These healthy Baked Cauliflower Tacos are incredibly easy to make and are loaded with flavors thanks to spices and silky smooth avocado crema. Make it as spicy or mild as you like.
This is a new spin on traditional Taco Tuesday night or a meatless Cinco De Mayo recipe. You gonna love it.
Cauliflower is one of the easiest veggie dishes to make, roast it in the oven or air fryer or just steam it. Serve it as is, with side dishes, sauces or in tacos. And boy, we do love tacos out here.
Out of all the taco recipes on my website, I think this one is the easiest. There are meatless vegetarian tacos such as sweet potato, chickpea kale tacos (also with veggies roasted in the oven) served with sweet and spicy tahini dressing and vegan parmesan cheese.
There is a skip-to-recipe button in the top left corner along with a clickable table of contents list (just below) that will quickly take you to the part you are more interested in. Enjoy!
These baked cauliflower tacos will win you over with their:
- Minimal prep, cheap ingredients, and easy process.
- Minimal effort: While baked cauliflower is cooking in the oven you have enough time to whip up the avocado crema and dice the toppings. Or even better, make these ahead a day or two.
- The cauliflower is roasted so it’s crisp and not dry, with plenty of flavors.
- And any leftovers can be reheated in the oven until crisp again. Or in an air fryer, even faster!
Roasted Cauliflower Tacos
And more details on how great these vegan tacos are.
- Texture: oven-roasted cauliflower comes out crisp, especially if you use the grill function towards the last 5-10 minutes of baking time. Crunchy veggies add a more interesting texture that avocado crema balances off its smooth silky texture. For ultra crisp cauliflower I recommend using an air fryer.
- Flavor: Enjoy a little spicy and very flavorful spiced cauliflower bites. The addition of avocado crema (it’s a little spicy, made with jalapeno but you can make it without too!) adds creamy flavor to it.
- Time: the actual baking time takes you about 20-25 minutes. This time is enough to blend the avocado crema, prep the toppings, and reheat the corn tortillas.
- Avocado crema uses plain Greek yogurt but it can be easily substituted with 100% plant-based yogurt too. Still tastes delicious, every time.
My few comments on the ingredients + don't forget to read the Tips section!
The full recipe and ingredients can be found in the recipe card below this post.
- Cauliflower - a medium head of cauliflower (it comes out about 5 cups of florets) is what you need here for this amount of seasonings. But even a simple salt and black pepper will work just fine with cauliflower.
- Spices and herbs - I love a healthy amount of mixed spices and herbs when roasting vegetables in the oven or in an air fryer. A little of each spice adds its unique flavor and combining all of them together makes even a very ‘’boring’’ veggie bursting with flavor.
- If you don’t have everything I’d still recommend not skipping the ground coriander and smoked paprika. And of course, garlic too (if you love its flavor though). Paprika adds color, and lots of flavors (especially smoked paprika), whereas coriander combines with avocado crema beautifully.
- Avocado crema - I made it with a little amount of jalapeno just to make it more interesting. But traditional avocado crema just needs some avocados, yogurt, seasoning, cilantro, and plenty of lime juice.
- These baked cauliflower tacos are vegetarian but to make them vegan, simply swap out yogurt for a plant-based option like coconut yogurt instead.
- More sauce options - for more vegan options try this incredible vegan nacho cheese or sprinkle assembled tacos with vegan parmesan cheese.
- Toppings - anything that comes to your mind when serving tacos works! And not only tacos. I used my favorite Mexican Slaw here, but just a simple pre-packaged coleslaw mix will work. And the addition of shredded cheese in tacos works even better.
- Alternatively, this popular Cabbage And Cucumber Salad With Dill goes very well inside and outside of those tacos.
- Warm corn tortillas - I used corn tortillas, but any wheat option is suitable of course for non-gluten-free folks. For gluten-free tortillas, I would rather go for 100% corn tortillas with gluten-free labels on them.
Make sure you use certified gluten-free corn tortillas (look for appropriate packaging label. Not all of these are gluten-free. Some are actually a blend of wheat and corn flour or made using shared non-gluten-free equipment.
Preheat the oven to 450 F.
Make baked cauliflower. In a large bowl combine spices, oil and salt and pepper, and cauliflower bites. Toss until all the florets are fully coated (more or less).
Arrange the seasoned cauliflower florets in a single layer on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper or aluminum foil. Keep an inch or two in between florets (important as it helps them to crisp up better).
Bake for 20-25 minutes.
Meanwhile, combine avocado crema ingredients in a food processor and pulse until smooth.
Assemble the baked cauliflower tacos.
In a warm tortilla (you can warm up the tortillas wrapped in foil in the oven right after the cauliflower is baked. Just for a couple of minutes or on the grill).
Add a thick layer of avocado crema, toppings, red pepper flakes (optional) and roasted spicy cauliflower. Serve while cauliflower is warm.
Air Fryer Instructions
Air fryer cauliflower will make your florets even more crispy, almost as deep fryer is crispy. But without a ton of oil.
For this method, follow the recipe instructions as they are, and instead of the oven, roast the florets in a preheated air fryer at 375 degrees Fahrenheit for 15 minutes.
I like to spray the florets lightly with cooking spray right before air frying. Shake the basket halfway, but if you forget that’s fine, they still crisp up nicely.
After 15 minutes the florets should look quite crispy and golden brown. If it feels not enough crispy enough, air fry for extra 3-5 minutes.
Depending on your air fryer you’ll need to cook these cauliflower bites in batches. Keeping some space between them helps with better crispy results.
- Avocado crema (with or without jalapenos) is one of the pairing options I recommend here. But you can definitely use a simple creamy-based sauce here. Or use a fresh salsa or a splash of hot sauce instead. Buffalo sauce is delicious for baked cauliflower too! In this case, use only a pinch or none of the chili powder that I mention in the cauliflower seasoning instructions.
- Cheese - if you love cheese, I have two great options for you. You can either add shredded cheese to your assembled tacos or bake the cauliflower with cheese! Generously sprinkle grated parmesan all over the cauliflower towards the last 5-10 minutes of baking.
- I love using parmesan as it holds up the texture well and helps with making cauliflower even crisper. On this note, you can experiment with adding melty cheese instead (cheddar, gouda) for a totally different look and flavor.
- Baking time will depend on the size of the florets, their thickness and desired end result. I recommend a little bigger than bite-size pieces. And for even baking, try breaking the florets up into more or less the same uniform sizes. For very small florets you’d need only 15-20 minutes of baking.
For small cauliflower florets - bake for 15-20 minutes Medium to large florets - 20-25 minutes.
- Refrigerate cauliflower in an airtight container for up to 3 days. Reheat in an air fryer or oven at about 350 F until crisp again.
- For even baking, try to cut the florets into similar sizes. Smaller pieces will cook faster.
- You can use cumin instead of ground coriander or add both for more flavor.
- Cheat sheet. If you don't have plenty of seasonings at home, a quick fix solution is to use a store-bought or homemade taco seasoning. Or burrito and fajita, also fine! Although you'll have to play around with the quantities.
- This roasted cauliflower recipe is a healthy side dish on its own. Cut into bite-sized pieces makes an excellent snack for both adults and kids.
- I love to make parmesan roasted cauliflower. It's so easy! Follow the recipe as is and add parmesan cheese towards the end of baking (towards the last 5-7 min). Bake until florets have golden brown edges. Serve with fresh herbs and a simple creamy sauce or this avocado crema. Kids love this too (just use less or no chili powder at all)!
These cauliflower tacos are a great meatless addition to my Taco Dinner Party Board or served with plenty of Tex-Mex style side dishes and salsas.
Freezing And Storing Instructions
Store. I recommend making this cauliflower taco recipe as fresh as it comes. And just enough to consume within one go. Keep everything separate, cauliflower, avocado crema, and toppings.
Store in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 2-3 days.
Reheat. The best is to reheat the cauliflower just once. I’d use an oven or air fryer for this. Or if none is available then just over the stovetop in the skillet with a little butter or ghee.
For meal prep chop the cauliflower (but wash only before mixing in the seasoning, will last longer) into bite-size pieces, and store it refrigerated in a food container for up to 2 days. Toss in seasoning once ready to cook.
Avocado crema will have its best flavor on day 1, but you can refrigerate it for 48 hours.
The lime juice will help the avocados from browning too much but the top layer may still change color. It is still safe to eat but I usually just spoon the top layer off and the crema is perfectly green and fresh underneath.
When cauliflower is roasted for too long or at high temperatures it will become mushy. The texture of perfectly baked cauliflower is still crisp and the florets hold their shape well. Another reason for mushy cauliflower is using too much oil, not drying the florets after rinsing, and placing the florets too close to each other on the baking sheet or baking dish.
Like any vegetable, cauliflower should definitely be washed prior to use. Do this right before cutting it or cooking it. Once it’s washed and cut it will start to lose its freshness, so doing this way upfront is not recommended. Place the cauliflower into the water with salt or vinegar and soak for 15 minutes to remove any dirt, chemicals, and insect that are hiding between the florets. Rinse and cut into florets.
Baking cauliflower does not destroy all the nutrients it is actually better than cooking or boiling. (Although the best method of cooking to preserve the nutrients in any vegetable is by steaming it). When cooked at the right temperatures and baking time, most of the nutrients, Vitamin Cand other vitamins will remain in the veggies.
- Air Fryer - for ease of reheating any veggie foods. Don’t forget to use basket liners so your air fryer can serve you for longer.
- Baking tray - use a larger size lined with parchment paper for this cauliflower. Airtight Food containers, earth friendly storage bags - for easy hassle free storage!
More Healthy Tacos
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I hope you'll enjoy this baked cauliflower recipe, please leave a rating on this recipe below and leave a comment, take a photo of your food and tag me on Instagram @theyummy_bowl. I love seeing your creations!
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Baked Cauliflower Tacos With Spicy Avocado Crema
For Baked Cauliflower
- 1 medium cauliflower head (cut into florets (about 5 cups) 560 g)
- 3 tablespoon olive oil or avocado oil
- 1 teaspoon ground chili or chipotle
- 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
- 1 teaspoon dried oregano
- 1 teaspoon coriander
- 1 teaspoon onion powder
- 1 teaspoon fresh garlic (minced)
- Salt to taste
- Black pepper to taste
- 7 8-10 inches corn tortillas
- 1 recipe Avocado Crema With Jalapeno
- 2 cups coleslaw (store bought or homemade coleslaw)
- Jalapeno for serving
- Avocado (diced)
- Lime slices/wedges
- red onions
- fresh cilantro or green onions for serving
- Preheat oven to 450 F.
- In a large bowl combine spices, oil and salt and pepper and cauliflower bites. Toss until all the florets are fully coated (more or less).
- Arrange the seasoned cauliflower florets in a single layer on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper or aluminum foil. Keep an inch or two in between florets (important as it helps them to crisp up better).
- Bake for 20-25 minutes.
- Meanwhile combine avocado crema ingredients in a food processor and pulse until smooth.
- Assemble the tacos. In a warm tortilla (you can warm up the tortillas wrapped in foil in oven right after the cauliflower is baked. Just for a couple minutes or on the grill) add a thick layer of avocado crema, toppings and roasted spicy cauliflower. Serve while cauliflower is warm.
- Nutrition value is without the Avocado Crema.
- Store in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 2-3 days.
- Reheat. The best is to reheat the cauliflower just once. I’d use an oven or air fryer for this. Or if none is available then just over the stovetop in the skillet with a little butter or ghee.
- For even baking, try to cut the florets into similar sizes. Smaller pieces will cook faster.
- Baking time: For small cauliflower florets - bake for 15-20 minutes. Medium to large florets - 20-25 minutes.
(Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)