Roasted Cauliflower Slices with Red Pepper, Capers, and Lemon (and Olives if you wish)

Hurry and make these Roasted Cauliflower Slices with Red Peppers, Olives, Capers, and Lemon before it gets too hot to turn on the oven! Add olives or not, your choice. This tasty meatless dinner is also low-carb, Keto, low-glycemic, dairy-free, gluten-free, vegan, Paleo, and Whole 30 approved. Use the Recipes-by-Diet-Type Index to find more recipes like this one.

Roasted Cauliflower Slices with Red Pepper, Capers, and Lemon found on

I realize that some of you would never be happy with a big slice of roasted cauliflower for dinner, even if it had a garlicky topping with red pepper, capers, and lemon, plus olives if you want to use them.  So if you’re one of those people who can’t get that excited about roasted cauliflower, feel free to consider these Roasted Cauliflower Slices with Red Pepper, Capers, and Lemon as a side dish. But I promise you, cauliflower lovers like myself will happily devour this as a Meatless Monday main dish and call it dinner.  And I ate the leftovers cold out of the fridge the next day; it was that good!

When I first posted this recipe, it was adapted from Melissa Roberts’ Roasted Cauliflower with Kalamata Vinaigrette that appeared in Gourmet Magazine.  And there was certainly nothing wrong with that version of the recipe; my Greek friend Mary tried it and loved it.

But the original photos were nothing to get excited about and when we decided to update them Jake and I got a little creative and added chopped red pepper and a few capers to the garlicky vinaigrette, which made it even more flavorful and definitely more colorful.  You can also make the garlicky topping without the olives if you prefer, but if you like cauliflower and Kalamata olives, this is a must try!

This delicious roasted cauliflower recipe is Low-Carb, Gluten-Free, Paleo, and also Vegan, so hopefully it will work for a lot of people.  And of course this is my Meatless Monday suggestion for this week.  You can find lots more Vegetarian Recipes and Vegan Recipes in the recipes-by-photo index pages.  And if you’re a Meatless Monday fan who likes finding recipes on Pinterest you might want to take a look at my Meatless Monday Pinterest Board, which has thousands of meatless main dish and side dish recipes from great bloggers all around the web.

(Roasted Cauliflower Slices with Red Pepper, Capers, and Lemon was first posted in 2010; updated for Meatless Monday April 2015.  My friend Dlyn also posted Roasted Cauliflower with Kalamata Vinaigrette as a farewell post to Gourmet Magazine back in 2010.)

Roasted Cauliflower Slices with Red Pepper, Capers, and Lemon found on
Cut a head of cauliflower into slices about 3/4 inches thick. I cut through the core of the cauliflower to keep the pieces intact, and then cut some of the core away afterwards. Lay the cauliflower slices in a single layer on a roasting pan. It’s important that the pan isn’t crowded.  Drizzle both sides of the cauliflower with olive oil and season liberally with salt and fresh ground black pepper. Roast cauliflower in a 450F/220C oven, cooking without turning for at least the first 15 minutes.

Roasted Cauliflower Slices with Red Pepper, Capers, and Lemon found on
While the cauliflower roasts, mash 1/2 tsp. minced garlic with some salt. I used a mortar and pestle, but you can do this in a bowl with a fork.  Rinse the garlic and salt into a bowl with lemon juice, then stir in olive oil, whisking until the vinaigrette is emulsified.  Then mix in the chopped olives, diced red pepper, and capers, and let dressing sit so the flavors blend while the cauliflower finishes roasting.

Roasted Cauliflower Slices with Red Pepper, Capers, and Lemon found on

When the cauliflower is crisp and slightly browned, spoon the spicy garlic dressing mixture over the cauliflower pieces and serve hot.

Original photo Roasted Cauliflower Slices with Kalamata Olives found on

And just for the memories, here’s the original photo of this recipe from back in 2010 with just olives. Make that version if you prefer!

Roasted Cauliflower Slices with Red Pepper, Capers, and Lemon (and Olives if you prefer)
(Makes about 4 servings, recipe adapted from a recipe by Melissa Roberts for Gourmet Magazine.)

1 medium head cauliflower
2 T olive oil
salt and fresh ground black pepper to taste

Vinaigrette Ingredients:
1/2 tsp. minced garlic
pinch sea salt
3 T fresh-squeezed lemon juice
3 T extra-virgin olive oil
1/4 cup finely chopped Kalamata olives or black olives, optional
1 red bell pepper, chopped small
1 T capers


Preheat oven to 450F/200C. Remove leaves from cauliflower, then use a large knife to cut the cauliflower into slices an even 3/4 inch thick, slicing through the core. Cut core section away from the slices and arrange cauliflower slices in a single layer on a baking sheet. (Don’t worry if some piece break off; they will still taste great!)

Drizzle both sides of cauliflower with olive oil and season with salt and fresh ground black pepper. (I used a generous amount of pepper, but not too much salt.) Start cauliflower roasting while you make the vinaigrette, and let it roast 15 minutes without turning.

While cauliflower roasts, mash garlic and sea salt in a mortar and pestle (or use a fork and a bowl), then rinse the garlic and salt mixture into a bowl with the lemon juice. Stir in the olive oil, whisking until the dressing is emulsified. Stir in chopped red peppers, and capers (and olives if using) and let the vinaigrette ingredients blend while cauliflower continues cooking.

After about 15 minutes, carefully turn cauliflower pieces with a large turner. Put back in oven and roast 10-15 minutes more, or until cauliflower is slightly crisp and nicely browned, and done to your liking. Serve hot, with the garlicky dressing mixture drizzled over cauliflower.

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Low-Carb Diet / Low-Glycemic Diet / South Beach Diet Suggestions:

This is a great side dish or vegetarian main dish for any phase of the South Beach Diet or any other type of low-carb or low-glycemic eating plan.

Find More Recipes Like This One:

Use the Recipes by Diet Type photo index pages to find more recipes suitable for a specific eating plan. You might also like to Follow Kalyn’s Kitchen on Pinterest to see all the good recipes I’m sharing there.

Nutritional Information?

If you want nutritional information for a recipe, I recommend entering the recipe into Calorie Count, which will calculate it for you. Or if you’re a member of Yummly, you can use the Yum button on my site to save the recipe and see the nutritional information there.

More Roasted Cauliflower Ideas for Cauliflower Fans:
Roasted Cauliflower with Lemon, Curry, and Cumin ~ Kalyn’s Kitchen

Roasted Cauliflower Recipe Round-up ~ The Kitchn

Roasted Cauliflower with Red Bell Pepper, Green Olives, and Pine Nuts ~ Kalyn’s Kitchen

Spicy Cajun Roasted Cauliflower ~ Sarah’s Cucina Bella

Roasted Cauliflower Salad with Feta, Capers, Red Bell Pepper, and Green Onion ~ Kalyn’s Kitchen

Roasted Cauliflower with Sumac ~ Give Recipe

Roasted Cauliflower Slices with Red Pepper, Capers, and Lemon found on

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37 comments on “Roasted Cauliflower Slices with Red Pepper, Capers, and Lemon (and Olives if you wish)”

  1. Looks yummy! ๐Ÿ™‚ ~Lanie

  2. Some day I will learn to love cauliflower, I really will — so I'm bookmarking this recipe in anticipation. Love the kalamata vinaigrette; I'm going to try that on some roasted vegetables.

  3. Oh my god, that looks so good! I need to make that very soon — I even have everything (okay, except the cauliflower) ๐Ÿ˜‰

  4. Oh Boy does that look good.I love olives -black, green, Greek you name it. I would never think of combining cauliflower with olives but it looks fabulous and definelty am going to try this recipe.

  5. You couldn't have put a more perfect topping on the cauliflower. I would happily eat olives all day, particularly kalamata ones. This would be a great topping for braised leeks, too.

  6. i love roasted cauliflowers any which way I can get. Such a unique addition of garlic and kalamata olives, looks very delicious.

  7. I confess that I've tried cutting cauliflower like this with the intent to grill and they ended up all falling apart! Nice job, yours look much better ๐Ÿ™‚

  8. Cauliflower is one of those vegetables that is so hard to get right. This recipe looks delicious and super savoury.

  9. This dish is definitely worth waiting for! I love cauliflower, especially roasted. Sounds delicious.

  10. Love the new โ™ฅ header and the garlic vinaigrette!! Ciao from a huge fan

    Eleonora xx

  11. I'm so glad people are liking this, because this recipe is amazing. I think I need to make it again soon.

    Eleanora, thanks so much. My wonderful brother Rand is the one who designs the headers. He's such a blessing to me, love him!!

  12. I think this dressing would be really good on zucchini and possibly eggplant. I'm not a big eggplant lover, which is why I would try it.

  13. ValerieAnne, I love the idea of eating this vinaigrette on eggplant of zucchini. Great idea!

  14. This sounds really delicious, I love roasted veggies and glad to have another way to prepare cauliflower.
    One little question: "then *rinse* the garlic and salt mixture into a bowl with the lemon juice."
    Rinse? Maybe whisk?
    Also, want you to know that I've been South Beachin' for about 6 weeks now and your website has been beyond amazing. It's all the kinds of food I like anyway, and the recipes are fantastic!

  15. I did mean to say "rinse." I mashed the garlic and salt together, then added the lemon juice and used the lemon juice to rinse the garlic out of the mortar and pestle. But if you mashed the garlic in a bowl that was big enough to make the dressing, you could skip that step.

  16. That looks amazing. And I love that you use more of the cauliflower (it looks like) with it. I adore kalamatas.

  17. This is so unique and looks absolutely fantastic! I love kalamata olives and I bet it goes great with cauliflower!

  18. Hi Kalyn,
    I just wanted to tell you how much I love your recipes! Youre site is such great inspiration. Keep up the good work.

  19. A lot of cauliflower recipes can be bland – what a great idea to roast and dress with kalamata vinaigrette – such good flavors.

  20. Long time reader, first time poster. Just had to say this was FANTASTIC! I made this the other night and couldn't stop eating it. I even loved it without the dressing. I will be making this again and again. Thanks so much for the receipe.

  21. Nancy, so glad you liked it, thanks for letting me know!

  22. What a great way to serve cauliflower! I dare anyone to complain that they don't like it.

  23. Wow, this looks great! You have such a way with veggies! I know I've said this before, and I know you did not seemed thrilled….but I sure wish you'de write a veggie cookbook. Our household is grainfree and I would love a book of your veggie recipes!!!

  24. Mrs. Ed, you are too sweet. Definitely, a veggie cookbook would be more interesting to me than just a cookbook in general. I will think about it; I'm certainly open to the idea if I had an offer!

  25. Ooh, well done. I tried getting those cf steaks before but failed miserably. Then later I was aiming for a fine chop but stumbled across the (im)proper cut by accident. I think there is a particularly tight arrangement of some cfs that allow them to maintain their integrity when sliced this way.
    Thanks for the link-love, by the way!

  26. Wow, those look really good.

  27. What a tasty way to enjoy some cauliflower!

  28. What a vegetable this is. I love how versatile cauliflower is. I so tempted to try your recipe later this week (I have 3 heads of cauliflower waiting for me at home.) I will come back to your site and report on how your recipe turned out for sure! Would you like to take a look at my most recent cauliflower creation?

  29. Made this recipe early in the week and it was delish! Wish I had made more – i finished it in 1 sitting!

  30. We.LOVE.this. It's great even without the vinaigrette.

  31. So glad people are enjoying this, and I bet the roasted cauliflower is good on it's own too. Thanks for that idea!

  32. I ate this as the main dish alongside some sauteed spinach. Just delicious! I have seen recipes for making cauliflower "steaks" on the grill, but it was cold outside so this was perfect! The Kalamata olive drizzle was yummy ๐Ÿ™‚

  33. Michelle, so glad you enjoyed it!

  34. I'm firmly in the I LOVE CAULIFLOWER camp! I am totally fine with eating it roasted and plain, but this topping sounds super.

  35. Been out of touch for a while. So what do I see when I get back? This!

    This is my kind of dish. I love roasted cauliflower topped with tangy vegetable relishes. Especailly ones with lemons & capers. Excellent recipe.

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