The Best Roasted Cauliflower Salad

This roasted cauliflower and lentil salad with tahini dressing is nutritious, filling, and works great as a light lunch or dinner. Vegan and gluten-free.

Roasted Cauliflower and Lentil Salad served on light blue plates on wood cutting board.

This cauliflower salad has the power to win over cauliflower haters. I know that’s a bold statement but seriously — it’s sooo good.

Roasted Cauliflower and Lentil Salad served on a light blue plate on wood cutting board.

I love all things roasted cauliflower so I knew I was going to enjoy this salad… and I did! Isaac, on the other hand, isn’t usually a huge fan of sweet components in salad so I was worried he wouldn’t love it because of the dates. Per the usual with worrying, it was unnecessary — after one bite he couldn’t stop raving about how good the salad was. Score!

Roasted Cauliflower and Lentil Salad served on light blue plates on wood cutting board.

I wish I could take credit for coming up with the flavor combination but the original recipe is from Food & Wine. My version includes a few EBF tweaks — less oil, no almonds, maple syrup instead of honey (to make it vegan), and a slight change in the spices.

Overall, the salad turned out beautifully. It’s nutritious, filling and works great as a light lunch or dinner. I could also see it being an awesome dish to bring to a potluck — you know, the one that everyone loves and then asks you for the recipe. The best part? You won’t have to write down the recipe, you can just send them here. 😉

Roasted Cauliflower and Lentil Salad served on light blue plates on wood cutting board.

If you make this roasted cauliflower and lentil salad, please be sure to leave a comment and star rating below. Your feedback is super helpful for the EBF team and other readers who are thinking about making the recipe. 

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Lentil and Roasted Cauliflower Salad

  • Author: Brittany Mullins
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 30 minutes
  • Total Time: 45 minutes
  • Yield: 4
  • Diet: Vegan


This roasted cauliflower and lentil salad with tahini dressing is nutritious, filling, and works great as a light lunch or dinner. Vegan and gluten-free.


  • 1 cup dry black or green lentils, rinsed
  • 1 head of cauliflower, cut into 12 inch florets
  • 2 Tablespoons olive oil
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
  • pinch of cayenne
  • sea salt & ground pepper, to taste
  • 2 Tablespoons tahini
  • juice from 2 lemons (about 34 Tablespoons)
  • 1 teaspoon maple syrup
  • 10 medjool dates, pitted and chopped
  • 1/2 small red onion, chopped
  • 4 cups loosely packed spinach


  1. Pre-heat oven to 425°. In a saucepan, combine the lentils with 2 cups of water and bring to a boil. Simmer over moderate heat until tender, about 20 minutes. Drain well and let cool.
  2. Place cauliflower, oil and spices (cumin, cinnamon, garlic powder, cayenne, salt and pepper) into a large bowl and toss. Spread mixture on a large baking sheet or stone and roast for 20 minutes or until the cauliflower has browned and become tender. Be sure to toss the cauliflower at least once while roasting.
  3. In a bowl, whisk the tahini with the lemon juice, maple syrup, and 2 Tablespoons of water until smooth. Add the lentils and season with salt and pepper; toss to coat. Add roasted cauliflower into the bowl. Then add your dates, red onion and spinach. Toss the salad a bit, plate and serve.
  • Category: Salads
  • Method: Roast
  • Cuisine: American


  • Serving Size: 1/4 of recipe
  • Calories: 509
  • Sugar: 8g
  • Fat: 12g
  • Carbohydrates: 81g
  • Fiber: 21g
  • Protein: 21g

Keywords: roasted cauliflower salad

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    1. Eileen
      May 5, 2014 AT 2:24 am

      I made this for dinner tonight and was so good! I’m usually not a big fan of cauliflower, but roasting it and browning it took the flavor to another level. I really enjoyed this dish.

      1. Brittany Mullins
        May 5, 2014 AT 10:41 am

        Yay! I’m so happy that you liked it, Eileen. Thanks for coming back to comment and let me know. 🙂

    2. Kira – The Healthable Old Soul
      April 5, 2014 AT 11:54 pm

      I agree – the BEST!

      1. Brittany Mullins
        April 6, 2014 AT 5:38 pm

        Thank you! 🙂

    3. Alexis @ Hummusapien
      April 1, 2014 AT 12:26 pm

      Soooo much goodness in one salad! I believe I have a bag of black lentils hanging out in the pantry. Can’t wait to try!

      1. Brittany Mullins
        April 1, 2014 AT 2:44 pm

        Yay! Let me know what you think if you do try it. Thank you for the tweet as well. 🙂

    4. Ellen
      April 1, 2014 AT 8:43 am

      This looks amazing! I love the addition of Dates as well. I conveniently have them on hand this week 🙂 Thanks for sharing!

    5. meg @ adashofmeg
      March 31, 2014 AT 6:46 pm

      great looking recipe babe!

      1. Brittany Mullins
        April 1, 2014 AT 9:36 am

        Thanks lady! xoxo

    6. Sara @ LovingOnTheRun
      March 31, 2014 AT 4:57 pm

      This salad looks delicious! I have to admit I don’t eat cauliflower very often because my husband isn’t a fan but I need to find a new way of cooking it to see if I can get him to eat it. Maybe this will work!?

      1. Brittany Mullins
        April 1, 2014 AT 9:37 am

        I think you should try this salad on him. 🙂

    7. Liz @ I Heart Vegetables
      March 31, 2014 AT 4:00 pm

      Ok I HAVE to admit that I always though that cauliflower was kind of a boring food but I’ve tried two of your cauliflower recipes and loved BOTH so you better believe I’ll be trying this one 😉

      1. Brittany Mullins
        March 31, 2014 AT 4:02 pm

        Woo-hoo! Can’t wait to hear what you think of this one!!

    8. Shel@PeachyPalate
      March 31, 2014 AT 3:30 pm

      I LOVE roasted cauliflower!!! Especially with harissa paste, definitely one for you to try! This salad looks yum! Well done on the race!!! Didn’t know you were back in to running. How did you do time wise? I’m considering getting back in to it now that the sun is starting to show it’s face here too!

    9. Maria Tadic
      March 31, 2014 AT 3:12 pm

      OMG…i ran the monument 10k too! My brother lives right on monument and throws a big party for it! How crappy was it that it rained the whoooole time! I was soaked!

      The salad looks amazing – I love roasted cauliflower!! Delicious!

      1. Brittany Mullins
        April 1, 2014 AT 10:08 am

        Oh, fun!! I love all the big parties that people throw the day of the race.

        I was soaked too but at least it was kind of warm and not freezing. I’d rather be wet than cold. 🙂

    10. emma @ be mom strong
      March 31, 2014 AT 2:06 pm

      TidalWheel the night before a race? You are good! I think my toes are still a little soggy!
      Slowly starting to appreciate cauliflower after making some muffins using them… and a LOT of cheese!

      1. Brittany Mullins
        March 31, 2014 AT 4:03 pm

        I know! It probably wasn’t the best idea because my legs were sore. haha

    11. meredith @ The Cookie ChRUNicles
      March 31, 2014 AT 1:38 pm

      Love roasted cauliflower and lentils – this looks delicious.

    12. Reynaul
      March 31, 2014 AT 12:06 pm

      Yummy looking recipe! I ran the 10K this past weekend too, so congrats! I’m just glad it was not raining and cold! 🙂

      1. Brittany Mullins
        March 31, 2014 AT 4:07 pm

        Totally agree. I hate cold rain!

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