When I start meal planning for the week, cauliflower is generally on my grocery list. Cauliflower, which appears as the focal point of many of my recipes, is one of my favorite vegetables. Why do I love cauliflower? Because it can be baked, broiled, and grilled. And, let's not forget, it absorbs sauces and flavors like a sponge. So tonight, I planned on making cauliflower steaks.
Cauliflower steak is not only low in calories, but it is also filling and very satisfying. However, there is an art to cutting and preparing cauliflower steaks, so you don't end up with cauliflower florets instead.
HOW TO BUY, TRIM, AND CUT CAULIFLOWER INTO STEAKS
Knowing how to prepare cauliflower is the first step to success. These step by step pictures and instructions should help you be successful the first time:
First, choose large, firm cauliflower without any brown spots. Brown spots, for example, indicate the cauliflower is old and not as fresh.
Next, flip the cauliflower upside down, and using a knife, carefully removed the core and stem. Cut around the stem, and carefully remove it without disrupting the florets, so it stays intact. Do not slice through the cauliflower, however, yet!
Once the core and stem of the cauliflower are removed, it should look just like this. Flip the cauliflower back over, revealing its top. You will notice the originally round cauliflower is now tripped, creating a point at the front, kind of like a rounded triangle.
A large cauliflower, for example, will yield five steaks. If cauliflower is smaller, it yields fewer steaks, but you will end up with florets you can use for another dish.
Now, cut the cauliflower steaks about an inch apart; you should get approximately 5 steaks.
THE ULTIMATE MARINADE FOR THE BEST CAULIFLOWER STEAKS
So, my husband misses steak, not the steak itself, the taste of the marinade and the grilling 'steak" experience. If you can't beat em', join em,' I say, so I made a steak marinade my sister, and I used to make back in the day.
Of course, I used vegan ingredients and took out the oil. Basically, I 'veganized' our favorite steak marinade to make it vegan happy.
I also use this marinade for tofu on the grill, so it is a tried and true recipe I know you will love. All you need is:
- Soy sauce or tamari
- Fresh lemon juice
- Vegan Worcestershire sauce
- Garlic powder
- Italian Seasoning
- Black pepper
- Minced garlic
- Sriracha (optional)
As with most of my marinade recipes, I suggest marinating for at least a few hours or overnight. Just stir whisk the ingredients in a large 9 X 13-inch pan, so the cauliflower steaks are in a single row in the pan's base.
At some point in the marinading process, I turned the cauliflower steaks over in the marinade.
HOW TO GRILL THE BEST CAULIFLOWER STEAKS IN TOWN
The secret to perfectly grilled cauliflower, however, is two-fold. First, you need the grill to be hot BEFORE you start grilling the steaks. I recommend 400 degrees or medium-low, depending on the grill you use. The second is to use a cast-iron grill press.
And, it only takes 15 minutes from the minute you put the cauliflower steaks on the grill.
COOKING CAULIFLOWER STEAKS IN THE OVEN...
Not everyone, however, has a grill, so you can also cook cauliflower steaks in the oven. To cook, preheat your oven to 400 degrees. Place each steak on a silicone baking mat or parchment paper on a baking sheet. Cook for 20 minutes and then flip them over and cook the other side another 20 minutes.
SUGGESTED SAUCE AND SIDE DISHES FOR CAULIFLOWER STEAKS
Because I was already using the grill, I decided to grill some vegetables. Instead of using the steak marinade, I made a different, quick marinade made of balsamic vinegar, soy sauce (Tamari), and dijon mustard. Even though I planned to grill the vegetables on skewers, I marinaded all the vegetables together beforehand.
Then, right before grilling, I put the vegetables on the skewers. However, a helpful tip is to soak your wooden skewer sticks in water before cooking, so the vegetables come right off the sticks easily.
Then, it simply takes 10 minutes to cook the vegetables on the grill. The tomatoes, though, take 5 minutes, so I separate the vegetables on the skewers.
I also decided to serve Quinoa to absorb all the sauce. Of course, I also added my favorite oil-free chimichurri sauce to both the steaks and the vegetables.
WHAT IS CHIMMICHURRI SAUCE?
Chimichurri is an Argentinian sauce and condiment used as a sauce or condiment for meat, fish, and vegetables. Typically, chimichurri sauce is flavorful with flavor with an acidic tang. Although chimichurri sauce is traditionally not cooked, it can also be used as a marinade.
Since I have an herb garden in my yard year-round, I am spoiled to have fresh parsley and cilantro whenever I want it. Even though chimichurri sauce is traditionally a grilling sauce, it has many uses throughout the year.
So, if it's BBQ season or the snow is knee-deep where you live, chimichurri sauce brings bland food to life.
WHAT DOES CHIMICHURRI SAUCE TASTE LIKE?
Because chimichurri sauce is made with fresh ingredients, it tastes zesty and sassy! With its strong garlic, cilantro, and parsley flavors, it smells like a fresh herb garden.
ARE YOU A CAULIFLOWER FAN? IF SO, CHECK THESE RECIPES OUT!
- Curried Cauliflower
- General Tso Cauliflower
- Roasted Cauliflower Salad
- Skinny Roasted Cauliflower Tacos with Avocado-Cilantro Cream
- Skinny Cauliflower Nachos
- Skinny Buffalo Cauliflower Salad with Cashew Ranch Dressing
- Spicy Korean Baked Cauliflower
- Skinny Buffalo Cauliflower Mac and Cheese
- Skinny Roasted BBQ Cauliflower Panini Wrap
- Tahini Roasted Cauliflower
- Cauliflower Bisque Soup with Paprika and Chives
- Cauliflower Bisque Soup with Paprika and Chives
- 1 large head cauliflower cut into steaks
Cauliflower Steak Marinade
- ⅓ cup soy sauce Tamari
- ⅓ cup fresh lemon juice
- ¼ cup vegan Worcestershire I used Annie's
- 2 cloves garlic. minced
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1 teaspoon onion powder
- 3 Tablespoons Italian Seasoning
- ½ teaspoon sriracha
- 8 ounces whole button mushrooms
- 1 red onion cut into large chunks
- 6 Kumato tomatoes or tomatoes of choice
- 4 Tablespoons balsamic vinegar
- 4 Tablespoons soy sauce Tamari
- 1 Tablespoon dijon mustard
- 1 recipe chimichurri sauce see link
CAULIFLOWER STEAKS/ MARINADE
- Whisk all ingredients into a 9 X 13-inch pan
- Cut cauliflower steaks and lay them flat in the marinade.
- Cover and refrigerate
- Flip cauliflower steaks over to marinate the opposite sides.
VEGETABLES AND MARINADE (OPTIONAL)
- Mix marinade ingredients
- Cut the red onion into large equal chunks.
- Clean and remove stems from mushrooms.
- Leave tomatoes whole
- Combine in an airtight container with marinade.
- Soak skewer sticks in water for hours before cooking vegetables.
- When ready to grill, separate vegetables into individual skewers.
CHIMICHURRI SAUCE (OPTIONAL)
- Follow the direction for chimichurri sauce on the attached link.
- Pre-heat grill to 400 degrees.
- Remove cauliflower steaks from marinade.
- Place steaks on the hot grill.
- Cook for 15 minutes, rotating every 7 or so minutes.
- Use a grill press on each cauliflower steak for a minute or so while cooking.
- Remove from grill and return to the pan with extra marinade.
- If grilling vegetables, cook mushrooms and onions for 10 minutes (last 10 minutes while cauliflower is cooking)
- Grill the tomatoes for 5 minutes.
- If making quinoa, follow the directions on the attached link.
- Place a serving of quinoa in a base of a shallow bowl or plate.
- Add a cauliflower steak and a spoonful of grilled vegetables.
- Drizzle with chimichurri sauce.
Hi! My name is Kathy, I am a retired high school English teacher & vegan enthusiast and blogger. My entire blog is fully plant-based vegan. I truly believe what we eat & how we live determines our health & the preservation of our planet! 🙂