These Cauliflower Steaks with Lemony Mashed Peas are full of flavor and texture and are so satisfying. The savory and slightly sweet cauliflower steaks are roasted to perfection to create a golden crust. They pair beautifully with the creamy and citrusy peas. The peas offer plant-based protein and provide a bright and creamy bed for the roasted cauliflower steaks. I like to garnish the dish with flaky sea salt, freshly ground black pepper, lemon zest, fresh mint leaves and a drizzle of extra virgin olive oil.
- 2 large heads cauliflower
- 5 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 1 teaspoon maple syrup
- 1 teaspoon fine salt
- 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
- 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
Lemony Mashed Peas
- 1 pound of peas, frozen
- 1/2 cup homemade vegan sour cream
- 1 lemon, zested*
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon pure maple syrup (optional)
Garnishes: drizzle of extra virgin olive oil, flaky sea salt, freshly ground black pepper, lemon zest, fresh mint leaves and lemon wedges
For the cauliflower steaks:
- Preheat oven to 450 degrees Fahrenheit and brush two half sheet rimmed baking sheets or a cast iron skillet with olive oil. See notes for parchment paper baking sheet option.
- Remove the leaves and stem of the cauliflower but leave the core fully intact. Place the cauliflower on the cutting board (core up) and cut each cauliflower head vertically through the core into two to three 3/4-inch thick steaks each. Allow the ends of the cauliflower to fall off naturally and set the florets aside for other use (i.e. roasting separately or making cauliflower rice).
- Use a silicone brush to coat all sides and crevices of each cauliflower steak with olive oil and maple syrup. Season both sides of each steak with salt, pepper and garlic powder.
- Arrange the steaks in a single layer on the baking sheet or cast iron skillet leaving 1-inch around all sides of each steak to prevent them from steaming. Roast for 30 minutes flipping halfway through until golden brown. You can broil for an additional minute or two to help it caramelize.
Prepare the Lemony Mashed Peas
- Bring four cups of water to a boil in a medium saucepan over high heat. Once it reaches a full rolling boil, place frozen peas in the water and cook over medium heat for 3-5 minutes until peas are just tender. Do not overcook.
- Reserve 1/4 cup of the cooking water then drain the rest of the liquid through a colander. Place the cooked peas in a food processor with 1/4 cup of the cooking water. Add sour cream, lemon zest, lemon juice, salt and pepper to the processor. Pulse 20-30 times until the pea mixture is chunky but mostly mashed. Taste and adjust seasonings if desired. You can also add a couple mint leaves to this mixture if desired (or save all the mint for garnish).
For serving, create individual plates with a couple spoonfuls of the mashed peas and one to two cauliflower steaks on each plate. Or, serve everything on a platter with the entire smashed pea mixture spread out on the serving platter and all the cauliflower steaks fanned out overtop the peas. Garnish the plates or platter with a drizzle of extra virgin olive oil, a sprinkle of flaky sea salt and freshly ground black pepper, lemon zest, fresh mint leaves and lemon wedges. Enjoy while the cauliflower steaks are piping hot.
For added healthy fats and plant-based protein, sprinkle hemp seeds overtop the dish. You can also sprinkle hemp seeds overtop the cauliflower steaks prior to roasting.
For a perfect golden-brown sear, I like to use a cast iron skillet or roast against a bare baking sheet brushed lightly with oil. If you are worried about the clean-up or the cauliflower steaks sticking to the bare baking sheet you can line the baking sheet with parchment paper.
*For me just zesting one large lemon was enough lemon flavor without thinning out the mashed peas too much. However, you could add the juice of 1/2 or all of the lemon if you like. It is up to you and how much lemon flavor you want in this dish. You could also cut the zested lemon into wedges and serve with the dish.
- Prep Time: 5
- Cook Time: 30
- Category: Side Dish or Entree
- Method: Oven Roasted
- Cuisine: American