Lemon Zesty Cauliflower with Garlic Basil

Simple, fast, and delicious. That is the second name for this wonderfully easy-to-make side dish.  My mother used to make cauliflower, and drizzle olive oil and lemon on it – we used to love it. And sometimes she would slightly fry the cauliflower, which would create the most delightful of tastes.  This is healthy and full of nutrients, particularly in the raw lemon, basil and garlic.  Now, if you don’t have time to make a main course, open a tin of cannellini beans, and add them to this. Or buy some hummus, and a crunchy brown baguette, and indulge.  Otherwise, you can eat it with just about anything, especially if it’s cold outside, and you don’t fancy a cold salad again you can serve this up warm.  Prepared in just a few minutes.   Here’s how :


  • 1 medium cauliflower (as white and tight as they come), cut into medium sized florets, washed and steamed for a few minutes (do not over-cook)
  • 2-3 garlic cloves, very finely chopped
  • ½ cup fresh basil, roughly chopped
  • juice of a fresh lemon
  • the zest of a lemon
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • a drizzle of extra virgin olive oil


Place the cauliflower in a serving bowl whilst warm, then add the rest of the ingredients on top, and serve. Enjoy !!!

All recipes, content & design © Miriam Sorrell www.mouthwateringvegan.com 2010

These are free recipes for your pleasure – all we ask in return is that you take a few moments to leave a constructive comment !



  1. mmmm! just bought a cauliflower, perfect timing 🙂

  2. Hi Melina, hope you enjoy it – this can also be made with broccoli. Take care.

  3. Flavia Hi, yes it would make a great potluck – the ingredients really compliment one another – hope you try it soon, let me know how it goes. Keep well !

  4. Paola Wegetariański

    It sounds really tasty I will try it tomorrow whit my broccoli Im a vegan but I really have a hard time eating my veggies 🙁 but lemon is one of my favour ones as well is avocados any Ideas for avocados other than guacamole?
    Ty so much Miriam I love your website


  5. Hi there Paola and welcome to my site. This recipe works very well with broccoli, and I hope that you have enjoyed making and eating it. Regarding avocados I will list a recipe soon, however bear in mind that their nutritional value is at it’s best when eaten raw, so add it to any salads that you are making for variety and also remember to make different dressings to make it desirable to eat – it’s just full of nutrients !!! Cheers and thanks for compliments !

  6. Very nice presentation. You site and page is great, we should talk.


  7. Hi Andrew, many thanks for your constructive feedback – all the very best to you too !

  8. I made this dish for our Easter dinner with my family. I recently changed my diet for healthy reasons, lots more vegans dishes. This cauliflower dish was a big hit, several asked for the recipe. Love your recipes, off to try the Eezy Peezy Stuffed Iceberg Parcels.

  9. Deenise Hi there, thanks for your wonderful feedback and glad the dish was a hit !!! Cauliflower is so full of nutrients too ! Hope you enjoy my Stuffed Parcels and shall await further feedback on that !

  10. Just a little over two weeks ago decided to adopt a diet free of red meat with a view to moving toward a vegan diet. Am currently experimenting with cooking and have a 3 day alternating plan which includes fish one day, then vegetarian, then vegan. I love my food and have a husband who adores his, and for both of us the food HAS to be tasty. Thank heavens I found this site. Am starting with this fabulous looking cauliflower and also today bought ingredients for ‘gardiniere’ (not sure if I spelled that correctly sorry. Anyway that is going to be lunch tomorrow. Can’t wait. Thanks again.

  11. Hi there Barbara and welcome here – thank you so much for sharing all with me. I am very happy that you have found my site – and you will see that I not only make delicious breakfast/s but lunches, dinners and desserts (dips, pate, corn bread and cakes) – my aim is to share my repertoire of diverse dishes – top priority is taste, together with nutritious food in the main and pleasing to the eye – I have helped many cross over to the other side and from the looks of things you are well on the way – keep up the great work and if you need anything regarding food info, if you can’t find it on google, just let me know. In the meantime do let me know how your menus go from my blog, I shall be delighted to hear back from you as and when – until then cheers to you !

  12. Thanks for your lovely response Miriam. This cauliflower was to die for, perfect for my taste (I just adore lemon and love cauli and my husband adores cauli and loves everything else). This is definitely a winner and will be on the table regularly. Today am making gardiniera. Can’t wait to try.

  13. Hi Barbara, that sounds great. I am so glad this dish is an appealing one for you and your husband, and given how healthy it is, it’s one that is great to have at the table, and great to have throughout the year (or when cauliflower is in season !!! Enjoy, and cheers to you !.

  14. This is the third recipe I’ve tried from your site, Miriam, and it’s absolutely fantastic! I made it as a side dish this afternoon. The lemon balances the garlic and basil to perfection! A great cauliflower recipe, presentation and taste!

  15. Audrey many thanks for your wonderful comment, am so happy you enjoyed the combination flavours from this recipe and that you have enjoyed the others you tried too ! I appreciate your feedback Audrey, and look forward to your future comments too ! Best to you !.

  16. This looks delicious and I will be sure to give it a try. Thank you for posting all these wonderful recipes. Here is just a thought that might be of help: People may be more willing to donate if there was a “Print Recipe” button. As it is, as far as I can see, one has to copy and paste” it onto another program, right? Is there an easier way that I am missing? Thanks!

  17. this was delicious!!! Very easy to make too. definitely a keeper! thanks for the recipe.

  18. Hi there Sandi, thanks for your comment. Unfortunately, I do not have the facility in my software to offer the option you mention. Hope you continue to enjoy my recipes. Best to you.

  19. Hi there Alisha and welcome to my site – so glad you enjoyed this recipe. It is very easy to make you are right ! Am glad you will be enjoying this one again and again in the near future. Cheers to you and look forward to your future comments !.

  20. I tried this and loved it! I had to use dry basil but I think I would have like fresh better. Excellent!!!!

  21. Glad you enjoyed it Kathleen – yes, fresh basil is preferable – but it’s a great and simple way of enjoying these veggies. Cheers !.

  22. I never thought of adding lemon to cauliflower – this dish is so encredibly tasty! I made it this weekend for a dinenr party and people loved it – fresh and light and full of nutrients, really the perfect side dish. I made a lot so was able to enjoy it again the next day – yum!

  23. Hi there dear Caroline and welcome here. I am delighted that you have made this zesty cauliflower dish, it really is a special yet simple way to prepare cauliflower and the lemon zang just takes it to another level. It is certainly a perfect side dish I have to agree with you there. I look forward to your future comments on my blog !

  24. OH MY! I love Cauliflower. I’m going to try this asap.

  25. As a vegetarian diabetic it’s vital that I have the correct nutrients every day but I love cooking and believe we feast with our eyes first … This is perfect .. Thank you 🙂

  26. Maryanne Hi there and welcome here. I must say that I agree with your culinary belief, we indeed eat with our eyes first. This recipe is great and absolutely fine for diabetes as are quite a few others here (browse my categories). Let me know how it goes and enjoy ! Best wishes your way in the meantime !

  27. Hi there Chloe and welcome here. Do let me know how this recipe goes as and when. Best wishes to you !

  28. Hi Miriam, I bought a whole lot of cauliflower the other day and par boiled then, froze it – can i use that ? iIs not easy for me to get to the shops.
    The recipe look delicious. I’ve not gone vegan yet, I still eat chicken and fish 2 times a week but am experimenting with vegetables and fruit the rest of the time. I must admit I feel much better with no red meat.. but i love my fish and chicken …

  29. just had a thought to add fresh young spinach – got a lot growing in the garden think it might complement the cauliflower mmm its a thought

  30. Cynthia Hi there and welcome here. Yes the answer is yes you can use par boiled cauliflower, allow it to thaw first, then steam it for a couple of minutes to put some heat back into it and follow the recipe. And to answer your other comment about the spinach, yes, sure spinach would marry very well indeed with the cauliflower and lemon and garlic. Regarding your saying that you have not become vegan yet, I don’t quite understand whether it’s in your mind to eventually become vegan, so not sure about what you meant completely. The only thing I will say Cynthia is that many vegans that become vegan for moral reasons (the animals) become so not because they don’t like the taste – I loved all my meat very much when I used to eat it some years ago, I can assure you I did not give it up because I stopped loving the taste, not at all – I stopped because my love for animals weighed heavier on the scales than the taste, and I guess since FB emerged the horrors of the slaughter house realities and the way animals are kept and treated just made me feel I wanted to totally disengage myself from being part of that food chain that links me to these horrors. But I loved my food with a passion and hence my blog here. Hope you enjoy my recipes and I look forward to your future comments and feedback on my blog. Best wishes to you !

  31. Cynthia Hi – you are correct the young spinach will go very well with it too. In fact we have a warm salad I make and it includes both of them and they do very well together. Good thinking on your part ! Enjoy !

  32. Excellent dish! Tastes balance each other beautifully, will be a regular one for me.

  33. Im very interested in joining Judy

  34. Hi there Judy. I am not sure what you mean to join – the only thing I offer presently is a list of people who are interested in purchasing my book next spring (some months from now) – I will notify the people who wish to purchase my book. I am not clear if this is what you mean. Forgive me for sounding forward, but am not sure if you mean ‘joining’ my list. Please let me know if so. Best wishes your way in the meantime and hope you are enjoying my recipes. Cheers !

  35. Thanks for that Lyse and glad you enjoyed it !

  36. Very nice and very refreshing. The lemon really lifts the cauliflower. I had this with some leftover spaghetti with your Spinach, Basil & Rocket Pesto. 😀

  37. What a wonderful combination you choose there – well done Sharron ! 🙂

  38. I was looking for a recipe like this, but my cauliflower will be with parsley or arugula 😉

  39. Hi Anna, am sure that the arugula will work very well. Enjoy !

  40. Pingback: Two Bear Farm › CSA Week #10

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