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Clever Ways To Use Cauliflower In Place of Carbs

Love pizza and grilled cheese but hate the carbs and gluten? Think cauliflower. Here’s how it's done.

Cauliflower is one of those wonderful vegetables that tastes great raw as a crudité with a dip, or served up mashed with a hearty main dish. But some very creative cooks out there have found a way to transform this versatile vegetable into a delicious carb substitute.

Whether you’re trying to get more vegetables in your diet, or trying to cut down on carbs in general, versatile cauliflower is your new best friend. Even if you’re not a fan of cauliflower, you are sure to be a convert when you taste the way it transforms itself in these delicious recipes:

Cauliflower Pizza Crust

Plain cauliflower pizza crust on a piece of parchment paper on a cutting board. Selective focus on front edge of crust.
How the cauliflower pizza crust looks before the toppings.

This pizza crust recipe is a great way to cut carbs.  Use can use this crust recipe to make cheesy breadsticks, bread for grilled cheese sandwiches, or anything else you can imagine!

Ingredients:

Half a head of cauliflower (about 3 cups raw)
1 egg, beaten
1/2 cup of shredded mozzarella cheese
2 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese
Salt and pepper to taste

Directions:

Start by making cauliflower rice (recipe below) in a food processor. Then place in a covered bowl in the microwave to steam the cauliflower until it softens. Let cool completely, and press out as much of the water as possible. This is very important, or you’ll end up with dough that is too wet to hold together. The drier the grains the better. Mix in the egg and cheeses (you can also add garlic, oregano, basil or any other flavors you desire at this stage).

Press dough into a circle on a parchment-lined baking sheet.  Bake the crust at 425º F for 10 to 15 minutes or until it starts to brown. Add your pizza toppings and mozzarella cheese, and return to the oven for another 10 minutes until cheese is bubbly. Let cool for 5 minutes. Slice and serve.

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Photo courtesy of The Iron You. www.TheIronYou.com

Grilled Cheese
To make “bread” for grilled cheese sandwiches, simply form the cauliflower dough, as prepared above, into any size “slices” you desire and place them on the parchment paper. Bake at 425º F until very golden brown, about 16 minutes. Let cool completely before you peel them from the parchment paper, careful not to break them.

Use the slices to create your grilled cheese masterpiece with any cheese filling you choose. Coat the “bread” slices with olive oil or butter, just as you would when making a grilled cheese, and grill each side until cheese is melted and tops are brown.

Cauliflower Rice or Couscous
Cauliflower rice is surprisingly easy to make and transforms the veggie into a grain-like goodie. Simply pulse a head of raw cauliflower in a food processor until it becomes granular. Use it raw in this stage for a couscous-like product in your recipes, or sauté it in olive oil or butter to create a more rice-like product which can be used in stir fries or as a side dish; as a filling for burritos. The possibilities are endless!

If you have more great recipes using cauliflower in place of a carb, let us know in the comments section!

Amber Kanuckel is a freelance writer from rural Ohio who loves all things outdoors. She specializes in home, garden, environmental and green living topics. Her article on woolly worm caterpillar folklore appears in the 2020 Farmers' Almanac.

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Elaine V Jones

My mother use to make the cauliflour mashed potatoes and they were great. Will definately be trying as a bread replacement!

Wendy

Good idea

Bernadette

Cauliflower “Mashed Potatoes”
Cut 1 head cauliflower into chunks and boil in salted water till just soft
Chop 1 shallot into fine slices and sauté in 3 Tbsps. butter
Drain and blot cauliflower to remove moisture
Mash in large bowl with potato masher, leaving it chunky (or use electric mixer for smoother texture)
Add shallots & butter, 1 Tbsp chopped chives and 1/2 cup sour cream
Serve hot with salt & pepper to taste
Serves 4-6

Susan Higgins

Bernadette, that sounds delish! Thank you for sharing!

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