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Roasted Cauliflower with Toasted Panko and Golden Raisins

September 28, 2023

This slightly sweet, perfectly crisp roasted cauliflower with toasted panko and golden raisins is the perfect healthy side dish.


Roasted Cauliflower with Panko and golden raisins and parsley on a plate

Cauliflower That is Deliciously Good For You.

Cauliflower bursting with big, bold, delicious flavors? Yes! Roasted cauliflower can be just as delicious as its carb-laden counterparts, and this crispy, savory preparation proves it. Panko breadcrumbs give it a crispy crunch, and warm, vinegar-spiked golden raisins lend a sweet and tangy bite to everyone’s favorite cruciferous vegetable.

Raw cauliflower cut into florets on a rimmed baking sheet
Toasted pine nuts in a stainless steel skillet
Buttery toasted Panko bread crumbs in a stainless steel skillet
Golden raisins in vinegar and chicken stock in a stainless steel skillet

How to Cut Cauliflower into Perfect Little Florets.

  1. Using a sharp knife on a clean cutting board, carefully cut the cauliflower in half through the big, main middle stem. Now you can clearly see where each floret is attached to the main stem.
  2. With the tip of your knife, cut each floret off at the base of its stem. You can also snap the florets off of the main core stem by hand, if that feels easier for you. Once you've cut or broken all of the florets away from the core, you can cut them into smaller florets, if you'd like to.
  3. Wash the cauliflower florets after you've cut them—they'll get a lot cleaner washed as tiny florets than if you wash the whole head before cutting.
Roasted cauliflower, toasted panko bread crumbs, golden raisins, pine nuts and parsley in a bowl.
Roasted cauliflower with toasted panko and golden raisins tossed together in a bowl

How to Roast Cauliflower

Once your cauliflower is floret-ed and washed, you’re ready to roast! Oven-roasted cauliflower has been having a moment for about a decade now, and rightly so! Roasting takes an otherwise neutral-tasting vegetable from ho-hum to a golden-brown, crisp, potato-like dream, with richly caramelized edges that’ll keep you coming back for more. Here’s how to roast cauliflower (it’s really easy!):

  1. “Roasting” means high heat, so boldly crank your oven to 425°F.
  2. Toss the cauliflower florets in olive oil, salt and pepper.
  3. Pop it in the oven for about 45 minutes.
  4. Done! You could stop here, and serve the roasted cauliflower right out of the oven. But with a 45 minute roasting time, you’ve got time to take things over the top.
Roasted Cauliflower with Panko and golden raisins and parsley on a plate
Roasted Cauliflower With Panko And Golden Raisins on a plate with a fork next to a bowl of fresh minced parley

Panko Makes This the Best Roasted Cauliflower Recipe EVER.

Panko—a type of Japanese breadcrumb—is a pantry staple in our homes for its light, airy, flaky texture and unique ability to bring exactly the crispy-crunchy texture we’re looking for to so many dishes. Panko is made from bread flakes rather than breadcrumbs, and so the texture that it gives to dishes like this crispy roasted cauliflower with panko and golden raisins is light and delicate. Toasting the panko lightly in butter is our way of adding a little heft and richness to this vegetarian side dish—a little butter makes everything better.

White Wine Vinegar + Golden Raisins. Stay With Us, Here.

Buttery panko, cauliflower roasted to the point of caramelization, and toasted pine nuts—rich, rich, rich flavors that are to die for, but in need of a little lift. That’s where these vinegar-plumped golden raisins come in! Sweet raisins are brought back to life with a quick simmer in chicken broth and white wine vinegar. They emerge from the pan warm and juicy, with a gorgeous zing that brings more than its fair share of complexity to this dish.

Roasted Cauliflower With Panko And Golden Raisins on a plate with a linen next to a bowl of parsley and a bowl of salt

Tools You’ll Need:

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Roasted Cauliflower with Toasted Panko and Golden Raisins

  • Serves: 8
  • Prep Time:  20 min
  • Cook Time:  45 min
  • Calories: 207


  • 1 (2-pound) head of cauliflower, cut into florets
  • 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • Freshly cracked black pepper, to taste
  • ¼ cup pine nuts
  • 3 tablespoons salted butter
  • ½ cup panko bread crumbs
  • ⅔ cup golden raisins
  • ½ cup chicken stock
  • 2 tablespoons white wine vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons chopped flat-leaf parsley


  1. Preheat the oven to 425°F with a rack in the center position. Line a sheet pan with parchment paper.

  2. Add the cauliflower to the prepared sheet pan in a single layer. Toss with the olive oil and season with salt and pepper.

  3. Roast the cauliflower, tossing occasionally, until golden and crispy, about 45 minutes.

  4. Meanwhile, add the pine nuts to a small skillet and cook over medium-low heat, stirring, until lightly brown and toasted, about 5 minutes. Transfer to a small bowl. Melt the butter in the same skillet over medium-low heat. Once the butter is melted, add the panko and cook, stirring, until browned and toasted.

  5. Add the raisins, chicken stock, and vinegar to a small saucepan and bring to a simmer over medium heat. Cook until the liquid has reduced and the raisins are plump.

  6. Sprinkle the cauliflower with the raisins, pine nuts, half of the panko and half of the parsley and toss until combined. Transfer to a serving platter and top with remaining panko and parsley. Serve warm.

Nutrition Info

  • Per Serving
  • Amount
  • Calories207
  • Protein4 g
  • Carbohydrates20 g
  • Total Fat13 g
  • Dietary Fiber3 g
  • Cholesterol11 mg
  • sodium746 mg
  • Total Sugars10 g

Roasted Cauliflower with Toasted Panko and Golden Raisins

Questions & Reviews

Join the discussion below.

  • Oma

    Will this be ok for a pot luck dinner


  • mary

    can you make this recipe the night before

    Yes, but it will be best if you store things separately, reheat then add it all together. Hope you enjoy Mary, we are OBSESSED with this cauliflower!

  • Kareen

    Can you roast the cauliflower the day before?

    You could. I would cook them al dente because they will get a little soggy over night. But if you don't mind them not bring crispy, then it would totally work to make the cauliflower ahead.

  • Tresa

    I made this for Christmas Eve for a big family dinner and I have never made a better vegetable side dish! Everyone was raving. It was so delicious. I always wondered how my favorite Portland restaurants make vegetables taste so good, now I know! I can do it too! Highly recommend.

    Thanks Tresa, So glad you liked it!

  • Monica

    This looked like it would be great when I was perusing through recipes and it did not disappoint. It was a great combination of flavors and textures that I would’ve never thought of putting together. When I make it again, I will probably use just one teaspoon of salt (personal preference) and twice as much cauliflower, but I will make it again! Delicious!!

    Thanks Monica! So glad to hear you'll make it again, happy you enjoyed it!

  • Andrea

    I made this tonight to test out before Thanksgiving and it was phenomenal. Hands down, the BEST cauliflower recipe I've made, the entire family loved it. I adapted it to an AIP version by omitting the panko and nuts and it was still "rock your world" amazing.

    Oh good! This is what we love to hear!