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Sharing my vegan twist on a traditional Filipino dish with this Filipino Coconut Cauliflower Adobo. I’ve swapped the chicken for nutrient-packed cauliflower and slow-braised it in soy sauce, vinegar, and bay leaves. Coconut milk adds a touch of creaminess to this sweet and tangy adobo sauce making it especially delicious. This is best served over steamed rice with fresh avocado and a side of beans. The perfect healthy, 30-minute dinner, any night of the week.

overhead photo of Easiest Coconut Cauliflower Adobo

It’s officially the deep, deep, deep winter around here. We had a cold, but beautiful, snow-filled weekend. At this point, I’m not yet sick of the snow and still very much embracing the cozy weather. Hoping you all are too, because it’s only mid-January and we still have a ways to go before spring!

As I mentioned Sunday, I decided to cancel a quick NYC trip to be able to spend some time with my mom for her birthday on Saturday. It was good I did because all the snow would have caused some travel issues, which I’m not so into. I was thankful to have a nice cozy weekend home and this coconut cauliflower adobo ended up being the perfect Sunday night dinner. It’s warming and hearty, yet light and healthy at the same time.

I first made this dish back before Christmas and I’ve been excited to share the recipe with you all for weeks. So happy the day has come!!

cauliflower on baking sheet

The inspiration.

Over the holidays my brother Red had his girlfriend, Hailey, here. We all LOVE Hailey so much, she is such a nice addition to our family’s Christmas celebrations. Hailey is part Filipino and every time she’s in town I’m excited to create a few Filipino inspired recipes.

Enter this easiest Filipino Coconut Cauliflower Adobo. No, it is not your traditional adobo, but it is my vegan take, and it sure is GOOD. It’s slightly inspired by last year’s Indian coconut butter cauliflower, but yet a completely different recipe with completely different flavors. This cauliflower is tangy, salty, and a touch spicy. It’s delicious served over rice.

Easiest Coconut Cauliflower Adobo cooking in skillet

The Details.

If you love a quick and simple recipe, this is for you. You need one sheet pan, one skillet, and only about thirty minutes from start to finish.

Start with the cauliflower. I like to charr it under the broiler to give it a bit of texture before tossing it with the adobo sauce. This will start the cooking process and ensure the cauliflower is crisp and not mushy or soggy.

While the cauliflower is charring in the oven, mix the sauce together using a few pantry staple ingredients, soy sauce, vinegar, coconut milk, and honey. It’s a slightly sweet and tangy sauce, but made a little creamy with the coconut milk.

Next, cook some garlic and shallots in a skillet, then toss in the sauce and the cauliflower. Simmer until the sauce thickens and coats the cauliflower. And that is it. Yes, that’s it. So super simple, but yet you’re left with the most flavorful, vegetable-packed dinner…that everyone will love.

overhead close up photo of Easiest Coconut Cauliflower Adobo

Serving suggestions?

This is best served with steamed rice, topped with thinly sliced green onions, and finished with a squeeze of fresh lime juice. Trust me, the rice is a MUST. If you want to be on the super healthy side, use brown rice, but either way, don’t skip the rice. The extra sauce soaks into the rice creating a delicious bite every single time.

If you wanted to make this meal heartier, I would recommend serving this with a side of black beans and maybe some fresh pineapple chunks for a nice tropical touch. Oh! And fried plantain chips would be a really fun and delicious addition as well. A very Filipino inspired (keyword being inspired) meal that’s perfect for these cold wintry days.

And lastly, I just have to say that this is truly a recipe that everyone really loves…even if they don’t enjoy cauliflower. I was shocked when my picky eating brothers gave this a try on New Year’s Eve. Everyone all agreed, this was the best dish of the night.

So, that should tell you right there…this is a recipe worth trying. When the brothers choose a vegetable-based dish over chicken, something about that dish must be REALLY GOOD.

Looking for a more classic Filipino style adobo? Try my one skillet adobo chicken or my pork adobo with pineapple from the Half Baked Harvest Super Simple cookbook.

overhead close up photo of Easiest Coconut Cauliflower Adobo with fork in cauliflower

If you make this easiest Filipino coconut cauliflower adobo, be sure to leave a comment and/or give this recipe a rating! Above all, I love to hear from you guys and always do my best to respond to each and every comment. And of course, if you do make this recipe, don’t forget to tag me on Instagram! Looking through the photos of recipes you all have made is my favorite!

Easiest Coconut Cauliflower Adobo.

Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Servings: 4
Calories Per Serving: 274 kcal

Nutritional information is only an estimate. The accuracy of the nutritional information for any recipe on this site is not guaranteed.



  • 1. Preheat the broiler to high. On a large baking sheet, combine the cauliflower, 2 tablespoons olive oil, and a pinch of pepper. Spread the cauliflower in an even layer. Transfer to the oven and broil for 3-4 minutes, until the cauliflower is just beginning to char.
    2. Meanwhile, in a large glass measuring cup, combine the soy sauce, vinegar, coconut milk, honey, red pepper flakes, and 1/4 cup of water.
    3. In a large skillet with sides, heat the remaining 1 tablespoon olive oil over medium-high heat. When the oil shimmers, add the shallots and garlic, cook until fragrant, about 1-2 minutes. Reduce the heat to low and pour in the soy sauce mixture. Stir in the charred cauliflower. Add the bay leaves. Bring the sauce to a boil, reduce the heat to medium. Simmer, uncovered for 15 minutes, until the sauce is thickening slightly. If the sauce thickens too fast, add ¼ cup of additional water. If the sauce is not thickening, simmer an additional 10 minutes. It's better to have more sauce than less sauce.
    4. Remove the bay leaves and discard. Serve the coconut cauliflower adobo over rice and top with green onions and a squeeze of lime juice, if desired
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  1. 5 stars
    Perfect! Perfect! The sauce is heaven and the cauliflower takes its taste. I make it all the time when its their season. Thank you !!

    PS I make it with noodles.

    1. Hi Maria,
      Wonderful!! I love to hear that this recipe turned out well for you, thanks for making it and your feedback! xT

  2. 4 stars
    Quite enjoyable. The low sodium spy sauce is a must, I used regular and even my salt addicted husband found it too salty. Next time I’m going to add some bell peppers and mushrooms. I also found it took longer than expected for the sauce to reduce.

  3. 3 stars
    I used all the ingredients listed and followed the recipe to a T, but it was way too salty for my taste. Next time I make it I will probably add 1/4 cup reduced sodium soy sauce and then make the other 1/2 up with coconut milk. I also liked my addition of a little ginger, plus a bit of lime zest and juice.

  4. 5 stars
    OMG-this was FABULOUS! I had it last night & I want it agin tonight. I may just need to but ALL of the cauliflower at the store & keep making it on repeat. Seriously, this was hella good-thank you!

    1. Hey Dale,
      Love to hear this! Thanks so much for making this recipe and sharing your comment! Have a great weekend!🌼🌴

  5. Hi, just wondering what would happen if I use light/less fat coconut milk? Or should I add something else? Thanks!

    1. Hi Amanda,
      That would be just fine for you to do! Let me know if you give this recipe a try, I hope you love it!! xTieghan

      1. I tried it with full fat coconut milk and loved it but we’re trying to be healthier so I thought I’d try light/less fat. Thank you!

        1. Hey Amanda,
          Happy Sunday!! Thanks so much for making this recipe, I love to hear that it was enjoyed!? xTieghan

  6. 5 stars
    Hi Tieghan! I think this is one of the first recipes I made of yours. That was over two years ago and I haven’t stopped making your dishes since! This one has become a regular in our house, I love how quick it is to make but the flavors pack a welcome punch for a weeknight meal. I appreciate you so much, keep doing what you’re doing!

    1. Hi Maria,
      I am so glad you family has been enjoying this recipe for so long, thanks for continuing to make it! xTieghan

  7. 3 stars
    This was good, but I’ll make some tweaks before it’ll earn a spot in my favorite recipes book. It is a bit salty, but if you’re eating adobo, that’s what it is! I think the biggest change this recipe needs is to thicken the sauce and then add the cauliflower. It continues to give off some water while it finishes cooking and that’s what makes the sauce so thin. If you wait for the sauce to thicken with the cauliflower in it, the vegetable gets overcooked. When making chicken, you want it in the sauce in order for it to get tender, but the cauliflower doesn’t need that time. I might also lessen the vinegar so that I have room for more acid from the lime.