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Sweet and Spicy Baked Cauliflower

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This sweet and spicy roasted cauliflower recipe is the perfect oven roasted side dish. Toss it on a sheet pan and it’s ready in no time! It’s vegan and gluten free, and it’s great for adding to meal prep!

BEST roasted cauliflower recipe. Tossed in an easy sweet and spicy marinade and baked for 30 min. So good!

I just spent two hours scouring reviews for baby bouncers on Amazon. My eyes ache. Do you guys even know what kind of features these things come with nowadays? I don’t know how I ever made it to adulthood without such luxuries. Built-in sound systems, relaxing vibration patterns, an assortment of dangling toys to entertain the baby, hands-free bouncing – and none of them come in the color I want.

I have to get this right – it’s a gift for my best friend’s first baby. My best friend is pregnant. My best friend is having a baby. I still can’t believe it.

I don’t know the first thing about babies. I’ve never changed a diaper (Hello, Google? it’s me, Jordan.) I like love wine. I say shit and damn and hell sometimes too much. I know she’s way more ready for baby H than I am. But it’s still so hard for me to picture her as a mother. I know that’s just because I haven’t ever seen her in this role before. I know she’s going to be amazing.

It’s hard to imagine. Because to me – playing house with our American Girl dolls seems like yesterday. Getting in trouble for swimming in a flooded ditch seems like yesterday. Terrorizing the neighborhood in her go-cart seems like yesterday. Her moving to Oklahoma seems like yesterday. Church camp. Boyfriends. High school. College. Graduations. Yesterday. Giving my first wedding speech as her Matron of Honor – I know that was just yesterday. I swear it was.

But here we are. Coincidentally, today is her birthday. And the next day is my birthday. It’s been so long since we celebrated together, even though we were born one day apart. Now, she’s a couple of weeks away from bringing a piece of her into the world. And soon, I’ll get to meet meet the magical little person she’s been busy creating.

How lucky am I? I get to watch my best friend change and grow and learn. And she’ll teach me things I didn’t realize I needed to know.

She’s going first. She’s paving this road. And she’s so got this. She’s going to be so good at this. When Baby H comes into the world, she will be surrounded with love and gratitude. She will be supported. She will be encouraged. She will be raised by two of the best people I’ve ever known.

BEST roasted cauliflower recipe. Tossed in an easy sweet and spicy marinade and baked for 30 min. So good!

I was having a hard time deciding what recipe to share before we leave to go camping over the weekend. But then I started thinking of the soon-to-be new parents and how pressed-for-time they will be. This recipe is a game-changer and a life-saver. (Too many hyphens in one sentence? Nah.)

This sweet and spicy cauliflower is one of those recipes you can keep on hand, in the back of your mind. When you see cauliflower on sale. When you have cauliflower that’s on the verge of going bad. Or when you have a mixture of random vegetables in the fridge and you need a solution right now – this is the kind of recipe that saves your ass at hangry dinnertime.

If you make this sweet and spicy cauliflower recipe, be sure to let me know! Leave me a comment or tag me on Instagram!

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Sweet and Spicy Baked Cauliflower

BEST roasted cauliflower recipe. Tossed in an easy sweet and spicy marinade and baked for 30 min. So good!

Keep it simple with this oven-roasted side dish. Cauliflower florets are tossed in an irresistible sweet and spicy marinade and baked until tender.

  • Author: Jordan Cord
  • Prep Time: 5 mins
  • Cook Time: 30 mins
  • Total Time: 35 minutes
  • Yield: 4
  • Category: Side

Ingredients

  • 4 cups cauliflower florets
  • 2 Tablespoons maple syrup
  • 2 Tablespoon sriracha
  • 2 Tablespoons olive oil
  • 1/2 Tablespoon tamari or soy sauce
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 400º. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  2. In a large bowl (or a Ziplock bag) combine cauliflower and other ingredients – maple syrup, sriracha, olive oil, tamari, and pepper. Mix until the cauliflower is well coated.
  3. Pour the cauliflower onto the baking sheet and place in the oven. Be sure to give the cauliflower “room to breathe.” If the baking sheet is over-crowded, the cauliflower will “steam” and it won’t cook right. If you need to, divide it between 2 baking sheets.
  4. Bake for 30 minutes or until cauliflower is tender.

Notes

I recommend serving this over a bed of steaming quinoa or rice.
You can easily incorporate other vegetables with or instead of cauliflower.

Nutrition

  • Calories: 115
  • Sugar: 6.3g
  • Sodium: 349.4mg
  • Fat: 7.1g
  • Saturated Fat: 1.1g
  • Unsaturated Fat: 6g
  • Trans Fat: 0g
  • Carbohydrates: 12.3g
  • Fiber: 2.2g
  • Protein: 2.3g
  • Cholesterol: 0g

 

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95 Comments
  • Kathleen
    April 16, 2018

    My family has always balked at cauliflower – too bland. i fixed this and they loved it. i’m not a big fan of sriracha (too much heat) so my go-to sub for that is an Asian sweet chili sauce – and once again, it worked beautifully in this dish. a little bite of heat, but mostly mild and flavorful. Thank you for a great veggie dish to add to my rotation.

    • thefitchen
      April 18, 2018

      Yay! I’m so glad everyone liked the cauliflower! Good idea to use the sweet chili sauce… I bet that was delicious!

  • Linda K
    April 15, 2018

    Very good! I will probably use a little less siracha next time so my whole family will enjoy it, but I loved it!

    • thefitchen
      April 18, 2018

      Ah! The sriracha definitely isn’t for everyone. I’m glad it was enjoyed though!

  • Andrea
    April 10, 2018

    This recipe is the best, my family loves it. I add fresh green beans with this mix too!

    • thefitchen
      April 12, 2018

      Oh good thinking! So glad you guys like it. :)

  • Patty
    April 7, 2018

    I tried this with a cabbage steak and it was soooo good… I just cut a thick slice of cabbage and drizzled this on top and baked until tender…

    • thefitchen
      April 9, 2018

      Ohhhhh I like your innovation! That sounds so good!

  • Jane
    March 31, 2018

    I used to make something similar to this on the BBQ in foil packets for summer grilling…I have no idea why I never thought of just doing it in the oven lol. I did tweak it a bit – personally I can’t stand sriracha (even the smell makes me gag for some reason) so after reading the comments I subbed balsamic instead. And because we have a gluten free family member now I used tamari sauce instead of soy. This was so simple to just toss together. And of course I had to taste test to make sure it would be up to Easter dinner quality lol. It’s delicious! Thanks :)

  • Ashley
    March 27, 2018

    Delicious!!!!!##

    • thefitchen
      March 31, 2018

      <3

  • Linda
    March 20, 2018

    Even the fussiest eater will like this!

    • thefitchen
      March 21, 2018

      Win!

  • Claudette
    February 5, 2018

    I made it last night and it was absolutely delicious. Thanks for sharing.

    • thefitchen
      February 6, 2018

      Awesome! So glad you enjoyed!

  • Regina
    February 4, 2018

    THis is a wonderful dish I had it with codfish cakes n buffalo wings can I do broccoli the same way

    • thefitchen
      February 6, 2018

      Yes, broccoli can be made the same way. It tends to cook slightly quicker than cauliflower, so just keep an eye on it!

  • Peggy
    January 23, 2018

    Love, love love this recipe, I have made it twice so far. So delicious! I reduced the sauce by half since it’s just two of us for dinner. Did not think about using it on other vegetables or meat, but will give it a try. I did reduce the oven temp to 400 and time to 20 minutes

    • thefitchen
      February 6, 2018

      Ah! I love hearing that. So glad you’re a fan of this recipe! :D

  • Susan
    January 5, 2018

    Made Sweet and Spicy Baked Cauliflower Jan 4, 2018. I like spicy food but did not have Sriracha in my pantry. I Googled a substitute and was given Balsamic Vinegar. I did have this. I used low-sodium soy sauce. I set a timer for 30 mins but smelled the start of burning at 25 so went ahead and pulled it out. The tips of the soft stalks were starting to burn. The veg was very good. I will make it again. Next time I will cut the stalks off mixing them with the florets instead. I will say the raw cauliflower with the marinade was also very tasty too. Thank you Jordan and Clark for this recipe!

    • thefitchen
      January 6, 2018

      Hi Susan! Thanks for the feedback – I’m glad you enjoyed the recipe. Thanks for letting us know about the substitutions you made! I always like to hear what people try. :)

      • Vivian
        January 21, 2018

        I was out of sriracha so I used cranberry chili sauce instead. Great recipe! Now Im gonna leave it in the oven for a while on 200, to see if i can get it to dehydrate, and get crunchy….

        • Jane
          January 27, 2018

          Vivian, just wondering if that worked for you? I *love* roasted vegetables with some crispiness to them.

        • thefitchen
          February 6, 2018

          Interesting… cranberry chili sauce sounds SO good.

  • Miriam Feyga
    October 31, 2017

    Delicious, yet spicy like HELL (((: Even for a little fire eater (:
    Actually, because I live in Israel, I used date syrup instead of maple and Yemenite harisa instead of sriracha.
    Now I see I should’ve used at least 4 times less of that spicy end of my mouth (:
    Thank you, anyway (:

    • thefitchen
      November 1, 2017

      Ha! So sorry this was too spicy for your tastes! I have never tried anything like Yemenite harisa but now I want to! That sounds amazing. <3

      • Jan
        December 21, 2017

        Can you use frozen cauliflower. Would I defrost it in microwave?

        • thefitchen
          December 21, 2017

          I don’t recommend using frozen cauliflower. Once it defrosts, it’s super wet and it’s difficult to get all that moisture out. Fresh cauliflower works best for this because it bakes up much better.

  • Eileen
    October 20, 2017

    Deeelish! I tried it on broccoli too-threw in some bacon bits just because………

    • thefitchen
      October 23, 2017

      That’s awesome! I’m so glad you enjoyed. :)

  • Beth Morse
    September 5, 2017

    These were amazing!!! i had no sriracha so i put the tiniest amount of red chilli powder in as im not too great with reeeeally hot things anyway! ill definitely make this again, my mum loved them and have recommended this recipe to friend:-)

  • Patti Buchanan
    July 7, 2017

    My trainer,a vegan,and an inspiration to me, just sent this recipe. I am most anxious to try this using tofu as she suggested.

  • Heather
    June 20, 2017

    Hated veggies my whole life, decided to try a few new roasting recipes and let me say I think I have fallen in love with this flavor combo on cauliflower! Yumm

    How do you recommend storing/reheating?

  • sly311
    June 5, 2017

    What about adding some cubed firm tofu to the mix?

    • thefitchen
      June 6, 2017

      You could certainly give that a try! As long as it’s thoroughly dried, I bet it would crisp up wonderfully.

    • Tiffini Music
      January 17, 2018

      Delicious just the way it is. Red-blooded, all American, meat-eating, Colorado girl. Why would you ruin ANYTHING by adding tofu? I have 1 vegan friend. Palest, weakest person I know. I tried it with a rare grilled ribeye. Substituted the cauliflower for the potatoes, but please, for God’s sake, NEVER leave out the meat!

      • guest
        January 19, 2018

        There… is no meat in this recipe that is being left out. Tofu is fine. It’s 2018. Your vegan friend isn’t pale because they eat vegetables.

  • Teresa Saxon
    May 29, 2017

    This was great! I used agave instead of maple syrup. This was great on cauliflower, but was a big hit on chicken wings! I’ll be using this sauce recipe often.

    • thefitchen
      May 31, 2017

      Awesome – I’m glad it works on wings too! So happy you liked it. :)

    • Carol
      November 16, 2017

      ok, chicken wings TOOOOOOOO???? hmmmm, sounds gooood!!!!

      • thefitchen
        November 20, 2017

        This sauce is good on juuuuust about any veggie or meat!

    • Miranda
      January 28, 2018

      Did you just mix the wings in there? or cook them separately?

      • thefitchen
        February 6, 2018

        I’ve never tried making wings alongside the cauliflower, but I would assume they would need to be baked for different lengths of time. Try it and report back!

  • Rick Metz
    May 1, 2017

    Thanks for sharing. This was delicious!

  • VideoPortal
    March 29, 2017

    But if consuming less dairy means I m eating more simple vegan recipes like this Maple-Sriracha Roasted Cauliflower, well cheese, don t let the door hit you on the way out.

    • Island Girl
      May 25, 2017

      ***BAMMMM, the DOOR SLAMMED ON YOU!!***
      SO SADDD you didn’t enjoy but as they say…- “TO EACH HIS OWN, SAID THE OLD LADY WHO KISSED THE COW!!”***** We LOVED IT!! if everybody was the same,we’d all be Clones – that’s even scarier say ‘Dolly’ the sheep!

      • Polly
        December 17, 2017

        What? The previous commenter was clearly giving a compliment. P.S. your terrible punctuation makes your comment very difficult to read.

  • Alisa Hill
    March 1, 2017

    I made this recipe tonight for my family. It was very good and a big hit with everyone. It was a bit spicy but we didn’t mind. We will definitely make this again.

    • thefitchen
      March 2, 2017

      Hi Alisa! I’m glad you guys liked this recipe. :) Thanks for your feedback!

  • Linda
    February 4, 2017

    1 word to describe this recipe….delicious!! My new favorite way to eat cauliflower!

    • thefitchen
      February 9, 2017

      Linda! So glad you like this cauliflower recipe! It’s definitely one of my favorites. :)

  • Georgie Moon
    January 30, 2017

    We loved the cauliflower recipe! I had to Google what sriracha was, I’ve never heard of it, I guess you are not from the UK? I had some chilli dipping sauce which I used, it was fine. And I used golden syrup instead of maple syrup which is difficult to find and expensive here. I’ll definitely be making new this dish again.

    • thefitchen
      February 2, 2017

      Ah! That’s funny. I didn’t realize sriracha wasn’t a universal thing – it’s so popular here in the US! I’m glad you were able to modify and that you liked it!

      • Tom
        May 24, 2017

        Sriracha is totally popular in the UK!

  • sylvia
    January 23, 2017

    hi! what can i use instead of sriracha? im not a big fan of spicy :/ i thought to just cut it out but i dont want the cauliflower to b flavorless :/ and about how much is 4 cups cauliflower? i read online that its around 400 grams? thanks :)

    • thefitchen
      January 25, 2017

      Hi Sylvia –

      Instead of sriracha, you could try using barbecue sauce. I’ve never tried it, but it would certainly be milder in spice. 4 cups of cauliflower was about a whole, medium-sized head of cauliflower. From what I see online, that can range from 400-600 grams. The goal is to make sure all of the cauliflower has a nice, light coating of sauce.

  • Kelly
    January 18, 2017

    I made this as a side dish for honey mustard baked chicken last night. Absolutely amazing! It was a little spicy for my kid, so I will use a little less sriracha next time…. All in all, definitely going to become a staple in my house!

    • thefitchen
      January 19, 2017

      Hi Kelly! So glad you liked this cauliflower! Pairing it with honey mustard chicken sounds like a flavor explosion. :D Thanks for commenting!

  • Christina
    January 15, 2017

    I recently became vegan and this recipe or variations of this recipe have been an absolute life saver! My friends probably want me to shut up about it already but, can’t stop, won’t stop! Thank you so much for this simple and satisfying dinner!

    • thefitchen
      January 16, 2017

      Hi Christina –

      I’m so glad to hear that you love this recipe! It’s one of my absolute favorites because you can swap in almost any vegetable! Thanks for sharing your thoughts. :)

  • Ivy Lauren
    January 9, 2017

    Tried these tonight for dinner! Turned out great! Although I accidentally substituted Honey for the Maple Syrup. The taste was still great! Maybe a little more of an asian taste, but still delicious.

    • thefitchen
      January 12, 2017

      Hi Ivy! I’m so glad to hear that you liked the cauliflower! Honey certainly works just fine in place of maple syrup. :) Thanks for sharing!

  • Aparna
    January 2, 2017

    I’m a huge brussel sprouts’ fan! I made this with brussel sprouts (halved )and it was sensational. I used thick sugar beet syrup instead of maple syrup.

    • thefitchen
      January 2, 2017

      Hi Aparna! That’s a great idea… I LOVE brussels sprouts. I bet they were delicious in the sweet and spicy mixture. :)

  • Ansley
    December 3, 2016

    Mine came out burnt! I don’t know what I did wrong! :(

    • thefitchen
      December 4, 2016

      Hi Ansley! I’m sorry to hear that the recipe didn’t work for you! We’ve made this several times and never had it turn out burnt. Granted, every oven is a little different. Perhaps try cooking 25º lower or for 5 minutes less?

    • Tiffany
      January 4, 2017

      Your not the only one!
      Crazy, next time I will change the recipe, so I don’t burn mine.

      • thefitchen
        January 6, 2017

        Hi Tiffany! I’m sorry to hear that yours turned out burnt, too. Hopefully if you decrease the heat or cook time slightly, it will turn out fine next time. Like I said, we’ve never had a problem with ours burning, but every oven is different!

        • Megan
          April 26, 2017

          Lower quality EVOO’s smoke point (when it burns) is around 320 degrees so that may be the issue! Try it with avocado oil or a higher quality EVOO?

  • Helena Zubkow
    November 21, 2016

    Omg, yum!!! This came out sooooo good. I’ll definitely be making it again. Thanks for the tasty recipe!

    • thefitchen
      November 21, 2016

      Yay! So glad you liked the cauliflower, Helena! Thanks for letting us know. :)

  • Stephanie
    September 7, 2016

    This sounds really good and so simple to do. I love cauliflower and I’m always looking for new ways to prepare it :)

    • thefitchen
      September 7, 2016

      If you’re a cauliflower fan, you will definitely love this recipe! One of my absolute favorite ways to eat it. :)

  • Shane
    September 4, 2016

    Great all around, go to recipe. I had a head of cauliflower in the fridge that I was wondering how to use it. It got put to good use.
    BTW, reading your blog, it looks like your b-day is 09/03. If so, just know that all of the worlds greatest, most beautiful, highly intelligent world changers are born on this day. Can you tell it’s my b-day too? :-)

    • thefitchen
      September 6, 2016

      Hi Shane –

      Nice! I’m glad you liked the recipe. It’s definitely one to keep in mind for quick, easy dinners. And yes… You are exactly right! There’s something special about those September 3rd babies. :)