Friday, July 19, 2024

Get Creative in the Kitchen with These Tasty Cauliflower Recipes

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Cauliflower is the newest powerhouse veggie, high in antioxidants, fiber and vitamins. It’s also incredibly versatile and can be used to make a variety of delicious and healthy dishes. Get creative with this edible flower and try out some tasty cauliflower recipes!

Benefits of Eating Cauliflower 

Cauliflower is a member of the cruciferous vegetable family, along with broccoli, Brussels sprouts, kale, and cabbage. The health benefits are plentiful:

• High in antioxidants and fiber – Antioxidants are a class of compounds that help neutralize free radicals and have numerous health benefits, including reducing inflammation and protecting against chronic diseases. Fiber aids in digestion, helps lower cholesterol and keeps you feeling fuller for longer.

• Low in calories – A medium head of cauliflower contains only about 150 calories and 3 grams of fat. It’s a great way to add bulk to your plate without weight gain.

• Rich in vitamins – Cauliflower is rich in vitamins C and K, as well as many B vitamins. Vitamin C is an essential nutrient for skin health and immune system function, while vitamin K is essential for bone health.

• High in iron –Cauliflower is a good source of non-heme iron, which is essential for the body’s production of red blood cells and energy.

• Low in carbohydrates – Cauliflower is naturally low in carbohydrates and is a great way to fulfill your cravings for carbs without the added sugar or calories.

Soups and Salads 

Soups and salads are the perfect way to get creative with cauliflower. Here are a few delicious recipes to try:

• Creamy Cauliflower Soup – This creamy vegan soup is packed with flavor and nutrition. Heat olive oil in a large stock pot, sauté chopped onions, carrots and celery until softened. Add cubed cauliflower, vegetable broth and fresh thyme, and bring to a boil. Simmer for 10 minutes, until cauliflower is tender. Carefully transfer to a blender and blend until smooth. Serve with fresh rosemary and freshly grated Parmesan cheese.

• Roasted Cauliflower Salad – Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Toss diced cauliflower with olive oil, salt and pepper and spread on a baking sheet. Roast in preheated oven for 20 minutes, until lightly browned. Meanwhile, combine green olives, cherry tomatoes, Lemon juice and red onion in a large bowl. Once the cauliflower is done, add to the bowl and stir to combine. Sprinkle with crumbly feta cheese and serve over a bed of fresh baby greens.

• Cauliflower Wedge Salad – Cut a head of cauliflower into four wedges and arrange in a large skillet along with lemon juice, olive oil and rosemary. Roast in preheated oven for 20 minutes, until lightly browned. Transfer to plate and top with a dollop of vegan mayo and a sprinkle of fresh chives. Serve with fresh greens, tomatoes and radishes.

Main Dishes 

Cauliflower is a great substitute for grain-based dishes, and can also be used to create delicious main course dishes. Here are two recipes that are sure to be a crowd-pleaser:

• Cauliflower Mac and Cheese – Preheat oven to 375 degrees. In a large pot, bring vegetable broth and diced cauliflower to a boil and cook until cauliflower is tender. Drain, reserving 1 ½ cups of the broth. Put the cauliflower in a blender and add reserved veggie broth, nutritional yeast, garlic powder, mustard, nutmeg and salt. Blend until smooth. Pour the mixture into a greased 8×8 pan and top with shredded cheese. Bake in preheated oven for 20 minutes and top with crushed Ritz crackers.

• Cauliflower Rice Stir Fry – Heat 1 tablespoon of oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add minced garlic, ginger and green onions and sauté for 1 minute. Add grated cauliflower and orange juice, stirring constantly. Cover and cook for 5 minutes, then add frozen vegetables and cooked quinoa. Cook until vegetables are tender and heat through. Serve with sriracha and cashews for a delicious and healthy meal.

Side Dishes 

Cauliflower is perfect for side dishes, too! Here are two recipes to try:

• Roasted Buffalo Cauliflower – Preheat oven to 450 degrees. In a large bowl, mix diced cauliflower with olive oil, garlic powder, smoked paprika, and hot sauce. Spread onto a baking sheet and roast for 25 minutes, or until lightly browned. Sprinkle salt to taste, then serve with vegan blue cheese dressing and celery sticks.

• Cauliflower Mash – In a large pot, bring diced cauliflower and vegetable broth to a boil and simmer until the cauliflower is tender. Drain the cauliflower, reserving 1 cup of the veggie broth, then transfer to a blender. Add olive oil, garlic, fresh thyme and reserved veggie broth, then blend until creamy and smooth. Transfer to a bowl and season with sea salt and freshly ground black pepper. Enjoy with your favorite roasted veggies.

Desserts 

Just when you thought cauliflower couldn’t get any more versatile, try using it to make delicious desserts! Here are two recipes to tantalize your taste buds:

• Cauliflower Fudge Bars – Preheat oven to 375 degrees. In a blender, add 2 cups of cooked and cooled cauliflower and a scoop of almond or peanut butter. Blend until smooth, then transfer to a large bowl. Add melted coconut oil, coconut sugar, almond flour, chopped almonds and chocolate chips, stirring until combined. Spread the mixture into a greased 8×8 pan and bake for 35 minutes, or until lightly browned. Let cool before cutting into bars and topping with flaky sea salt.

• Cauliflower Berry Crisp – Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a medium bowl, mix together cooked and cooled cauliflower, frozen raspberries and blueberries, maple syrup, coconut oil and lemon juice. Transfer to a greased baking dish and top with a mixture of oats, almond flour, coconut sugar and cinnamon. Bake in preheated oven for 30 minutes, until lightly golden brown. Serve with a scoop of vanilla ice cream for an irresistible dessert.

There are so many delicious and creative ways to use cauliflower. From soups and salads to main dishes to desserts, you can’t go wrong with this versatile cruciferous vegetable. Experiment with these tasty recipes and get creative in the kitchen!

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