If you’ve read our article about smart food swaps to save calories you’ll already know at least one new way of enjoying the humble cauliflower as a filling, tasty and healthy side dish, but I’m sure at least a few of the below ideas will be new to you. By the time you finish reading, you’ll be itching to buy yourself a cauliflower and try out these amazingly inventive cauliflower recipes – especially when you see how low calorie they are! Better yet, cauliflower is low in carbohydrates so won’t make you feel more hungry after you eat it.
#1 Cauliflower Mash
Ah mashed potato – a great British staple and side dish to many a warming winter meal. You can save yourself a whole heap of calories as well as carbs by swapping the mash for cauliflower mash, at only 35 calories a serving using this great recipe from Lavender & Lovage. If you’re not a big fan of that cauliflower taste, you can adjust the recipe to include garlic, herbs or anything you would usually add to your mashed potato. Or why not go half and half, mixing cauliflower mash with mashed potato to cut back on the calories just a little?
#2 Cauliflower Crust Pizza
Look at that delicious pizza up there… would you believe the crust is actually made using cauliflower? The whole pizza comes in at under 500 calories thanks to yet another great Lavender and Lovage recipe. Don’t expect it to taste like a normal pizza base, but do expect a filling and healthier meal full of all the great flavours of pizza thanks to there being enough calories to top it with all the usual suspects! I’d cut back on the cheese a bit and throw on some extra toppings or serve with a side salad.
#3 Cauliflower Tortillas / Tacos
This is one I really must try out as we have Mexican food most Saturdays in my home and I’ve always preferred a soft shell for my tacos than those crispy ones which break and make such a terrible mess! These low calorie cauliflower tortilla wraps don’t have to just be used for Mexican food, fill them with whatever you like, turn them into little pizzas, the possibilities are endless (well, maybe not endless but you can do as much with these as you can with a normal soft tortilla!). Here’s a recipe from Slim Palate for oven baked cauliflower tortillas and one for a quicker pan-cooked version from The Healthy Foodie.
#4 Cauliflower Breadsticks
Starting to notice a bit of a theme now eh? Cauliflower can replace many of our favourite grain laden, carby bread products! This recipe from An Edible Mosaic offers a delicious sounding cauliflower based alternative to garlic bread – perhaps a nice accompaniment to courgetti ‘pasta’?
#5 Cauliflower Hummus
If the idea of dunking sticks of low calorie vegetables into nice healthy beans (in the form of hummus) appeals to you, perhaps the idea of dunking your vegetables into another vegetable is even more appealing! This recipe for cauliflower hummus from Oh My Veggies contains around 25% fewer calories than chickpea hummus per serving.
#6 Creamy Cauliflower Sauce
This one looks simply amazing – a simple idea, and so low in calories at just 49 per serving. This cauliflower sauce recipe from Pinch of Yum looks super versatile not only in terms of tweaking the ingredients to change the sauce but also the sheer number of dishes you could use it with – rice, pasta, meat, vegetable – you name it! Heck, you could even make it cheesy and serve over more cauliflower for cauliflower cheese (double cauliflower cheese?).
#7 Cauliflower Rice / Cous Cous
Of course no article about the wonders we can make with cauliflower would be complete without this now legendary 5:2 classic, cauliflower rice. So simple to make and so very versatile – turn it into a dish in its own right by making it ‘special fried rice’ style, or use as a side in dishes which call for rice or cous cous. It has just 20% of the calories compared to boiled rice (25 calories per 100g vs 130 calories per 100g boiled rice) and you can find a recipe here, courtesy of Tinned Tomatoes.
Who would ever have thought you could do so many things with a cauliflower?!
Have you tried any of these recipes? What did you think of them? Have you tweaked them or invented new ones? Let us know in the comments!