Photo: Johnny Autry; Styling: Mary Clayton Carl
Hands-on Time
12 Mins
Total Time
1 Hour 4 Mins
Serves 4 (serving size: 1 1/4 cups)

How to Make It

Step 1

Preheat oven to 400°.

Step 2

Combine first 4 ingredients; drizzle with 2 teaspoons olive oil. Toss. Arrange mixture on a baking sheet; bake at 400° for 40 minutes or until cauliflower is tender and golden, stirring twice. Cook pasta according to package directions, omitting salt and fat. Drain in a colander over a bowl, reserving 1/2 cup cooking liquid.

Step 3

Heat a large skillet over medium heat. Add pancetta to pan, and cook for 5 minutes or until crisp, stirring frequently. Remove pancetta; set aside. Add remaining 2 1/2 teaspoons oil to drippings in pan. Add 1/2 cup reserved cooking liquid to drippings in pan; bring to a boil over high heat. Boil 30 seconds or until emulsified, stirring constantly with a whisk. Add rind, juice, thyme, and garlic to pan. Add pasta; toss. Remove from heat. Add cauliflower and pancetta; toss. Top with cheese. Serve immediately.

Ratings & Reviews

LauraB08's Review

January 18, 2015
Truly outstanding! This confirms my theory that all roasted vegetables are delicious. Plus the bacon fat and oil makes a delicious coating for the pasta.

ald0ra's Review

January 07, 2015
I *really* wanted to love this recipe. I like the idea of roasting cauliflower, etc. As one review mentioned that they wished it was "saucier", I share the same sentiment. However I did eat it immediately. There wasn't enough cauliflower; so I roasted broccoli to add more. Personally I didn't think the effort was equal to the taste. Perhaps I might use this as a base and make modifications accordingly.

sterlingfink's Review

August 26, 2014
I have lost count of how many times I have made this! I make it for both regular weeknights and when entertaining. Like another reviewer said once the cauliflower has roasted everything comes together quickly, so it does pay to prep. Cheap, easy, very flavorful.

VeaLea's Review

May 13, 2014
Tasty and easy to make - but clean-up is a bit on the high side. Read my full review here -

LDombeck's Review

November 19, 2013
This was good! Roasted cauliflower is so good, pair it with pasta = success!

amberlapp21's Review

March 13, 2013

debbieshuman's Review

October 23, 2012
I didn't even make the pasta part of this recipe. I made the cauliflower part and it was incredible. We don't normally eat cauliflower but have been searching for other veggie type sides. This worked well. We only cooked it for 35 minutes and it was very tender. We also put foil on the pan to make cleanup easier.

ahatfield's Review

October 04, 2012
I made no changes to this recipe, and thought the finished product was good, but perhaps not worth the effort (particularly not on a weeknight). The leftovers were actually even better, though, and if nothing else, the roasted cauliflower was delicious - I'd do that for a quick side anytime.

ChefAmandaLynn's Review

September 29, 2012
I love Cauliflower, but this was very bland. I used pancetta rather than bacon, so perharps that made a difference, but I did not think this was saucy at all, and thought it was very bland.

Michael1965's Review

September 21, 2012
both my wife and I enjoyed this recipe. Make sure you have everything ready ahead of time as it cooks quick.