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The Cauliflower Craze: How to Incorporate it Into Meals

10. Cauliflower Pizza Crust

10. Cauliflower Pizza Crust

Make yourself a guilt-free, homemade pizza by replacing the carb-loaded crust with a tasty cauliflower crust. It has great texture and will complement your favorite toppings perfectly.

Ingredients:

  • 1 head cauliflower
  • 1 large egg
  • ½ cup mozzarella or parmesan cheese, shredded
  • 1 tsp Italian seasoning (or dried rosemary, basil, & parsley)
  • ? tsp salt
  • ¼ tsp black pepper

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 375°F, and line a round pizza pan with parchment paper.
  2. Chop cauliflower into small pieces, and put in a food processor. Process until the cauliflower resembles rice.
  3. Place "rice" on a parchment-lined pizza pan and bake for 15 minutes.
  4. Transfer to a cheesecloth-lined bowl, pick up the cheesecloth around the cauliflower, and squeeze the liquid out of the ball until barely any liquid comes out.
  5. Increase the oven temperature to 450°F.
  6. Transfer cauliflower to a mixing bowl and add egg, cheese, Italian seasoning, salt, and pepper. Mix until combined.
  7. Spread mixture back onto the same parchment-lined pizza pan, and flatten until it forms a thin pizza crust.
  8. Bake for 15-20 minutes, or until the edges are slightly brown.
  9. Top with desired sauce and toppings, then bake until cheese turns golden brown.

9. Cauliflower “Fried Rice”

9. Cauliflower “Fried Rice”

This is a delicious, healthy alternative to Chinese take-out, and if you want, you can feel free to add ham, chicken, or any other meat to the recipe.

Ingredients:

  • 1 head cauliflower
  • 2 Tbsp sesame oil
  • 1 small white onion, chopped
  • 1 cup frozen peas and carrots, thawed
  • 2-3 Tbsp soy sauce
  • 2 eggs, lightly beaten
  • 2 Tbsp green onions, chopped

Directions:

  1. Chop cauliflower into small pieces and add to a food processor. Pulse until the cauliflower resembles rice.
  2. In a large wok or skillet, saute white onion, peas, and carrots in sesame oil until tender, about 2-3 minutes. Push to one side of the pan.
  3. Pour eggs into the other side of the pan and scramble, then mix with vegetables.
  4. Add cauliflower to the skillet, and pour soy sauce on top.
  5. Fry the mixture until heated through and cauliflower is tender.
  6. Top with green onion and serve.

8. Buffalo Cauliflower Bites

8. Buffalo Cauliflower Bites

Like buffalo wings? Then you’ll love these! You get the same taste without a lot of the unnecessary calories. These can be served as an appetizer, snack, or if you make enough, a light dinner.

Ingredients:

  • 1 head cauliflower

Batter:

  • ½ cup flour
  • ½ cup water
  • Dash of Frank’s Wing Sauce
  • ¼ tsp garlic salt
  • ¼ tsp dried onion

Buffalo Sauce:

  • ¼ cup Frank’s Wing Sauce
  • 3 Tbsp salted butter, melted
  • Salt to taste

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 450°F.
  2. Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil, and cover with oil or a non-stick spray. 
  3. Chop cauliflower into bite-sized pieces.
  4. In a medium bowl, mix batter ingredients until combined.
  5. Dip cauliflower pieces into the batter until evenly coated, then place on baking sheet in a single layer.
  6. Bake for about 15 minutes or until the batter is slightly hardened.
  7. In a small bowl, mix buffalo sauce ingredients until combined, and brush onto cauliflower pieces until evenly coated.
  8. Bake for 5-7 more minutes, or until the sauce has mostly dried.
  9. Let cool, and serve with ranch or blue cheese dressing.

7. Cauliflower Tots

7. Cauliflower Tots

Since these are much healthier than their potato counterparts (only 150 calories for 8 tots!), you don’t have to feel guilty about eating the entire plate yourself. Or, you can serve them as a healthy side with grilled turkey burgers.

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups cauliflower florets
  • 1 large egg
  • ½ cup onion, minced
  • ¼ cup bell pepper, minced (optional)
  • ½ cup cheddar cheese, shredded
  • ¼ cup parmesan cheese
  • ¼ cup breadcrumbs 
  • ¼ cup parsley or cilantro, minced
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Cooking spray

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F and spray a cookie sheet with cooking spray.
  2. Steam cauliflower in hot water for 3-5 minutes, or until soft. Drain, chop into small pieces, and pulse in a food processor for a few seconds.
  3. In a medium bowl, add all ingredients and season with salt and pepper, and mix until combined.
  4. Spoon about 1 tablespoon of the mixture into your hands and roll into small, oval-shaped tots.
  5. Place on cookie sheet ½ inch apart and bake for 20 minutes, turning halfway through.
  6. Serve with ketchup or other dipping sauce.

6. Garlic Mashed Cauliflower

6. Garlic Mashed Cauliflower

If you think mashed potatoes are delicious, just wait until you try mashed cauliflower. It’s just as creamy and comforting, but with significantly fewer calories (only 65 calories per cup!).

Ingredients:

  • 1 head cauliflower, chopped into florets
  • ¼ cup skim milk or unsweetened almond milk
  • 1 Tbsp olive oil
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • ½ tsp salt
  • Black pepper to taste
  • Chopped scallions (optional)

Directions:

  1. Boil cauliflower in a large pot of salted water and cook until very tender, about 10 minutes. Drain.
  2. In a small skillet, saute garlic in olive oil until fragrant, about 1 minute. Remove from heat.
  3. Place cauliflower in a large bowl and mash with a potato masher. 
  4. Transfer to a food processor and puree until mostly smooth.
  5. Slowly add milk until desired consistency is reached, then mix in salt, pepper, garlic, and olive oil. 
  6. Top with chopped scallions, if desired, and serve.

5. Cauliflower Crust Grilled Cheese

5. Cauliflower Crust Grilled Cheese

By swapping out the bread for cauliflower, you’re getting 2 whole servings of veggies, which is a great excuse to add some extra cheese.

Ingredients:

  • 1 head cauliflower, cut into small pieces
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten
  • ½ cup shredded mozzarella cheese
  • ½ tsp sea salt
  • ¼ tsp black pepper
  • 1 Tbsp butter
  • ⅓ cup (or more) shredded cheddar cheese

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 450 degrees F.
  2. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and grease with olive oil or cooking spray.
  3. Add cauliflower to a food processor and pulse until the cauliflower resembles rice. 
  4. Transfer cauliflower to a microwave-safe bowl and microwave on high for 8 minutes, or until cooked.
  5. Using a tea towel or cheesecloth, squeeze out as much moisture from the cauliflower as possible, at least a cup of liquid.
  6. Add cauliflower, egg, mozzarella, salt, and pepper to a mixing bowl and mix until combined.
  7. Spread mixture on lined baking sheet and shape into 4 squares.
  8. Bake for about 16 minutes, or until golden brown.
  9. Let cool for 10 minutes before removing from baking sheet.
  10. Heat a pan over medium heat.
  11. Butter one side of each slice of cauliflower bread.
  12. Place one slice of bread in the pan, buttered side down, sprinkle with cheese and top with the remaining slice of bread, buttered side up.
  13. Turn the heat to low and cook for 2-4 minutes.
  14. Flip and cook other side until cheese is fully melted.

4. Cauliflower Alfredo

4. Cauliflower Alfredo

It can be difficult to persuade picky kids (and sometimes adults) to eat their veggies, but you’ll have no problem if you disguise some cauliflower as a delicious alfredo sauce served over fettuccine. 

Ingredients:

  • 8 large cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 Tbsp butter
  • 5-6 cups cauliflower florets
  • 6-7 cups vegetable broth
  • 1 tsp salt
  • ½ tsp pepper
  • ½ cup milk
  • 12 oz fettuccine
  • Parsley, chopped (optional)

Directions:

  1. Cook pasta in salted water, according to package directions. Drain.
  2. In a large skillet, saute garlic in butter over low heat. Cook until fragrant, about 1 minute. Set aside.
  3. Bring vegetable broth to a boil in a large pot. Add cauliflower and cook, covered, for 7-10 minutes, or until cauliflower is soft. Do not drain.
  4. Transfer cauliflower to a food processor. Add 1 cup of the vegetable broth, sauteed garlic/butter, salt, pepper, and milk, and blend until very smooth. Add more broth or milk if needed.
  5. Serve sauce over fettuccine and garnish with parsley, if desired.

3. Cauliflower Nachos

3. Cauliflower Nachos
“These are mine, nach[y]o’s!” That’s how you’ll feel after trying one bite of these.
 

Ingredients:

  • 1 head cauliflower
  • 2-3 Tbsp olive oil
  • Salt to taste
  • 1 red bell pepper
  • ½ cup sliced black olives
  • 1 cup marinated artichoke hearts, chopped
  • 2 scallions, chopped
  • ½ cup feta, optional
  • Nacho cheese sauce

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 450 degrees F.
  2. Separate cauliflower into florets and cut each floret into thin slices, about ?” thick.
  3. Spread slices on a baking sheet, drizzle with olive oil, and season with salt. Roast for 20-30 minutes, or until brown and crispy.
  4. Meanwhile, place the bell pepper on a baking sheet and roast in oven alongside cauliflower. Turn every 5 or so minutes until every side is blistered. 
  5. Remove pepper from oven and wrap in aluminum foil to steam for a couple minutes. 
  6. Unwrap, peel off skin, and slice pepper into strips.
  7. Arrange cauliflower, pepper strips, artichokes, olives, scallions, and feta on a platter and top with cheese sauce.

2. Cauliflower Tortillas

2. Cauliflower Tortillas

Give Taco Tuesday or Fajita Friday a healthy twist with cauliflower tortillas! They taste delicious topped with cheese or filled with meat and veggies.

Ingredients:

  • ¾ head cauliflower
  • 2 large eggs
  • ¼ cup fresh cilantro, chopped
  • Juice from ½ lime
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  2. Chop cauliflower into small pieces and pulse in a food processor until cauliflower resembles rice.
  3. Place cauliflower in a microwave-safe bowl and nuke for 2 minutes, stir, and nuke for another 2 minutes.
  4. Place cauliflower in a cheesecloth and squeeze out as much liquid as possible.
  5. In a medium bowl, whisk the eggs. Add in cauliflower, cilantro, lime, salt, and pepper. Mix until combined.
  6. Use your hands to shape 6 small “tortillas” on the lined baking sheet.
  7. Bake for 10 minutes, flip, and bake for an additional 5-7 minutes.
  8. Heat a medium skillet over medium heat and brown each side of the tortillas for 1-2 minutes.
  9. Fill with favorite toppings and serve.

1. Crock Pot Cauliflower and Cheese

 1. Crock Pot Cauliflower and Cheese
 
This is comfort food at its finest: cheesy and delicious, but healthy at the same time! You won’t be able to get enough of this mac and cheese alternative.

Ingredients:

  • 1 head cauliflower, chopped into florets
  • 1 can condensed cheddar soup
  • 5 oz evaporated milk
  • ½ tsp salt
  • ½ tsp pepper
  • ½ tsp paprika
  • ¼ cup onion, finely diced
  • 2 cups shredded cheddar cheese

Directions:

  1. Grease the inside of a 3-4 quart crockpot.
  2. Place cauliflower florets in crockpot.
  3. In a medium-sized saucepan, add cheddar soup, evaporated milk, salt, pepper, paprika, diced onion, and cheddar cheese.
  4. Cook over medium heat until combined and melted, stirring constantly.
  5. Pour sauce over cauliflower.
  6. Cover crockpot and cook on low for 3 to 3 ½ hours.