Cauliflower Antipasto Salad

Cauliflower Antipasto Salad

A ketogenic diet friendly antipasto salad made with a mixture of marinated cauliflower, fresh cheeses, salami, and a variety of vegetables and fresh herbs to make a bright and satisfying salad.

Looking for healthier alternatives to enjoy before your big meal? This lighter and low carb cauliflower antipasto salad is a great way to enjoy an appetizer!

This recipe is simple and uses marinated cauliflower florets as a base of the antipasto. Toss in all your favorite vegetables, meats, cheeses, olives, and pile on the fresh herbs for a hearty yet light salad recipe. With a homemade vinaigrette, this salad is packed with bright flavor!

Get all the details below on how to prepare and serve this cauliflower salad dish!

Love salads? Check out my Grinder Salad recipe and these grilled antipasto-style sausage kebabs too.

“School” Supplies:

  • Knife and Cutting Board
  • Large Mixing Bowl
  • Small Mixing Bowl
  • Whisk

“Class” Notes:

Welcome to my virtual classroom! Use the guided notes below where I often answer commonly asked questions I get from readers and cooks just like you.

This information is meant to help you have a stronger understanding of this recipe and the process so you can find success all on your own.

Ready to begin cooking? Simply jump to the recipe below and begin.

What is Antipasto?

Antipasto is an Italian word that refers to the plate that is served before a meal. It is essentially an appetizer that is meant to stimulate the appetite before the main course of the meal. Oftentimes, it is a platter filled with cured meats, fresh cheeses, olives, and vegetables.

This cauliflower antipasto salad takes all the best parts of an antipasto platter and makes it into a salad to eat before or with your dinner!

Ingredients:

For the Salad:

  • Cauliflower- One head of cauliflower, diced and trimmed into bite size pieces.
  • Zucchini– Cut into 1/2 inch pieces.
  • Heirloom Tomatoes– Any fresh tomatoes that are in season will do!
  • Black Olives
  • Artichoke Hearts– These can be found in jars at your local grocery store. Drain them well before using them for this salad.
  • Hard Salami or Smoked Ham– Cubed into bite sized pieces.
  • Mini Mozzarella Balls– Sometimes called pearl mozzarella and is found in the cheese section at the store.
Antipasto ingredients

For the Dressing:

  • Olive Oil
  • Lemon– If you don’t have fresh lemon juice, then use the bottled lemon juice.
  • Garlic– One minced garlic clove will do for this recipe.
  • Seasonings: Salt & Pepper, Dried Oregano, Dried Basil, Dried Parsley & Dried Rosemary
Grinder salad dressing ingredients

Preparation:

Cauliflower Antipasto Salad:

The base of this antipasto salad is cauliflower. Because cauliflower is frankly, bland, boring, and overall blah, it needs time to marinade in the dressing, so plan accordingly.

  1. Dice all the vegetables, cheeses, and meats and place them into a salad bowl.

Antipasto Dressing:

  1. In a blender or food processor, add a few squeezes of fresh lemon juice, some classic Italian seasonings, and a little salt and pepper! Blend it all together while drizzling olive oil into the blender. If you don’t have a blender or food processor, you can whisk all of these ingredients together.
  2. Season to taste and pour the dressing over the diced veggies, cheeses and meats.
  3. Toss everything together with your dressing, cover, and allow it to rest for at least 4 hours. I did mix mine once halfway through because the dressing can sometimes settle at the bottom of the bowl.
  4. After the salad has marinated, serve and top with fresh herbs and enjoy!
Antipasto salad on a white plate on top of a red and white table cloth.

Expert Tips:

  • An easy Italian vinaigrette is simple to whip up, so I recommend making the dressing homemade. It usually involves most of the ingredients you already have in your cabinets!
  • The biggest thing to remember is to use good quality ingredients, especially olive oil. A lot of store bought products have hidden sugars, preservatives, and extra junk you just simply don’t need.
  • Many of olive oils on the market are not pure so make sure you use high quality olive oil as your base.
  • For the salami, try a Genoa salami since it is from Italy and the flavors will go nicely! Otherwise, try cubed smoked ham for a nice flavor as well.
  • You can really make this antipasto salad your own by choosing your own variations and favorite Italian ingredients!

Variations for Cauliflower Antipasto Salad:

I recommend getting really creative in your ingredients for antipasto salad. Besides, cauliflower I love to add artichoke hearts, fresh heirloom tomatoes, and other seasonal fresh vegetables like asparagus or zucchini.

Some other options you can try are green olives, fresh parsley or basil, pepperocinis, and sliced red onions! If you don’t want to use cauliflower, you can make this salad on a bed of lettuce instead. You can add all of these things or choose what you think would be your favorite!

Fresh mini mozzarella balls are my preference but a Swiss cheese or grated fresh parmesan would work beautifully as well.

More Salad Recipes to Try:

Cauliflower Antipasto Salad

Cauliflower Antipasto Salad

A ketogenic diet friendly antipasto salad made with a mixture of marinated cauliflower, fresh cheeses, salami, and a variety of vegetables and fresh herbs.
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Prep Time: 1 hour 30 minutes
Servings: 12
Calories: 230kcal
Author: Bon Appeteach

Ingredients

  • 1 head Cauliflower
  • 1 cup Cucumber (seedless) diced
  • 1 cup Cherry Tomatoes halved
  • 1 cup Black Olives halved
  • 4 oz. Artichoke Hearts diced and sliced thin
  • 8 oz. Salami diced and cubed
  • 8 oz. Mini Mozzarella Balls

Dressing

  • 1/2 cup Olive Oil
  • 1 whole Lemon juiced
  • 2 cloves Garlic minced
  • 1 tsp. Oregano
  • 1 tsp. Basil
  • 1 tsp. Parsley
  • 1 tsp. Rosemary
  • 1/2 tsp. Salt
  • 1/2 tsp. Black Pepper

Instructions

  • Begin by dicing all the vegetables, cheese, and meats. Place all the ingredients into a large mixing bowl.
  • In a bowl, combine the dressing ingredients and whisk well until combined.
  • Fold the dressing into the antipasto mixture until everything is very coated.
  • Cover and place in the fridge for 1-2 hours to marinade. Mix as needed before serving.

Notes

Try roasting and cooling the cauliflower for a slightly different take! 

Nutrition

Calories: 230kcal | Carbohydrates: 3g | Protein: 8g | Fat: 21g | Saturated Fat: 5g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g | Monounsaturated Fat: 11g | Cholesterol: 22mg | Sodium: 702mg | Potassium: 144mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 0.4g | Vitamin A: 201IU | Vitamin C: 4mg | Calcium: 94mg | Iron: 1mg

Cauliflower Antipasto Salad

Print Recipe
Serves: 12-16 Cooking Time: 4 1/2 Hours

Ingredients

  • 1 Head Cauliflower, diced and trimmed into bite sized pieces
  • 1 Zucchini, Sliced in half and diced into 1/2" pieces
  • 1 cup, Heirloom Tomatoes, sliced in half
  • 1 cup, Black Olives, sliced in half
  • 4 oz. Artichoke Hearts, sliced and diced (drain the liquid well)
  • 8 oz, Hard Salami or Smoked Ham, diced in half/cubed
  • 8 oz. Mini Fresh Mozzarella Balls, diced in half
  • 1/2 cup Olive Oil
  • 1 Lemon, juiced
  • 1 Garlic Clove, minced
  • 1 tsp. Dried Oregano
  • 1 tsp. Dried Basil
  • 1 tsp. Dried Parsley
  • 1 tsp. Dried Rosemary
  • 1 tsp. Salt & Pepper (each)
  • Optional add ins: Fresh asparagus, green olives, Swiss cheese, and fresh basil or parsley

Instructions

1

Dice all the vegetables, cheese, and meats.

2

In a blender or food processor combine the olive oil, lemon juice, and seasonings. Blend until well mixed and smooth.

3

Pour the dressing over the vegetables and fold in until evenly coated. Cover and refrigerate for a minimum of 4 hours.

4

Garnish with fresh parsley or basil before serving!

 

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