Asian BBQ Roasted Cauliflower

5 from 9 votes
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Asian BBQ Roasted Cauliflower with cilantro, peanuts, and a sticky-sweet glaze. The absolute BEST roasted cauliflower recipe that’s sure to become a favorite.Roasted cauliflower topped with peanuts and cilantro in a white bowl

Why You’ll Love this Asian BBQ Roasted Cauliflower

This is, by far, my favorite cauliflower recipe to date. It’s sweet and tangy with just the right amount of spice. Garnish with fresh cilantro and chopped peanuts, and it will become a regular in your rotation.

And if you’re wondering what Asian BBQ sauce is, think of classic bottled BBQ sauce with a blast of umami. This version has so much more dimension and zing than traditional southern BBQ sauce, and I have a feeling you’ll be hooked.

Pair this roasted cauliflower recipe with your protein of choice–tofu, pork, chicken, beef–for a flavorful weeknight dinner.

Recipe IngredientsRecipe ingredients in separate bowls with blue labels

  • Cauliflower: You need one large head of cauliflower, which should amount to 6 to 7 cups of florets. You can also buy pre-chopped florets for convenience.
  • Asian BBQ Sauce: This sauce is made of a lot of pantry staples, however one or two you may not be as familiar with. You need ketchup, honey, soy sauce, chili garlic sauce, fresh ginger, and Tom Yum Paste. Tom Yum Paste is made of a fragrant blend of lemongrass, Thai chilies, kaffir lime leaves, and galangal. It’s typically added to Tom Yum soup, which has its origins in Thailand. If you can’t find it, you can use red Thai curry paste instead.
  • Cilantro: With all the sweet and savory flavors going on here, fresh cilantro adds welcome freshness. You can also use chopped fresh mint or basil, if you prefer.
  • Peanuts: A crunchy garnish is the ultimate compliment to buttery, roasted cauliflower florets. I love using roasted peanuts, however you can also use cashews or chestnuts.

Spoon and fork in a bowl of roasted cauliflower

Step-by-Step Instructions

Step 1: Roast the Cauliflower

Start by preheating the oven to 450ºF and lining a large, rimmed baking sheet with foil. Place the cauliflower florets on the baking sheet, and toss with olive oil, salt, and pepper. Toss the cauliflower to make sure it’s evenly coat, and place the pan in the oven. Bake for 25 minutes, tossing once halfway through.Cauliflower florets on a gold baking sheet

Step 2: Prepare the Asian BBQ Sauce

While the cauliflower bakes, prepare the Asian BBQ sauce. Combine ketchup, honey, soy sauce, chili garlic sauce, fresh ginger, and Tom Yum Paste in a small bowl; whisk to combine.Asian BBQ sauce in a gold bowl on a pink plate

Step 3: Toss Roasted Cauliflower in Sauce

Remove the cauliflower from the oven and drizzle half of the Asian BBQ sauce overtop. Toss to combine, and place the cauliflower back in the oven for 10 more minutes.Roasted cauliflower florets on a gold baking sheet

Step 4: Garnish and Serve

Transfer roasted cauliflower to a serving plate or platter, and drizzle remaining sauce overtop. Garnish with cilantro, peanuts, and sliced chilies (if desired), and serve!Spoon and fork sticking in a bowl of roasted cauliflower

FAQs and Expert Tips

How to Cut Cauliflower into Florets

Here is the best way to slice a head of cauliflower into smaller florets:

  1. Remove large leaves from the base of the cauliflower so that the stem is exposed; discard or compost the leaves.
  2. Use a sharp knife to cut around the stem of the cauliflower; remove and discard the core.
  3. Break the cauliflower into large florets with your hands.
  4. Slice each segment of  cauliflower into smaller florets (1″ to 2″ pieces), and either discard or compost larger stems.

Tips to Making the BEST Oven Roasted Cauliflower

For cauliflower that’s buttery and tender on the inside with quintessential crisp, roasting is the way to go. Not only does roasting create perfectly caramelized florets, it also brings out cauliflower’s natural nutty flavor. However, they are a couple tricks to maximize the veggie’s goodness and versatility

  • Avoid overcrowding the pan, which will encourage steaming over browning.
  • Crank the oven up to 450°F, which will tenderize the veggies while also creating those yummy charred bits.
  • Toss every 12 to 15 minutes to ensure all sides of the florets make sufficient contact with the pan.

Close up of roasted cauliflower topped with peanuts and cilantro

Tips to Store and Reheat

Oven-roasted cauliflower is best enjoyed fresh, however if you end up with leftovers, store them in an airtight container. When you’re ready to reheat, you have a few options. One option is the toaster oven, which is my personal go-to, because it reestablishes their crispiness. Alternatively, you can reheat cauliflower in a skillet over medium heat until warm.

I don’t suggest microwaving leftover cauliflower, unless you don’t mind it being super soft. (In a pinch, however, this will always do the job!)

What to Serve with Asian BBQ Roasted Cauliflower

Oven-roasted cauliflower has to be one of the versatile side dishes. You can serve it alongside just about any protein you like: tofu, chicken, shrimp, beef, or pork. Here are a few of my favorite pairings:

Cauliflower florets tossed in Asian BBQ sauce

Other Reader-Favorite Cauliflower Recipes

Harissa-Roasted Cauliflower and Chickpea Salad

Moroccan Cauliflower with Tahini Honey

Butter Cauliflower

If you give this recipe a try, be sure to snap a pic and tag #dishingouthealth on Instagram so I can see your creations. Also, follow along on Facebook and Pinterest for the latest recipe updates!

5 from 9 votes

Asian BBQ Roasted Cauliflower

Asian BBQ Roasted Cauliflower with cilantro, peanuts, and a sticky-sweet glaze. The most flavorful roasted cauliflower recipe you'll try.
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 35 minutes
Total Time: 45 minutes
Servings: 4

Equipment

  • Large sheet pan
  • Mixing bowls

Ingredients  

  • 1 medium to large head cauliflower, cut into florets (6 to 7 cups total)
  • 2 Tbsp. olive oil (sub avocado oil)
  • 1/2 tsp. kosher salt
  • Chopped roasted peanuts and fresh chopped cilantro for garnish

Asian BBQ Sauce

  • 2 Tbsp. ketchup
  • 2 Tbsp. honey
  • 1 Tbsp. soy sauce
  • 1 Tbsp. sweet red chili sauce (I use Thai Kitchen brand)
  • 1 tsp. freshly grated ginger
  • 1 tsp. Tom Yum paste* (sub red Thai curry paste)
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Instructions 

  • Preheat oven to 450ºF. Line a rimmed baking sheet with foil for easy clean up, if desired. Toss cauliflower in olive oil and salt, and spread out on prepared baking sheet. Bake for 22 to 25 minutes, stirring once halfway through, until golden and charred in some spots.
  • Meanwhile, prepare Asian BBQ Sauce by placing all sauce ingredients in a small bowl and whisking to combine.
  • Drizzle half of Asian BBQ Sauce over roasted cauliflower, and toss to coat. Place cauliflower back in the oven, and bake for 8 to 10 more minutes, tossing every few minutes, until deeply caramelized.
  • Transfer cauliflower to a bowl or serving platter, and drizzle remaining sauce overtop. Garnish with chopped peanuts and fresh cilantro.

Notes

Tom Yum paste can be found in the international aisle of most well-stocked supermarkets. I've found it at Whole Foods, Safeway, and Walmart. 
This cauliflower is best enjoyed fresh, however if you end up with leftovers, store in an airtight container. For best results, reheat in the toaster oven or in a skillet over medium until warm. 

Nutrition

Serving: 0.66cup | Calories: 175kcal | Carbohydrates: 23g | Protein: 5g | Fat: 9g | Saturated Fat: 1.5g | Sodium: 710mg | Fiber: 4g | Sugar: 15g

I calculate these values by hand to ensure accuracy, however expect up to a 10% variable depending on food brands.

If you love this recipe, please leave a star rating and review below!
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Recipe Rating




14 Comments

  1. Judi JJ says:

    5 stars
    I made this tonight and my (non-vegetarian) husband and I both loved it. The only change I made was to use the Air Fryer to roast the cauliflower, since it was a weeknight. I had dinner on the table in less than 30 minutes. I enjoyed making the recipe; this is a great technique for cauliflower. I’m going to work my way through this website making all the cauliflower recipes now. Thanks for the recipe and for including the nutritional analysis–very helpful.

    1. Jamie Vespa says:

      Hi Judi- I’m so glad the recipe was a hit! Thank you for sharing your adjustments, too.

  2. Marian Junkman says:

    5 stars
    Made this exactly as recipe but put half sauce initially, I goofed. Then baked some more and broiled a couple minutes. Served with Lindbergh wild blend rice and some roasted pancetta only because I had it. Would have been fine without meat. Loved it!

    1. Jamie Vespa says:

      Hi Marian–I’m glad you enjoyed this one!! Thank you for leaving a review!

  3. Kaitlin Pace says:

    5 stars
    So good! I served it with coconut milk rice as another commenter suggested and it is a perfect pairing. I also had some red cages, so I shredded that and added it along with some scallions, a fried egg, and sesame seeds! I will definitely be making this again!

    1. Jamie Vespa says:

      Omg sounds like an incredible meal! So glad you enjoyed the cauli, Kaitlin!

  4. Amanda Shade says:

    This has become a major favorite at our house! We turned it into a full meal by serving the cauliflower on coconut milk rice with quick pickle cucumbers and red onions all topped off with a fried egg. My husband isn’t a vegetarian, but he asks for this recipe almost every week.

  5. Kristen D says:

    5 stars
    The sauce is delicious – I plan on using it again on Cauliflower Steaks for a Meatless Monday!

  6. Emily Raynes says:

    5 stars
    This recipe was incredible. Do yourself a favor and make it!

    1. Jamie Vespa says:

      So glad to hear! Thank you for taking time to leave a review!

  7. Kyle Harpster says:

    5 stars
    I never knew cauliflower could taste so good. This dish is so delicious. I am obsessed with the sauce. I would love to have this with your Black Pepper Tofu recipe some day.

    1. Jamie Vespa says:

      I’m so glad you enjoyed it, my love!!

  8. Emily G. says:

    5 stars
    So delicious! Made some extra sauce too and put it on salmon which paired really well.

    1. Jamie Vespa says:

      Oh what a great idea! So glad you enjoyed it. Thank you for taking time to leave a review!