Creamy Cauliflower Mac and Cheese.
First of all, let’s take a moment to acknowledge the fantastic role that side dishes play. I will gladly put it this way: side dishes complete a meal course. Here in the United States, people love mac and cheese sides, and today we will happily put a little spin on this trendy side. My classic cauliflower mac and cheese is worth every praise. This deliciousness will give you the authentic satisfaction of the real thing with fewer calories (obviously). This meatless creamy, comforting, and cheesy cauliflower side is made with fresh cauliflower, some milk, and some cheeses – a perfect low-carb and low-calorie side dish for all your holiday cooking. Forever enjoy a guilt-free and… Click To Tweet
Healthy Side Dish = Cauliflower Mac and Cheese.
Whether you are intentionally looking for a healthier holiday side dish to host your family and friends, or you want a smart way to add more veggies, this cauliflower mac and cheese comes through. It is;
- Easy to make.
The list is endless. When it comes to this side dish, you have total creative control, in other words, you can make it your way. And you can obviously serve this as a side dish or you can actually have it as a main dish. You do you.
How to Make Cauliflower Mac and Cheese
First, start with fresh, healthy cauliflower; I have not yet used a frozen cauliflower for this recipe. So be sure to grab the best looking cauliflower you can find in the store. Second, get all your ingredients ready, I used plant butter, but honestly, it doesn’t matter. Third, even after melting the cheese and immersing the cauliflower florets in them, always save some cheese to sprinkle on top just like the real cauliflower. This gives this dish an oven golden tan.
Main Dish, Too?
First of all, let’s appreciate the versatility of the cauliflower; this vegetable comes handy in several ways – my cauliflower fried rice is another excellent example. And yes, though this is a side dish, you can definitely have it as a main dish. On the plate below I serve this scrumptious healthy side with salmon as a main dish.
This creamy and insanely tasty cauliflower mac and cheese can compete with the real mac and cheese any time any day! Whether you are celebrating Thanksgiving, Christmas, or family reunion, this meal is a winner healthy side dish you… Click To Tweet
Enough said, let’s go ahead and make this dish already.Print
How to Make Classic Cauliflower Mac and Cheese
- Total Time: 55 minutes
- Yield: 8 people 1x
- Diet: Vegetarian
Look no further for a perfect holiday side dish; this cauliflower mac and cheese recipe is festive, flavorful, and fabulous! You are bound to fall in love with this!
- 2 fresh heads of cauliflower
- 2 cups of cheese (Parmesan, asiago, and mozzarella)
- 2 cups of milk (or less)
- 1 cup of chopped (white or yellow) onions and garlic
- 1-teaspoon salt
- ½ white or black pepper
- 1 teaspoon seasoning powder
- 1 teaspoon of onion powder
- ½ teaspoon garlic powder
- 2 tablespoon of olive oil
- 2 tablespoon of plant butter
- 2-tablespoon of flour
- More salt and Pepper to taste (if needed)
- Wash and cut all vegetables and set aside. Place a big clean pot on the stove and add olive oil, as it starts to heat up and add the chopped onions and garlic. Cook to soften (for about 2 – 3 minutes) and then add the cut cauliflower. Stir, and add the salt, seasoning powder, onion powder, and pepper. Stir very well to combine. Cook cauliflower up to 10 – 12 minutes to sauté a little bit. This will help to reduce the moisture content of cauliflower. Turn off the stove and scoop off cauliflower into another bowl to chill until the next step.
- Meanwhile, preheat oven to 350 and spray a baking dish, set aside.)
- Rinse the big pot (or use without rinsing), place it back on the stove at medium-high heat and allow the pot to heat up. Add butter and reduce heat to medium-low. Add flour into the butter and keep stirring for about 2 – 3 minutes or less (until the flour is no longer raw). Then begin to gently stir in the milk, add all the milk, and continue to stir gently. Add some salt and pepper and taste for flavors (remember, the cauliflower is well seasoned, so don’t add too much salt). As the milk starts to thicken, turn off the stove and add the cheese if possible, leave out a ¼ of cheese to sprinkle on top.
- Add the sautéed cauliflower and gently coat and mix well into the cheese sauce, ensure that every bit of the cauliflower is coated in cheesy goodness. Then add the entire cauliflower into the sprayed baking dish, sprinkle the remaining ¼ of cheese on top of the cauliflower “mac and cheese,” and then place it into the oven. Bake for about 30 minutes or until the top of your cauliflower “mac and cheese” starts to develop a golden-brown color.
- Remove from oven, and place in a safe area to rest a bit before you start digging in. Garnish with rosemary or parsley for a touch of green. Serve by itself or alongside other favorite dishes. Enjoy!
Cauliflower has tons of moisture, so if you love thick sauce, you could increase the quantity of flour as well as cheese. You could already reduce the milk from two cups to about 1 – 1½ cups of milk.
I have, in the past, used a combination of regular flour with almond (2 tablespoons of almond flour and one tablespoon of regular flour), and it worked fine.
I used plant butter; you can use regular one if you choose.
- Prep Time: 20 minutes
- Cook Time: 35 minutes
- Category: Side dish
- Method: Baking
- Cuisine: American
Keywords: Cauliflower Recipe, Vegetarian Mac and Cheese, Healthy Mac and Cheese recipe, Cauliflower gratin, Cauliflower Mac and cheese, Cauliflower side dish
MORE SIDE DISHES TO TRY:
Do you have a favorite healthy holiday side dish? Please share in the comment, below. Also, PLEASE SHARE THIS POST if like it, be sure to check out these other healthy holiday side dishes:
- Baked Brussels Sprouts (another scrumptious healthy side dish)!
- Healthy Braised Red Cabbage with Apples (Vegan).
- Healthier Classic Cornbread.
- The Tastiest Coconut Rice.
- Healthy Whole wheat Banana Bread.
- Healthy cauliflower fried rice recipe.
- Shredded Beets Salad.
Some Main Dish to go with Cauliflower Mac and Cheese:
- Stuffed Turkey Breast.
- Roast Leg of Lamb.
- Whole Roast Turkey (Super easy +Juicy)!
And these healthy breakfast recipes:
- Greek Yogurt Pancakes
- Healthy Almond Cacao cookies.
- Avocado Coconut Smoothie Bowl.
- Coconut Milk Oatmeal with Stewed Cherries.
Want some healthy salads too? Grab my FREE (5) spinach salad recipe bundle would be a great addition to your dinner table. Get the recipes here.
Finally, let’s connect on social media, am on Pinterest, Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter. Make sure to subscribe to my Youtube Channel for my recipe videos. Share this recipe post, and SAVE/PIN THIS IMAGE ON PINTEREST. ⤵️
As always, THANKS SO MUCH for stopping by!
This is a healthy alternative to traditional Mac and cheese. I love it 👍cauliflower is so versatile, well done sis!
Thank you so much queen, glad you like this recipe!
Yes, it is a perfect alternative to traditional Mac and cheese.
Everything about this recipe is so amazing! Nothing better than a healthier version to replace your favorite pasta dish!
Thank you so much, Leslie!
Kechi, I’ll take the fewer calories option because that is becoming more important as I’m reaching milestones here on this earth. I used to hate cauliflower when my mom will serve it to us when we were kids but I’ve grown to fall in love with it. This classic cauliflower, mac, and cheese look creamy and delicious and I’m sure it’ll taste just as good.
Glad you will give this a try, Fred! Every little healthy step option counts, especially as we get older.
I do have a cauliflower that needs to be used asap, so this is just perfect. So cheesy and delicious!
Yay! I hope you like this recipe as we did, Stine. Please let me know how it goes.
Your cauliflower mac and cheese looks delicious. I’m always looking for healthier holiday side dishes to serve to family and friends, thanks for sharing.
Thank you so much, Sarah!
THis is such a great recipe for Mac & Cheese. I love the healthy twist to it and my family love it too. WIll make again.
Glad to know that you enjoyed this recipe, Julie!
I love cauliflower cheese. It’s a very popular side dish in UK and I make it all the time. Yours has more seasoning and spices which sounds delicious. Going to give your recipe a try asap!
That is amazing to hear, Jacqueline! Please let me know when you do make it, and I hope you like it!😊
I can certainly enjoy this as a main dish as it certainly looks filling! Looks so creamy and tasty!
Yep, such a filling main dish, Gail!
Drooling over this delicious mac and cheese. CNt wait to make this for dinner tonight. Thanks for sharing
Yes, it is super easy to make, and delicious! Thanks for your kind words.🙏🏾
I love mac and cheese but you took it over the top by adding cauliflower! This dish looks lovely!
I wasn’t sure how this was going to turn out, but it was an epic success! Everyone absolutely loved the cauliflower mac and cheese
WOW!!! Am glad you like this recipe, Dennis! I appreciate this feedback.🙏🏾
5 stars and all the receive great reviews. I can’t wait to try them.
Thanks for stopping by, Roser and I hope you enjoy this recipe!!