Spicy Sesame Cauliflower with Toasted Garlic

roasted sesame cauliflower with toasted garlic and pecans, tossed in a sweet & spicy asian-inspired sauce

servings: 4


  • 1 (2 lb) head cauliflower, trimmed into florets
  • neutral oil (I like using safflower)
  • kosher salt
  • 1 tbsp sesame seeds
  • 1 tbsp toasted sesame oil
  • 4 cloves garlic, very thinly sliced
  • 1 red fresno chile, thinly sliced
  • 1 tsp minced fresh ginger
  • ¼ cup soy sauce
  • ½ cup hoisin sauce
  • ½ cup sweet chili sauce
  • 1 cup pecans


  1. Preheat the oven to 425°F. Place the cauliflower florets onto a sheet pan. Drizzle with oil, season with salt, and toss well to coat. Spread into a single layer. Sprinkle the sesame seeds and drizzle the sesame oil over top. Roast for 15 minutes.
  2. Meanwhile, heat a 2 qt saucepan over medium heat. Add a tablespoon of oil. Once hot, add the slices of garlic. Toast until golden and crispy, stirring continuously so they don’t burn. Use a slotted spoon to transfer the garlic to a plate lined with a paper towel.
  3. Add the red chile and ginger to the saucepan. Cook for a minute or so until softened. Add the soy, hoisin, and sweet chili sauces. Bring to a boil over medium heat and cook for 2 minutes. Reduce the heat to medium-low and continue to cook for 6-8 more minutes, or until the sauce is reduced to a glaze.
  4. Add the pecans to the cauliflower pan and continue to roast for 10 more minutes, or until the cauliflower is browned and tender, and the pecans are fragrant.
  5. Combine the roasted cauliflower, sesame seeds, and pecans with the sauce and toss to coat. Serve on a platter and garnish with the toasted garlic.


You can turn this into a complete meal by roasting up some chicken & making some rice. Serve it all together with the sauce drizzled over top.