Whether you’re keeping it low carb – or simply looking to mix up your veggie routine – Cauliflower Mashed Potatoes are a game changer. No potatoes included, and no thickeners needed, this simple mash works great as a side or as a base to build a well-rounded dish. Perfect for keto and low carb diets, especially around the holiday season!
Growing up, mashed potatoes were really only ever part of a “big deal meal.” Holidays, family dinners on Sunday, when company came over. If you are in charge of the mashed potatoes, you know that in order to get them perfect, it takes quite a bit of elbow grease.
I can still picture my grandmother using that old-school potato ricer (you know, the one that looks like a cross between a giant garlic press and a speculum?) and slowly adding milk and cream and butter by the dollop and then stirring and adding and stirring and adding, just to get it right. So it’s no wonder that silky-smooth, Thanksgiving-quality mashed potatoes are not a regular Tuesday night occurrence. (And please don’t talk to me about instant potatoes. Bridge too far.)
But the same could be said for pretty much anything served on Thanksgiving. I have probably said some iteration of “Why can’t we just have Thanksgiving dinner for dinner every night?” every year since I could speak. Now that I’m an adult and am responsible for cooking Thanksgiving dinner, I know the logical answer to this question, but my inner fat kid doesn’t want to take no for an answer.
So in honor all our inner fat kids, we owe it to ourselves to find small ways to keep the spirit alive year-round. Cause even if you don’t have the time or energy – or the inclination to feel mashed potato-full after – for a full spread, we can still come pretty darn close with dishes like Cauliflower Mashed Potatoes.
My Favorite Mashed Cauliflower Hack
Let’s say and celebrate it together: Frozen. Cauliflower. Thanks to this hack, cauli “fauxtatoes” are by far the quickest, easiest, and (arguably) healthiest of all to make.
How to Make Cauliflower Mashed Potatoes
- Steam cauliflower florets. Snip off the ends of two bags of frozen cauliflower. Place in the microwave and heat for 5 minutes; flip the bags over and heat 5-8 minutes more, or until very soft. If you prefer to use fresh cauliflower, take your pick and make tender, mashable steamed cauliflower with one of these three tested methods.
- Dry the cauliflower. Spread the steamed florets onto a baking sheet and allow to air dry for 5-10 minutes. Dried florets will create a fluffier mashed texture.
- Mash the florets. Mash the cauliflower with heavy cream in a food processor in batches.
- Add mix-ins. Scrape the mashed cauliflower into a large bowl. Add sour cream, melted butter, salt, and pepper; mix with a rubber spatula until well-combined.
- Season and serve. Always taste for seasoning and adjust with more salt and pepper until the flavor pops.
Tips for Making This Recipe Perfectly
- Steam the cauliflower florets until very soft – you should be able to easily mash a floret with the tines of a fork.
- Do not skip drying. I cannot stress this enough. If you want to go the extra mile, empty the bag into a mesh sieve after steaming and then use paper towels to gently blot on your baking sheet.
- Season generously, especially if you’re feeding people who may not be full cauli-converts yet.
- Mash to preference – if you prefer a smoother texture, add a touch more heavy cream.
Are Cauliflower Mashed Potatoes Keto? Are They Healthy?
You betcha! Aside from being a great source of fiber and antioxidants – including a mega-dose of vitamin C – let’s put it this way… there’s about as many carbs in this entire recipe as there are in one 4oz serving of mashed potatoes.
Can I Make These Whole30?
Sure can! As prepared, these cauliflower mashed potatoes are heavy on dairy but with a few adjustments you can make them Whole30 in a snap:
- Substitute almond or cashew milk for the heavy cream and sour cream. Start with a ⅓ c total, and add more as needed.
- Substitute ghee for butter
Make It Your Way
Adjust and tweak cauliflower mashed potatoes the same way you’d make regular mashed potatoes to your liking.
- Top with bacon, shredded cheddar and more sour cream for classic baked potato taste
- Mix in additional seasonings like garlic (powder, or whole roasted cloves) or even Old Bay for big flavor
- Garnish with a high quality, flavored EVOO instead of melted butter – try gremolata or herb
- Take it to the next level and top cottage or shepherd’s pie with mashed cauli
More Cauliflower Sides You’ll Love
- Creamy Cauliflower Risotto
- Mediterranean Roasted Cauliflower
- Cauliflower Fried Rice
- Curried Cauliflower Soup
- Broccoli and Cauliflower Salad with Sunbutter Sauce
Did you make these Cauliflower Mashed Potatoes? I’d love to know how they turned out! Leave a comment and a rating below.
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- Food Processor
- 2 16-oz bags frozen cauliflower florets
- ¼ c heavy cream
- ¼ c sour cream
- 6 tbsp butter, melted
- 1.5 tsp kosher salt
- ½ tsp cracked black pepper
- 1 tbsp minced chives, optional
- Snip venting holes in each end of the bags of cauliflower. Place into the microwave and heat 5 minutes. Flip the bags over, and heat an additional 5-8 minutes, or until the cauliflower florets are very soft and can be easily mashed with the tines of a fork.
- Spread the florets onto a baking sheet and air dry 5-10 minutes, or until tacky to the touch.
- Combine half the cauliflower with half the heavy cream in a food processor. Blend until smooth. Scrape the cauliflower mash into a bowl and repeat with the remaining florets and heavy cream.
- Add the sour cream, melted butter, salt, and pepper to the mashed cauliflower. Blend with a rubber spatula until well combined. Taste for seasoning and adjust with more salt, pepper, or sour cream as needed. Serve warm, garnished with fresh chives and melted butter if desired.