Roasted Cauliflower (with garlic, lemon and thyme)

Roasted cauliflower is a simple, tasty and fresh side dish that you will find yourself making on repeat.

Roasted cauliflower on sheet pan with wooden spoon

News flash: Cauliflower is the chameleon of food blog world. I am sure you have seen all the cauliflower rice, cauliflower pizza crust, cauliflower alfredo sauce, yada, yada, yada. 🙄 I can almost feel the collective eye roll out there, y’all. People have made cauliflower into ALL the things.

There are even memes about it. For example: “If cauliflower can be pizza, you can do anything baby girl.” 😜

Full STOP. Stop all the insanity! 🙅🏼‍♀️Please!

Like, right here, right now. Because today, internet friends, I hereby call on this beloved vegetable to be…ITSELF. 💥

cauliflower on a marble counter with blue strip towel

That’s right! You do YOU, cauliflower.😂👊🏻

Rant over.🤪

In my humble opinion, cauliflower shines (and tastes awesome!) roasted up very simply. It is bright, FRESH and YES – tasty.😎👌🏻 I’ll show you how I do it. And you may decide that cauliflower is pretty awesome as itself too.🙃

roasted cauliflower on a sheet pan overhead

Prepping cauliflower

You could, of course, save yourself the trouble of prep and just buy a bag of already-prepped cauliflower.💁🏼‍♀️ But here is how to prep a head of it into bite sized pieces.

First, I remove as many leaves and tough stems as I can with my hands.

removing stems and leaves off a head of cauliflower

Then I slice off the rest of the base with a good, sharp chef’s knife.

cutting base off cauliflower

Next, I cut it in half.

cutting cauliflower in half

And then I use my hands to start separating out the chunks by pulling them off the tough stem.

prepping cauliflower

Finally, I use my knife to split any larger bits into bite-sized chunks, and I make sure and remove any more of the tough stems. I place those on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper.

How to season roasted cauliflower

When I make this in real life, I season this a variety of ways. At the minimum, I season it up with some olive oil, salt pepper and garlic powder.

drizzling oil on vegetables on a baking sheet

To take it to next level deliciousness, I add a couple other simple ingredients: lemon zest and thyme. I highly recommend not skipping them!

zesting a lemon on a pan of cauliflower

Fresh thyme is my favorite. But of you don’t have any, you can totally use dry. I used dry thyme in this batch you see in the photos.

After I get all the ingredients on the pan, I just give everything a good toss with my hands to make sure all the pieces are well-coated.

How to roast cauliflower

So what time and temperature is best to roast cauliflower? Once everything is prepped and seasoned, I recommend baking it in a preheated oven at 400 degrees until the edges start to turn brown. For me, that is about twenty-five minutes.

And all of the above steps result in the brightest, yummiest, most flavorful, authentic version of cauliflower awesomeness you can imagine.

closeup roasted cauliflower

And maybe…just maybe…if cauliflower can shine as itself? You can shine as yourself too, friends!😉

roasted cauliflower being served with a wooden spoon

Serving suggestions

Roasted cauliflower goes great with any of the following main dishes. I have included recipe links for your convenience.

Roasted cauliflower recipe

Below is a printer-friendly recipe card for your convenience.

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closeup roasted cauliflower

Roasted cauliflower

Roasted cauliflower is a simple, tasty and fresh side dish that you will find yourself making on repeat. Seasoned with olive oil, garlic, lemon and thyme.

Author Marjorie @APinchOfHealthy


  • 1
    medium head of cauliflower
  • 1 1/2
    olive oil
  • 1/4
    garlic powder
  • salt and pepper
    to taste – I used about 1/4 teaspoon salt, 1/8 teaspoon pepper
  • 1/4
    dried thyme
  • zest of half a lemon


  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

  2. Prep the cauliflower by removing tough leaves and stems from the cauliflower, and cut in half.

  3. Pull chunks off with your hands, using the knife to remove any tough ends and split any huge chunks into bite-sized pieces.

  4. Spread pieces on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper.

  5. Drizzle with oil, and sprinkle on the salt, pepper, granulated garlic, thyme and lemon zest.

  6. Toss with your hands until the pieces are evenly coated, and rearrange the pieces with plenty of space to ensure even cooking.

  7. Bake in a preheated 400 degree oven, until edges start to brown, about 25 minutes

Recipe Notes

Nutritional information is approximate and was calculated using a recipe nutrition label generator.

Feel free to use one of those pre-prepped bags of cauliflower.

Also, you can double this recipe and still use one sheet pan.

I have made this lots of times without the lemon zest or thyme. But I highly recommend including them.

Fresh thyme is great. Just use at least double the amount written in the recipe for dried.

Nutrition Facts

Roasted cauliflower

Amount Per Serving

Calories 83
Calories from Fat 54

% Daily Value*

Fat 6g9%

Saturated Fat 1g6%

Sodium 43mg2%

Potassium 430mg12%

Carbohydrates 7g2%

Fiber 3g13%

Sugar 3g3%

Protein 3g6%

Vitamin C 69mg84%

Calcium 32mg3%

Iron 1mg6%

* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

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