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+ servings

Za’atar Roasted Cauliflower, Red Onion, and Lentil Salad with Harissa Tahini Dressing (gluten free)

Author - Gena Hamshaw
Yields: 4 generous servings


For the Salad:

  • 3/4 cup dry brown green, or Le Puy lentils, picked over (substitute 2 cups cooked lentils, or 1 can, drained and rinsed)
  • 1 medium head cauliflower washed and chopped into bite-sized florets (about 1 3/4 lbs after prepping)
  • 1 large red onion sliced
  • 1 tablespoon grapeseed safflower, canola, or coconut oil
  • 2 teaspoons za'atar spice mix
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • Black pepper to taste
  • 4 heaping cups arugula

For the harissa tahini dressing:

  • 1/3 cup tahini paste
  • 1/3 cup water
  • 1 large clove garlic crushed or very finely minced
  • 2 1/2 tablespoons lemon juice about 1 lemon
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon harissa powder or paste more or less, depending on your tolerance for heat


  • Preheat your oven to 400F. If you're cooking lentils from scratch, mix the dry lentils in a saucepan with enough water to cover them by two inches. Bring to a boil and reduce to a simmer. Simmer for 25 minutes, or until the lentils are still tender but retain their shape and firmness. You can start testing them at the 20 minute mark for doneness. Drain the lentils and set them aside.
  • While the lentils cook, toss the cauliflower florets and sliced onion with the oil, za'atar, lemon, paprika, salt, and black pepper. Spread the veggies onto two parchment-lined baking sheets. Roast the vegetables for 20-25 minutes, or until the cauliflower is tender and lightly browning, and the onions are getting crispy. Check on the veggies and stir them on the sheet halfway through roasting. Allow the roasted vegetables to cool to room temperature.
  • While the veggies roast, whisk together the tahini, water, garlic, lemon juice, salt, and harissa to make the dressing. If it's too thick, add a few extra tablespoons of water.
  • When the vegetables are cool, toss them together with the lentils and arugula. You can either pour the dressing over the whole salad and toss to coat, or you can plate the salad and serve it separately. If you want to keep salad leftovers, I recommend dressing each plate individually. Salad leftovers will keep for two days in an airtight container in the fridge, and the dressing will keep for up to five days.