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A rectangular serving platter filled with roasted cauliflower with olives sitting next to a couple glasses of white wine.

Roasted Cauliflower with Olives and Lemon

Course: Side
Cuisine: Vegetable
Keyword: healthy side dish, how to cook cauliflower, how to roast cauliflower
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 25 minutes
Total Time: 40 minutes
Servings: 4 people
Calories: 186kcal
Roast Cauliflower with Olives is deeply flavorful, healthy, easy to make, and can be adaptable to your own tastes. The roasting just enhances the natural flavors. Wonderful side dish any time of the year!
Print Recipe


  • 1 baking pan lined with parchment paper or foil for easy cleanup.


  • 1 head cauliflower cored and cut into 2-inch florets
  • ¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • Zest from 1 lemon
  • ¾ tsp Kosher salt
  • ½ ground black pepper
  • 1 tsp smoked paprika
  • ½ cup green olives pitted
  • ½ cup Kalamata olives pitted
  • 2 tbsp capers drained
  • 2 tbsp pine nuts toasted
  • 2 tbsp parsley fresh, chopped, for garnish
  • 3 tbsp Parmesan cheese freshly grated, for garnish, optional


  • Preheat oven to 400F.
  • Place the cut cauliflower in a large bowl.
  • In a small bowl, whisk together the oil, salt, pepper, paprika, and lemon juice. , combine the cauliflower, olive oil, lemon zest, and olives. Pour the mixture over the cauliflower and use two large spoons to mix and fully coat.
  • Spread the cauliflower onto a baking sheet lined with parchment paper (or foil).
  • Roast for 15 minutes, stirring halfway through with a wooden spoon.
  • Remove from the oven and stir in the olives, capers, and half of the toasted pine nuts. Return to the oven for another 10 minutes.
  • Remove from oven and carefully transfer to a serving platter. Garnish with remaining pine nuts, parsley, and grated Parmesan (if using). Serve at once.


See the video near the top of the blog post for visual guidance.  If you like the video, please subscribe to our YouTube channel
All of the prep work can be done for the dish up to a day in advance.  Mix together the EVOO, seasonings, and lemon zest, and then keep covered in the fridge.  Do the same for the cut cauliflower.  Once ready to be baked, the recipe is extremely simple and quick. 
You can also add in cut broccoli, carrot spears or slices, and/or bell pepper strips.  During the holidays, we often add cooked pancetta (cut into small cubes) and fresh sage.
Leftovers will keep in the fridge for several days (though it's never as it is fresh out of the oven). We don't recommend freezing.  


Calories: 186kcal | Carbohydrates: 10g | Protein: 5g | Fat: 14g | Saturated Fat: 2g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 6g | Cholesterol: 3mg | Sodium: 1177mg | Potassium: 503mg | Fiber: 5g | Sugar: 3g | Vitamin A: 584IU | Vitamin C: 72mg | Calcium: 101mg | Iron: 1mg