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Cauliflower with Brown Butter, Pears, Sage & Hazelnuts

Scott Phillips

Servings: 8-10

This dish has the advantage of cooking on the stovetop, freeing up valuable oven space for other dishes.

Want to see this recipe in action? Watch the Video Recipe to see how this dish comes together. 


  • 3 oz. (6 Tbs.) unsalted butter
  • 1 medium head cauliflower, cut into small florets about 3/4 inch wide
  • 1/2 cup toasted, skinned, chopped hazelnuts (see tip right)
  • 8 fresh sage leaves, thinly sliced crosswise
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 large ripe pears, cored and thinly sliced
  • 2 Tbs. chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley

Nutritional Information

  • Calories (kcal) : 140
  • Fat Calories (kcal): 90
  • Fat (g): 11
  • Saturated Fat (g): 4.5
  • Polyunsaturated Fat (g): 1
  • Monounsaturated Fat (g): 4.5
  • Cholesterol (mg): 20
  • Sodium (mg): 125
  • Carbohydrates (g): 11
  • Fiber (g): 3
  • Protein (g): 2


  • In a 12-inch skillet over medium-high heat, melt the butter until light brown and bubbly. Add the cauliflower, hazelnuts, and sage. Cook for 2 minutes, stirring occasionally. Season with 1 tsp. salt and 1/2 tsp. pepper and continue cooking, stirring occasionally, until the cauliflower is browned and crisp-tender, 6 to 7 minutes more.

    Remove the pan from the heat. Add the pear slices and parsley. Gently toss to combine and warm the pears. Season to taste with more salt. Serve hot or at room temperature.

Make Ahead Tips

You can prep all the ingredients several hours ahead except for the pears, which will brown if cut too far in advance.


To toast hazelnuts, spread them in a single layer on a baking sheet. Bake in a 350°F oven for 14 to 18 minutes, stirring every 5 minutes, until lightly browned. While still warm, rub them against each other in a clean dishtowel to remove the papery skins.


Rate or Review

Reviews (14 reviews)

  • Fastype77 | 01/11/2022

    FABULOUS!! This is our new favorite side dish! I use Bosc pears (firm, sweet, and not grainy - just check the tops for a little give) and stovetop-toasted almond slivers. Also fortunate to be over-wintering my sage plant so fresh sage is always available. Thank you for this wonderful recipe!

  • user-812785 | 12/11/2017

    Being one that can be served warm or at room temperature, this one worked out great for a covered dish Christmas party that we went to. I took it straight from the skillet to a pre-heated Corningware dish to transport. The meat served was ham and this made for an excellent side pairing. In lieu of the hazelnuts, I used what I had on-hand, toasted slivered almonds. They worked great. Since I was making 1-1/2 times the recipe my skillet was very full. So, I took Lisa Barrett's advice and covered the pan to steam the cauliflower some. However, I did it after the addition of the nuts and sage in several smaller time increments, stirring in between until everything was browned. Everyone really liked the cauliflower/pear combination, too.

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