How To Make This Creamy Cauliflower Casserole With Olives And Red Onion

This vegan casserole recipe is sure to impress


2 Minutes Read

A vegan cauliflower casserole with a tahini sauce Cauliflower is in season right now, so it's the ideal time to make this casserole - Media Credit: Ashley Madden

If you’re looking for a tasty vegan recipe to cook tonight that’s both comforting and packed full of nutrients, this creamy cauliflower casserole might be just the ticket.

This vegan casserole recipe is packed full of vegetables, and features a homemade tahini-based dressing. It comes from plant-based recipe developer Ashley Madden, and is an ideal choice for a quick and easy midweek meal.

Why cauliflower?

Cauliflower is not only versatile and nutritious, but also the perfect vegetable to use in recipes during the autumn months.

As cauliflower reaches its peak season during the fall season, it’s not only fresher and more flavorful but also often more affordable and widely available. This seasonal abundance makes it an excellent choice for a variety of fall recipes, from soups and stews to roasted side dishes and hearty casseroles like this one. Cauliflower’s natural nuttiness and slightly sweet taste intensify when roasted or caramelized, complementing the rich flavors typical of fall cuisine.

Cauliflower is also regarded as highly nutritious. It’s packed with vitamins C and K, fiber, and antioxidants, which are thought to be beneficial for boosting the immune system as the colder weather sets in.

What is tahini?

This homemade sauce for this recipe is tahini-based. Tahini is a paste made from ground sesame seeds, a staple ingredient in many Middle Eastern and Mediterranean cuisines. It’s prepared by grinding roasted sesame seeds into a smooth, creamy paste, similar in texture to nut butters. Tahini has a distinct, nutty flavor with a slight bitterness, making it a versatile ingredient in both savory and sweet dishes.

Aside from its use in dips and spreads, tahini serves as a flavorful base for dressings, sauces, and marinades, adding depth and richness to a variety of dishes. Nutritionally, tahini is rich in healthy fats, protein, and is a good source of essential nutrients such as calcium, magnesium, and iron.

Ready-made tahini tends to be readily available at most supermarkets and grocery stores. To make the sauce for this recipe, you’ll need a blender.

Here’s how to make it:

Creamy cauliflower casserole recipe

This creamy cauliflower casserole is jam-packed with vegetables and makes for a perfect midweek meal
A vegan cauliflower casserole with a tahini sauce
No ratings yet
Servings4 people


  • 4 cups (400g) bite-sized cauliflower florets
  • 1 large red onion, thinly sliced
  • 1 red or yellow bell pepper, seeded, stemmed and cut into 1˝ [2.5-cm] pieces
  • 1 cup (100g) pitted black or green olives, sliced if desired
  • 1 ½ cups (225g) cooked or canned chickpeas, drained and rinsed
  • 1 cup (30g) baby spinach
  • 1 cup (180g) uncooked millet or white quinoa
  • cup (80g) stirred tahini
  • cup (80ml) fresh lemon juice
  • 3 large cloves garlic, crushed and peeled
  • 1 tbsp (15ml) red wine vinegar
  • 1 tsp (2g) dried oregano
  • 1 tsp dried parsley
  • ¾ cup (175ml) water
  • 1 tbsp (8g) arrowroot starch
  • ¼ tsp sea salt, or to taste
  • Pinch of black pepper
Optional garnishes
  • 1 small bunch fresh mint
  • 2 tbsp (16g) sesame seeds
  • Lemon wedges


  • Preheat the oven to 425ºF (220ºC).
  • Start with the casserole: Put the cauliflower, onion, bell pepper, olives and chickpeas in a 9×13–inch (23 x 33–cm) casserole dish.
  • Make the tahini sauce: In a blender, combine the tahini, lemon juice, garlic, vinegar, oregano, parsley, water, arrowroot, salt and pepper, and blend until smooth. Pour the sauce over the vegetables in the casserole. Stir to coat all the veggies, then cover tightly with tinfoil.
  • Roast in the oven for 60 minutes, stirring once around the 40-minute mark. It’s done when the cauliflower is fork-tender and the sauce is bubbling.
  • When about 20 minutes are left on the casserole, cook the millet according to the package directions. Once cooked, fluff with a fork and cover until needed.
  • When the casserole is ready, remove it from the oven and stir in the spinach. Cover again for a few minutes to let the greens wilt. Taste and reseason with salt, if needed.
  • Spoon the millet into bowls and top with the casserole. Garnish with mint and sesame seeds and serve with a lemon wedge.

This recipe was republished with permission from Ashley Madden (owner of Rise Shine Cook). The recipe features in her vegan cookbook, Plant-Based Delicious. You can follow Ashley on Instagram here.

More like this:

Join The Plant Based Newsletter and we will plant a tree! 🌳

We plant a tree for every signup. You’ll receive our weekly news round-up and be the first to hear about, product launches, exclusive offers and more!

© 2024 Plant Based News is a mission-led impact media platform focused on elevating the plant-based diet and its benefit to human health, the planet, and animals. | Plant Based News Ltd, PO Box 71173, London, SE20 9DQ, United Kingdom.