Cauliflower Mac & Cheese 2.0 {Gluten Free & Vegetarian}

Cheesy and creamy, yet still relatively healthy, you can't go wrong with this cauliflower mac and cheese!

Cheesy and creamy, yet still relatively healthy, you can’t go wrong with this cauliflower mac and cheese!

Cauliflower mac and cheese is definitely a favorite in our house.  Seriously, every time I say that I’m going to make it Brendan gets a little bit giddy.  We scarf it down at dinner time, and fight over the leftovers for lunches throughout the week.  From what I gather, this is one of the dishes he brags about when he’s eating it in front of his coworkers and/or students.  Hey, I’m not going to complain.  I like that my cooking is appreciated.

Bubbly cheese on top...what's not to love?

Bubbly cheese on top…what’s not to love?

Anyway, I’ve made this many times before.  I’ve even adapted it into a pseudo-alfredo.  When I went to make this recently, though, I looked at the recipe I’d posted on the blog and realized two things.  One, the recipe I’ve used has changed a little bit over time.  It’s even creamier and tastier now than it was!  Two, my goodness those were bad pictures!!!!  When it comes to food photography, it’s amazing what a little experience does to the final product.  Based on those two things, I knew it was time to re-post this as Cauliflower Mac and Cheese 2.0: better tasting and better pictures!

As I’ve said before, there is nothing not to like about this mac and cheese.  Both Brendan and my dad, neither of whom are real cauliflower fans, thoroughly enjoy this.  And it’s healthified, so when you end up eating a second or third helping you don’t feel quite as bad as if it were full of heavy cream and six more cups of cheese a la the Martha Stewart recipe I’ve made.  Oh yes, you cannot go wrong with this recipe!

Cauliflower Mac & Cheese 2.0

Ingredients

Depending on how hungry we are and what we serve with it, we normally get around six servings out of this.

Depending on how hungry we are and what we serve with it, we normally get around six servings out of this.

  • 20 oz cauliflower
  • 1 lb brown rice pasta
  • 2 – 3 cups vegetable stock
  • 1 ¼ cups cheese
    • ¾ cup cheddar jack
    • ¼ cup swiss
    • ¼ cup pecorino romano
  • 2 tbsp Dijon mustard
  • Pinch cayenne pepper
  • Salt & Pepper to taste
  • 1 tbsp olive oil

Directions

  1. In a large pot of salted water, cook cauliflower in boiling water for 15 – 20 minutes until soft. Once cooked, remove cauliflower with a slotted spoon and drain.
  2. Once water has returned to a boil, add pasta and cook just short of al dente.
  3. While the pasta is cooking, puree the cauliflower and remaining ingredients (starting with just 2 cups of stock, and adding more as necessary) in a food processor until creamy.
  4. Combine drained pasta with sauce and top with more cheese, if desired. Transfer to a casserole dish and bake for 15 – 20 minutes until bubbly in an oven preheated to 350.
Cauliflower Mac & Cheese is a healthier version of a favorite comfort food.  It's creamy and delicious, and so simple to make!

Cauliflower Mac & Cheese is a healthier version of a favorite comfort food. It’s creamy and delicious, and so simple to make!

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