Marinated Cauliflower Salad

$8.40 recipe / $1.05 serving
by Beth - Budget Bytes
4.90 from 28 votes
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Can’t stop, won’t stop with refrigerator salads! If you’re new here, refrigerator salads are salads that hold up really well in the refrigerator, so you can have delicious and colorful meals all week. This Marinated Cauliflower Salad is the perfect example. In fact, this salad gets better as it refrigerates. The flavors mix and mingle, and all those good flavors get soaked right up by the crunchy cauliflower. 👌

Overhead view of marinated cauliflower salad in a serving bowl

Take a Short Cut

I included a homemade Italian dressing in this cauliflower salad recipe, but if you want to make this salad even a little faster you can easily sub your favorite store-bought bottled Italian Dressing. You’ll need about one cup, but you can just add as much or as little as you’d like.

Make it Vegan

The recipe as written below contains Parmesan cheese, which does give the salad a little bit of body, but if you’d like to make this dish vegan you can easily leave the Parmesan out or add a little nutritional yeast in its place.

What to Serve with Marinated Cauliflower Salad

I served this cauliflower salad with my Garlic Marinated Chicken this week, but it would also go great with Herb Roasted Pork Tenderloin, Baked Ziti, Pizza Baked Chicken, or Easy Oven Baked Fish with Tomatoes. This would also be a great dish to bring to potlucks!

How Long Does It Stay Good?

As I mentioned in the introduction, this salad actually gets better with time in the fridge. …Up to a point. Haha. This salad will be good for about 4-5 days of refrigeration, with the peak flavor being on about day 2-3. As always your mileage may vary depending on the freshness of your ingredients and conditions inside your refrigerator.

Side view of marinated cauliflower salad in a serving bowl
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Marinated Cauliflower Salad

4.90 from 28 votes
Marinated cauliflower salad is full of crunchy and colorful vegetables marinated in a homemade Italian dressing. Perfect for meal prep!
Overhead view of marinated cauliflower salad in a white serving bowl
Servings 8 1 cup each
Prep 15 minutes
Marinate Time 30 minutes
Total 45 minutes


Italian Dressing*


  • 1 head cauliflower ($2.39)
  • 1 2.25oz. can sliced black olives ($1.49)
  • ½ 12oz. jar banana pepper rings ($0.90)
  • 1 red bell pepper ($1.50)
  • cup diced red onion ($0.16)
  • 2 Tbsp chopped fresh parsley ($0.08)


  • Make the dressing first, so the flavors have time to blend. In a jar or bowl, combine the olive oil, red wine vinegar, Dijon, garlic powder, Italian seasoning, salt, pepper, and Parmesan. Whisk the ingredients together or close the jar and shake until combined. Set the dressing aside.
  • Remove the leaves and stem from the cauliflower, then chop it into very small florets (about the size of a grape). Place the chopped cauliflower in a large bowl.
  • Drain the black olives and remove the banana peppers from the jar. Add both to the bowl with the cauliflower.
  • Dice the red bell pepper and finely dice the red onion and parsley. Add them to the bowl.
  • Pour the prepared dressing over the salad, then toss to combine. Refrigerate the salad for at least 30 minutes to allow the flavors to absorb. Stir again just before serving. This salad gets better as it refrigerates and the cauliflower has more time to marinate. Always stir just before serving to redistribute the flavors.

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*Store-bought Italian dressing can be used in place of homemade.


Serving: 1cupCalories: 175.66kcalCarbohydrates: 8.06gProtein: 2.69gFat: 15.6gSodium: 431.44mgFiber: 2.7g
Read our full nutrition disclaimer here.
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How to Make Marinated Cauliflower Salad – Step by Step Photos

Dressing ingredients in a jar

Make the dressing first so it can have a few moments to blend. In a jar or bowl combine ½ cup olive oil, ¼ cup red wine vinegar, 1 tsp Dijon mustard, ¼ tsp garlic powder, 1 Tbsp Italian seasoning, ½ tsp salt, ¼ tsp pepper, and 2 Tbsp grated Parmesan.

shaken Italian dressing in a jar

Shake the jar or whisk the ingredients in a bowl until the dressing is combined. You can use a store-bought Italian dressing in place of homemade, if you prefer. You’ll need about 1 cup dressing.

Chopped cauliflower on a cutting board

Remove the leaves and stem from a head of cauliflower, then chop in to very small florets (about the size of a grape). Place the chopped cauliflower in a bowl.

Cauliflower and other vegetables in a bowl

Drain one 2.25oz. can of black olives, and remove ½ of the peppers from a 12oz. jar of banana pepper rings. Dice one red bell pepper, finely dice about ⅓ cup red onion, and chop about 2 Tbsp parsley. Add everything to the bowl with the chopped cauliflower.

Italian dressing being poured over salad ingredients.

Pour the Italian dressing over the salad ingredients in the bowl, then stir to combine.

Finished marinated cauliflower salad in the bowl with a spoon

Cover the salad and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes to give the salad time to absorb the flavors from the dressing. Always give it a stir before serving to redistribute the flavors throughout.

Overhead view of marinated cauliflower salad in a white serving bowl
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  1. One of my favorite spring/summer salads! I love it as written as a side but it’s also quite flexible to bulk up for a main. I typically add chickpeas or white beans, and a little chunk feta or provolone. I also reduce (or even leave out) the salt in the dressing in this case since there are so many other salty components, then season a bit more before serving if necessary.

  2. Followed recipe as written. Delicious! Served over romaine lettuce. Added to favorites.

  3. One of the best tasting salads I have made. Great combinations of vegetables. Salad dressing very flavorful.

  4. Wow! I love this salad!!!! I used what I had on hand as far as black olives I used the seedless Greek olives. I like the flavor with banana peppers. And I used Ken Stake-house lite zesty Italian dressing. Tasted like a bit of summer