Are you ready to try the very BEST Keto Cauliflower “Mac” and Cheese? If so, I guarantee you will be thrilled with this recipe, especially since the cheese sauce is made WITHOUT any flour.
As you know, eating any type of pasta or macaroni is a real no-no on a Keto diet due to the high carbohydrate count in the pasta. Bite-size pieces of cauliflower tossed in olive oil then roasted in the oven is the perfect substitute for the macaroni.
The cheese sauce is not made of one type of cheese or even two types. Instead we melt three types of cheese, add half and half and butter and a delicious creamy cheese sauce comes to life.
INGREDIENTS FOR CHEESY CAILIFLOWER “MAC” AND CHEESE
- 1 Head of Roasted Cauliflower, tossed in Olive Oil then roasted.
- 1 Stick (8 Tablespoons) of Salted Butter. I prefer Kerry Gold if you can find it.
- 1 Block (8 Ounces) of full fat Cream Cheese
- 1 1/4 Cup of Half and Half, divided
- 2 Cups Shredded Sharp Cheddar Cheese (I prefer Tillamook if you can find it).
- 6 Ounces Shredded Gruyere Cheese
- 3 Teaspoons of Turmeric (Optional)
- 1/2 Cup Panko Pork Rind Crumbs (Optional)
- 1/2 Cup Parmesan Cheese
- 2 Tablespoons Butter, sliced
Depending on the size of the head of cauliflower you are roasting, you may have extra sauce leftover. Don’t drown the cauliflower, just mix in enough sauce to cover all of the cauliflower. Extra sauce can be saved for up to three days in the refrigerator.
TRICKS TO MAKING THIS SAUCE SUPER CHEESY AND FLAVORFUL
My personal favorite of store bought Macaroni and Cheese is frozen Stouffers in a box. Back in the days of eating everything bad for me and fattening, I would pop that baby in the microwave and eight minutes later I would be in cheese and pasta heaven. While I was tweaking my recipe I was trying to think of a way I could mimic the color, flavor and texture of a Stouffers Mac and Cheese. I couldn’t exactly match the texture of the macaroni but personally, I think this cheese sauce hits the ball out of the park. Shredded cheddar is a must as is heavy cream and melted butter which brings the rich flavor we enjoy to the sauce.
Cream cheese adds thickness to the sauce, and Gruyere Cheese adds a little bite to the overall flavor. For the deep yellow color I snuck in a few teaspoons of Turmeric, which doesn’t effect the flavor of this sauce but does add a deep yellow color and has a wonderful health benefit. Turmeric, also known as Curcumin is used in many mustards and Curry Recipes. The spice brings a deep yellow color to whatever it is added to. Along with being colorful in nature Curcumin is known for its antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties.
While the roasted cauliflower is cooling I toss in a teaspoon of Turmeric and a few tablespoons of half and half to color the cauliflower. In a pot on the stove I melt the butter, add in the cream cheese, half and half, shredded cheddar and shredded gruyere. I find that an immersion blender works well when it comes to making the sauce smooth and creamy. When the cheese is melted I add one teaspoon of Turmeric to color and if it needs more color, I will add in a second teaspoon.
After tossing everything together I pour the Cauliflower and Cheese into a greased 9″ x 9″ Ceramic dish. Sprinkle the Parmesan on top then the Panko Pork rinds. Slice two tables spoons of butter on top and into the oven it goes. After 20 minutes of baking, when the cheese starts to bubble around the edge of the pan, I switch to broil for about 3 minutes to brown the top. When that is done, I remove the pan and let it cool for a few minutes. That’s it! Cauliflower “Mac” and Cheese. Rich, creamy, cheesy and low-carb. Enjoy!