It’s easy to get bored of plain ol’ veggies as a healthy side dish. Though gaining popularity (rightfully so, it’s delicious), this recipe has a creative take on using cauliflower that can fool even the most stubborn of eaters.
This Roasted Garlic Cauliflower Mash is like the cousin of mashed potatoes – a lighter and healthier version. It’s the perfect side to pair with many dinner dishes, especially if you’re looking to add more veggies to your plate but still want that comfort food feeling.
Roasted Garlic Cauliflower Mash
- food processor
- 4-5 cups cauliflower florets (1 head)
- 2/3 cup unsweetened almond milk
- 3 large large garlic cloves minced
- 2 T fresh chives chopped
- 1 T olive oil
- 1 t sea salt
- 1/4 t black pepper ground
- Fill a medium saucepan halfway with water and bring to a boil.
- Add the cauliflower florets and reduce the heat to medium. Let cook for 10 minutes or until soft.
- In a small pan, add the olive oil and minced garlic and cook over medium heat, stirring occasionally. When lightly browned, remove garlic from heat.
- Strain the cauliflower from the water and add the cauliflower, cooked garlic with its oil, half of the chives, almond milk, salt, and pepper to a large food processor and blend until smooth.
- Serve in small side bowls garnished with the remaining chives, a drizzle of olive oil, and a few cracks of black pepper.
Its high-nutrient profile makes this a great alternative to using potatoes. Cauliflower is packed with essential nutrients like fiber, but also vitamins C, K, B6, and folate.
It’s also loaded with antioxidants, which help the body fight off free-radicals and inflammation. Additionally, cauliflower has a high amount of choline, a nutrient responsible for proper cell signaling, neurotransmitter function, and liver function.
An added health bonus is that this recipe is very low in fat, unlike its mashed potato counterpart. I find that it’s easier to use less fat with cauliflower since it blends very smoothly on its own.
Besides the health benefits of this dish, the best part is that it’s super simple, easy to make, very affordable, and fully customizable.
Variations and Substitutions
This recipe calls for a food processor in order to give the mash that super creamy, smooth texture. However, it can be made using a potato masher if you don’t have a food processor or if you prefer a less-creamy texture. Either way, don’t worry about over-whipping the cauliflower. It doesn’t run the risk of getting over-whipped as mashed potatoes does!
Another alteration is incorporating other ingredients into the mash. You can half the amount of cauliflower used and add things like sweet potatoes, turnips, or carrots. Other herbs can also be used with or in place of the chives like parsley, thyme, or sage.
To save more money on this dish, consider growing your own herbs on your kitchen windowsill or outside. Chives, in particular, are very hardy herbs and can last outdoors throughout the winter season.
Cauliflower pair with any roasted meat such as turkey, chicken or beef. Include a colorful vegetable such as peas, green beans, carrots or corn to jazz up the serving plate.
You can add any toppings to spice up the side dish, the same way you would to mashed potatoes. Butter, sour cream, fresh herbs, and spices are a few of the standard additions. Vegetables can also be added like spinach, sauteed chopped onions or green peppers. You are limited only to your imagination and your pantry!