Instant Pot Cauliflower

Instant Pot Cauliflower

The Spruce / Kristina Vanni

Prep: 5 mins
Cook: 5 mins
Pressure Build: 10 mins
Total: 20 mins
Servings: 4 servings
Yield: 1 cauliflower
Nutrition Facts (per serving)
198 Calories
17g Fat
12g Carbs
2g Protein
Show Full Nutrition Label Hide Full Nutrition Label
Nutrition Facts
Servings: 4
Amount per serving
Calories 198
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 17g 22%
Saturated Fat 2g 11%
Cholesterol 0mg 0%
Sodium 431mg 19%
Total Carbohydrate 12g 4%
Dietary Fiber 3g 10%
Total Sugars 7g
Protein 2g
Vitamin C 36mg 179%
Calcium 35mg 3%
Iron 1mg 7%
Potassium 226mg 5%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
(Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)

You won't believe how easy it is to create a flavorful side dish or elegant vegan main dish in a matter of minutes in the Instant Pot. A whole head of cauliflower is drizzled with olive oil and coated with seasoning. It is pressure cooked for just two minutes, then it can easily be sliced into wedges or steaks. Each piece is then garnished with a tangy Southern Italian-style topping filled with capers, pine nuts, raisins, and fresh lemon zest.


For the Cauliflower:

  • 1 small head cauliflower, trimmed of leaves and stem cut as close to florets as possible

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil

  • 2 teaspoons Italian seasoning

  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt

  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

  • 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes

  • 3/4 cup water

For the Topping:

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil

  • 1 tablespoon red wine vinegar

  • 2 tablespoons pine nuts

  • 2 tablespoons capers

  • 1/4 cup golden raisins

  • 3 tablespoons finely chopped parsley

  • Freshly grated lemon zest

Steps to Make It

  1. Gather the ingredients. 

    Instant Pot Cauliflower
    The Spruce / Kristina Vanni
  2. Place a whole trimmed and cleaned cauliflower head on a cutting board and drizzle with 2 tablespoons of the olive oil. In a small bowl combine the Italian seasoning, kosher salt, black pepper, and red pepper flakes. Generously drizzle the cauliflower head with the spice blend, taking care to rotate it and cover all sides completely. 

    Instant Pot Cauliflower
    The Spruce / Kristina Vanni
  3. Place the metal trivet into the bottom of the pot insert of an electric pressure cooker. Pour in the water. Place the seasoned cauliflower head on the trivet. Seal the lid and set to manual. Cook on high pressure for 2 minutes. 

    Instant Pot Cauliflower
    The Spruce / Kristina Vanni
  4. Manually release the pressure immediately and transfer the cooked cauliflower to a cutting board. In a medium bowl, combine the 2 tablespoons of olive oil with the red wine vinegar, pine nuts, capers, golden raisins, and chopped parsley. 

    Instant Pot Cauliflower
    The Spruce / Kristina Vanni
  5. Cut the head of cauliflower either into wedges or large, thick steaks. Spoon the prepared topping over the cauliflower. Grate fresh lemon zest over each piece. Serve immediately. 

    Instant Pot Cauliflower
    The Spruce / Kristina Vanni
  6. Enjoy.


  • There are two ways to release the pressure from an electric pressure cooker once the cooking process is complete. One way is to let the pressure release naturally. This will take longer and you will know it is complete when the pressure valve is down. Alternately, you can immediately release the pressure by manually opening the vent. If a recipe calls for this option, be especially careful of the steam that will be released from the pressure cooker to avoid burns.

Recipe Variation

  • To cook plain steamed cauliflower in an electric pressure cooker, follow the instructions above but without using any oil or seasoning, only the cauliflower and water for the bottom of the pot. The cauliflower can be cooked whole or cut into florets and then used in recipes as desired.