This Harissa Cauliflower recipe features crispy, buttery cauliflower seasoned in a peppery harissa paste and topped off with a tangy tahini dressing and freshly chopped herbs! This side dish offers the perfect combination of heat, smokiness, and savory goodness!

Harissa cauliflower in a white serving bowl.

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    The Best Harissa Cauliflower Recipe

    Who ever said that cauliflower is boring is seriously mistaken! Roasted harissa cauliflower proves that cauliflower can be absolutely delicious with very little effort.

    I am a true believer that roasted cauliflower is the best kind of cauliflower. It gets taken up a notch with a bold, red chili paste known as harissa paste. After being roasted to crispy perfection, I like to drizzle a creamy tahini sauce on top for a wonderful combination of flavors and textures!

    This cauliflower recipe is super easy to whip up and serve alongside your favorite meals for dinner. Even picky eaters will be loving how their veggies taste with this recipe!

    Cauliflower on a sheet pan after being roasted and drizzled with tahini sauce.

    Ingredients Needed

    For the Roasted Harissa Cauliflower

    • Cauliflower: You will need about one head of cauliflower for this recipe. Chop it into bite sized pieces!
    • Olive Oil: To help the cauliflower get nice and crispy in the oven.
    • Harissa: You can buy a jar of harissa paste at the store in the international food section! They also sell it online here!
    • Garlic & Onion Powder: For a deeper, savory flavor.
    • Parsley: Freshly chopped parsley for garnish!

    For the Creamy Tahini Sauce

    • Tahini: Tahini adds a creamy and tangy flavor to the sauce, which balances out the harissa perfectly.
    • Lemon Juice: A little lemon juice balances all the flavors and adds a bit more tang!
    • Garlic: Fresh garlic adds an extra savory flavor!
    • Maple Syrup: Don’t worry, the maple syrup doesn’t make the sauce sweet! It will just balance all the flavors out perfectly.
    • Olive Oil: Use a high quality olive oil for the best flavor.
    • Water: You might need just a splash of water to thin out the sauce to a perfect drizzling texture! It all depends on how thick or runny your tahini is.
    Pieces of cauliflower on a sheet pan coated in harissa paste before being baked.

    How to Make harissa cauliflower

    1. Preheat & Prep: Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F. Add the cauliflower, olive oil, harissa, garlic powder and onion powder to a large sheet pan. Toss to coat the cauliflower in the seasonings and spread into an even layer.
    2. Bake: Bake for 15-20 minutes or until the cauliflower is tender. While the cauliflower is baking, make the tahini sauce.
    3. Make the Tahini Sauce: Add all of the sauce ingredients to a small bowl and whisk to combine. If the mixture is still chick and not runny, add a splash or two of water. Set aside.
    4. Drizzle & Serve: Drizzle the cauliflower with tahini sauce and fresh chopped parsley! Serve immediately and enjoy!
    Harissa cauliflower on a sheet pan after being baked.

    Tips For Success

    • Don’t overcrowd the pan! Make sure the pieces of cauliflower are in an even layer on the sheet pan and not piled on top of each other. This will allow each of them to get crispy on the outside and buttery on the inside!
    • If you don’t have tahini on hand, try substituting it with Greek yogurt. It doesn’t offer the exact same flavor, but it is a good creamy and tangy alternative!
    • If you are sensitive to spice, use a mild harissa paste. If you like spicy foods, you can opt for a spicy one! Just give it a taste before adding too much so you know exactly how spicy it is!
    Up close shot of cauliflower on the sheet pan after being baked.

    Frequently Asked Questions

    What is harissa?

    Harissa is a hot chili pepper paste that is usually packed in olive oil with additional flavors like garlic, coriander and cumin. It is used often in Middle Eastern and North African cuisine. It has a peppery and smoky flavor, and varies in heat depending on what you buy. Generally, it is not extremely spicy.

    How should I store leftover harissa cauliflower?

    You can store any leftovers in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 4 days! Reheat in the microwave until heated through. To make it extra crispy, I like to reheat mine in the air fryer! I recommend storing the tahini sauce separately and drizzling in on top of the heated through leftovers, too!

    Cauliflower with harissa on the sheet pan after being drizzled with tahini sauce.

    Serving Suggestions

    Roasted harissa cauliflower and lemony tahini dressing is a versatile side dish that can be paired with a bunch of different meals! You can place it on a bed of lettuce or greens for a warm, spicy salad. Or, pop them into a tortilla wrap with some roasted chickpeas for a vegetarian, protein-packed lunch!

    Or, serve harissa cauliflower with dinner, as a side dish to some of my favorite meals:

    Cauliflower with harissa and tahini being served in a white platter.

    More Veggie-Packed Recipes to Try

    Harissa Cauliflower

    This Harissa Cauliflower recipe features crispy, buttery cauliflower seasoned in a peppery harissa paste and topped off with a tangy tahini dressing and freshly chopped herbs! This side dish offers the perfect combination of heat, smokiness, and savory goodness!
    Servings: 4
    Prep Time: 10 minutes
    Cook Time: 20 minutes
    Total Time: 30 minutes

    Ingredients 

    Roasted Harissa Cauliflower

    Creamy Tahini Sauce

    • 2 tbsp tahini
    • 2 tbsp lemon juice
    • 1 clove garlic, minced
    • 1 tsp maple syrup, or more to taste
    • 1 tbsp olive oil
    • water as needed to thin out the sauce

    Instructions 

    Roasted Harissa Cauliflower

    • Preheat oven to 425 degrees.
      Add the cauliflower, olive oil, harissa, garlic powder and onion powder to a large sheet pan. Toss to coat the cauliflower in the seasonings and spread into an even layer.
    • Bake for 15-20 minutes or until the cauliflower is tender.
      While the cauliflower is baking make the tahini sauce.
    • Drizzle the cauliflower with tahini sauce and fresh chopped parsley! Serve immediately and enjoy!

    Creamy Tahini Sauce

    • Add all of the sauce ingredients to a small bowl and whisk to combine. If the mixture is still thick and not runny add a splash or two of water. Set aside.

    Nutrition Information

    Calories: 125kcalCarbohydrates: 6gProtein: 2gFat: 11gSaturated Fat: 2gPolyunsaturated Fat: 3gMonounsaturated Fat: 7gSodium: 105mgPotassium: 92mgFiber: 1gSugar: 2gVitamin A: 57IUVitamin C: 5mgCalcium: 18mgIron: 1mg

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