Parmesan Mashed Cauliflower

by Andie Mitchell on March 3, 2011

parmesan mashed cauliflower

Don’t let anyone fool you, mashed cauliflower on its own always tastes a bit wet and cabbagey. And gritty. I understand why people make it, I do. It’s mock mashed potatoes… faux-tatoes for a fraction of the calories.

mashed cauliflower and potato

Cauliflower is super healthy, low calorie, and can be pretty darn delicious as a side, cozied up next to meatloaf, or tucked under stroganoff.  But it doesn’t have that same silkiness, that same smooth fluffiness that a mashed potato does.  It’s squashier. And if you haven’t already noted it, I do make up words in my spare time. I also think about the dynamic science and structure of mashed potatoes. I have loads of friends.

parmesan mashed cauliflower

In an effort to make something light and lovely texture-wise, I combined the two. The cauliflower keep things light, while the potatoes lend to a nice pasty mash to keep things smooshed together. Then I added two of my favorite ingredients to enrich the flavor and make the dish feel less like the poor man’s buttery mashed potato, and more like a unique, healthy spin on comfort food. Sour cream and parmesan cheese. Both give these guys a smooth, creamy richness. A buttery and satisfying smoothness.

parmesan mashed cauliflower

Here’s how they’re made:

steaming cauliflower and potato

 

 

mashed cauliflower and potato

 

 

 

mashed cauliflower and potato

 

 

 

Parmesan Mashed Cauliflower

serves 4

1 head cauliflower, cut into florets, trimmed of as much of the stems as possible

1 large russet potato, peeled and cut into 1″ cubes

1/4 cup full-fat sour cream

3 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

 

Fill a large pot with about an inch and a half of water. Fit with a steamer basket and put the cauliflower and potatoes inside. Cover, bring the water to a boil, and steam until very tender and easily pierced with a fork, about 15 minutes. Drain well and return the cooked vegetables to the empty pot on the stove top with the heat turned off. Allow them to stand for about 3 minutes so that the water can evaporate and the cauliflower can dry out. Add sour cream, Parmesan, salt, and pepper, and mash until smooth. Serve with minced fresh chives.

Nutrition info for 1 serving: Calories: 127.2, Fat: 4.5g, Cholesterol: 9.3mg, Carb: 18.2g, Fiber: 4.3g, Sugar: 0.6g, Protein: 5.8g

{ 34 comments… read them below or add one }

Teena March 3, 2011 at 2:29 pm

we seem to share the love for wordinventerism and cauliflower :)
my favourite recipe still is cauliflower & pear salad but I must try the spudsmash version. have tried a mash recipe with parmesan, and butter – to counter the general healthiness :) and brown onions… but the texture was a bit .. meh. Added spuds might just be it.
thanks for sharing :)

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Can You Stay for Dinner March 3, 2011 at 2:34 pm

LOVE the idea of a cauli-pear salad Teena! I’ll be sure to try it! Just roasted cauliflower in that?

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Teena March 3, 2011 at 3:11 pm

actually just blanched.. or steamed.. but roasted sounds great. must try.. with roasted pine nuts too…
thanks for the idea :)

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Peggy Hogan March 3, 2011 at 3:06 pm

yummmm. just made some last week. I like the idea of throwing in a few potatoes and the parmesan. I like the greek yogurt as a sour cream substitute too!

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Jenn @ Cooking Aweigh the Pounds March 3, 2011 at 3:12 pm

Yum! The best of both worlds! :)

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haya March 3, 2011 at 4:01 pm

honestly, when i saw the title of this post, i was almost about to move on to a different entry in google reader and somehow. SOMEHOW you have managed to sell me on this. HOW DO YOU DO IT?
i am definitely going to have to make meatloaf next week. and mashed cauliflower. (what an annoying word to spell)

fake words rock.

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Can You Stay for Dinner March 3, 2011 at 4:55 pm

Thanks Haya!!

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Tracey @ I'm Not Superhuman March 3, 2011 at 4:52 pm

I love cauliflower mash, but the only way my husband will eat it is if it’s mixed with potatoes. And, of course, a lot of cheese. Yours looks so good!

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Can You Stay for Dinner March 3, 2011 at 4:56 pm

Thanks Tracey!

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ahlterra March 3, 2011 at 8:47 pm

I actually managed to get my father, who hates anything new and different, to try some mashed cauliflower! I added in some potato flakes (yes i know, bad me) last minute to get the right consistency, but he loved them. he even went back for seconds! I can’t wait to try these out on my boyfriend. He’ll probably eat the whole cauliflower before I get it cooked, though.

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Can You Stay for Dinner March 3, 2011 at 9:15 pm

I love stories like this! It reminds me of times when I’ve gotten my family to love things they, at first thought, might have shunned. Thanks!

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Stephanie December 3, 2011 at 5:25 pm

I have been making mashed cauliflower for a few months now. I also add low-fat shredded cheese. I have always explained to my friends that it is kind of like cheesy grits with the texture. I will now try the potato with it for a smoother texture. Sometimes I will use greek yogurt instead of sour cream, depending on what I have on hand.

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thecompletecookbook March 3, 2011 at 10:08 pm

What a great recipe – wonder if I could get these past my hubby. Maybe just dish them up as “mashed potatoes” and wait for the reaction. :-) Mandy

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MelissaNibbles March 4, 2011 at 2:58 am

This looks great. I want to try making these and zuchini pasta. I need more veggies in my life!

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Sarah (Running To Slow Things Down) March 4, 2011 at 4:11 am

Mmm…I think parmesan is the most perfect addition to cauliflower. I can’t believe I never thought of doing this! Thank you so much for sharing the recipe. I can’t wait to make some. :D

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Megan@Dirty Dishes Daily March 6, 2011 at 4:06 pm

For months now I have been wanting to try Mashed Cauliflower but I always forget once I am at the grocery store. That looks really yummy.

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Can You Stay for Dinner March 6, 2011 at 4:19 pm

Thanks Megan!

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cozydelicious March 6, 2011 at 7:29 pm

I just bought cauliflower today – I’m totally making these for dinner tomorrow. I bet they are wonderfully creamy and delish!

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Can You Stay for Dinner March 6, 2011 at 8:34 pm

Yay! Thanks Katie!

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tj March 7, 2011 at 8:41 am

Sounds seriously YUMMY!

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Katherine April 25, 2011 at 4:33 am

You should have a fb/twitter/digg/reddit/#whereeverelseIcanpostit share buttons!

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Marcia April 26, 2011 at 5:50 pm

Adding some garlic couldn’t hurt! It all sounds good to me.

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Katherine May 18, 2011 at 10:22 pm

Am going to try to trick my friend’s mom into eating vegetables with this recipe. Yum!
Came out amazing, I realized my sour cream went… sour so I just subbed in some milk. And I didn’t cut off all the stalks to the cauliflower because I just don’t follow directions and they did come out a little cabbage-y. Still good though and considering the way I cook pretty fool-proof

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Jenny August 24, 2011 at 7:46 pm

I didn’t tell my family this was mostly cauliflower. My husband couldn’t even tell the difference until I pointed it out! I’m making this at least monthly now. Thank you so much for giving me mashed potatoes I don’t feel guilty about.

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Carmen November 7, 2011 at 7:04 am

I know I’m late to the table, but Thanksgiving is coming and I think THESE will be my mashed potatoes this year! Son and I are trying to eat healthier BUT we also like things to taste good — this seems like it’ll fit the bill :)

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Starlight Mama January 3, 2012 at 7:51 pm

I’m a big-time mashed potatoes gal, so these look wonderful. Anytime I see “faux-tatoes,” though, I wonder to myself if parsnips would be a better bet instead. Mainly because my husband hates cauliflower.

Your thoughts….?

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admin January 4, 2012 at 10:15 am

Ooo, parsnips would work! I think the flavor would be sharper, a little spicier though. Which could actually be a great thing :)

andie

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Kik Bee February 21, 2012 at 5:12 pm

I am not a cook. I am not even one of those people who says they can’t cook…but they really can. BUT….I am determined to be better, do better and get healthy. All while tricking my mind and taste buds into thinking that I’m eating mashed potatoes!!! So I made these tonight and WHAT A HIT!!! So delish and my Handsome loved them too!!! I can’t believe I made something so yummy.
Oh, I forgot to buy sour cream so I just used a splash of milk-still delish!!!!
Thank you so much for making me into a veggie eater!!
XO

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Rachel July 10, 2012 at 5:22 pm

I made these tonight to go with dinner and they were amazingly,(surprisingly, I might add) good! Loved them. My husband and I just started eating better, healthier and thought mashed potatoes would be out of the question. Thank you. Your journey has inspired me to reevaluate my relationship with food. I don’t have to give up things I love and find comfort from. I can just find ways to do them differently. You’re awesome. Truly. :0)

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jacque October 28, 2012 at 5:22 pm

i also made this without sour cream ( i was out) added 1/4 cup of almond milk, and portabellos left over from the grill.
O…….M…….G.
The addition of that one potato and the parmesean, is amazing. from grit- to great! thanks

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Dawn Royster November 22, 2012 at 9:11 am

Doing this tonight. What about roasting the potatoes and cauliflower and a little garlic and then putting it in a food processor, then sour cream and parm……… I RARELY cook so maybe this wouldn’t work?

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jacque November 23, 2012 at 5:04 am

I would think it would be even better as long as they are roasted long enough

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Hilaire March 1, 2013 at 7:45 am

hey every one I have made these faux tatoes several times and I got my sson to eat them by just using cauliflower I used a handheld blender and the consistancy of the cauliflower was just like whipped potatoes I also tried to get some of the moisture out of the cauliflower by puitting it back on the stove after draining it over med heat for 2 mins stirring constantly th cauliflower will break up while you do his but its ok cause you are just going to mash it up anyway I also added a few leftover bacon crumbles that we had fom breakfast yummy!!

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Sarah August 5, 2014 at 6:09 pm

Hi there! I Found your recipe on pinterest and tried it tonight. I’ve never made cauliflower anything (seriously, nothing) and this was delicious! Not only did I manage to make it without screwing it up, but it was tasty and totally worth the minimal effort. Thanks for sharing! :)

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