Roasted Cauliflower and Quinoa with Candied Walnuts


This simple and elegant dish makes an easy dinner party side. Slideshow:  More Cauliflower Recipes 

Roasted Cauliflower and Quinoa with Candied Walnuts
Photo: © Kristen Stevens
Active Time:
25 mins
Total Time:
35 mins


  • 1 small head of cauliflower

  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil

  • 1/2 cup walnuts

  • 2 tablespoons sugar

  • 2 tablespoons water

  • 1/4 teaspoon salt

  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper

  • 2 tablespoons quinoa


  1. Preheat the oven to 420° and set the oven rack to the highest setting. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

  2. Cut cauliflower into bite-sized pieces, toss with the extra-virgin olive oil and spread on a sheet tray. Roast in the oven for 20-30 minutes, or until soft and very brown in spots, turning half way through.

  3. While the cauliflower is roasting, prepare the walnuts. Line a plate with a piece of parchment paper. Add the walnuts, sugar, salt and pepper to a small frying pan over high heat and stir well. Cook until the nuts have caramelized and all the liquid has evaporated, shaking the pan occasionally, about 4 minutes. Transfer the walnuts to the plate, making sure they are in a single layer.

  4. Add the quinoa to a small frying pan over medium high heat. When the quinoa begins to pop, shake the pan occasionally and continue to cook for about 2 more minutes, or until the quinoa is fragrant and light brown. Remove from the heat.

  5. To serve, place the roasted cauliflower on a serving platter and top with candied walnuts and toasted quinoa.

Make Ahead

The walnuts can be candied and the quinoa toasted up to 1 week in advance. Store each in a separate airtight container at room temperature.

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