Looking for a new side dish idea? Our Fully Loaded Cauliflower Mash recipe is filled with all the tasty stuff: bacon, cheese, and perfectly-cooked cauliflower. Try it out for yourselves!
If ever I had to choose a favourite vegetable, it would definitely be cauliflower. In fact, I even loved it when I was a little girl – and normally cauliflower gets a bad rep by kiddos!
What are some cauliflower recipes that actually taste good? I get it, eating your vegetables can be….boring. Well, one bite of this cauliflower mash will have you replacing mashed potatoes!
This recipe will make you fall in love with this cruciferous vegetable – even if you think you don’t like it. With all the same ingredients as loaded mashed potatoes, it elevates the flavor of cauliflower. It doesn’t even taste the same!
What You Need
Here is what you will need from the store. The exact amounts are in the printable recipe card at the bottom of this post.
Cauliflower Mash Tips
This is a super-simple recipe! Here are some tips that will make it even easier (and tastier). If you make any changes to this recipe, please let us know in the comments. We would love to hear!
Use Pre-Cut Florets
As you can see in my picture above, chopping cauliflower is very messy! Save yourself time and grab fresh cauliflower florets from the grocery store.
Don’t use frozen cauliflower. It will have too much moisture in it, and could water down your cauliflower mash.
Use Unsalted Butter
This recipe is full of flavor! So, I suggest using unsalted butter. It will prevent your recipe from tasting too salty. And always use real butter instead of margarine. It’s a lot healthier.
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Use A Food Processor
This is optional. But, if you want the dish to be extra-creamy, place the cauliflower and a bit of milk and butter into a food processor. Pulse and process it until it is completely smooth.
Shred Cheese At Home
For the fullest flavor, shred the cheese at home. Packages of pre-shredded cheese contain preservatives and anti-caking ingredients in them. This dampens the flavor a bit.
Use Your Favorite Cheese
Cheddar cheese is the most common type used in mashed potatoes, so it will taste perfect in this recipe, too. But you can use pepper jack cheese, or mix in some mozzarella cheese. Or deepen the flavor by sprinkling shredded parmesan cheese on top before you bake it.
The Versatility of Cauliflower
Cauliflower falls high on my veggie ranking because it’s so versatile. There’s just SO much you can do with it in terms of serving styles:
- Cauliflower rice
- Roasted cauliflower
- Cauliflower pizza crust
- Cauliflower steaks
…the possibilities are endless! And now, you can add this cheesy cauliflower side dish to the list. Your family will absolutely adore it!
How to Make Fully Loaded Cauliflower
Okay, I wanted to make this post a short one and get right to the point. Do you love cheese? Do you love bacon? How about green onions? Okay, then this Fully Loaded Cauliflower recipe is especially for you!
Fully Loaded Cauliflower
- 1 large cauliflower head leaves removed and cut into florets
- Large pot of water
- 2 tbsp salted butter
- 3 cloves garlic minced
- 3 tbsp all-purpose flour
- 2 cups milk
- 2 oz. softened cream cheese
- 1 ½ cups shredded cheddar cheese divided
- Salt and pepper to taste
- 6 slices bacon cooked and crumbled, divided
- 3 green onions sliced
- Begin by preheating oven to 350 degrees F
- Boil pot of water and add 1 tsp salt. Add cauliflower for 3 minutes, drain and set aside.
- In a large skillet, melt butter and add garlic. Cook for about one minute, then add flour and stir quickly for about 2 minutes.
- Lower heat and slowly add milk to the butter and flour mixture, whisking as your pour. Add cream cheese and mix until everything is well-incorporated.
- Remove skillet from heat and add cheese. Season with salt and pepper and mix until everything is melted and well-combined.
- Add cauliflower to a baking dish and pour over the cheese sauce. Add half the amount of your bacon and green onion and combine into the cauliflower mixture.
- Add remaining bacon and green onion as a topping. Bake for about 30 minutes.
More Easy Side Dish Recipes
This easy cauliflower mash will taste perfect with these side dishes!