Crispy Smashed Cauliflower with Pesto

Cauliflower gets steamed before it gets flattened and flavored with a dollop of pesto. A quick trip under the broiler gives it a satisfying, crispy exterior.

Crispy Smashed Cauliflower
Photo: Jason Donnelly
Active Time:
25 mins
Total Time:
25 mins


  • 8 cups bite-size cauliflower florets (1 1/4 pounds)

  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

  • ¼ teaspoon salt

  • ¼ teaspoon ground pepper

  • ¼ cup prepared pesto


  1. Position oven rack 6 inches from broiler.

  2. Bring a few inches of water to a boil in a large pot fitted with a steamer basket. Steam cauliflower until just tender, 3 to 4 minutes.

  3. Preheat broiler to high. Spread the cauliflower on a large rimmed baking sheet. Drizzle with oil and toss to coat. Space the florets evenly on the pan, then flatten with the bottom of a mason jar or sturdy glass. Sprinkle with salt and pepper and place a small dollop of pesto on each floret. Broil until hot and starting to brown, 3 to 5 minutes.

Nutrition Facts (per serving)

179 Calories
14g Fat
12g Carbs
5g Protein
Nutrition Facts
Servings Per Recipe 4
Calories 179
% Daily Value *
Total Carbohydrate 12g 4%
Dietary Fiber 5g 18%
Total Sugars 4g
Protein 5g 10%
Total Fat 14g 18%
Saturated Fat 2g 10%
Vitamin A 276IU 6%
Sodium 362mg 16%
Potassium 673mg 14%

Nutrition information is calculated by a registered dietitian using an ingredient database but should be considered an estimate.

* Daily Values (DVs) are the recommended amounts of nutrients to consume each day. Percent Daily Value (%DV) found on nutrition labels tells you how much a serving of a particular food or recipe contributes to each of those total recommended amounts. Per the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), the daily value is based on a standard 2,000 calorie diet. Depending on your calorie needs or if you have a health condition, you may need more or less of particular nutrients. (For example, it’s recommended that people following a heart-healthy diet eat less sodium on a daily basis compared to those following a standard diet.)

(-) Information is not currently available for this nutrient. If you are following a special diet for medical reasons, be sure to consult with your primary care provider or a registered dietitian to better understand your personal nutrition needs.

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