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cauliflower steaks with kale pesto on citrus salad
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5 from 3 votes

Pesto Cauliflower Steaks + Citrus Salad

Healthy cauliflower steaks dinner over a citrus salad, with a few make-ahead options to get this on the table quickly.
Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time20 mins
Additional prep while cauliflower roasts10 mins
Course: Main Entree
Cuisine: American
Keyword: cauliflower steaks
Servings: 2 people
Author: The Wimpy Vegetarian


Cauliflower Steaks

Citrus Salad

  • 2 oranges of any kind, or 1 tangerine + 1 orange
  • 1 medium shallot minced
  • 1/3 cup kalamata olives, halved
  • 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon Chipotle Spice Rub, or your favorite spicy or Cajun spice rub
  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil


Cauliflower Steaks

  • Make the Chipotle Spice Rub and Brown Butter Breadcrumbs, and set aside.
  • Preheat the oven to 400° F. Slice the cauliflower head in half through the central stalk. Slice each half into two halves. You should have 2 thick cauliflower slabs that are intact. Some florets will crumble off the slabs towards the ends. Reserve the florets for this recipe. Wrap the remaining cauliflower for another use, and store in the refrigerator.
  • Rub both the slabs and florets with olive oil and the Chipotle Spice Rub.
  • Heat some olive oil in a sautè pan over medium-high heat, and sear the cauliflower slabs until slightly crisped - about 3 minutes per side.
  • Place on a baking sheet along with the florets, and roast until tender, about 15 minutes.
  • Spoon the citrus salad (below) onto a serving plate, and arrange the cauliflower steaks over the salad. Add a dollop of pesto and a sprinkling of breadcrumbs.

Citrus Salad

  • Slice the citrus into thick slices and coarsely chop. Combine in a medium bowl with the shallot, olives and the roasted cauliflower florets.
  • Combine the vinegar and spice rub, and whisk in the olive oil. Toss with the citrus salad.


Make Ahead Tips

  • I keep a stash of toasted breadcrumbs in a jar in the refrigerator. Having these on hand make it easy to add as a finishing touch of flavor and texture to this dish. If you don't have them on hand, you can eliminate this extra crunch.
  • Either make the Chipotle Spice mix ahead of time, or use your favorite spicy spicy mix, such as a Cajun spice mix if you're pressed for time.
  • The citrus salad can be made ahead, but I typically make it while the cauliflower is roasting.
Tips For Omnivores at the Table
Steak, obviously. My husband, Carnivorous Maximus, prefers ribeye steaks rubbed with the same Chipotle Spice Rub.