Roasted Mexican Cauliflower with Pepitas

Roasted Mexican Cauliflower with Pepitas -

Cauliflower is a vegetable I had to learn to love. I went through the better portion of my life not knowing how good it could be, completely unaware of its delicious potential. But once I discovered the ultimate secret to preparing cauliflower, to simply roast it in the oven until it’s tender and caramelized, it’s been hard to hold me back. I’m always looking for new flavors to pair this veggie with, and this Roasted Mexican Cauliflower with Pepitas is the best dish yet!

Kitchen Conversations Group -

I’m ever so thankful to be a part of the Kitchen Conversations group again this year with Land O’Lakes, sharing about their butter products. Last year was a blast working with Becky from the Land O’Lakes Test Kitchen, Ree from The Pioneer Woman, Julie from The Little Kitchen, Maria from Two Peas and Their Pod, and Sommer from A Spicy Perspective. This year we have some new faces joining the group. Yay! Please say hello to Bridget from Bake at 350, Joanne from Fifteen Spatulas, Jenny from Picky Palate, and Jessica from The Novice Chef!

2014 has kicked off with an awesome start, with a visit to the ranch last week. Or should I say, The Ranch! It was so much fun, super casual and filled with great food, friends, and laughter. For a trip recap with photos from the event, click here. Also be sure to check out the hashtag #KitchenConvo on Instagram, Twitter, and Pinterest for more on our time in Oklahoma, plus all the latest Kitchen Conversations happenings!

Roasted Mexican Cauliflower with Pepitas -

Did you know that Land O’Lakes offers a variety of spreadable butter products in tubs? When my husband found out that the Kitchen Conversations group was going to be working with these this year, I discerned visible signs of excitement from him. Blake is a man who does not show his emotions, so it was obvious to me that this was a good thing. A man of simple needs, he requires nothing more than a slice of warm toast with a good shmear of creamy butter. But when the butter doesn’t shmear easily, well, that’s not a good thing. Needless to say, Blake loves the Land O’Lakes spreadable butter products. He and our daughters are especially fond of the Cinnamon Sugar Butter Spread; it makes every piece of toast a special one!

Roasted Mexican Cauliflower with Pepitas -

I think that most people view the spreadable butter products as only easy-to-use toppers for their toast or muffin. But I wanted to show you how versatile they truly are and used the Land O Lakes® Butter with Olive Oil in my recipe for this roasted cauliflower. Because, really, its only ingredients are sweet cream, olive oil, and salt. That’s it. Perfect for this recipe!

Roasted Mexican Cauliflower with Pepitas -

Cauliflower is a bit bland on its own, I think everyone can agree. But when you roast it with a simple combination of butter, olive oil, salt, and pepper…it’s transformed into something so tasty you almost forget how good it is for you.

The secret to roasted cauliflower’s amazingness is in the caramelization. A simple roasting pan provides the vehicle for perfectly tender cauliflower with caramelized cut surfaces and edges. It’s so delicious, I burn my mouth every single time as I snitch from the hot pan, unable to wait for it to be set on the table. Blake and the girls can’t get enough of the roasted cauliflower, either. It’s a sure way to get our family to eat their veggies!

Roasted Mexican Cauliflower with Pepitas -

Cauliflower is the ideal stage for playing with flavors. And this new recipe, infused with a Mexican flavor twist, takes roasted cauliflower to a whole new level. The vegetable adores being partnered with cumin and ancho chili, and absolutely shines when brightened up with the fresh lime. Add to that the earthiness of cilantro and nuttiness of pumpkin seeds and it’s just plain irresistible! 

Roasted Mexican Cauliflower with Pepitas -

I love serving this Mexican cauliflower straight from the hot roasting pan. Letting my family scrape up all the tasty morsels on their own not only makes for a casual and fun presentation, but it also shows off the simplicity of this hearty dish of veggies. I want our girls to know that awesome meals don’t have to be fussy and complicated. All you really need are beautiful ingredients and a desire to let them shine.

Roasted Mexican Cauliflower with Pepitas

Yield: 4 servings


  • juice and zest from 1 lime
  • 2 tsp. ground cumin
  • 1/2 tsp. ground ancho chili
  • 1 tsp. flaky sea salt or kosher salt
  • 1/4 tsp. freshly ground black pepper
  • 3 T. plus 1 tsp. Land O Lakes® Butter with Olive Oil, divided
  • 1 large head cauliflower, cut into smaller florets, and florets cut in half
  • 4 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
  • 1/4 c. pepitas (pumpkin seeds)
  • 1/4 c. chopped fresh cilantro
  • fresh lime wedges


Place a large roasting pan with edges into the oven and preheat the oven to 450°. While oven preheats, combine lime juice and zest in a small bowl. In another small bowl, combine cumin, ancho chili, sea salt, and black pepper. Set both bowls aside.

Remove hot pan from oven and add the 3 tablespoons of Land O Lakes® Butter with Olive Oil to the pan. With a spatula, spread the butter around as it sizzles and dances across the hot pan. Add cauliflower florets to pan and quickly toss with the melting butter. Drizzle the lime juice and zest mixture over the cauliflower, and then sprinkle with the mixture of spices. Toss cauliflower to combine, and then spread it out evenly in the pan. Place pan back into the oven and roast for 15 minutes without stirring, letting the edges of the cauliflower caramelize.

In a small bowl, melt the remaining teaspoon of Land O Lakes® Butter with Olive Oil in the microwave, and then stir in the garlic slices. Remove hot pan of cauliflower from the oven and add buttery garlic slices and pepitas to the cauliflower. Toss to combine, then place pan back into the oven to roast for an additional 5 minutes. Remove from oven and sprinkle with fresh cilantro. Add a bit more sea salt and black pepper, if desired. Serve cauliflower right from the pan with fresh lime wedges to squeeze over individual portions.

from a farmgirl's dabbles

You’re surely going to want to check out the rest of the recipes from our Kitchen Conversations group. I ate every single one of these dishes at The Ranch – they’re all awesome!


A Trip to The Ranch_1200

Also be sure to get the whole story from my trip to The Ranch! Just click here!

Disclosure: A Farmgirl’s Dabbles has partnered with Land O’Lakes for an exclusive endorsement of Land O Lakes® Butter for their Kitchen Conversation blogger program. This blog post is sponsored by Land O’Lakes. All opinions are my own.


38 Responses to “Roasted Mexican Cauliflower with Pepitas”

  1. #
    Erin | The Law Student's Wife — March 17, 2014 at 8:05 am

    What an amazing weekend. Also, I’m a big fan of those Land o’ Lakes spreads (only brand we buy), but I have tried roasting with them yet. Great idea Brenda!

  2. #
    JulieD — March 17, 2014 at 8:35 am

    I love love your cauliflower recipes…this was fantastic!! I need to make this ASAP!

  3. #
    Christine from Cook the Story — March 17, 2014 at 8:40 am

    Sounds like you had a fabulous trip, Brenda. What fun! Your roasted cauliflower recipe has been Pinned and shared!

  4. #
    Kim from Kim's Healthy Eats — March 17, 2014 at 8:48 am

    Perfect I have a head of cauliflower in the fridge… I am making this! Looks delish!

  5. #
    Tieghan Gerard — March 17, 2014 at 8:48 am

    Again, what and incredible weekend!! Looks amazing, but also so does this cauliflower!! I love the Mexican spices!

  6. #
    kelly @ livelovepasta — March 17, 2014 at 8:56 am

    I love cauliflower…this looks really YUM!!

  7. #
    Kelli @ The Corner Kitchen — March 17, 2014 at 9:29 am

    What a fun weekend! I adore cauliflower and love how you jazzed it up!!

  8. #
    bridget {bake at 350} — March 17, 2014 at 9:45 am

    This is the prettiest cauliflower ever….and I think, the yummiest, too! I love the flavors you added…and the pepitas! Definitely making this at home!

    Cannot wait to be on your “turf” this summer!!! Yay!

  9. #
    Melanie @ Carmel Moments — March 17, 2014 at 10:10 am

    Looks like you had a beautiful visit at the Ranch!
    Lovin cauliflower lately. Nothing like putting a twist on it. Nice!

  10. #
    Maria — March 17, 2014 at 10:19 am

    I am so in love with this recipe! Loved spending time with you on the ranch! Can’t wait until our next butter adventure! xo

  11. #
    Paula - bell'alimento — March 17, 2014 at 1:21 pm

    This wouldn’t stand a chance on our dinner table! Love it and y’all!

  12. #
    Liz @ The Lemon Bowl — March 17, 2014 at 1:53 pm

    We are a huge roasted cauliflower family!!! I am loving your twist on it with lime and spices!!

  13. #
    cheri — March 17, 2014 at 3:03 pm

    What a great week-end you had, love cauliflower and your spice twist on this.

  14. #
    Gaby — March 17, 2014 at 4:35 pm

    Love the flavors and the pepitas, I must try this!

  15. #
    Jeanette | Jeanette's Healthy Living — March 17, 2014 at 4:44 pm

    What a great recipe – love the cumin, ancho chili and pepitas – roasted cauliflower is one of our favorites!

  16. #
    Aggie — March 17, 2014 at 6:52 pm

    Am totally loving this Brenda!!

  17. #
    Megan {Country Cleaver} — March 17, 2014 at 8:55 pm

    I’m as sucker for roasted veggies of all kinds – especially cauliflower! Beautimus!

  18. #
    Sommer@ASpicyPerspective — March 18, 2014 at 7:23 am

    So good to see you Brenda! Your cauliflower is (was) amazing! Two thumbs up!!

  19. #
    Joanne @ Fifteen Spatulas — March 18, 2014 at 9:14 am

    You definitely took cauliflower to the next level here!! I loved trying your recipe at the ranch and it was so wonderful to spend time with you!!! Can’t wait to see you again in MN!

  20. #
    Wendy — March 18, 2014 at 11:37 am

    I think you did a great job of using the butter in a dish with great flavors included. I love any vegetable roasted and this looks yummy! Enjoyed seeing the pictures of you on PW site. What a great experience!

  21. #
    Barbara @ Barbara Bakes — March 18, 2014 at 11:52 am

    This looks like a great way to learn to like cauliflower.

  22. #
    kelley {mountain mama cooks} — March 18, 2014 at 3:13 pm

    I’m digging the roasted cauliflower right now. I love your twist!

  23. #
    Laura (Tutti Dolci) — March 18, 2014 at 3:17 pm

    I love roasted cauliflower, what incredible flavors!

  24. #
    Georgia @ The Comfort of Cooking — March 19, 2014 at 3:25 pm

    What a fun adventure at the PW’s ranch! Looks like you all came away so inspired to cook up delicious dishes! Loving this spicy, scrumptious cauliflower side dish. Great recipe!

  25. #
    Denise — March 19, 2014 at 6:58 pm

    Roasting cauliflower, well any veggie, is the only way to go. Outstanding flavors here …

  26. #
    Danae @ reciperunner — March 19, 2014 at 7:10 pm

    I can only imagine what an amazing weekend you all had with Ree at the Ranch! I’m in love with this cauliflower recipe you are sharing, the Mexican flavors sound amazing!

  27. #
    Rebecca {foodie with family} — March 20, 2014 at 10:32 am

    It looks like the ranch visit was great fun and this roasted Mexican cauliflower looks INCREDIBLE!

  28. #
    Shaina — March 20, 2014 at 2:52 pm

    Looks lovely, and what a fun trip!

  29. #
    Aqiyl Aniys — March 25, 2014 at 9:03 pm

    Your cauliflower is simply amazing. I love the wide range of tastes and flowers.

  30. #
    Diane — March 25, 2014 at 9:07 pm

    Love roasting cauliflower and we love our mexican. Cannot wait to try this!!! Thank you so much for posting and the Land of Lake tip. I’m always mixing butter and olive oil to start recipes. Great shortcut for work nights!

  31. #
    Tracey Black — April 3, 2014 at 3:35 pm

    Yum! This looks delicious. I’m featuring it my Gluten Free Breakfast Ideas Round-Up:

  32. #
    Sadie Frericks — June 19, 2014 at 3:15 pm

    I am now a cauliflower convert. Call it fate: my sister left a head of cauliflower here right after you published this recipe. It was love at first taste. I have since purchased fresh cauliflower for the very first time, just to make this again. And again. This is now a go-to recipe for me. Thanks, Brenda!


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