Fried Cauliflower with Romesco Sauce and Quinoa

A perfect vegetarian fork-and-knife dinner with a tender fried cauliflower slice smothered with homemade romesco sauce. 

  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 20 minutes
  • Total Time: 30 minutes
  • Yield: 2 servings 1x
  • Category: Main Course




  • 1 cup uncooked quinoa
  • 1 cup vegetable broth
  • 1 cup water
  • Pinch of salt


  • 1 large head of cauliflower
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • ½ teaspoons salt
  • ½ teaspoon black pepper

Romesco Sauce

  • 1/4 cup slivered almonds
  • 1/4 cup hazelnut pieces
  • 1 large roasted red pepper
  • 1 garlic clove
  • 1/4 cup tomato puree
  • 2 tablespoons flat-leaf parsley
  • 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • Salt and Pepper


  1. Rinse quinoa and place in a medium pot with broth, water, and salt. Bring to a boil, reduce to a simmer, cover, and cook for 12 minutes. Remove from heat and let sit until ready to serve.
  2. While the quinoa is cooking, remove the greens from the cauliflower and cut right in half. Slice a ½” thick slice of cauliflower from each half. Set aside remaining cauliflower for another use. Heat a skillet over medium-low. Add olive oil in a skillet large enough to hold both cauliflower slices, or work in batches. Add cauliflower slices to the heated oil and fry on each side until golden, 4 to 5 minutes on each side. Sprinkle with salt and pepper and transfer to a plate.
  3. In a small, dry skillet, add the almonds and hazelnut pieces over medium heat. Shaking the skillet often, lightly toast the nuts until fragrant, 4 to 5 minutes.
  4. In a food processor or small blender, combine the ingredients for the romesco sauce, including the toasted nuts. Puree until the sauce is fairly well smooth. Taste and add salt and pepper as desired
  5. Serve the fried cauliflower over quinoa and spoon romesco on top.


Tips and Tricks: You most likely will have leftover romesco sauce. Use it in this romesco potato pizza or romesco green beans.

Stock up: Get the pantry ingredients you will need: cauliflower, quinoa, parsley

Nutrition: See the information (this includes the quinoa + using all the sauce).