Spring Detox Cauliflower Salad

Spring Detox Cauliflower Salad in a bowl with a fork.

Okay, here’s the deal.

Cheese and pasta and Greek pork pitas are all so super delicious and – I do not say this lightly – they have been exactly what my body and soul have needed throughout the last three months. I see them, I acknowledge their place, and I thank them for helping me heal my broken heart.

But now it’s April, and my body and soul are asking for some new things.

Mostly: Vegetables. Fruits. Healthy proteins. And more vegetables and more fruits.

And if that could happen in a way that does not make me hate my life, that would be awesome k thanks.

How To Make Our Cauliflower Salad (1 MIN):

Spring Detox Cauliflower Salad with a drizzle of sweet mustard dressing.

So it works out pretty nicely then that a few days ago, when I was deep in a Google rabbit hole, I came across THIS SALAD from the ultra-inspiring-plant-based-goals blog known as The First Mess.

It’s old. Like, 2014 old. Which is only fitting for Google rabbit holes, right? Where else can you expect to find such hidden gems? But it’s still as crunchy, tangy, nutritious, and buttery (s/o to the perfect avocados) as it must have been in 2014 when it was a newbie to the internet.

When this detoxy cauliflower salad materialized for lunch at the studio, we crunched in blissful silence and all agreed: it’s strange, maybe even unpredictable, but ridiculously delicious. Here’s what we’ve got in this unicorn of a cauliflower salad:

  • RAW cauliflower rice. RAW, thank you very much.
  • Apples.
  • Mint and parsley.
  • Shallots. Super thinly sliced, like paper.
  • Roasted chickpeas.
  • Big chunks of buttery avocado.
  • A two-second honey-olive oil-mustard dressing.
  • Lime juice and zest. because WHY NOT.

It feels kitchen-sinky in the best possible way.

Hands holding Spring Detox Cauliflower Salad in a bowl with a fork.

Raise your hand if you need some spring detox in your life?

Right there with you, girlfriend. Cauliflower Salad to our delicious rescue.

Detox Cauliflower Salad in bowl with fork.

Spring Detox Cauliflower Salad

  • Author: Lindsay
  • Total Time: 40 minutes
  • Yield: 4


An herby, fresh vegan power salad featuring cauliflower, apples, shallots, roasted spiced chickpeas, and a quick grainy mustard dressing.


Cauli Salad:

  • 1 14-ounce can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
  • chili powder, salt, and pepper
  • 1 head cauliflower, cut into florets
  • 1 apple, sliced thin
  • 1 shallot, sliced thin
  • a handful of parsley and mint, chopped
  • 2 firm avocados, cut into chunks

Jar Dressing:

  • 2 tablespoons grainy mustard
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1/4 cup water
  • juice and zest of one lime
  • salt and pepper, to taste


  1. Chickpeas: Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Place chickpeas on a baking sheet lined with parchment. Drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with chili powder, salt, and pepper to taste. Roast for 20-30 minutes until crispy and browned.
  2. Cauliflower Prep: Working in batches, run the cauliflower florets through a food processor until you get “rice” – it should take about 20-30 pulses.
  3. Dressing: Shake up all the ingredients in a jar, or whisk together. Taste and adjust.
  4. Assembly: Toss everything together. That’s it!


If going sugar free is important to you, make sure to look for a mustard without sugar.

I like to reserve a few chickpeas and herbs to top the salad, just to make it pretty.

This salad doesn’t last long once tossed together, so if you’re prepping in advance, keep everything separate.

Maple syrup or agave would be a perfect sub to make this recipe vegan.

  • Prep Time: 20 minutes
  • Cook Time: 20 minutes
  • Category: Lunch
  • Cuisine: American

Keywords: cauliflower salad, spring salad, vegan salad

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One More Thing!

This recipe is part of our best healthy summer salads page. Check it out!

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