Smoky Cauliflower Steaks With Orange and Herb Quinoa

Smoky Cauliflower Steaks with Oranges and Herbs Quinoa (via you guys had cauliflower steaks yet? There’s a great restaurant near our new house that sometimes has this cauliflower steak and bean dish on the menu, and it’s awesome! I have no idea what their recipe is. And this isn’t exactly modeled after theirs, mainly because it’s been a while now since I had it. BUT, it is cauliflower steaks. And it is delicious. Actually I can’t decide which I like better in this dish: the cauliflower or the quinoa.

Smoky Cauliflower Steaks with Oranges and Herbs Quinoa (via We’re gonna roast our cauliflower in a smoky, slightly sweet sauce. It’s kind of like a quick homemade BBQ sauce. Kind of. And then the quinoa gets sautéed with butter, olive oil, orange zest, garlic and parsley. I don’t know what it is but something about the orange and kind-of-sort-of BBQ sauce just works for me! But you could also serve this quinoa alongside all sorts of other main dishes and it would be plenty fun.

Now I must admit that this particular meal takes a bit of prep and uses 2-3 pots/pan along the way. It’s not a one-pot dinner, but I think you’ll find that it’s totally worth the extra 2 minutes of clean up. 🙂

How to make baked cauliflower steaksSmoky Cauliflower Steaks With Orange and Herb Quinoa, serves two.

1 head of cauliflower
1 tablespoon ketchup
1 tablespoon soy sauce
1 tablespoon molasses
1 teaspoon liquid smoke
1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
1/8 teaspoon cayenne
2 cups cooked quinoa
2 tablespoons butter
1 tablespoon olive oil
zest from one orange (about 1 tablespoon)
2 cloves garlic
1 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley
salt and pepper

For the cauliflower steaks, first cut the head so that you have 2-3 “steaks” from the center. You will have extra cauliflower florets from both sides, which you can either cook alongside the steaks now or save for another meal. I usually save them for another meal and just cook the two steaks if my cauliflower head was fairly large to begin with, but this is up to you. Not all cauliflower heads are going to be the same size, so just think about how much you want to serve per serving here.

Blanch the cauliflower in boiling, salted water for 8-10 minutes until softened. Drain and pat dry. In a small glass bowl stir together the ketchup, soy, molasses, liquid smoke, vinegar and cayenne. Place the cauliflower on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper or a baking mat. Brush 2/3 of this mixture over the cauliflower and bake at 375°F for 15-18 minutes. The cauliflower will release moisture (from the vegetable but also from the blanching process). So at this stage carefully dab some of that up with a paper towel, then brush with the rest of the sauce and bake for another 5-6 minutes.

Best way to prepare quinoaWhile all of that is going on, make your quinoa. Lately I’ve been cooking my quinoa in a rice cooker as it just makes everything super easy. But if you don’t have a rice cooker, just follow the directions on your quinoa package.

Once cooked, sauté in a pan over medium/high heat with the butter, olive oil and chopped garlic. Cook for 1-2 minutes, then add the orange zest. Cook for another 1-2 minutes. Then stir in the parsley. Taste and add salt and pepper as needed.

Smoky Cauliflower Steaks with Oranges and Herbs Quinoa (via Once it’s all ready, plate it up and enjoy! In this photo I really have more like two servings on one plate as I was eating this for lunch one day and didn’t bother saving Trey any. Ha! But I wasn’t able to finish it all, not even close. So I’d stick to the two servings here.

Am I over explaining my photos? Yes, yes I am. OK. I’ll stop now. Enjoy! xo. Emma

Note: If you are enjoying this as part of the Weekday Weekend Challenge and you can’t find a compliant ketchup feel free to substitute with tomato paste. The mixture may be slightly thicker but the results will be basically the same.

Credits // Author and Photography: Emma Chapman. Photos edited with A Beautiful Mess actions.

  • I just made this for dinner. So delicious, quick and easy! The best kind of recipe. Thanks <3

  • Mmmm yum. My cousin and I love all your recipes Emma, but this one takes the cake!

  • I’m practically drooling over here… YUM! I love cauliflower steaks but have never tried them myself. I am trying this recipe – next week for sure! Thank you so much for adding another healthy recipe into my rotation!

  • Definitely on my January healthy eats list for this year. Healthy and yummy, just perfect.

  • Definitely on my January healthy eats list for this year. Healthy and yummy, just perfect.

  • Beginning the New Year with healthy meals…Yes! This one looks delicious. Thanks!

  • This both looks and sounds delicious — which is not always an easy task with a vegetarian meal.

    Kristi | Be Loverly

  • Cauliflower steaks sound so delicious! One of my resolutions this year is to eat more veggies, so I’ll definitely be saving this recipe!


  • This sounds (and looks) really delicious! I’m a big cauliflower fan, always looking for new and unique recipes, and I’m definitely going to give this one a try! Thank you for sharing!

  • Emma, your vegetarian friendly recipes are my favourite part of ABM! I can’t thank you enough for providing the tastiest veggie options. Yum yum & thanks for being so rad!

  • That seems delicious. I probably should use more quinoa in my recipes! This one with orange must be SO tasty!
    Need to try this!

    xo, Deborah

  • I love making these! we are a veggie family so things like this are a big hit!


  • I never would have thought of this! It looks super good.

  • Wow, this looks super delicious and it’s so damn healthy at the same time! Thank you for sharing this!

  • I love cauliflower steaks, and I’m SWOONING over the sound of orange herb quinoa… lush!!

  • I looks so healthy!!! There’s a support to my new year resolution to eat healthy LOL

  • Delicious!

  • I make roasted califlower regularly, and i think they taste better if you skip the blanching step. I just put them in the oven for 35-40 mins, and will not release moisture at all, but be roasted and caramelised beautifully.
    I will try the quinoa part, must be great with the califlower.

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