Friday Recipe: Scrumptious Cauliflower Popcorn

Want your kids to eat more veggies? Want your partner to eat more veggies? Want to eat more veggies yourself? Sometimes it's just a matter of preparing a vegetable in a way that's totally yummy and irresistible. For instance, my son wants no part of mashed sweet potatoes, but if I bake up some sweet potato fries or chips, he's all over them.

That's what will happen with this Cauliflower Popcorn, adapted from Surreal Gourmet Bites: Showstoppers and Conversation Starters. I didn't get to try it out on my husband and son because I ate the WHOLE HEAD OF CAULIFLOWER ALL BY MYSELF. (Naturally, I did not have any room in my belly for dinner that evening.) Seriously, have you ever been tempted to eat that much cauliflower in one sitting?

Yes, it's that good. And it's easy to make, too; takes a bit of tending, but no heavy lifting. Let's not forget to discuss cauliflower's many health benefits: the cruciferous vegetable is loaded with antioxidants and phytonutrients such as Vitamin C, manganese, beta-carotene; Vitamin K (normally found in green veggies many kids avoid); fiber; folate, so crucial during pregnancy; and even omega-3 fatty acids, which may boost mood and may even help prevent postpartum depression. In other words, your whole family should be eating cauliflower. Make them this "popcorn" and they will!

Cauliflower PopcornCauliflower_Cooked.JPG


serves 4 (or, if I'm around, 1)

  • 1 head cauliflower
  • 3T extra virgin olive, grapeseed or canola oil
  • 1/4T kosher or sea salt, or to taste
  • 3T grated parmesan (optional)


Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Trim the cauliflower head; reserve the core and stems for another use. Cut florets into the size of ping pong balls (they will shrink a bit as they roast).

Put salt and oil in large bowl and mix. Add cauliflower and toss well, ensuring that the pieces are evenly coated. Spread florets on baking sheet lined with parchment paper.

Roast for an hour, turning the pieces about every 15 minutes. All sides of each floret should be well caramelized. Don't be afraid of that browning, it actually makes the cauliflower taste sweet.

Place in serving bowl and serve warm. I tossed mine with some grated parmesan, which was just incredible. I'm thinking I'll try it with truffle salt next time. Nutritional yeast -- or any topping you would enjoy on regular popcorn -- should work well, too!

Justine is a Certified Holistic Health Coach who is dedicated to helping women live happier, healthier, more fulfilling lives. Justine is board-certified by the American Association of Drugless Practitioners and was named one of the Top 25 Foodie Moms for 2012 by Circle of Moms.

Post originally published on Full Belly Sisters blog 8/12/2011:

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