Roasted Cauliflower with Indian Spices and Yogurt Dressing

by | Feb 27, 2023 | Spring

Whether steamed, boiled, mashed, or roasted, cauliflower is delicious and healthful in every preparation. Roasted Cauliflower with Indian Spices and Yogurt Dressing is a delicious and novel way to eat this often-overlooked vegetable. 

Spicy seasonings have long been a staple in Indian cooking, and they really bring out the flavor in this meal. Aromatic Indian spices and tangy yogurt combine to provide a flavor profile that is guaranteed to please. 

Yet, Indian food has had a significant impact outside its boundaries, with curry being one of the world’s most beloved cuisines. Indian spices have become a standard ingredient in many international cuisines, from Thai cooking to that of Trinidad & Tobago. 

Jamaican curry is a good illustration of this since it combines Indian spices with indigenous ingredients like Scotch bonnet peppers and allspice. It’s proof that when two cultures collide, they may produce delicious new cuisines. 

Turmeric is the dominant spice included in the mixture of spices that make up Curry powder. It is used to prepare curry dishes and other traditional recipes in Indian cuisine and that of its diaspora.  Your curry mixture might include allspice, cumin, nutmeg, cinnamon, coriander, paprika, cayenne pepper, ground ginger, and a myriad combination of spices. It depends on your household, regional subtleties, and personal preference. 

Turmeric contains curcumin. It’s the substance that gives the spice a bright golden color, which is known to have anti-inflammatory properties and other antioxidant effects. 

Jamaica had an influx of Indians after the abolition of slavery. They came as indentured servants and brought their spices. We use curry often in my Jamaican family. Growing up I was tired of it but after going to college and seldom having it in the cafeteria, it has been on regular rotation in a variety of my meals every week. One of my favorite Jamaican brands is Blue Mountain. It is a curry blend that is fragrant and a good standard all-purpose curry to use in your morning hash, add to your lunch gazpacho, season your tagine, use in a dressing, or even in a pound cake. 

Here, curry compliments cauliflower which always denotes fall to me yet this recipe sings of Spring and is a wonderful accompaniment to lamb, salmon, or rabbit. An easy side dish, roasting vegetables bring out their natural sweetness, and cauliflower makes it also tastes quite nutty. The addition of a yogurt dressing cools the spiciness of the cauliflower and the roar of spice curry can have if you like it hot. You can treat other vegetables in the same manner with this method working on potatoes, mushrooms, zucchini, sweet potatoes, carrots, and other root vegetables.

The next time you eat this Roasted Cauliflower with Indian Spices and Yogurt Dressing, think about how Indian cuisine has influenced other cultures and cuisines throughout history.

Health Benefits:

  • High in fiber: Cauliflower is an excellent source of fiber, which is essential for maintaining healthy digestion and preventing constipation.
  • Rich in antioxidants: Cauliflower is rich in antioxidants, which can help protect against cellular damage and reduce the risk of chronic diseases such as cancer and heart disease.
  • Anti-inflammatory: Many of the spices used in this dish, such as turmeric, cumin, and coriander, have anti-inflammatory properties that can help reduce inflammation in the body.
  • Low in calories: Cauliflower is a low-calorie vegetable, making it a great choice for those watching their calorie intake.
  • Good for bone health: Cauliflower contains vitamin K, which is important for bone health and helps to prevent osteoporosis.
  • Probiotic-rich: The yogurt dressing used in this dish is a good source of probiotics, which can help improve digestion and boost immune function.

Ingredient Substitute:

  • Kosher salt: You can substitute table salt or sea salt for kosher salt. Just keep in mind that table salt is denser than kosher salt, so you’ll need to use less of it.
  • Freshly ground black pepper: You can substitute pre-ground black pepper for freshly ground black pepper. However, if you have whole black peppercorns, you can grind them in a spice grinder or with a mortar and pestle to make your own freshly ground black pepper.
  • Hot ground pepper: You can substitute cayenne pepper or red pepper flakes for hot ground pepper.
  • Ground turmeric: You can substitute curry powder for ground turmeric, as most curry powders contain turmeric as one of their main ingredients.
  • Ground cumin: You can substitute ground coriander for ground cumin, as they have similar flavor profiles.
  • Allspice: You can substitute a mixture of cinnamon, nutmeg, and cloves for allspice, as allspice is a combination of these three spices.
  • Curry powder: You can substitute a mixture of ground turmeric, ground cumin, ground coriander, and ground ginger for curry powder.
  • 1 cup yogurt: You can substitute sour cream or Greek yogurt for regular yogurt.
  • Fresh dill: You can substitute fresh parsley or tarragon for fresh dill.
  • Fresh mint (or just use cilantro without the dill or mint): You can substitute fresh basil or parsley for fresh mint, or just use cilantro on its own.
  • Fresh cilantro: You can substitute fresh parsley or basil for fresh cilantro.
  • Fresh basil: You can substitute fresh oregano or thyme for fresh basil.
  • Lime juice: You can substitute lemon juice or vinegar (such as apple cider vinegar or white wine vinegar) for lime juice.
Roasted Cauliflower with Indian Spices and Yogurt Dressing

Roasted Cauliflower with Indian Spices and Yogurt Dressing

Nadine Nelson


For the Cauliflower:

  • 1 head cauliflower
  • 1/8 cup olive oil
  • 1 tsp kosher salt
  • 1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 tsp hot ground pepper
  • 1 tsp ground turmeric
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 1/4 tsp allspice 
  • 2 tsp curry powder

For the Yogurt Dressing:

  • 1 cup yogurt
  • 1 tbsp chopped fresh dill
  • 1 tbsp finely chopped fresh mint (or just use cilantro without the dill or mint)
  • 1 tbsp finely chopped fresh cilantro
  • 1 tbsp finely chopped fresh basil 
  • 1/2 tsp ground cumin
  • 1 tsp lime juice 
  • 1/4 tsp kosher salt, plus additional to taste


  • Position the oven rack in the middle and heat the oven to 450 degrees F.
  • Cut the cauliflower into bite-size florets and place it in a plastic bag.
  • In another bowl or cup, combine the seasonings and spices with the olive oil, and drizzle over the cauliflower. 
  • Mix well and allow the dressing to coat the cauliflower evenly.
  • Spread the cauliflower on a (9×13-inch) baking dish and bake for 25 to 30 minutes or until the cauliflower is nicely browned around the edges. 
  • Periodically peek inside the oven and stir the cauliflower around.
  • While the cauliflower is roasting, combine the yogurt, dill, mint, basil, cumin, lime juice, and salt together and keep cold. 
  • Transfer the cooked cauliflower to a serving platter, and serve with the yogurt sauce drizzled over it or on a side.


Storage Instructions:
  • Store the roasted cauliflower and yogurt dressing separately: Store the roasted cauliflower in an airtight container and the yogurt dressing in a separate container. This will prevent the cauliflower from becoming soggy and the dressing from becoming too thick.
  • Refrigerate promptly: Once the dish has cooled down to room temperature, refrigerate it promptly to prevent bacterial growth. Ideally, store it in the fridge within 2 hours of cooking.
  • Use within 3-4 days: Roasted cauliflower with Indian spices and yogurt dressing can be stored in the refrigerator for up to 3-4 days. Beyond this time, it may start to spoil and lose its flavor and texture.
  • Reheat before serving: When you are ready to serve the dish, reheat the roasted cauliflower in the oven or microwave until it is heated through. Drizzle the yogurt dressing on top just before serving.