Five Cauliflower Dishes to Eat Right Now in San Diego County

Cauliflower was the trendiest vegetable of 2018 (yes, even vegetables trend these days), and it's not hard to see why. The hearty plant can easily replace carb-heavy rice and wheat – or even meat -- while taking on the flavor of whatever else is in the dish.

Chefs around San Diego County have been using this humble veg as a blank canvas for incredible flavor combinations and layers of texture, and these are our five favorite places to savor them right now.

Charred Rainbow Cauliflower Taco at LOLA 55

Lola 55 has several great vegetarian options, but their best (in my opinion) is the charred rainbow cauliflower taco. With smoky eggplant “bacon,” creamy avocado mousse, crunchy almonds, sweet golden raisins and spicy morita dulce salsa, you will not miss the meat among so many flavors and textures. Watch the corn tortillas being made while you stand in line to order.


1290 F Street, East Village

Sunday to Thursday, 11am - 9pm; Friday to Saturday, 11am - 11pm 

Roasted Cauliflower Steak at The Nolen

One of the best cauliflower steaks I’ve tried is on The Nolen's new menu. While you’re never going to mistake the Roasted Cauliflower Steak for filet mignon, the unusual combination of pappadew, olives, capers and provolone makes for a flavorful and surprisingly hearty main dish.

The Nolen

453 6th Avenue, Gaslamp

Sunday brunch, 11am - 2 pm; Sunday to Thursday, 4pm - 12am; Friday to Saturday, 4pm - 1am

Photo: Michelle Stansbury

Wood Grilled Cauliflower at TRUST

At TRUST, they aren’t trying to make cauliflower “be” anything else. Chef Brad Wise has just figured out how to make cauliflower the very best version of itself: wood grilled over red oak and combined with golden raisins, mint, Serrano aioli, and curry vinaigrette. This is a dish to eat quietly as you detangle the layers of flavor in silent reverence.  

Trust Restaurant

3752 Park Boulevard, Hillcrest

Monday to Thursday 5pm – 9pm; Friday 5pm - 10pm; Saturday 9am – 2pm, 5pm – 10pm; Sunday 9am – 2pm; 5pm – 9p


Buffalo Cauliflower at Backyard Kitchen & Tap

 Pacific Beach’s Backyard Kitchen & Tap brings the flavor of Buffalo wings to the vegetarian Buffalo Cauliflower, a plateful of roasted cauliflower, crispy kale, and chickpeas, smothered in tangy buffalo sauce and topped with gorgonzola crumbles. After a few beers, you might even mistake the texture for boneless wings.

Backyard Kitchen & Tap

832 Garnet Avenue, Pacific Beach

Monday, 3pm-10pm; Tuesday to Friday, 11am-10pm; Saturday & Sunday: Brunch, 9am-3pm and Dinner, 3pm-10pm

Roasted Cauliflower at Tocaya Organica

The vegan, gluten-free roasted cauliflower at Tocaya Organica is spiced with curry, garlic, and cumin for a delicious alternative to potatoes. While most of the menu has a Mexican flair, the Indian flavors in their cauliflower works nicely as a counterpoint to their main dishes. The fast casual new spot is a good place to get your cauliflower fix when you’re on the go.

Tocaya Organica San Diego

755 5th Avenue, Downtown San Diego

Daily, 11:30am - 10:00pm