. Add more to make it into a salad big enough for 6 people.
Storing: I recommend storing the roasted cauliflower, lentils, sun-dried tomatoes, and dressing in an airtight container in the fridge without any other fresh greens or vegetables mixed in to avoid them wilting. Make your salads with any greens or fresh veggies right before serving.
Keywords: roasted cauliflower, lentils, sundried tomatoes