roasted cauliflower and chicken sausage casserole

April 6, 2015 § 35 Comments


I just can’t stop buying cauliflower.  It’s as though I am making up for lost time because for years I wouldn’t touch the stuff.  There are so many delightful ways to prepare cauliflower and here’s an interesting casserole with plenty of room for modification. This particular recipe is the “full on” gluten and dairy free version. If you prefer you could replace the almond meal and nutritional yeast with parmesan cheese and breadcrumbs for a toasted crunchy top.  The combination of textures and flavors in this dish are outstanding and it is suitable as a one dish meal.  We used both spicy and mild Italian chicken sausage.   It’s a hearty meal that doesn’t leave you feeling stuffed. Clean eating and a simple recipe.


Serve with a leafy green salad.

The recipe is from the Clean Eats cookbook written by Alejandro Junger.

I n g r e d i e n t s

  • 1 medium head of cauliflower (roughly 2 pounds) cut into bite size florets
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, plus a little extra for the baking dish
  • 1/2 pound raw organic Italian chicken sausages, nitrate and sugar free, removed from casings
  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • leaves of 2 sprigs fresh thyme
  • 1- 28 ounce can whole organic peeled tomatoes, drained and the liquid reserved (the reserved liquid can be omitted to achieve less tomato flavor)
  • sea salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
  • 1/2 cup almond meal
  • 1/4 cup nutritional yeast or you can use parmesan cheese

M e t h o d

Preheat oven to 350°F.  Lightly coast a 9 x 12 baking dish with olive oil.  In a large bowl, toss the cauliflower florets with half of the minced garlic and one tablespoon olive oil.  Spread the cauliflower on a baking sheet and roast for approximately 20 minutes, turning them frequently. When the cauliflower is evenly browned remove from the oven and set aside.

Heat the remaining tablespoon of olive oil in a large skillet over medium high heat.  Add the sausage and break it up.  Cook for 10 – 12 minutes until it is cooked through and beginning to get crispy.  Lower the heat to medium low and add the onions, the remaining garlic and thyme.  Sauté the mixture for about 5 minutes.  Crush the tomatoes and add them to the pan.  Stir thoroughly, add the remaining tomato sauce, if desired, and sauté for 5 more minutes.  Turn off the heat and taste.  Add salt and pepper if necessary.  Stir in the cauliflower.

In the prepared baking dish, distribute the cauliflower and sausage mixture evenly.  In a small bowl combine the almond meal and nutritional yeast (or parmesan) and sprinkle over the casserole.  Place in the oven and bake for 25 minutes.  Let it stand for 5 minutes before serving.

Serves 4



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§ 35 Responses to roasted cauliflower and chicken sausage casserole

  • I love cauliflower and that sounds like an interesting weeknight meal, easy and as you said, doesn’t leave one feeling overstuffed. Never had nutritional yeast before, what’s the difference? N.

    • That’s exactly the beauty of this recipe. It’s very filling but also light. Nutritional yeast is a deactivated yeast. It comes in flakes and it’s wonderful! I just gathered this bit of information from wiki regarding nutritional yeast: “Nutritional yeast has a strong flavor that is described as nutty, cheesy, or creamy, which makes it popular as an ingredient in cheese substitutes. It is often used by vegans in place of cheese. It can be used in many recipes in place of cheese, such as in mashed and fried potatoes, and atop scrambled tofu. Another popular use is as a topping for popcorn.” :)

  • ladyredspecs says:

    Thanks for the explanation of nutritional yeast, a new ingredient for me too. Seana, this looks a really interesting recipe for cauliflower, thanks for sharing

    • Almost didn’t even post it because it does seems a bit “boring” but it truly was a delicious meal so I decided to share it. :) I’ll make it again for sure. Thanks Sandra!

  • I have always loved cauliflower too. Love your recipe here!

  • Like you I didn’t eat cauliflower for years! Now I love the stuff. Hadn’t thought of pairing them with tomatoes, though. Excepting with spices. I might have to buy a cauli tomorrow and have it with pork sausages (that I’ve recently started to eat again) and leftover cheese.
    Hope you had a great Easter break.

    • My Easter (Spring) break isn’t until next week! Don’t know why it’s scheduled so late but much needed. I already have another cauliflower in the refrigerator waiting for the next roasting. (Yes, it’s a mild obsession) And I love pork sausages but don’t buy them often! So wonderfully flavorful and now that you mention it I’ll have to pick some up. :)

  • This does look so wonderfully hearty Seana! I love cauliflower, but unfortunately I’m the only one in the family who does… though I know the only way of changing that is by getting it on the table in new and delicious ways – just like this one! :)

    • Hi Margot! I didn’t care for cauliflower for years! Most likely because of the way it was prepared for me. My mom usually boiled the heck out of it. :) Funny because I’m starting to notice my son’s palate changing. He’s eating things he would never eat before. It’s very satisfying, as a mom, to see your child(ren) eat vegetables and enjoy them for the first time. He couldn’t get enough of those oyster’s yesterday! :)

  • This recipe is anything but boring! Now I have another recipe to add to my long list of “to make” recipes. ;) I have made several of yours before and none of them have ever failed me!

    • :) Funny because I seriously hesitated before tapping the “publish” button. You are too nice! :) Thank you and hope you do put this one together. It’s delicious.

      • I bought some chicken sausage and cauliflower today to make this sometime this week! How much of the sausage should I use? your recipe says 1/2 chicken sausage, did you mean 1/2 pound?

      • I bought two packages with four sausages in each package. One package was spicy Italian and the other was broccoli rabe (mild). Hmm, maybe I should be a little more specific on this recipe. I’ll go in and change it a little later this evening. Heading out for happy hour! :) I’m so glad you are going to make it and I hope your family likes it! My son liked it over jasmine rice. Let me know!

      • Enjoy your happy hour! I have one package of plain chicken sausage with four links, so I guess I’ll need to spice it up with something. I’ll look for your changes later, thank you so much!

      • I somehow missed the fact it was Italian chicken sausage, darn it! But I can certainly spice it up.

      • I changed it! Sorry about that. The original recipe (in the book) says 1/2 lb. chicken sausage. I think that might only be 4 sausages. With a teenager in the house, who loves protein from meat, it’s always better for me to add more. :) And his recipes doesn’t say “spicy” so I think it will be good without too. Hope you’ll like it!

      • Thank you so much Seana! I am looking forward to making it and will let you know what we think! However, all the recipes I’ve made of yours have been fantastic so I am not too worried. :)

      • Seana, I made this recipe last night! Since I bought plain chicken sausage I added diced tomatoes with garlic, oregano and basil. Since it had a lot of the spices in the liquid, I did add it to the dish. My daughter liked the “soupy” part of it so much she went back for a second helping of only the “soupy” part and sopped it up with two slices of bread! Very flavorful. I used ground almonds since I couldn’t find almond meal. Lots of great tastes in this dish, thank you!

  • I love cauliflower and it’s chameleon like qualities. It’s wonderful and your casserole is wonderful, it sounds really delicious.

    • Thank you so much Suzanne. I couldn’t believe the wonderful posts you created around Easter. Your lamb and your carrot cake was gorgeous. I love how you always create such wonderful food around the holidays.

  • Cauliflower season has just started here – so I definitely will try this.It looks divine. Suddenly there seems to be a whole world of interesting cauli recipes out there, For so long I only ever prepared it in one of three ways – crumbed, au gratin or as a salad with a vinaigrette dressing. Lately I’ve been “ricing” whole heads in my food processor then sauteeing the “grains” in a hot wok to make a delicious “couscous”.

    • I absolutely love “riced” cauli! It’s my favorite way to eat it. I have to rice it by hand though and it leaves quite the mess, but worth it. Maybe cauliflower is now the “new” kale! :) I love it.

  • Feast Wisely says:

    I had to read this post when I saw that like me you’re going made for cauliflower! I even substituted it for rice in a paella last week and it worked! So good to see you recommending nitrate free sausages too.

    • I love to “rice” cauliflower! What a brilliant idea to serve with paella. I love paella and have never made it. Now I am going to visit your blog to see if you posted it. :)

      • Feast Wisely says:

        Hi I haven’t posted the recipe yet – my first attempt was an experiment – I did learn that you need a good blender or grater to turn cauliflower to rice like consistency (without the water leeching out and it becoming mushy)!

  • Liz says:

    mmmm…Glad you’re enjoying cauliflower. This looks like a great showcase. You’ve pureed it, yes? That’s my favorite way to serve. Oh, and roasting :-) Chicken sausage is the perfect partner!!!

    • No I haven’t pureed it Liz! Now I’m intrigued. I prepared a celery root mash for Easter and it was fantastic. I’m going to look up pureed cauliflower. Sounds wonderful.

  • This looks delicious and we love cauliflower at home. A perfect and healthy simple meal. Thank you for sharing :)

  • Nothing wrong with cauliflower once you know what to do with it… But nothing worse than cauliflower when it’s cooked badly.
    This looks cracking my friend 😜

  • I too love cauliflower. Can’t wait to try!

  • Any cookbook that can convert someone to a cauliflower lover enough to say “i can’t stop buying it” must be amazing. I actually like its versatility, but I’m not in love with it on its own. You’re starting to convince me though :)

  • […] Cauliflower and Chicken Sausage Casserole Adapted from Roasted Cauliflower and Chicken Sausage Casserole at Cottage Grove […]

  • Ariana says:

    Loved readiing this thanks

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