32 Healthy Cauliflower Recipes – Creative Ways to Eat Cauliflower

Who knew that cauliflower—with its plain, unassuming white florets—would become one of the sexiest vegetables of the 21st century? Just look at the menu of any creative, plant-friendly restaurant, and you’ll find cauliflower steaks, cauliflower salads, and about a million versions of cauliflower rice bowls.

“Cauliflower has become so popular not only because of its many nutritional benefits, but because it’s really versatile—there are so many ways to use it in the kitchen,” says Kara Lydon, R.D., a Boston-based dietitian, food blogger, and author of Nourish Your Namaste. “Also, more and more people are going plant-based, and cauliflower makes a really easy substitute for animal-based ingredients.”

Cauliflower is both low in calories (just 29 calories per 1-cup serving) and jam-packed with nutrients, like all cruciferous vegetables (a category of slightly bitter-tasting veggies that includes broccoli, Brussels sprouts, kale, cabbage, arugula, and collard greens). “It’s high in fiber, choline (an essential nutrient for brain health), and antioxidants including vitamin C,” Lydon explains. It’s also rich in vitamin K, which is important for building strong bones.

The trendiest way to eat cauliflower these days is to turn it into a vitamin-rich version of rice. Lydon recommends you do this by cutting it into florets and giving it a quick pulse in the food processor. Mashed cauliflower also can also be used as a healthier replacement for mashed potatoes, and cauliflower can even serve as the secret ingredient in a gluten-free alternative for a pizza crust. The texture and bite of cauliflower florets also make it a popular plant-based alternative for chicken wings and steak.

Then, there’s the simple-but-delicious route to prepare the white treat: “My favorite way to prepare cauliflower is to simply roast it in the oven with olive oil and spices,” says Lydon. “It’s subtly sweet and with a little nutty flavor.”

Ready to get creative with this all-star veggie? Check out dozens of must-try, healthy cauliflower recipes below:

1

Roasted Cauliflower “Steak” Salad

If you want the chewy, meaty flavor of a steak salad, but don’t want to harm any cows, try this tasty salad, featuring slices of cauliflower roasted with zesty za’atar spices.

Get the recipe from Prevention »

2

Instant Pot Buffalo Cauliflower Wing Dip

3

Roasted Cauliflower and Red Chile Pizza

For a surprisingly delicious way to pep up your pizza, top it with cauliflower, leeks, and a little kick of red chile. (A fourth of the pie will run you under 400 calories!)

Get the recipe from Prevention »

4

Harissa Cauliflower Wings

Who says you need to eat meat to enjoy spicy barbecue wings? Cauliflower has the perfect shape and texture to replace chicken wings in Lydon’s recipe for the favorite finger-licking snack.

Get the recipe from Kara Lydon Nutrition »

5

Cauliflower Couscous With Paprika Shrimp

If you want to add more cauliflower to your repertoire but aren’t ready to make it the main event, you can always pulse it into small, couscous-like bits, and add a tasty protein, like this paprika-flavored shrimp.

Get the recipe from Prevention »

6

Roasted Cauliflower With Cranberry Vinaigrette

7

Chicken With Cauliflower Fried Rice

A big old takeout container of chicken fried rice is a Sunday night staple. Make it healthier by making it in your own kitchen, and using riced cauliflower as the delicious base.

Get the recipe from Prevention »

8

Seared Salmon With Roasted Cauliflower

This simple but delicious dish pairs garlicky, protein-rich salmon with roasted cauliflower (doused in olive oil and plenty of salt and pepper, of course). Try it for a fast but satisfying weeknight meal.

Get the recipe from Prevention »

9

Sheet Pan Chicken Tikka With Cauliflower and Chickpeas

There’s nothing like a sheet pan recipe to make cooking easy. This one is loaded with classic Indian flavors: tikka masala sauce, garam masala, cilantro, and yogurt for a satisfying protein and veggie-packed meal prep.

Get the recipe from Prevention »

10

Cauliflower and Potato Mash

Swapping in cauliflower for some (read: not all!) of the potatoes in this mash is an easy way to sneak in extra nutrients. This recipe also swaps cream for antioxidant-rich olive oil. Oh, and sprinkle on some grated Parmesan for that extra cheesy goodness.

Get the recipe from Prevention »

11

Cauliflower Alfredo

A rich bowl of fettuccine Alfredo can warm you up on a cold night. This plant-based version replaces the calorie-heavy butter and cream with olive oil, puréed cauliflower, and nutritional yeast (a vegan staple that replaces regular cheese).

Get the recipe from Good Housekeeping »

12

Aloo Gobi

This traditional Indian dish, starring cauliflower and potatoes, is easy to make and packed with mouth-watering flavors. Serve over any grain for a hearty vegan entree.

Get the recipe from Delish »

13

Best-Ever Cauliflower Stuffing

This savory, low-carb stuffing—which replaces bread with cauliflower—is so addictive that you won’t want to wait until Thanksgiving to gobble it up.

Get the recipe from Delish »

14

Best-Ever Cauliflower Soup

One of cauliflower’s classic preparations is in a creamy soup. This simple recipe delivers hefty flavor, thanks to a healthy dose of garlic and thyme.

Get the recipe from Delish »

15

Keto Mac and Cheese

If you’re trying to cut down on carbs but are still craving your thick-and-cheesy childhood favorite, this version of a classic baked mac and cheese replaces the elbow noodles with cauliflower. Who knew?

Get the recipe from Delish »

16

Chimichurri Cauliflower Steak

17

Cauliflower Apple Fritters

Mix the nuttiness of cauliflower with the sweetness of apples in this healthy and tasty variation on hash browns. Pile them on top of a green salad for a delicious lunch.

Get the recipe from Floating Kitchen »

18

Vegan Cauliflower Pizza Crust

This crispy, gluten-free pizza crust is made from just four ingredients: cauliflower, flax seed, rice flour, and chickpea flour. Top it with your favorite veggies for a weeknight treat.

Get the recipe from Simple Vegan Blog »

19

Crispy BBQ Beer-Battered Cauliflower Nuggets

You’ll get everyone in the house—from the pickiest children to the most carnivorous meat-eaters—to pop these tangy BBQ nuggets in their mouth. Make sure you save a secret stash for yourself.

Get the recipe from Half-Baked Harvest »

20

Mashed Cauliflower Shepherd’s Pie

21

Mushroom Cauliflower Risotto

Kick your cauliflower rice game up a gourmet notch by whipping up this elegant risotto. The luxe ingredients include coconut cream and truffle oil. Are you salivating yet?

Get the recipe from Every Last Bite »

22

Za’atar Roasted Cauliflower Steaks With Green Tahini Sauce

24

Baked Cauliflower Parmesan

25

Crispy Cauliflower Tacos

26

Sriracha Cauliflower and Chickpea Sheet Pan Dinner

Two vegan powerhouses—cauliflower and canned chickpeas—star in this dish, with excellent support from a spicy sriracha sauce. Best of all, it takes just 30 minutes, making it an ideal weeknight treat.

Get the recipe from Eating Bird Food »

27

Bang Bang Cauliflower

This veggie version of the popular shrimp dish makes a great finger food next time you’re able to have a party. But who needs a party? Just bake up a batch for yourself. Pass the sweet chili sauce.

Get the recipe from Cupcakes and Kale Chips »

28

Spicy Cauliflower Ranch Burger

You’ve now seen cauliflower take the place of steak, chicken wings, and shrimp—so burgers must be next on the list! This scrumptious, meat-free burger is made from cauliflower, quinoa, almond flower, and plenty of spices, topped off with avocado and red cabbage.

Get the recipe from Sweet Peach Chef »

29

Malted Chocolate Cauliflower Smoothie

Proving that its neutral, creamy flavor makes cauliflower the most versatile veggie in town: This tasty-looking chocolate shake is made from riced cauliflower, chocolate protein, and almond milk (along with some other secret ingredients) blended together with ice.

Get the recipe from Eating Bird Food »

30

Cauliflower Hash Browns

These decadently cheesy hash browns swap out the potatoes and swap in the cauliflower—they go great with eggs for breakfast, or as a side dish for dinner. Seriously, you’ll want to eat these any time of day.

Get the recipe from Well Plated »

31

Sesame-Crusted Cauliflower With Pomegranate Ponzu Sauce

This extra crispy, oven-baked cauliflower dish has so many enticing flavors (sesame! pomegranate! orange! lime! ginger! honey!) that our mouths are watering just typing this sentence.

Get the recipe from Half Baked Harvest »

32

Curry Roasted Cauliflower Salad With Chickpeas and Sweet Potatoes

This salad is a real showstopper—curry-flavored cauliflower, sweet potatoes, and chickpeas are piled high with cashews, raisins, and cilantro, then topped with a sublime yogurt dressing.

Get the recipe from Well Plated »

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