Cinnamon Caramelized Cauliflower: A Delightful Raw, Vegan Snack!
November 5, 2012

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Thank you for your warm and enthusiastic responses to Allyson’s cookbook! I hope many of you will have a chance to explore it. One of the recipes that caught my attention right away when I recieved the book was Allyson’s recipe for cinnamon roasted cauliflower, which is exactly what it sounds like: cauliflower roasted with cinnamon and a touch of cornmeal. It looked fantastic, and the idea of snackable cauliflower seemed like a fun departure from using cauliflower as a side dish or in entrees, which is the norm.

When I got to thinking about snackable cauliflower, my mind turned to one of my favorite raw food snacks: cauliflower coated in a raw, vegan “cheese” sauce and dehydrated till crispy. I wondered why I had never thought to make a sweet version of this old favorite, and Allyson’s use of cinnamon seemed like a perfect place to get started. Soon enough, cinnamon caramelized cauliflower was born.

The recipe calls for dehydrating the cauliflower, rather than roasting (this gives it just a slight and irresistible crunch), but roasting is a fine option if you don’t have a dehydrator. It’s quite a bit sweeter than Allyson’s recipe—hence the word caramelized—and it is, all things considered, totally delicious.

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Just look at each crispy, crunchy, sweet and salty bite!

Here’s how to make the magic happen.

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Cinnamon Caramelized Cauliflower

Makes 2 snack portions

2 1/2 cups cauliflower florets, cut small
5 pitted medjool dates
2 tablespoons almond butter
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp sea salt
2/3 cup water (more as needed)

1. Blend dates, almond butter, cinnamon, salt, and water in a high speed blender (or a food processor) till smooth. If the mixture is super thick, add a few more tablespoons of water as you go.

2. Coat the cauliflower florets well in the date and cinnamon mixture: you want them drenched! Place on a Teflex-lined dehydrator sheet and dehydrate at 115 for 8-10 hours, or until dry and slightly crispy.

Alternately, you can roast the cauliflower at 400 degrees Farenheit till it’s crispy on edges and tender on the inside (about 25 minutes). Enjoy!

I couldn’t be more delighted by this recipe! I have enjoyed it as a snack, as a sweet, yet veggie-ful dessert, and today, it got tucked into my daily lunchbox:

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Along with quinoa, fresh greens, and a simple tahini dressing:

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I highly recommend this recipe to all of you!

Before I go, an announcement for all of my HOYA readers. Though it rarely occurs to me that you’re reading, occasionally I do get an email from a fellow Georgetown student who reads CR. Last week, a student named Mary emailed me to ask if I’d be willing to join her in participating on a panel about eating disorders on campus. Mary is the brave, spirited, and caring survivor of an eating disorder battle, and she and a fellow student, Brittany, are now committed to creating a “safe space” in which anyone whose life has been affected by an ED can come to be supported. Whether you have an eating disorder yourself, are worried that certain eating or exercise tendencies may be blooming into a full blown ED, know anyone with an ED, or simply want to learn more, I really encourage you to join us. Representatives from student health services will be present, and you’ll have a chance to hear about the experience of disordered eating from three young women who have struggled and ultimately found a path out.

On the panel, we hope to address some of the myths surrounding disordered eating as we share our stories. Please join us. The details:

Eating disorders have the highest mortality rate of any mental illness. They are also alarmingly common on college campuses. We are organizing a panel discussion to foster dialogue on our campus about these serious illnesses (anorexia, bulimia, binge eating disorder, compulsive exercising, and other forms of disordered eating) and how they can affect students’ lives.

Several student panelists will share their own stories of an eating disorder struggle and recovery.

Faculty representatives from Health Education Services and CAPS will also be present to answer question, share information about resources available on campus, and address how to approach a friend you’re worried about.

We encourage people of all ages, genders, shapes, sizes, colors and sexual orientations to attend.

Thursday, November 8th at 8pm in ICC 107

Please holler if you have any questions; I look forward to connecting with some new students. I truly admire the young women who are speaking out about their experiences; I didn’t come to terms with my ED till after college, and I’m happy to have a chance to give back now.

xo

Categories: Small Plates, Raw

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    54 Comments
  1. Hi Gena, I made these for the first time yesterday. I don’t have a dehydrator so I went down the roasted in the oven route. I absolutely LOVE the sauce! My cauliflower wasn’t as crisp as I would have liked. I decided that I am going to buy myself a dehydrator. I only just discovered cauliflower pizza crust. To find another use for it as a dessert is a real gem! Thank you for inspiring me!!

  2. Hi, Gena! I have made these several times, and I LOVE them!! You are a snack creating GENIUS! I never would’ve thought to put these flavors together, but they work beautifully! I also used the sauce for dehydrated kale chips, and that’s delicious, too! Thanks for a great recipe!

  3. just made a whole head of it. It’s still in the dehydrator (with also eggplant bacon, yum) and I was wondering how long and how I can best keep it?

    Thank you, you are indeed an inspiration to all ;o)

  4. Anyone that made this successfully, could you share what the consistency of your sauce was? Pourable or nut butter-like?

    • Hi, Liz! I have made these several times, and I like them best when the sauce is thick (just a little thinner than nut butter) because it sticks to the veggies better! This sauce is also great for kale chips!

  5. Gena,
    What should the consistency of the sauce be like? Caramel, runny nut butter, or easily pourable?

  6. Cauliflower is one of my bf’s fave veggies, and I’m always looking for new ways to use it (gotta encourage him to eat those veggies!). Adding this to my list of recipes to try out 🙂

  7. I made this with sunflower seed butter since I had just run out of almond butter and I loved the flavor of the sauce! If I ever had a craving for apple slices dipped in caramel, this would be what I would make! Final product isn’t quite complete, but I am sure it will be delicious! Thanks again for another great recipe!

  8. LOVE THIS WEBSITE! Have been using it for months but am moved to comment here because this cauliflower is like an oatmeal cookie!!! I soaked the dates in warm water for ten minutes before using them and then used that water in the mix. AMAZING!

  9. This recipe is GENIUS Gena! I cannot wait to try! I love any easy recipe that lets me use my dehydrator.

    Happy to hear about the ED support you’re doing. You rock, sista!

  10. Wow what a great idea! I have a huge head of cauliflower just waiting to be dressed up and eaten, and this sounds fun!

    Kudos to you also for speaking up for ED survivors and reaching out to those who may need guidance or inspiration. Congratulations on being in a position to do that.

  11. What can you use instead of dates? My daughter is allergic to dates. I used to put dates in everything and post baby I’ve had to skip a lot of recipes I would otherwise run to the kitchen to make.

  12. Yum – this bowl of deliciousness looks right up my alley!

    On another note, I so admire your ED outreach and advocacy work. This sounds like an especially worthwhile opportunity to support and inspire young folks. Good on you, Gena!

  13. I found your blog via Avery Cooks and though I’m not vegan, I love creative/healthy veggie snacks and I’m a bit obsessed with cauliflower. Excited to start following your blog and to try out this recipe (The baked variation.)

  14. Holy crap that looks amazing. Going on the shopping list and recipe list for the week!

    • Just made these and am not sure about them. The sauce was great and tasted like what I remember Cinnamon Toast Crunch Cereal tasting like. Just not sure if I like the combination of cauliflower and a sweet sauce. It was a great experience trying a new combination of flavors, but I don’t think I’ll be making them again. They made a mess in my dehydrator too; very drippy. I guess 3/4 c water was too much for me.

      • Friends of mine who have tried the recipe and I did well with the 3/4 cup, but I’ve changed it to 2/3 cup just in case people use smaller dates — easier to add water than take away.

        • Thanks! It actually worked out that it was too liquidy because i was left with a little leftover sauce which I combined with a tablespoon of cocoa and 3/4 cup unsweetened almond milk to make a hot cocoa of sorts! Very yummy! (There were little crumbs of cauliflower in my cocoa which were actually kind of nice! Lol.)

  15. I love cauliflower bites! My mom makes them tossed with olive oil and arabic spices (a mix of cinnamon, nutmeg, and cumin) and roasts them until crispy. They never make it into a storage container. These are so interesting, being sweet, but sound pretty good. I’ll have to give them a go!

    It’ll be great of you to get involved in that ED panel. You have a whole lot of insight about it all.

  16. I’ve never dehydrated cauliflower before. I may have to run to the store tomorrow to pick some up 😉

    It’s so funny that this recipe is on here tonight, too. I just returned home to find my brand-new vitamix waiting on my doorstep. I wanted to make something in it right away, but couldn’t think of what. As I munched on a gala apple, I found myself wishing that I had almond butter so that I could make a caramel sauce with almond butter and dates. So, on my run to get cauliflower tomorrow I can get the almond butter, too. Thanks for the recipe, Gena. This is going to be awesome!

  17. I cannot WAIT to make this, it looks absolutely amazing. I’m blown away by your creativity, this is such a unique idea. I adore cauliflower recipes but it never occured to me to make a sweet treat rather than savory. Yum!

  18. Thank you for this wonderful recipe, I just made it! I wanted it a little spicy so I added cayenne pepper, it is in the dehydrator, cannot wait for tomorrow. Best wishes.

  19. Gena, this looks amazing. That marinade sounds like it would be awesome when making kale chips aswell!
    I am so happy to hear that you get involve and support people who struggle with eating disorders. You are such a busy lady so to still make that a priority is one of the many things you are respected for.

    I have been wanting to write a green recovery post for over a year now but felt that I should do it when I am healthy so people can hear how I did it and how they can do it to.
    Today is a big day today because I finally got my period which means my body is now at a healthy weight.
    And CR helped me reach it so your words are helping people like me all over the world.
    Lisa

    • Oh, Lisa!!! Congrats!!! Getting the big P back is a huge, momentous event in recovery from anorexia. I am so happy for you, and so proud that you’ve persisted in recovery, even when it’s hard. May this be a year of continued strength and healing for you.

      And yes, do please share a GR story when you are ready 🙂

  20. This recipe is one of the many reasons you’re awesome.

    I think it’s really awesome that you’re taking your activism for ED awareness to a whole new level & really helping your community. Way to go, Gena, for being a voice & helping others know there’s hope!

  21. These look wonderful! I’ve been expanding my dehydrating recipes. At this time of year I find it very warming as it gets a bit colder in the northern climes. And the smell of cinnamon as it feels the air warms my soul. Good luck with your panel discussion on eating disorders. I think that is a topic that should definitely be addressed. I think most of the eating we all do is emotional; it just isn’t always apparent.

  22. A marinade of dates, almond butter, cinnamon …oh my YES!

    And then you have to wait 8 hours for these beauties…what a cruel trick 🙂

    Seriously Gena these look amazing and right up my alley!

  23. Hi Gena,

    This recipe looks amazing cant wait to try it. I’m wondering where you bought your bought that plate or container (not sure what to call it)? I love how it portions out the foods very well!