Fennel is an under-appreciated vegetable IMHO. I’m the first to admit, I didn’t really know how to prepare fennel until a few years ago. My sister-in-law made a fennel side dish for Thanksgiving and I was hooked! I was determined to figure out the best (and simplest) way to cook this tasty bulb.
There really isn’t a ‘wrong’ way to roast fennel. It’s really just figuring out timing and how you want to season it. I love how this version uses fresh minced garlic, so the depth of flavor that the roasted garlic adds is delicious. Fennel is a great source of vitamin C, as well as aiding in digestion.
Truth be told, I typically cut the fennel in slightly smaller slices – they just don’t look quite as appealing for this blog post 😀 Start by choosing your oil – olive oil is great (as long as you don’t roast at a higher temperature than 400°). I’ve used coconut oil or avocado oil if roasting at 425°. Next, add any combination of spices that you’d like. Besides salt and pepper, the possibilities are endless! Cayenne is a nice addition if you want a spicy kick. Toss the fennel slices in the oil and herb mixture until they are combined.
After 20-25 minutes of roasting, look for the edges of the fennel starting to brown. You should smell the garlic and fennel getting nice and caramelized. This is the point where you can add the parmesan cheese – if you are omitting the cheese, continue to roast for another 5-10 minutes. I love serving this as a side for salmon, but it can be paired with your protein of choice, or enjoyed all by itself.
- 2 large bulbs fennel
- 3 Tbsp. olive oil
- 3 garlic cloves, minced
- 1/2 tsp. salt
- 1 tsp. black pepper
- 1 tsp. thyme
- 1/4 cup parmesan cheese (omit if vegan)
- Preheat oven to 400° F.
- Remove the fennel stalks if needed and cut off the tough ends of the bulbs. Slice them lengthwise and then into slices ~1/2 inch thick.
- In a large bowl, add the olive oil, garlic, and spices. Stir to combine.
- Add the fennel slices and toss to coat.
- Roast for about 20-25 minutes, until the edges start to brown and caramelize.
- Add the cheese (if using), and roast until the cheese starts to brown – another 5-10 minutes.
Nutrition Information:Yield: 4 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 134Total Fat: 12gSaturated Fat: 2gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 9gCholesterol: 5mgSodium: 427mgCarbohydrates: 5gFiber: 2gSugar: 2gProtein: 3g
Nutritional information is an estimate and may vary per preparation.