Cauliflower Salad with Fresh Herbs

An easy summer salad, just steamed cauliflower tossed in a vinaigrette with fresh herbs. So simple to make but memorable to serve. No mayonnaise so perfect for picnics and outdoor gatherings. Weight Watchers Friendly & Low Carb. Vegan & Naturally Gluten-Free.
Cauliflower Salad with Fresh Herbs, another Summer Easy recipe ♥, just steamed cauliflower tossed in a vinaigrette with fresh herbs but really memorable. Vegan. Gluten Free. Low Carb. Weight Watchers Friendly.

Easy Summer Recipes ♥, a collection of easy-to-remember and memorable recipes especially for summer. Less cookin'. More livin'. It's the summer's motto!
This recipe is so quick and easy
that I'm adding it to a special collection of easy summer recipes
published every summer since 2009.
Watch for new "summer easy" recipes all summer long!
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Summer Easy: The First Inspiration

Truth be told, this was the first of two recipes that inspired this summer’s recipe theme, Summer Easy, a collection of easy summer recipes. (The second recipe? This Easy-Easy Grilled Mushroom Appetizer!)

I made it one night, twas excellent. The next night, we ended up with an impromptu party with about 90 minutes notice. I made it again, this time without thinking, just whisking the vinaigrette with the herbs that happened to be on hand while the cauliflower cooked. Voila, an easy summer salad — and healthy too — that our guests raved over.

The "recipe" is a breeze to remember: just toss steamed cauliflower with a vinaigrette and fresh herbs. That’s all!

How To Cut Up a Cauliflower Into Florets

The supermarket cauliflowers have been snowy white and inexpensive for a couple of weeks now. Is late May the "season" for California cauliflower? Perhaps!

But don't let the sight of a whole head of cauliflower overwhelm you. It's really easy to cut one into florets and takes only a couple of minutes. Here are photos that show how to cut cauliflower.

How to Cut Up a Cauliflower ♥, step by step

First, rinse the entire cauliflower under running water. With a sharp knife, slice off the outer leaves.

How to Cut Up a Cauliflower ♥, step by step

To keep the head whole, cut out the core in a deep cone shape. The core is often too tough to cook but okay to chew on. It's a good snack for the cook while cooking supper!

How to Cut Up a Cauliflower ♥, step by step

But for florets, there's no need to go through the trouble of the deep cone cut. Instead, cut the cauliflower in half through the core, then cut out the core with a V cut. Cut off the florets, small florets will cook more quickly, larger florets will look dramatic on a plate. Cook’s choice!


Hands-on time: 25 minutes
Time to table: 2 - 24 hours
Makes 5 cups
  • 1 large head fresh cauliflower, cleaned and trimmed, cut into small florets
  • 1 – 2 cloves garlic, minced fine
  • 3 tablespoons capers, drained
  • 3 tablespoons white wine vinegar
  • Juice of a lime (about 1 tablespoon)
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 3/4 cup mixed fresh herbs (see TIPS)
  • Hot sauce to taste
  • Kosher salt to taste

Bring an inch of water to a boil in a pot large enough to hold a collapsible steamer. Meanwhile, clean and trim the cauliflower. Arrange the cauliflower on the steamer, place in pot, cover and steam for about 8 minutes or until tender.

Meanwhile, in a large bowl, whisk together the garlic, capers, vinegar, lime juice and olive oil. Stir in the hot cauliflower and herbs. Season with hot sauce and salt to taste.

For the fullest flavor, let the salad rest at room temperature for 90 minutes and even in the refrigerator overnight.

ALANNA's TIPS I've tried two fresh herb combinations with this salad so far: flat-leaf parsley, cilantro and mint; also parsley and fresh tarragon. Both were great. If your inner vampire loves a really garlicky salad, this recipe can take 3 and even 4 cloves of garlic. Check the salad bar at the grocery store for just a few tablespoons of capers.
NUTRITION INFORMATION Per Half Cup: 49 Calories; 3g Tot Fat; 0g Sat Fat; 0mg Cholesterol; 104mg Sodium; 5g Carb; 3g Fiber; 2g Sugar; 2g Protein. WEIGHT WATCHERS POINTS Old Points 1 & PointsPlus 1 & SmartPoints 2 & Freestyle 1 This recipe has been "Alanna-sized" with reductions in fat and increases in no-calorie flavors.
Adapted from the New York Times' Recipes for Health by Martha Rose Shulman, a terrific source of healthy recipes.

A Menu

Easy-Easy Grilled Mushroom Appetizer

World's Best Burgers
Berry Baby Backs
~ Cauliflower Salad with Fresh Herbs ~
(recipe above)

Strawberries in Wine

More Easy Summer Salad Recipes

(hover with a mouse for a description; otherwise click a photo to view the recipe)

Green Bean Garden Salad Garden Pasta Salad with Mint Vinaigrette Zucchini Spiral 'Noodle' Salad
~ more Favorite Summer Salad Recipes ~
~ more salad recipes ~

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~ cauliflower ~
~ capers ~

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~ How to Clean & Trim a Head of Cauliflower ~

Kitchen Parade is written by second-generation food columnist Alanna Kellogg and features fresh, seasonal dishes for every-day healthful eating and occasional indulgences. Quick Suppers are Kitchen Parade favorites and feature recipes easy on the budget, the clock, the waistline and the dishwasher. Do you have a favorite recipe that other Kitchen Parade readers might like? Just send me a quick e-mail via How to print a Kitchen Parade recipe. Never miss a recipe! If you like this recipe, sign up for a free e-mail subscription. If you like Kitchen Parade, you're sure to like my food blog about vegetable recipes, too, A Veggie Venture. If you make this recipe, I'd love to know your results! Just leave a comment below.

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Alanna Kellogg
Alanna Kellogg

A Veggie Venture is home of "veggie evangelist" Alanna Kellogg and the famous asparagus-to-zucchini Alphabet of Vegetables.


  1. Anonymous5/26/2009

    The salad sounds great, but it's not from Tara Parker-Pope. It's from Martha Rose Shulman's "Recipes for Health."


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Thank you for taking a moment to write! I read each and every comment, for each and every recipe. If you have a specific question, it's nearly always answered quick-quick. But I also love hearing your reactions, your curiosity, even your concerns! When you've made a recipe, I especially love to know how it turned out, what variations you made, what you'll do differently the next time. ~ Alanna