Tahini Roasted Broccoli and Cauliflower
on Dec 13, 2021, Updated Dec 04, 2023
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Making a tasty tahini marinade is a simple way to dress up a sheet pan of roasted broccoli and cauliflower. By tossing the veggies in a combination of tahini, soy sauce, fresh ginger and garlic before they go into the oven, you can add nutty, savory flavor and end up with an exciting and easy side dish that roasts in less than 30 minutes.
If you’re looking for another tahini and vegetable recipe, you have to try this roasted cauliflower and chickpeas with herby tahini.
Table of Contents
Why You’ll Love This Recipe
The marinade is fantastic. Tahini is one of the most versatile ingredients you can have in your fridge. For this roasted cauliflower and broccoli, tahini the star of the marinade not only adding it’s sesame taste, but it also thickens the mixture so it coats the vegetables.
This is a nutritious and easy vegetable side dish. During fall and winter, squash and sweet potatoes might get more attention for as your go-to roasted vegetable sides, but actually broccoli and cauliflower are quicker to cut, no peeling necessary. And they really shine with this marinade.
You can turn these vegetables into a vegan main dish. All you have to do is add baked tofu and serve the broccoli and cauliflower with brown rice. Then you have a complete dinner.
This is what you need:
- Broccoli: Fresh broccoli will have tight clusters of florets. You should not see any yellow flowers. Also, the stem should be firm and not limp.
- Cauliflower: Look for a head of cauliflower that feels heavy for its size. Just like broccoli, the florets should be tightly packed together. And avoid cauliflower with brown spots.
- Tahini: Made with sesame seeds, this magical paste has a wonderful nutty flavor. It’s a key ingredient in hummus. I also love it for drizzling and in salad dressings.
- Soy sauce: Always use low-sodium soy sauce. Then you have more control of the overall seasoning level.
- Oil: The oil should fade into the background. That’s why I use a neutral vegetable oil such as grapeseed oil or sunflower oil. My preferences are brands that are organic and non-GMO.
- Ginger: Sesame, ginger and soy sauce are a trio that works perfectly together. That’s why I stir in a tablespoon of minced fresh ginger.
- Garlic: There is a minced garlic clove to round out marinade.
- Red pepper flakes: For a touch of subtle heat, I add a pinch of red pepper flakes to the marinade.
- Salt & pepper: Even though soy sauce tends to have a salty taste, I still season the marinade with a little salt and pepper.
- Scallions: For something oniony and fresh, I finish the dish with sliced scallions.
- Sesame seeds are the final garnish for the roasted veggies.
Optional Variation: Parmesan Roasted Vegetables
If you want to go in an Italian or Mediterranean flavor direction, whisk together 2 tablespoons olive oil, the juice of 1 lemon, 1 teaspoon kosher salt and 1/2 teaspoon black pepper in a big bowl. Then toss in the cauliflower and broccoli in this mixture, spread them across a baking sheet and roast them. When they come out of the oven, sprinkle on grated Parmesan cheese and fresh herbs like chopped parsley.
How To Make Roasted Broccoli and Cauliflower
Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F. To prep the veggies, cut the broccoli into florets. Remove the leaves from a head of cauliflower. Trim the rough end off the stem. Then slice the cauliflower and break it into smaller pieces. Some of it will probably fall apart on its own as you cut it. Those flat sides are great for making contact on the pan and browning.
1. Make the tahini-soy marinade. In a large bowl, stir together the tahini, soy sauce, oil, garlic, ginger, salt, pepper and red pepper flakes.
2. Toss the broccoli and cauliflower in the marinade. Make sure to stir around the veggies, so they all get coated.
3. Spread the veggies across a baking sheet.
4. Roast the broccoli and cauliflower until they are browned, about 20-25 minutes. Flip them over halfway through roasting. They should be tender but still have some bite. Toss the vegetables with sliced scallions and sesame seeds before serving.
Roasted broccoli and cauliflower are best served warm. For proteins to pair with them, try chicken or salmon. The tahini marinade is distinct, but don’t limit it to just main dishes with Asian or Middle Eastern flavors. I like a few non-traditional sides at holidays like Thanksgiving because they add something more interesting.
Leftovers & Storage
You can keep leftovers in an airtight container in the refrigerator up to 3 days. Then warm them in a 350-degree F oven. Don’t reheat in the microwave or the veggies will get mushy and too soft. I love eating them cold in a salad with kale, spinach, arugula or chopped romaine. They are also good stirred into brown rice or quinoa.
Slice a head of cauliflower rather than buying cauliflower florets. Besides being less expensive than buying precut veggies, those flat sides are great for making contact with the pan and browning.
Don’t forget to flip over the veggies halfway through roasting. You want to make sure they brown on each side.
Both broccoli and cauliflower roast well at a high temperature. For this recipe, I preheat the oven to 425 degrees F.
Don’t crowd the pan. This is a rule for roasting any vegetable. Take advantage of all the space on the baking sheet, and spread out the broccoli and cauliflower in a single layer as much as you can. You don’t want the florets to be piled on top of each other or they will steam instead of roasting.
If you don’t have tahini in your pantry, you can use almond butter instead. You may need to warm it, so it is more on the runny side. Then it will be easier to stir with soy sauce and oil.
No. To get the broccoli and cauliflower to brown and and caramelize on the edges, it’s better if they make direct contact with the metal of the pan. Since there is oil in the marinade, I do not find that they stick to the pan.
You can absolutely just go with broccoli or cauliflower instead of using both. Also, this tahini-soy marinade is great on other fall – winter veggies including sweet potatoes, butternut squash and acorn squash.
More Roasted Vegetable Sides
Tahini Roasted Broccoli and Cauliflower
- 1-2 bunches broccoli, about 1 pound
- 1 head cauliflower, about 1-1/2 pounds
- 2 tablespoons tahini
- 1/4 cup low-sodium soy sauce
- 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
- 1 garlic clove, minced
- 1 tablespoon minced fresh ginger
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
- Pinch of red pepper flakes
- 2 scallions, thinly sliced
- 1 tablespoon sesame seeds
- Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F.
- Trim the broccoli and cut it into small to medium florets. Cut the leaves off the cauliflower and trim the rough end off the stem. Cut the cauliflower into 1/2-inch thick slices, breaking it into pieces.
- In a large bowl, whisk together the tahini, soy sauce, vegetable oil, garlic, ginger, salt, pepper and red pepper flakes.
- Add the cauliflower and broccoli, stirring to coat in the marinade.
- Spread the cauliflower and broccoli across a sheet pan. Roast for 20-25 minutes, flipping over halfway through cooking, until browned and tender but still somewhat crisp.
- Toss the cauliflower and broccoli with scallions and sesame seeds before serving.
Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.