Pan Seared Cauliflower

Pan Seared Cauliflower | In Jennie's Kitchen

Yes, I know this Pan Seared Cauliflower looks awfully familiar. What began as a simple cauliflower side dish, morphed in an amazing fall salad recently. You can get that recipe here. With Thanksgiving next week, that means menu planning mode is probably for high for everyone. I think it’s a much needed distraction from the election, though we do need to keep our minds focused on that, too.

Anyway, that salad recipe from a few weeks ago was a spinoff of this very simple cauliflower dish. If you’re looking for something quick, easy, and make ahead to serve next week, then this is exactly the recipe you want for Thanksgiving. It’s sure to be a staple for me as long as I can get cauliflower at the farmstand. 

Rather than roasting, which is a popular, hands off, way to prepare cauliflower, a few minutes invested at the stove top imparts a lovely charred note thanks to a blast of high in the skillet. I like to dress it hot from the pan with this champagne vinaigrette. That allows the cauliflower to really absorb the flavors.

From there, you can serve it, or do what I do, and store it in the fridge to use throughout the week. This comes in handy for Thanksgiving when you’re likely already doing a lot of cooking. All you need to do is take it out a few hours before serving, if you’re okay with room temperature, reheat it in a skillet just before serving to warm it up.

Pan Seared Cauliflower | In Jennie's Kitchen

More Thanksgiving Recipes

Pumpkin Slab Pie

Homemade Evaporated Milk

Spice Scented Cranberry Sauce

Perfect Mashed Potatoes

No Roll Pie Crust

Gruyère cheese & rosemary buttermilk biscuits

No Bake Pumpkin Cream Pie

Mashed Potato Pie

Sweet Potato, Ricotta & Leek Souffle

Pan Seared Cauliflower | In Jennie's Kitchen

Pan Seared Cauliflower

You can finish this off with a sprinkling of fresh chopped herbs. I love lemon thyme, but parsley, regular thyme, or sage would all work nicely, too.
Prep Time 5 mins
Cook Time 10 mins
Total Time 15 mins
Servings 4


  • Extra virgin olive oil
  • Small head of cauliflower florets cut up
  • Sea salt
  • 2 tablespoons Vinaigrette Dressing recipe here


  • Heat a 12-inch skillet over medium-high heat until very hot. Swirl in a bit of olive oil. Add the cauliflower, and let cook, undisturbed, until deep golden on one side, 3 to 4 minutes. Give the pan a shake to flip the cauliflower. Continue to cook, shaking the pan as necessary, until the cauliflower is nicely browned all over, 5 to 6 minutes more. Remove the pan from the heat. Spoon the dressing over the cauliflower, and stir to coat well. Serve warm or at room temperature.

Some more Thanksgiving side dish inspiration from my friends at Food Network.

Devour: Thanksgiving Side Dishes That’ll Hold Up to Reheating
The Lemon Bowl: Oven Roasted Brussels Sprouts with Bacon
Foodtastic Mom: French Style Sweet Potato Soufflé
Feed Me Phoebe: Gluten-Free Stuffing with Vegan “Creamed Spinach” and Leeks
The Hungry Traveler: Loaded Smashed Potatoes
Healthy Eats: 7 Lighter Takes on Essential Thanksgiving Sides
Dishin & Dishes: Bacon Wrapped Butternut Squash Wedges
The Mediterranean Dish: Jeweled Couscous with Pomegranate and Lentils
The Fed Up Foodie: Festive Orange Spinach Salad
A Mind “Full” Mom: Parmesan Garlic Slow Cooker Mashed Potatoes
Creative Culinary: Golden Onion Casserole with Thyme and Toasted Bread Rounds
Swing Eats: Creamed Spinach
Taste with the Eyes: It’s Back – The Stuffing Everyone Loves!
FN Dish: Stovetop vs. Oven-Baked: Battle of the Thanksgiving Side Dishes