Steamed first, then quickly sautéed in seasoned olive oil, this simple weeknight cauliflower recipe is delicious and very easy to make.
This flavorful cauliflower recipe has become one of my favorite side dishes. It's a simple and delicious recipe that I make quite often.
Cauliflower is such a versatile vegetable. I make it very often for my family, so I'm always on the lookout for new and interesting ways to prepare it. This tasty recipe fits the bill perfectly!
The ingredients you'll need
You'll only need a few simple ingredients to make sauteed cauliflower. The exact measurements are listed in the recipe card below. Here's an overview of what you'll need:
Fresh cauliflower: I use a small head of cauliflower in this recipe. I do recommend using fresh, not frozen cauliflower. Frozen will not be as good, both in terms of flavor and in terms of texture.
Olive oil: I love cooking with this delicious oil. You can also use avocado oil (though it won't be as flavorful), and another tasty option is ghee.
Minced garlic: Mince it yourself, or use the stuff that comes in a jar. Both work equally well. You can also use thinly sliced garlic cloves.
Kosher salt and black pepper: If using fine salt, you should reduce the amount you use, or the dish could end up too salty.
Spices: This is optional, but greatly enhances the flavor of the dish. I like to use dried thyme. Oregano is another tasty option.
How to make sauteed cauliflower
Scroll down to the recipe card for the detailed instructions. The basic idea? You simply cook fresh cauliflower florets in fragrant, garlic-infused olive oil.
Your first step is to trim the cauliflower, wash it, and cut it into bite-size pieces. Then, to speed up the cooking process, use the microwave for quickly steaming the cauliflower (microwave cauliflower is awesome, by the way).
After steaming, you quickly sauté the cauliflower pieces in seasoned olive oil (or ghee). This should take a mere five minutes over medium-high heat.
This is a great weekday side dish because it's ready so fast.
Don't overcook the cauliflower
I would say that the most important tip about this recipe is that in the first step, when you microwave-steam the florets, you shouldn't overcook them.
Overcooking them will result in mushy cauliflower. So start with just 4 minutes - you can always add a minute or two, or reduce the heat when they're in the skillet and saute them for a little longer.
What to serve with sauteed cauliflower?
What about leftovers?
You can keep the leftovers in the fridge, in an airtight container, for 3-4 days. They actually keep quite well, and the leftovers are just as tasty as the freshly cooked dish.
Reheat the leftovers gently, in the microwave on 50% power. I like them cold too! Sometimes I add them cold to a salad, the next day for my lunch.
More tasty cauliflower recipes
If you too enjoy cauliflower, may I suggest a couple more great recipes in addition to sauteed cauliflower? Such as cheesy roasted cauliflower and these wonderfully crispy and flavorful cauliflower pancakes. Both are very flavorful and very easy to make.
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- 1 small head cauliflower 1 lb. after trimming
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 tablespoon minced fresh garlic
- ½ teaspoon Diamond Crystal kosher salt
- ¼ teaspoon black pepper
- ½ teaspoon dried thyme
- Trim and wash the cauliflower. Chop it into bite-size pieces.
- Place the cauliflower in a microwave-safe bowl with 1 tablespoon water. Cover tightly with a microwave-safe plate. Microwave on high until almost tender, about 4 minutes. Drain.
- Heat the oil in a large (14-inch) nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add the cauliflower and sprinkle it with the seasonings.
- Allow the cauliflower to cook undisturbed until some pieces are browned on the bottom, 2-3 minutes.
- Gently stir and keep cooking for 1-2 more minutes, then serve.