fbpx

How to Make Classic Cauliflower Mac and Cheese

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

The best Cauliflower Mac and Cheese Incredibly easy and healthy baked cauliflower "mac and cheese" - The best Thanksgiving veggie side! 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. With this easy cauliflower mac and cheese, you will forever enjoy a guilt-free and comforting healthy side, and you will never miss mac and cheese. #lowcarb #cauliflower #Thanksgivingrecipe #cauliflowermacandcheese #healthysidedish #meatlessmaindish #sidedish #cauliflowermac

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;

  • Healthy.
  • Nutritious.
  • Delicious.
  • Easy to make.
  • Kid-friendly.
  • Cheesy.
  • Yummy!

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.

Process photo. Fresh Cauliflower, all the ingredients, pot on the stove with milk and cheese.

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

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 want to present!

Enough said, let’s go ahead and make this dish already.

Print
clock clock icon cutlery cutlery icon flag flag icon folder folder icon instagram instagram icon pinterest pinterest icon print print icon squares squares icon

How to Make Classic Cauliflower Mac and Cheese


  • Author: Nkechi Ajaeroh
  • Prep Time: 20 minutes
  • Cook Time: 35 minutes
  • Total Time: 55 minutes
  • Yield: 8 people 1x
  • Diet: Vegetarian

Description

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!


Scale

Ingredients

  • 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)

Instructions

  1. 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.
  2. Meanwhile, preheat oven to 350 and spray a baking dish, set aside.)
  3. 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.
  4. 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.
  5. 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!

Notes

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.

  • 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

Do you have a 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 side dishes:

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. Share this recipe post, and SAVE/PIN THIS IMAGE ON PINTEREST. ⤵️

The best Cauliflower Mac and Cheese Incredibly easy and healthy baked cauliflower "mac and cheese" - The best Thanksgiving veggie side, healthy Christmas side dish or perhaps just make this deliciousness for a family dinner. This is the best holiday healthy side!

With love,

Nkechi Ajaeroh, MPH

Hi, I'm Nkechi "Kechi" Ajaeroh, a Public Health professional turned Inspirational author slash exceptional home cook. A 2x International Best Selling Author of Elevate Your Life with the Power of Positive Perception and Gratefully Growing. African, (specifically, Nigerian) Food Enthusiast, watermelon connoisseur, on my to finessing my fitness. This blog is all about loving food, living life, practicing gratitude, and inspiring you to use your wings. Join the journey.

2 Comments

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.