Butter Cauliflower and Chickpeas with Mint Cilantro Sauce Recipe - Skillful Cook
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Butter Cauliflower and Chickpeas with Mint Cilantro Sauce

7 reviews / 4.4 average

This Butter Cauliflower and Chickpeas is a weeknight staple! Roasty spiced cauliflower, a jar of butter sauce, a can of chickpeas, and a pile of steamy rice with a waterfall of mint sauce on top.

This Butter Cauliflower Is a New Weeknight Staple.

It's 5pm. Here's what you're doing (and me, too):

  • Roasting some cauliflower
  • Adding a jar of butter sauce
  • And a can of chickpeas, lightly smashed
  • Piling a steamy scoop on some rice
  • And topping the whole thing with mint cilantro sauce

And it's the easiest little veg-forward number that three out of four in my family love. (Toddler is the holdout.)

The cauliflower is roasty and seasoned to the max, and the chickpeas get just a little bit chunky and creamy when you give them a few good smashed. They're just a bit TOO round sometimes, ya know?

You can make a butter sauce from scratch, or you can just do as I've been doing and buy the KFI brand butter chicken sauce from Costco which comes in a big jar and works like a charm. I've also heard via your DMs on Instagram that their Vindaloo sauce is even better. If you don't have a Costco, any brand of tikka masala or Indian-spiced simmer sauces that you love would work just as well (and you can give it some love with a bit of extra cream or butter).

Nothing will beat a made-from-scratch sauce, I know, I know. But all I'm trying to beat with this recipe is myself from defaulting to a frozen pizza for dinner. End result: a veg-forward dish that makes the house smell great and that comes together effortlessly. That's what I'm here for.

If you can swing it, a little tangle of pickled onions on top is very nice.

Make This Butter Cauliflower With Me

1

Season and Roast the Cauliflower.

Coat the cauliflower in spices and some avocado oil. Roast in the oven or air fryer till it's roasty and yummy.

Raw cauliflower in a bowl tossed in spices.

Don't skimp on the spices!

2

Activate Your Yummy Butter Sauce.

Homemade, with a pureed base of onions, garlic, ginger, spices, and tomato sauce plus cream and butter, is delicious. Or... just use a store-bought sauce! Costco sells KFI brand butter chicken sauce and I've been enjoying it as an SOS option.

Butter and cream in a pot with butter chicken sauce.

Here's a homemade run - nice lil knob of butter and some cream going in!

3

Add Your Chickpeas and Mash.

Okay, you don't have to mash them. But sometimes chickpeas are just a bit too round. If you can understand that weird sentiment, you'll probably enjoy a bit of mashing for texture.

Mashing chickpeas in a pot with sauce.

Add chickpeas and give 'em a few good smashes.

4

Add Cauliflower Back In.

Here she comes, looking nice and roasty!

Adding cauliflower to the chickpea sauce mixture.

Those spices did us well.

5

You're Done! Yum!

I love, love, love this with some kind of a cilantro sauce which is why you'll see a waterfall of it on my bowl here.

Butter cauliflower and chickpeas in a bowl with mint sauce on top.

A golden mountain of butter cauliflower topped with rivers of mint sauce.

Watch How To Make This Butter Cauliflower

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A picture of Butter Cauliflower and Chickpeas with Mint Cilantro Sauce

Butter Cauliflower and Chickpeas with Mint Cilantro Sauce


  • Author: Lindsay
  • Total Time: 40 minutes
  • Yield: 6 1x

Description

This Butter Cauliflower and Chickpeas is a weeknight staple! Roasty spiced cauliflower, a jar of butter sauce, a can of chickpeas, and a pile of steamy rice with a waterfall of mint sauce on top.


Ingredients

Units Scale

Butter Cauliflower and Chickpeas:

  • 1-2 tablespoons avocado oil
  • 1 head cauliflower, cut into florets (about 3 cups)
  • 1 teaspoon each cumin, garam masala, and curry powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
  • 1 jar of butter chicken sauce (24.5 ounces) or homemade

Mint Cilantro Sauce:

  • 1/4 cup packed mint leaves
  • 1/4 cup packed cilantro
  • 1/2 cup mayo or plain Greek yogurt
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 1 small chunk of jalapeño, optional
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • juice of 1 lime

Instructions

  1. Roast the cauliflower: Toss the cauliflower with the avocado oil, cumin, garam masala, curry powder, smoked paprika, and salt. Roast at 425 / 20 minutes in the air fryer, or 425 / 30 minutes in the oven until nice and roasty and golden.
  2. Make the mint sauce: Blitz everything up until it's nice and smooth. I like to really blend this one so it's less chunky and more of a smooth green sauce.
  3. Butter sauce time: Add butter sauce and chickpeas to a large skillet. Smash the chickpeas lightly with a potato masher to give a more interesting texture if you want (I do want). Add cauliflower back in. 
  4. Serve: Serve the butter cauliflower on rice and top with the mint sauce. Add pickled onions if you want. ENJOY!
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 30 minutes
  • Category: Dinner
  • Method: Stovetop
  • Cuisine: Indian-Inspired

Keywords: butter chicken, butter sauce, cauliflower, chickpeas, easy dinner

Frequently Asked Questions For This Butter Cauliflower

Could I add meat to this?

I think some roughly chopped or shredded boneless skinless chicken thighs could tuck in that sauce nicely with the cauliflower and chickpeas. Or, just go straight for a meat instead of the veggies in the sauce - like these butter chicken meatballs.

How can I make this dairy-free?

Use coconut cream, coconut milk, cashew cream, and/or ghee to make it nice and creamy!

Could you skip roasting the cauliflower and just simmer it in the sauce to cook?

Yes! I will say, I love the roasty bits on the caulfilower and I feel like it adds a lot of flavor, texture, and color. That said, absolutely yes - save yourself some time and just throw that cauliflower right in the pan if you're not feeling too precious about it.

Three More Cauliflower Favorites

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11 Comments

  1. Skillful Cook Logo

    Lindsay, I love your recipes. Your butter meatballs are a weekly staple! Looking forward to trying this and I really appreciate the vegetarian options as I am trying to incorporate more plant-based meals into my lifestyle!!! Thanks so much for your inspiration. It makes the struggle of juggling work and home life so much easier and less mundane!

  2. Skillful Cook Logo

    Very good. And the timing was perfect — got your email with this at same time I was contemplating what to do with a head of cauliflower.

  3. Skillful Cook Logo

    This recipe looks great! Can you freeze the leftovers? If so, how would you recommend reheating?

  4. Skillful Cook Logo

    This recipe looks great! Can you put the leftovers in the freezer? If so, how would you recommend reheating?

  5. Skillful Cook Logo

    Almost all recipes from Skillful Cook are excellent, and I’ve trusted the process of combining unfamiliar ingredients. This blog has been a lifeline for me over the last five years!

    However, this recipe was not that case. It was too tangy, salty, and spicy. Something in the butter sauce gave me a stomach ache, and then I had to throw out the leftovers, and then get takeout for lunch the next day. Kids would also not eat it.

    Do not recommend!

  6. Skillful Cook Logo

    I made this as written* as I usually do the first time I make a recipe. And while I will definitely make this again (if for no other reason than weeknight ease!), I will definitely make some changes next time. For me the cauliflower was over-spiced and over-salted—next time I make this, I will cut the seasoning in half or even less. The mint cilantro sauce will remain unchanged (I could drink it) aside from the one small change I already made. Thanks for another great idea Lindsay!

    *I added a whole jalapeño with seeds and will do it again. Maybe even two, because I like the heat.

  7. Skillful Cook Logo

    This was absolutely delicious! The flavors were spot on! I used the link and made the homemade butter sauce – which was unbelievable. And the mint cilantro sauce was a great flavor to add to the meal. I have to say that adding pickled onions is a definite must!! My family loves so many of your recipes, thank you!

  8. Skillful Cook Logo

    This recipe is so good! Every time I’ve made it, I couldn’t wait to make it again!