Whole Braised Cauliflower Recipe

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Juanita Published: December 10, 2020 Modified: October 15, 2021
Whole Braised Cauliflower Recipe

How To Make Whole Braised Cauliflower

Enjoy a flavorful batch of braised cauliflower for your next dinner meal! It comes with a tangy salsa verde orzo sauce to match for a tasty dish.

Preparation: 24 minutes
Cooking: 1 hour
Total: 1 hour 24 minutes



For Cauliflower:

  • 2tspsmoked paprika
  • 2tspground cumin
  • 1tbspkosher salt
  • 2tspfreshly ground black pepper
  • 1medium cauliflower,greens trimmed and stem removed
  • 3tbspolive oil,divided
  • ½medium yellow onion,diced

For Salsa Verde Orzo:

  • 4garlic cloves,minced
  • 2cupsvegetable stock,divided
  • 2tsphoney
  • 2lemons,zested
  • 2lemons,juiced
  • 6fresh parsley sprigs,+1 tbsp, chopped, for serving
  • 4garlic cloves
  • 1large shallot
  • fresh parsley,1 bunch
  • 1cupfresh mint leaf
  • fresh cilantro,1 bunch
  • ¼cupolive oil
  • 2tspkosher salt
  • 2tbspred wine vinegar
  • 1tspground cumin
  • 1cuporzo,cooked



  1. Preheat the oven to 300 degrees F.

  2. In a small bowl, stir together the paprika, cumin, salt, and pepper.

  3. Add the cauliflower to a medium bowl, then rub the spice mixture all over.

  4. Let sit for about 10 minutes.

  5. Heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil in a large Dutch oven or cast iron pot over medium-high heat.

  6. When the oil is shimmering, use tongs to transfer the seasoned cauliflower to the pot.

  7. Sear for 1 to 2 minutes per side, until golden brown all over.

  8. Remove the cauliflower from the pot and set aside.

  9. Add the remaining 2 tablespoons of oil to the pan, along with the onion.

  10. Sauté for 5 to 7 minutes until the onion is translucent.

  11. Add the garlic and sauté for 1 to 2 minutes until fragrant.

  12. Deglaze the pot with ½ cup of the vegetable stock, stirring with a wooden spoon to scrape up any browned bits stuck to the bottom.

  13. Reduce the heat to medium-low, then add the honey, lemon zest, and lemon juice. Stir to combine.

  14. Return the cauliflower to the pot, along with the remaining 1½ cups of vegetable stock and the sprigs of parsley.

  15. Cover the pot with a lid and transfer to the oven.

  16. Braise the cauliflower for 35 to 40 minutes, until tender but still holding together.

Salsa Verde Orzo:

  1. While the cauliflower is braising, add the garlic, shallot, parsley, mint, and cilantro to a food processor.

  2. Process for 1 to 2 minutes, until finely chopped.

  3. With the processor running, add the olive oil, salt, red wine vinegar, and cumin.

  4. Process until smooth, thick, and light green in color.

  5. Add the orzo to a medium bowl, then spoon in the salsa verde.

  6. Toss until the orzo is well coated.

  7. Remove the cauliflower from the braising liquid, then return the pot to the stove over medium heat.

  8. Reduce the braising liquid for 10 to 12 minutes, until thick enough to coat the back of a spoon. Season with salt to taste.

  9. Scoop the orzo onto a serving platter, then place the cauliflower on top.

  10. Spoon the reduced braising liquid over the cauliflower, then garnish with the chopped parsley.

  11. Serve warm, and enjoy!


  • Calories: 854.34kcal
  • Fat: 50.98g
  • Saturated Fat: 7.37g
  • Monounsaturated Fat: 35.31g
  • Polyunsaturated Fat: 6.03g
  • Carbohydrates: 93.12g
  • Fiber: 18.39g
  • Sugar: 20.78g
  • Protein: 19.11g
  • Sodium: 2122.46mg
  • Calcium: 318.80mg
  • Potassium: 1861.85mg
  • Iron: 12.91mg
  • Vitamin A: 242.25µg
  • Vitamin C: 237.73mg
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