If you’re looking for a warm, hearty, and healthy side dish, roasted turmeric cauliflower is one recipe you’ll want to keep on standby. Turmeric has a slightly spicy flavor with notes of ginger and pepper.
When combined with the somewhat nutty, even sweet, flavor of cauliflower, which is brought out even more by roasting, you’ll find there’s no need to overload on starchy mashed potatoes or rice to get your comfort-food fix – this recipe is bound to become a new go-to favorite.
Better still, this recipe, from Black Fitness Today,1 is delicious served warm during the fall and winter, but come spring and summer, it also works well chilled as a summer salad.
Did You Know?
- Roasted turmeric cauliflower is packed with flavor and nutrition
- Cauliflower contains vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants that support your brain and heart health, and fight cancer, and inflammation
- The active ingredient in the spice turmeric is curcumin, which has antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and anti-cancer properties
Roasted Turmeric Cauliflower2
- 1 head of organic cauliflower
- 1 tablespoon olive oil [or coconut oil]
- 1 tablespoon turmeric
- Pinch of cumin
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Chop cauliflower head into florets.
- Place cauliflower into a baking dish. Add olive oil, turmeric, cumin, and salt then mix together.
- Cover baking dish with foil to keep florets from drying out and roast for about 35-40 minutes.
- Then, remove foil and cook for another 15 minutes.
My Recommendation: While the recipe uses olive oil, I recommend coconut oil instead. Olive oil is susceptible to oxidation when heated and should only be used cold, whereas coconut oil is stable enough to resist heat-induced damage.
Why Eat Cauliflower?
If you’re wondering what makes roasted turmeric cauliflower so good for you, it starts with the cauliflower, which is a member of the cruciferous family of vegetables.
Cauliflower contains sulforaphane, a sulfur compound that has also been shown to kill cancer stem cells, thereby slowing tumor growth. Some researchers believe eliminating cancer stem cells may be key to controlling cancer.
For instance, research has shown that combining cauliflower with curcumin (the active compound in the spice turmeric, just like in the recipe above) may help prevent and treat prostate cancer.3
A study published in Carcinogenesis also found sulforaphane may reduce the incidence and rate of chemically induced mammary tumors in animals.4 It also inhibits the growth of cultured human breast cancer cells, leading to cell death.
Cauliflower also contains a wealth of anti-inflammatory nutrients to help keep inflammation in check, including indole-3-carbinol or I3C, an anti-inflammatory compound that may operate at the genetic level to help prevent the inflammatory responses at its foundational level.5
Cauliflower helps your body’s ability to detoxify in multiple ways. It contains antioxidants that support Phase 1 detoxification along with sulfur-containing nutrients important for Phase 2 detox activities. The glucosinolates in cauliflower also activate detoxification enzymes.6
Easily Increase Your Intake of Vitamins, Minerals, and Antioxidants
Snacking on cauliflower is a simple way to increase your intake of nutrients in which many Americans are seriously lacking. For instance, one serving of cauliflower contains 77 percent of the recommended daily value of vitamin C.
It’s also a good source of vitamin K, protein, thiamin, riboflavin, niacin, magnesium, phosphorus, fiber, vitamin B6, folate, pantothenic acid, potassium, and manganese. Cauliflower is also a good source of choline, a B vitamin known for its role in brain development.
Choline intake during pregnancy "super-charged" the brain activity of animals in utero, indicating that it may boost cognitive function, improve learning, and memory. It may even diminish age-related memory decline and your brain's vulnerability to toxins during childhood, as well as conferring protection later in life.7
Plus, eating cauliflower is like winning the antioxidant and phytonutrient lottery. It’s packed with vitamin C, beta-carotene, kaempferol, quercetin, rutin, cinnamic acid, and much more. If you want to know even more about cauliflower, be sure to read “What Is Cauliflower Good For?”
What’s Healthier Than Cauliflower? Cauliflower with Turmeric!
Adding turmeric to cauliflower makes this superfood even more super. Turmeric, the yellow-pigmented "curry spice" often used in Indian cuisine, contains curcumin, the polyphenol identified as its primary active component and which exhibits over 150 potentially therapeutic activities, which include antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and anti-cancer properties.8
According to Dr. William LaValley, who focuses most of his clinical work on the treatment of cancer, curcumin appears to be universally useful for just about every type of cancer, and has the most evidence-based literature supporting its use against cancer of any nutrient.
Curcumin has the ability to modulate genetic activity and expression—both by destroying cancer cells and by promoting healthy cell function. It also promotes anti-angiogenesis, meaning it helps prevent the development of additional blood supply necessary for cancer cell growth. In addition, according to an ever-expanding clinical body of studies, curcumin may help:
|Support healthy cholesterol levels
||Prevent low-density lipoprotein oxidation
||Inhibit platelet aggregation
|Suppress thrombosis and myocardial infarction
||Suppress symptoms associated with type 2 diabetes
||Suppress symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis
|Suppress symptoms of multiple sclerosis
||Suppress symptoms of Alzheimer's disease
||Inhibit HIV replication
|Suppress tumor formation
||Enhance wound healing
||Protect against liver damage
|Increase bile secretion
||Protect against cataracts
||Protect against pulmonary toxicity and fibrosis
Unfortunately, while there's some curcumin in whole turmeric, there's probably not enough in the regular spice to achieve all of these clinically relevant results. The turmeric root itself contains only about 3 percent curcumin concentration, so while it’s still very healthy to consume, if you’re looking for the full therapeutic effects you might want to consider a supplement of turmeric extract with at least 95% curcuminoids.
Love Cauliflower and Turmeric? Here’s a Bonus Recipe
If you love the combination of cauliflower and turmeric, here’s another way to prepare it. This quick recipe, from the World’s Healthiest Foods,9 is anti-inflammatory, antioxidant-rich, and cooks up in just five minutes, making it perfect for lunch, dinner, or even a quick snack. Impressively, one serving of this dish provides 181% of the daily value for vitamin C, 46% for vitamin K, and 33% for folate!
Healthy Cauliflower with Turmeric
- 1 pound organic cauliflower
- 5 tablespoon low-sodium chicken or vegetable broth
- 1 teaspoon turmeric
- 3 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
- 2 teespoon lemon juice
- 2 medium cloves garlic, pressed or chopped
- Sea salt and pepper to taste
- Cut cauliflower florets into quarters and let sit for 5 minutes to bring out their hidden health benefits.
- Press or chop garlic and let sit for 5 minutes.
- Heat 5 tablespoon broth in a stainless steel skillet on medium heat.
- When broth begins to steam, add cauliflower and turmeric and cover. For al dente cauliflower, cook for no more than 5 minutes.
- Transfer to a bowl. For more flavor, toss cauliflower with the remaining ingredients while it is still hot. (Mediterranean Dressing does not need to be made separately.)
Sources and References
Tags: Fruits and Vegetables, Side Dishes