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Cauliflower Mash (Keto)

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Cauliflower mashed with bacon, garlic, heavy cream, and gouda is the perfect low-carb side dish. It’s keto-friendly and is ready in under 25 minutes!

mashed cauliflower loaded with bacon, butter and cheese
perfect for holiday dinners

WHY YOU’LL LOVE THIS RECIPE

Keto Cauliflower Mashed Potatoes may be reduced in carbohydrates, but it tastes just as fantastic. The key is to add just the proper amount of flavoring to transform them from drab to scrumptious.

I guarantee you’ll fall in love with Cauliflower Mashed Potatoes if you’ve never had them before. It’s the perfect healthy substitute for mashed potatoes.

What’s the secret to making cauliflower mashed potatoes?


Mashed cauliflower has become my go-to veggie side dish after years of experimenting and cooking low carb veggies.  

The secret is to use most of the same yummy topping that you would typically use in your mashed potatoes. You’ll also want to season this dish well.

ingredients for cauliflower mash, including butter, bacon, gouda and heavy cream
No gouda? try cheddar, American, or pepper jack cheese

RECOMMENDED INGREDIENTS

Cauliflower Mash with Bacon & Gouda

  • cauliflower florets– there’s plenty of low carb health benefits from this little veggie
  • heavy cream– If dairy free, use vegetable stock or almond milk instead. Cream cheese may also be used for extra creaminess.
  • gouda cheese, shredded
  • butter– you can adjust the saltiness by using unsalted butter
  • slices of cooked bacon, reserve one piece to crumble and use as garnish
  • garlic powder (or fresh garlic)- garlic powder may be sautéed with butter to add extra flavor.
  • salt and pepper to taste

PRO TIP: Freshly grated Parmesan cheese, Cheddar, Ricotta, or Romano cheese may be be added to your preferences.

HOW TO MASH CAULIFLOWER

First, add the cauliflower, butter, heavy cream, salt, pepper and garlic powder to a microwave safe dish and microwave on high to soften the florets, approximately 18 minutes. Stir halfway through.

Next, add the cauliflower mix to a food processor, add the Gouda and bacon and blend until smooth and creamy.

Serve warm and enjoy!


To top it off, garnish with bacon bits, dried parsley and more.

PRO TIP: Cauliflower cooks to mush quicker than potatoes, so keep that in mind. 12-14 minutes steamed or boiled in a large pot for 10 minutes is the typical time needed. You know it’s done when a fork can easily puncture it.

large bowl of mashed cauliflower with chunks of crisp bacon, butter and cream
a fully customizable keto-friendly recipe

FAQ

Time-saving Tips

Tip 1: Riced cauliflower or pre-cut cauliflower florets are widely available in most grocery stores.

You’ll be able to spend less time preparing, chopping and cooking!

Tip 2: After boiling and draining, place a lid over the florets and let them cool. A colander may be used to drain while sautéing garlic in a separate pot.

This method allows for faster clean-up with fewer pots.

How long does cauliflower mash last?

Store cooked cauliflower mash in an air-tight container up to 3 days in the fridge.

Freeze up to 3 months in a sealed freezer bag. Thaw overnight in fridge, then reheat. 

large bowl of mashed cauliflower with loads of butter and parsley
extra butter, please

How to make it creamy

There are many different types of food processors and blenders on the market.


Use a high-quality food processor or blender to get the smoothest mash possible.

If using a blender, it’s possible that you’ll have to do this in batches of two or three, with each batch of cauliflower being thrown back into the saucepan after being blended.

Help! Why is my cauliflower watery?

Nobody likes watery mashed cauliflower. You don’t want to skip this step! Before mashing the cooked cauliflower, let it cool and steam for a few minutes so that any remaining moisture may be reabsorbed into the dish.

ingredients and toppings for mashed cauliflower, including large bacon bits, salt, pepper, garlic powder
mix and match to your preferences

MASHED CAULIFLOWER TOPPINGS

A few basic ingredients go a long way in this mashed cauliflower dish. However, you may customize it to your liking by adding your favorite ingredients.

Some of my favorite keto toppings for mashed cauliflower include:

  • bacon
  • chives
  • jalapeño
  • cheese- any sharp cheese will do!
  • cream cheese/sour cream
  • parsley
  • cajun seasoning
  • roasted garlic
  • red pepper flakes
bowl of mashed cauliflower with butter, bacon, parsley
bacon + butter + parsley

WHAT TO SERVE WITH CAULIFLOWER

This recipe goes well with a main dish, like chicken or beef stew.

I often serve this recipe with air fryer turkey breast during the holidays.

bowl of cauliflower mash with bacon bits, creamy butter and parsley

Cauliflower Mash

This simple keto cauliflower mash is the perfect blend of butter, cream and cheese.
5 from 4 votes
Print Pin Rate
Course: Side Dish
Cuisine: American
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 18 minutes
Total Time: 23 minutes
Servings: 6
Calories: 249kcal
Author: Amber @ Low Carb Quick

Equipment

  • food processor or blender

Ingredients

  • 6 cups cauliflower florets
  • ¼ cup heavy cream
  • 6 oz gouda shredded, *may also use cheddar, pepper jack, or your preferred cheese
  • 3 tbsp butter
  • 6 slices slices bacon, fried
  • ¼ tsp salt and pepper to taste
  • ½ tsp garlic powder or fresh minced garlic

Instructions

  • Chop cauliflower into small florets. You may also use store-bought riced cauliflower.
  • Add the cauliflower, butter, heavy cream, salt, pepper and garlic powder to a microwave safe dish and microwave on high to soften the florets, approximately 18 minutes. Stir halfway through.
  • Add the cauliflower mix to a food processor, add the Gouda and bacon and blend until smooth and creamy.
  • Top with bacon and parsley.

Notes

Suggested toppings:
  • bacon
  • chives
  • jalapeño
  • cheese
  • cream cheese/sour cream
  • parsley
  • cajun seasoning
  • roasted garlic
  • red pepper flakes
For dairy-free diets: use almond milk instead of heavy cream
Freeze up to 3 months in a sealed freezer bag. Thaw overnight in fridge, then reheat. 
Store in an air-tight container up to 3 days in the fridge.

Nutrition

Calories: 249kcal | Carbohydrates: 6g | Protein: 12g | Fat: 20g | Saturated Fat: 12g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 6g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 69mg | Sodium: 550mg | Potassium: 386mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 3g | Vitamin A: 483IU | Vitamin C: 48mg | Calcium: 230mg | Iron: 1mg

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