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Cauliflower & Herb “Pasta” with Ricotta Sauce

  • Author: Tessa
  • Yield: 2 large servings 1x


Also vegetarian.


  • ½ C pine nuts or sunflower seeds (raw or toasted)
  • 6 slices prosciutto or bacon (optional)
  • 1 head cauliflower, cut into florets (about 8 C florets)
  • 1 T olive oil
  • 3 C frozen peas (not thawed)
  • 1 lb. ricotta cheese (I use full fat)
  • 4 oz. parmesan cheese, coarsely grated (plus more for serving)
  • ½ C loosely packed basil leaves, roughly chopped
  • ½ C loosely packed mint leaves (or more basil), roughly chopped
  • 1 ½ t kosher salt
  • ½ t ground black pepper


  1. If nuts aren’t already toasted, heat them in a large (3 quart) skillet or Dutch oven over medium heat without oil. Stir or shake occasionally for 5 to 10 minutes, until mostly golden. Transfer to a cutting board or paper towel to cool in a single layer.
  2. Heat the same pan over barely medium. Add prosciutto or bacon in a single layer and cook, turning occasionally, until most of the fat has rendered and slices are just darkened and beginning to crisp. Remove to paper towels to drain excess fat. Once cool, roughly chop or crumble prosciutto and set aside.
  3. Bring a large pot of water to a boil over high heat. Carefully add the cauliflower (a slotted spoon works well) and boil for about 6 minutes, until just softened. Reserve about a half cup of the hot water, then drain cauliflower in a colander and set aside.
  4. Heat the oil in the same pan from the prosciutto over medium high, then add the peas. Cook 3 to 5 minutes, until thawed and warm. Reduce heat to medium low and add the ricotta, parmesan, almost all the herbs, 2 tablespoons of the reserved hot water, salt, and pepper. Stir until well combined into a thick sauce. Add the cauliflower and stir to coat in the sauce. If sauce is too thick to evenly coat cauliflower, add more of the reserved water a tablespoon at a time. Remove from heat and adjust seasoning to taste. Serve cauliflower topped with nuts, prosciutto, and extra parmesan and herbs.


Adapted from Stone Soup‘s cauliflower pasta recipe.

  • Category: Entree
  • Cuisine: Gluten Free