Baked Cauliflower Mac And Cheese

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Cauliflower Mac And Cheese

Baked Cauliflower Mac and Cheese Recipe | Easy 4 Ingredient Low Carb & Keto

Cauliflower makes a wonderful replacement in recipes like low-carb mashed potatoes, so why not macaroni and cheese!?

Ive partnered with Real California Milk to create this cheesy, comfort food dish. This cauliflower dish is great for college students looking for healthy meals made from real food, and their parents looking for more ways to incorporate more vegetables into meals. My college age daughter was home while I was testing it, and she went nuts over this dish. Shes a big cheese fan, but tries to avoid eating too much pasta. It can be a quick study snack, main lunch or dinner, or serve it as a side dish for a multi-course meal.

College students, now that school is back in full swing, this delicious dish will help you fuel up on protein! To make a stove-top version, simply skip the last step of baking it in the oven and serve it right out of the pot.

Variations For Macaroni And Cheese

This cauliflower mac and cheese is completely customizable, and it will still be spectacular. Here are a few ways!

  • Cheese: You are not stuck with just cheddar as the only option, as great as it is. Mix it up with different combinations of cheeses. Monterey Jack, pepper jack, havariti, swiss, guyre, or colby all are fun to include or mix and match.
  • Topping: If you like your mac and cheese with a little crunch on top, feel free to add a mixture of melted butter and bread crumbs, french fried onions or panko.
  • Add ins: You can mix up the veggies in this cauliflower mac and cheese if you desire. Add in broccoli, zucchini, peppers or mushrooms.
  • Meats: Give the mac and cheese some protein with ham, bacon or sausage.
  • Roast: You can oven roast the cauliflower instead of boiling it if you prefer. Toss in some olive oil and cook on a cookie sheet at 400 degrees for 20-25 minutes or till done to your liking. Roasting it will give the cauliflower a bit of a crunch, so yummy!

Why You’ll Love This Recipe

Modern take on a classic! Cauliflower is an amazingly versatile veggie! Why not use it to change up a traditional dish?

Kid-friendly! I dont know a single child who doesnt like mac and cheese.

It’s Comfort Food! Despite the lack of noodles, make no mistake, this is as comforting as it gets!

Low Carb & Keto Friendly! Only 7 net grams of carbs per serving plus loaded with fats and healthy cauliflower!

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Making This Cauliflower Mac And Cheese Keto

This dish is practically already keto! Just omit the milk and use heavy cream or any keto-friendly cream or milk option of your choice. Also, knowing which types of cheeses to combine to keep the sauce creamy will help if you want to omit cream or milk altogether. A great option for a creamy cheesy sauce is cream cheese!

Why This Recipe Works

Creamy Baked Cauliflower

Cauliflower I know this goes without saying because how would this recipe work without cauliflower but it truly has been a game-changer for me when cooking, knowing theres this versatile veggie I can use instead of pasta, potatoes, riceso many other things. Its fun to mix it up once in a while and having an extra serving or two of veggies never hurt anybody.

Hand-shredded cheese Im all about the kind of shredded cheese you shred yourself. Why? Well store-bought shredded cheese is coated with this powdery substance that keeps it from all caking together in the bag. That substance that keeps it from caking also keeps it from melting together well and leaves the cheese with a grainy taste and texture. Do yourself a favor and grate it yourself its even more economical that way too.

That roux You have to make a roux to get the cheese to fold in correctly and melt smoothly and consistently. Ive skipped this step before and what you end up with is cauliflower with melted cheese pieces stuck to it. Definitely not creamy and cauliflower mac and cheese like at all.

Leftovers This recipe heats up well the next day and the day after too . Mac and cheese for daaaays.

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Amazing Cauliflower Mac And Cheese

The Best Mac and Cheese without all the carbs! One bite of this indulgent satisfying dish and you will fall in love. Cauliflower mac and cheese is every dieters dream dish come true. You will never miss the noodles. You will never miss the carbs, I promise. My family loved this and I loved sneaking in more vegetables into their diets. Its kind of like my Cheesy Butternut Squash Pasta, full of flavor and vegetables. Having this cauliflower Mac and cheese is a double win!

Whether you are trying to be healthier or not, this is a mac and cheese you have to try. You wont regret it. Serve this up with a big salad and either this exquisite Air Fryer Chicken Breasts or Perfect Air Fryer Steak with Garlic Herb Butter. And dont forget you have to have The Best Keto Brownies to finish it off the meal. Of course you can serve this as main dish too. Whatever way you want to serve this, just make it! You will love it!

Heres How You Make It

  • First, set the oven to 375 degrees to preheat it.
  • Steam the cauliflower in the microwave by filling a microwave-safe bowl with about an inch of water, then the cauliflower and popping in the microwave for 8 minutes. Carefully drain the water out of the bowl and set aside.
  • In a large saucepan over medium-high heat, melt the butter.
  • Stir the flour into the melted butter for about 3 minutes, stirring continuously to make a roux.
  • Now whisk in the milk into the flour/butter mixture a little bit at a time until the milk is totally incorporated and the mixture thickens and is smooth.
  • Take the saucepan off the heat, and stir in the garlic powder, salt, pepper, and shredded cheese until thats thoroughly melted and smooth as well.
  • Add the cauliflower to the cheese in the saucepan, stir it all together and pour it into a prepared 9×13-in. baking dish.
  • Put the dish into the oven for 25 minutes until the cheese is bubbly and the outsides begin to brown. Switch the oven to broil for 2-4 minutes to really brown that top if you wish.
  • Pull the baking dish from the oven and allow to cool a little before serving.
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    Baked Cauliflower Mac And Cheese Comfort Food

    Ive never met anyone who didnt like mac and cheese. Its one of those comfort foods that seem to pop up on my NEED-o-meter more often than I should probably entertain.

    But the good news is, there are many variations of mac and cheese where the calories can be brought down or, take them through the roof if so inclined which, I admit, I AM inclined.

    However, put cauliflower and mac and cheese together? Im all in! For this easy cauliflower mac and cheese, while the carbs are reduced due to the addition of cauliflower, you also get the benefits of enjoying more veggies! Its a win-win!

    Plus the texture of roasted cauliflower in this recipe is just so satisfying.

    Join Our Jesus And Keto Movement

    Dairy-Free Baked Cauliflower Mac N’ Cheese Casserole Recipe

    Randy and I came to the keto diet looking at it from a Christian perspective. As believers, we live our lives supported by Gods grace. So when the Holy Spirit led us to combine our Christian faith and the keto diet, we did so in hopes of finding lasting transformation.

    To say we needed Gods intervention is putting it mildly. When we followed the Holy Spirits prompting to we got on the path to real transformation.

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    Cauliflower Macaroni And Cheese

    Sneak in to your mac and cheese bake for an easy way to get the kids to eat their vegetables.

    • 1 medium brown onion, finely chopped
    • 3 rashers shortcut bacon, chopped
    • 1 garlic clove, crushed
    • 1/2 cup grated Devondale Tasty Cheese Block
    • 250g dried macaroni
    • 400g , cut into small florets
    • 1 cup grated Devondale Mozzarella Cheese Block
    • Select all ingredients
    • Heat oil

      Unsure of the quantity needed?

      OK, Got It in a large frying pan over medium heat. Add onion and bacon . Cook, stirring, for 5 minutes or until softened. Add garlic . Cook, stirring, for 1 minute or until fragrant.

    • Step 3 Melt butter in a saucepan over medium heat for 2 minutes or until foaming. Add flour . Cook, stirring, for 1 minute or until mixture bubbles. Remove from heat. Add milk , 1/4 cup at a time, stirring constantly to prevent lumps forming. Return pan to medium heat. Cook, stirring, for 5 minutes or until sauce boils and thickens. Remove from heat. Stir in tasty cheese ).

    What You Need To Make The Best Cauliflower Mac And Cheese

    • Cauliflower This recipe calls for one large head of cauliflower or two small heads. Fresh cauliflower is much better than frozen cauliflower rice for this keto cauliflower mac.
    • Olive oil You could really use any neutral oil that you have on hand.
    • Salt + black pepper One of the best parts of this recipe is the simplicity! It only requires minimal kitchen staple seasonings.
    • Garlic powder If youre a huge fan of garlic, you could certainly replace this with fresh minced garlic for a stronger flavor.
    • Onion powder Onion powder can also be increased or decreased based on personal preference.
    • Heavy whipping cream Helps add to the creaminess of your low carb cauliflower mac. You could also use milk if you prefer, it may change the consitency a bit. Sometimes Ill use both and divide them in the recipe.
    • Cream cheese If youre trying to keep this cheesy cauliflower recipe on the healthier side, I would use a low fat cream cheese.
    • Cheese I like to use a combination of Cheddar, Monterey Jack and Gruyere cheese, but feel free to choose whichever cheeses you prefer. It is also a great way to clean out the odds and ends in the fridge.

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    Cauliflower Mac And Cheese Recipe Ingredients

    You just need a handful of ingredients to make this cauliflower mac and cheese recipe:

    • Cauliflower, of course! Look for a head of cauliflower thats fairly big, just over 2 pounds. For this recipe, make sure to break it into small florets, about the size of macaroni.
    • Vegan cheese sauce That creamy, gooey sauce looks like its made with cheddar cheese, but I promise, its totally dairy-free! Its rich, oozy texture comes from blended potato, sweet potato, and cashews. Nutritional yeast adds yummy cheesy flavor.
    • Smoked paprika and cayenne pepper I stir them into the cheese sauce for a smoky, spicy kick.
    • And panko bread crumbs For crunch! To make this recipe gluten-free, use gluten-free panko.

    Find the complete recipe with measurements below.

    Tips For Perfect Cheese Sauce

    Creamy Baked Cauliflower

    Have you ever made a mac and cheese that wasnt creamy or smooth? Instead if was grainy or gritty? The worst! Heres a few steps you should take for perfectly creamy cheese sauce.

  • Use real cheese. First step to success is to start with real cheese. I used a good quality sharp cheddar to give this dish maximum flavor.
  • Youre not limited to just cheddar. You can play around with different cheese combinations like Havarti, White Cheddar, Monterey Jack, etc.
  • Shred your own cheese. For this recipe, grating your own cheese will give you the smoothest results.
  • Start with a white sauce. A white sauce is made with butter or olive oil stirred with flour and milk. It thickens once it cools, then you stir the cheese into it to make your cheese sauce.
  • Do NOT add the cheese to boiling sauce. When adding the cheese, remove the white sauce from the heat completely before adding the cheese. I usually move this to a different burner so it stops boiling. You dont want to add the cheese to the mixture if its boiling/bubbling. Doing so will cause the cheese to break down causing a gritty texture.
  • Add the cheese a little at a time. I usually do this 1/4 cup at a time, whisking in between until its all melted.
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    Cauliflower Mac N Cheese

    Mac n cheese is the ultimate in comfort food for all ages. There is something about the simplicity of the meal, the memories of the dish, and the flavor that has this dish being served for all occasions.

    While the traditional method with pasta and cheese sauce is a good one, for low-carb eaters or those who need to avoid gluten, its a no-go. Pasta dishes do not work if you are trying to limit carbs or avoid gluten.

    Cauliflower, thankfully, is a perfect substitute for a variety of carbohydrates and gluten-containing items. This white-colored vegetable has been the star of many alternative recipes macaroni and cheese included.

    In this version, we are going to take the classic dish we know and love and create a healthier option. One that is low in carbs, gluten-free, and a great way to up your veggie intake.

    To make a quick and easy complete meal, we love to serve cauliflower mac and cheese with low-carb baked pork chops or pan fried chicken tenders. And for dessert, we are going to finish it off with keto blondies for a truly delicious evening.

    Lets Make Baked Cauliflower Mac And Cheese

    To begin, preheat oven to 350F. Then, cut cauliflower into bite size pieces each floret can be cut into 3-4 pieces.

    Next, place cauliflower in a large pot with water and a steamer basket and steam until soft enough to pierce with a fork, but not too soft, about 10 minutes.

    Then, remove steamed cauliflower from the pot and drain water and set the cauliflower aside. Return the pot to the stove over med-low heat.

    Next, add butter to the pot. As soon as the butter melts fully, add the cassava flour and a splash of cream to the pot.

    Then, whisk vigorously until a paste forms. Pour in the remainder of the cream, salt, and pepper and mix thoroughly.

    Leave the pot on burner, but turn off the heat and pour in 2 cups of cheese. Then, mix continuously until the cheese melts.

    .Next, add the steamed cauliflower to the cheese mixture and toss until all pieces are coated. Pour cheese and cauliflower mixture into a greased medium casserole dish and top with more cheese and crumbled pork rinds

    Finally, bake in the oven for 25 minutes until the top is browned and the cheese is bubbling.

    Enjoy immediately or store in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.

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    Cauliflower Mac And Cheese Serving Suggestions

    This mac n cheese is fantastic as-is, but feel free to serve it with a little extra cheese . I love topping mine with Vegan Parmesan, and Jack always showers his with freshly grated Parmesan cheese. We both sprinkle some fresh parsley on top.

    Enjoy this recipe as a light meal on its own, with a hunk of crusty bread or focaccia for sopping up the cheese sauce at the bottom of your bowl. Its also a yummy side dish. Serve it with your favorite protein, veggie chili, tomato soup, or a baked potato with all the fixings.

    How To Make Baked Cauliflower Mac And Cheese

    Cauliflower Mac and Cheese Recipe
  • Season & roast cauliflower .
  • Simmer cream, chicken broth, mustard and onion powder. Whisk in cream cheese.
  • Mix cheeses together, and add half to creamy mixture. Stir and season to taste.
  • Add cauliflower and pour into a casserole dish. Top with remaining cheese and bake.
  • PRO TIP: Cauliflower pieces can also be boiled or steamed. Pat dry to prevent sauce from becoming watery.

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    Roasted Cauliflower Mac And Cheese Ingredients

    Before we get to the full recipe below, here are a few notes about the ingredients you will need to make this roasted cauliflower mac and cheese

    • Pasta: Feel free to use traditional macaroni elbows, shells, or any other pasta shape that you love best.
    • Cauliflower: You will need one large cauliflower, which we will chop into florets.
    • Panko breadcrumbs: I recommend briefly toasting the breadcrumbs before adding them to the mac and cheese to bring out their best texture and flavor.
    • Cheeses: I recommend using a sharp cheddar and/or gruyere as the base for the cheese sauce. Then we will also stir in some Parmesan for those salty, nutty, umami notes.
    • Olive oil and butter: We will use olive oil to roast the cauliflower and butter to form the roux for the cheese sauce.
    • Whole milk: I generally use whole cows milk as the base for mac and cheese sauce, but you are welcome to sub in a plain plant-based milk if you prefer.
    • Flour: We will use flour to form a roux and thicken the cheese sauce.
    • Garlic: I also like adding a generous amount of garlic to season the cheese sauce.
    • Seasonings: I used a simple combination of smoked paprika, garlic powder, fine sea salt, black pepper to season the cauliflower. But feel free to experiment with whatever seasonings here you love best!
    • Garnish: A sprinkling of fresh chives or parsley adds a lovely pop of color and freshness to this dish.

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