Garlic Parmesan Roasted Cauliflower

$3.21 recipe / $0.80 serving
by Beth - Budget Bytes
4.94 from 15 votes
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Remember ten years ago or so when cauliflower suddenly got super popular and everyone was using it in place of every carb imaginable? And then the supply and demand got all out of whack and cauliflower was suddenly more than $5 per head??

Well, I’m glad that the supply has finally caught up with the demand and I can buy cauliflower for a reasonable price again. 😅 Because it really is a super versatile vegetable and you can use it in place of so many different things, but I love just roasting it up,  as simple as can be, with a little garlic and Parmesan. This Garlic Parmesan Roasted Cauliflower makes a great side dish to go with dinner, or even a snack with a little Comeback Sauce for dipping. Any way you eat it, it’s gooooood

Overhead of Garlic Parmesan Roasted Cauliflower on a tray with a bowl of dipping sauce

Is The Cauliflower Crispy?

I know texture can sometimes not come across well in photos, so I wanted to make sure no one mistakes this cauliflower for being crispy. Cauliflower gets softer went roasted. You do get nice caramelization on the edges that provide a lot of flavor, but it doesn’t actually get crispy. 

Can I Use Fresh Garlic?

Yes, absolutely! I used garlic powder in this recipe because I find it more evenly coats the cauliflower than little pieces of fresh garlic, but you can absolutely use fresh garlic in place of, or in addition to the garlic powder for an extra garlic punch. Two to four cloves (minced) should do well in this recipe.

What to Serve with Garlic Parmesan Roasted Cauliflower

As I mentioned above, this roasted cauliflower makes a great all-purpose side dish. The garlic-Parmesan flavor combo is so universal. This would go great next to some roasted meat like Herb Roasted Pork Tenderloin, a classic comfort food like Salisbury Steak, or something like Balsamic Chicken and Mushrooms. But today, when I made a batch to take the photos, I ate damn near the entire batch just dipping it into some Comeback Sauce (a good ranch dressing would also be good). :) 

Side view of a tray full of Garlic Parmesan Roasted Cauliflower

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Garlic Parmesan Roasted Cauliflower

4.94 from 15 votes
Garlic parmesan roasted cauliflower is an easy, flavorful side dish or snack that will have everyone begging for seconds.
Overhead of garlic parmesan roasted cauliflower on a tray with a bowl of dip
Servings 4
Prep 10 minutes
Cook 30 minutes
Total 40 minutes


  • 1 head cauliflower ($2.39)
  • 1/4 cup grated Parmesan ($0.44)
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder ($0.05)
  • ¼ tsp salt ($0.02)
  • 1/4 tsp freshly cracked black pepper ($0.02)
  • 2 Tbsp olive oil ($0.24)
  • 1 Tbsp chopped parsley (optional garnish) ($0.05)


  • Preheat the oven to 400ºF. Rinse the cauliflower well, then cut into bite-sized florets.
  • In a small bowl, combine the Parmesan, garlic powder, salt, and pepper.
  • Place the cauliflower florets in a bowl and drizzle the olive oil over top, followed by the prepared garlic Parmesan seasoning. Toss the florets until they are completely coated in oil and seasoning, and no seasoning remains on the bottom of the bowl.
  • Spread the seasoned cauliflower out over a baking sheet lined with parchment paper, making sure the florets are in a single layer with some space around each piece. Transfer the baking sheet to the preheated oven.
  • Roast the cauliflower for about 30 minutes, stirring half-way through, or until the florets reach your desired level of caramelization. Season with extra salt and pepper and sprinkle chopped parsley over top just before serving, if desired.

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Serving: 1ServingCalories: 139.55kcalCarbohydrates: 11.63gProtein: 5.85gFat: 9.1gSodium: 383.38mgFiber: 2.98g
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How to Make Garlic Parmesan Roasted Cauliflower – Step by Step Photos

Chopped cauliflower on a cutting board

Preheat the oven to 400ºF. Chop the head of cauliflower into bite-sized florets. Honestly, sometimes I just pull the head apart with my hands because the little florets snap off fairly easily at the base! But I use my knife to cut larger florets into smaller pieces.

Garlic Parmesan seasoning

Combine ¼ cup grated Parmesan, ½ tsp garlic powder, ¼ tsp salt, and ¼ tsp freshly cracked pepper in a small bowl. 

Seasoning being sprinkled over cauliflower in a bowl

Place the cauliflower florets in a bowl and drizzle 2 Tbsp olive oil over top, then sprinkle the garlic Parmesan seasoning on top. Toss the cauliflower florets until they are well coated in oil and seasoning. Make sure you keep tossing (I use my hands) until all of that flavoring is stuck on and in the crevices of the cauliflower. You don’t want any left in the bowl.

Cauliflower on a lined baking sheet ready to roast

Spread the seasoned cauliflower out onto a baking sheet lined with parchment, in a single layer, with as much room around each piece as possible. Giving the cauliflower space helps the cauliflower roast in a dry environment and produce that nice caramelization, rather than sitting in trapped steam and essentially stewing as it bakes.

Roasted cauliflower topped with chopped parsley

Roast the cauliflower in the fully preheated 400ºF oven for about 30 minutes, stirring half way through, or until the cauliflower has reached your desired level of caramelization. Season with extra salt and pepper, if needed, and top with chopped parsley before serving, if desired.

Overhead of garlic parmesan roasted cauliflower on a tray with a bowl of dip


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  1. Hi Beth this looks good – one question though – you show a dip being served with the cauliflower in every picture but no recipe or mention of what sauce it is??????

    1. Hi, Tom! That is called Comeback Sauce, and you can find a link to the recipe in this blog post under the header, “What to Serve with Garlic Parmesan Roasted Cauliflower.” ~Marion :)

  2. My Italian mom used to make this dish with the identical seasonings, but she fried the florettes in butter…I can tell you that EVERYTHING tastes better with butter, but, you know, too much butter is not a good thing.
    So I made this recipe just as written, but in my air fryer. Took much less time, and it was amazing!!!

  3. This is the best Cauliflower Recipe! My kids love it. We put it on pizza, make tacos out of it with the Comeback sauce and make Cheesy cauliflower quesadillas with it. It is my go to healthy snack!

  4. This is by far the best cauliflower recipe! I did add a little bit of onion powder, as we love the combination of salt, pepper, garlic & onion powder. Kids loved it too.

  5. Thanks for the recipe Beth!   It has been quite some time since I have had any cauliflower.  This recipe sounded sooo tasty, so I thought I would try this for my wife and I.  

  6. This is the BEST cauliflower recipe I’ve ever made! We have teenagers and toddlers/babies (as well as our adult selves) under one roof and it was a hit with *almost* all of us (we have one very picky teen but the other helped himself to seconds).

    I have yet to meet a Budget Bytes recipe I don’t like – and I’ve been making a LOT of them these past few months for our new meal planning goals (at least two to three a week).

    I made the comeback sauce with another recipe a few months back and now I basically just stockpile a large batch of it in my fridge. There are worse problems to have, right? Haha.

  7. I can’t stand cauliflower but this is great.  I did not make the sauce but I will next time.  I have been converted.