Bloomin’ Indian-Spiced Whole-Roasted Cauliflower {With Indian-Spiced Bloomin’ Sauce}

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How many of us have a guilty food pleasure? Let me rephrase that: How many of us don’t?

I wholeheartedly admit that one of my favorite guilty pleasures when it comes to food is a blooming onion. Deep fried in a crunchy spiced coating, with tender pieces of onion, which is without a doubt my favorite vegetable (maybe even my favorite food!). Anyone who knows me knows that I order any sandwich “extra, extra onion” because just one “extra” just isn’t enough, lol. Topped off with a spicy little sauce for dipping, a blooming onion is perfection in all its greasy glory.

It’s a good thing treats like that don’t come around often. But I wish they did.

Actually, what I wish is that they did, but in healthier form, which is exactly what Alyssa from Everyday Maven has done with her cauliflower. How is that for brilliance?


Speaking of brilliant, anyone who continuously comes up with fresh new ways to keep veggies exciting is a kitchen genius in my book. Alyssa does just that in her eBook Think Vegetables First, which is a collection of 12 vegetable side dishes.

When I was looking through the recipes trying to pick one to make, there were so many that stood out to me; there isn’t a single recipe that I don’t want to try! Here are a few of them: Old Bay Parsnip Fries, Moroccan Carrot Salad, Masala Smashed Fingerling Potatoes, Coconut Creamed Kale, Cinnamon + Palm Sugar Roasted Delicata Squash, and especially Shredded Brussels Sprouts with Crispy Shallots, which sounds amazing! If you want some fantastic fresh ideas for veggie sides, this eBook is a must-have, and at $4.99 it’s incredibly reasonably priced… anything that gets the family eating more veggies is worth its weight in gold, isn’t it?

The first thing I made was the Bloomin’ Indian-Spiced Whole-Roasted Cauliflower. I only made a couple substitutions to the spices: I used garam masala instead of curry (based on personal preference) and I used ground yellow mustard powder instead of brown mustard seeds (because that’s what I had in my pantry). I served this with a creamy dipping sauce, which is totally optional (the cauliflower is delicious even without it!), but definitely fun for dipping and serving purposes. I included this as part of our Superbowl appetizer spread and it was a huge hit.

Head over to Everyday Maven to check out more of Alyssa’s healthy and delicious recipes, and get your copy of Think Vegetables First here!


Bloomin’ Indian-Spiced Whole-Roasted Cauliflower {With Indian-Spiced Bloomin’ Sauce}
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Yield: 6 servings
  • 1 (2.5 lb/1.15 kg) head cauliflower
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon garam masala spice mix
  • ½ teaspoon coarse salt
  • ½ teaspoon cumin seeds
  • ¼ teaspoon ground yellow mustard powder
  • ¼ teaspoon ground turmeric
  • ⅛ teaspoon ground cayenne pepper (more or less to taste)
  • ⅛ teaspoon ground black pepper
  • ¼ cup (50 g) low-fat mayo
  • ¼ cup (55 g) plain, low-fat yogurt
  • 1 tablespoon ketchup
  • 2 teaspoons coarse mustard with horseradish
  • ½ teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
  • ½ teaspoon ground sweet paprika
  • ½ garlic powder
  • ½ teaspoon onion powder
  • ¼ teaspoon garam masala spice mix
  • ⅛ teaspoon black pepper
  • ⅛ teaspoon ground cayenne pepper (more or less to taste)
  1. Preheat oven to 425F. Line a large baking sheet with foil and spray it with cooking spray.
  2. Remove the outer green leaves from the cauliflower and use a paring knife to cut out the core, leaving enough core intact so that the florets stay together.
  3. Place the cauliflower on the prepared baking sheet and rub with the olive oil.
  4. Combine all the spices for the cauliflower in a small bowl, and evenly rub the spices onto the oiled cauliflower.
  5. Cook until the cauliflower is tender inside and golden outside, about 1 hour 15 minutes, rotating the baking sheet once halfway through.
  6. Cool for 5 minutes, and in the meantime whisk together all ingredients for the sauce.
  7. Transfer the cauliflower to a serving dish; if desired, serve with the sauce alongside for dipping.
Recipe for Bloomin’ Indian Spiced Whole-Roasted Cauliflower adapted slightly from Think Vegetables First, Winter Edition 2012, by Alyssa Brantley of Everyday Maven. Recipe for Indian-Spiced Bloomin’ Sauce is mine.

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    • says

      Wanted to let you know I made this tonight and it was really good. The spices were perfect. It had the perfect amount of heat. I couldn’t find coarse mustard with horseradish so I just mixed half Old Style mustard and half horse radish and it was fine. Is there a certain brand that you use so I can look for it next time I make it? Thanks for the recipe.

      • says

        Vita, I’m so glad you enjoyed this! Right now I’m using Emeril’s Horseradish Mustard, which is really good. In the past I’ve also used a horseradish mustard with maple, which was fantastic (I don’t remember the brand name of it though!).

  1. says

    Wow, I’ve never seen a cauliflower served whole before! It definitely looks impressive – and most importantly a delicious new way with veg.

  2. says

    What an outright FABULOUS recipe! I really can not wait to give this a try. I love vegetables, and know I will be especially crazy about this serving idea. Thanks for such an inspirational post!

  3. says

    this definitely marks the first time i’ve seen a whole head of cauliflower prepared like this! i’m also a fan of new ways to make and eat veggies. :)

  4. Sue says

    Thank you for this fantastic recipe. I served it last night with bean burgers. BUT today the leftovers were all mine! So good!!


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