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Pasta with Roasted Cauliflower, Parsley, and Breadcrumbs


Easy prep cuts stress in the kitchen. Here, corkscrew pasta is tossed with oven-roasted vegetables and topped with toasted breadcrumbs.

  • Prep:
  • Total Time:
  • Servings: 4

Source: Everyday Food, September 2008


  • Coarse salt and ground pepper
  • 1 head cauliflower (about 2 1/2 pounds), cored and broken into small florets
  • 1 medium red onion, halved and cut into thin wedges
  • 5 garlic cloves, peeled and halved
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 4 slices white sandwich bread
  • 12 ounces cavatappi or other short pasta
  • 1/4 cup grated Parmesan, plus more for serving (optional)
  • 1/4 cup fresh parsley, chopped


  1. Preheat oven to 475 degrees, with racks in upper and lower thirds. Set a large pot of salted water to boil. On a rimmed baking sheet, toss cauliflower, onion, and garlic with 2 tablespoons oil; season with salt and pepper. Roast on lower rack until lightly browned and tender, 20 minutes, tossing once.

  2. Meanwhile, in a food processor, combine bread and remaining 2 tablespoons oil; pulse until coarse crumbs form. Spread on a rimmed baking sheet. Bake on upper rack until golden brown, 5 to 6 minutes, tossing once.

  3. Cook pasta in boiling water until al dente. Reserve 1/2 cup pasta water; drain pasta and return to pot. Add cauliflower mixture, Parmesan, and parsley; toss to combine. Tossing pasta, gradually add enough pasta water to form a thin sauce that coats pasta. Serve topped with breadcrumbs and, if desired, more Parmesan.

Cook's Notes

Cauliflower tastes surprisingly nutty and sweet when roasted. Break it up into small florets to help it cook quickly.

Reviews Add a comment

  • michaelxavier
    6 APR, 2017
    Another recipe listed here: That absolutely is NOT vegetarian.
  • MS12094152
    22 DEC, 2016
    This is such a versatile recipe - I have made this per recipe and love it. I also add chicken and on other occasions spicy sausage ... added peas or mushrooms too. Always so quick, filling and tasty!
  • MS11985352
    9 OCT, 2014
    Made this last night and took the advice of another reviewer and used panko crumbs (which I toasted with some olive oil with a little minced garlic and pepperoncini) instead of fresh bread. The recipe came out great and I will definitely make this again.
  • MirToni
    8 AUG, 2014
    Unfortunately this recipe was ok but not great. Loved the roasted vegetables but together with the pasta the combination did not work. The dish was too dry even with the addition of the pasta water. Will not be making this again.
  • mikasomni
    30 APR, 2014
    This was great. Did the following modifications. Used brown rice pasta. Used panko bread crumbs that I just quickly toasted in a saute pan (who wants to whip out the food processor?) and voila it was perfect!
  • ewokem
    29 OCT, 2013
    this was delicious! I used half a box of whole wheat pasta. The cauliflower blended nicely with the pasta and the sauce was tasty. I skipped the breadcrumbs, and would have skipped the parsley if I didn't have any in the house.
  • lisaz4
    6 OCT, 2013
    This was an awesome recipe, instead of using pasta water to create a thin sauce, I used chicken broth. Excellent, will make again.
  • Kathy Cuen-Ashby
    11 APR, 2013
    This is definitely going to be making frequent appearances on our dinner table! I did substitute a healthier seed bread instead of the white. Will use more cauliflower, less pasta in the future, but it is a delicious, easy and inexpensive dish!
  • LisaDRugger0
    14 JAN, 2013
    This was scrumptious! The directions were well written and easy to follow. The homemade breadcrumbs definitely make it. I added a little onion powder, salt and pepper to the breadcrumbs and used veggie stock instead of the pasta water. Yummmm
  • Leapnow
    19 OCT, 2011
    I added a pinch of red pepper it adds just a bit of zing.