Creamy Cauliflower Macaroni and Cheese

Why do weekends have to go by so fast?  I think Monday is my least favorite day of the week.  Again since I woke up late yesterday, I had another brunch – this time with 2 ounces french bread topped with spinach and ham scrambled eggs, topped with 1/2 ounce of cheese, then put under the broiler.  Breakfast was a delicious 10 points.

On Saturday when I was doing an inventory of my pantry/fridge/freezer I forgot that I had a whole cauliflower to use up.  I was recently sent a box of Dreamfield’s Pasta to try (I received two boxes of pasta to try for free).  Being diabetic, I appreciate the fact that this pasta is low on the Glycemic index, meaning that I don’t have a spike in blood sugar like I normally would eating regular pasta.

I adapted a recipe from Mark Bittman to make a Creamy Cauliflower Mac N Cheese.  The only thing I did was reduce the broth to 2 cups, left out the Parmesan cheese, left out the olive oil and reduced the bread crumbs to 3 tablespoons over the top – and reduced the cheese to three ounces total.  Six servings (a generous cup) is 6 WW points.

Creamy Cauliflower Mac
Instead of using high-fat butter and cream, Bittman makes his healthier mac and cheese with pureed cauliflower, chicken stock, and a moderate amount of cheese.

  • 2 1/2 cups vegetable or chicken stock  (I used 2 cups)
  • 2 bay leaves (nope, hate by leaves)
  • 1 cauliflower, cored and cut into large pieces
  • 8 ounces whole-wheat elbow macaroni  (I used Dreamfield’s Pasta)
  • 1/2 cup grated cheese (such as sharp cheddar, Gruyere, or Emmental, or a combination)  I used 2 ounces in the sauce, and 1 ounce for the top
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • 1/8 teaspoon nutmeg
  • Salt and black pepper
  • 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1/2 cup whole-grain bread crumbs (I used 3 tablespoons)

Heat oven to 400° F. Boil a pot of salted water.   In a saucepan, warm stock and bay leaves on medium-low heat for five minutes; turn off heat.
Cook cauliflower in boiling water for 25 minutes. Put cauliflower in a food processor.  Cook pasta in boiling water for five minutes. Drain and rinse to cool; put pasta in a greased, nine-inch square baking dish. Process cauliflower with stock (discard bay leaves), cheese, oil, mustard, nutmeg, salt, and pepper, working in batches.
Pour sauce over pasta, toss, and spread evenly in dish. Top with Parmesan and bread crumbs. Bake 20 minutes. Serves six four.

This was super delicious and creamy.  And the pasta tastes like regular pasta to me – sometimes whole wheat pasta has a different texture that I am not fond of.  Best part is that this reheats really well too.

My SIL and I went to see the Vow yesterday – really cute movie, but TOTAL chick flick. 😀  I ended up making a whole chicken on the gas grill.  I cut out the back bone, put about 1 teaspoon of olive oil over the top, then salted and peppered it and added chopped fresh rosemary.  I put the chicken back in the fridge and it stayed there for about 2 1/2 hours before I grilled it.  Because it’s butterflied, it only took about 50 minutes to grill.

 

I just happened to have brussel sprouts on hand – I wanted to give them another try and bought them last week, but never used them.  My SIL and MIL love them, so I cooked them up with broccoli – simply tossed in a bit of olive oil, salt and pepper and baked for 15 minutes at 400 degrees.


Guess what?  I still don’t like brussel sprouts, but the broccoli was delicious!  I never took a picture of my finished plate!  Oh well, my SIL loved dinner.  Remember how I used to cook her lunches when she first started WW?  She’s lost almost 35 pounds so far!  Well, she’s decided to hire me back in a couple weeks – she pays me $25 a week, and since I usually make recipes that serve at least 2 people and usually 4, it’s not a big deal.  She missed my food!

Alright, I guess I have to jump in the shower, unless anyone wants to sit at my desk today – any takers??

Make it a great day!

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28 thoughts on “Creamy Cauliflower Macaroni and Cheese

  1. I don’t like Brussells Sprouts either. I’ve tried but I just don’t like them, I’d take the broccoli too!

  2. Haha, I have to clean my whole house (and it’s a disaster, you know, when the floors are sticky and everything) any takers? Didn’t think so.

    That’s great that you can make a little money by doing what you’re already doing, your meals always look so great so I can see why she’d hire you.

  3. That pasta looks delicious, and I really need to try the whole chicken on the grill, yum!

    I used to like brussel spouts, but haven’t had them forever. For some reason they never come to mind when I’m picking out veggies.

  4. would really like to know if the dreamfields raised your blood sugar, there is so much controversy over that pasta and how it raises bloodsugar, you should do a test with just plain pasta one day and let us all know, i have been using fibergourmet pasta, due to the 18 grams of fiber in 2 oz but more spendy and can only get over the internt, so would really like if you did a blood sugar test for us all and let us know if all the bad press is just what it is bad press and not true…

  5. Love your chicken on the grill–she looks so relaxed there, like she’s sunbathing. She did get quite a nice tan! I’ll have to try your trick of butterflying the chicken–grilling a whole chicken usually gives me a part charred, part not done bird.

    I’m with you on brussels sprouts. I’ve never liked them, but about every other year I think “maybe this time” and try a different recipe. The best one was roasted brussels sprouts–I almost liked them. 🙂

  6. This dish looks delicous! I went to the library the other day looking for The Vow book, but they didn’t have it yet. Want to read the book before I see the movie:)

  7. That mac and cheese looks awesome! And what a great compliment that your sister hires you to cook for her. My son gave me a compliment while we were watching part of “Worst Cooks in America” by saying. “You would do good on that show.”

    I said “thanks sweetie, but I’m not one of the worst cooks in America!”

  8. No thanks for the offer of your desk. I’m almost done here and like you Mondays are my least favorites. I often have the song “I don’t like Mondays” in my head from the Boomtown Rats.

    I don’t really like califlower, every now and then I try it again but I always regret it no matter how I use it in a recipe.

  9. I love that mac and cheese recipe. What a great idea to use cauliflower. I’m going to have to try this on the hubby – he’s not a fan of cauliflower but LOVES mac and cheese.

  10. That macaroni looks sooo good. There’s something about cauliflower and cheese that just works so, so well! And your grilling skills – as impressed as ever!

  11. Your SIL is getting a deal on having her meals made by you – I swear you could do that for real and make some good money…people don’t want to have to think about their “diet” food (I put it in quotes because your meals don’t look diet, know what I mean?), they just want to have it ready for them. We drove by a little place in Austin that looks similar – sure would be great to see you doing what you love for a living!

  12. I love brussels sprouts! The mac and cheese looks great too.
    Congrats to your SIL, that is awesome

  13. See? You’re trying to like brussels – which I LOVE – and I’m trying to like cauliflower… I have such an aversion to it that I don’t even want to try things that use it as an ingredient. Weird, huh?

    I’m Monday averse too and actually found myself dreading the thought of work today around 3 o’clock yesterday afternoon. Why can’t we win the lottery?!! 😉

  14. Just printed the mac and cheese – sounds great. Dreamfield pasta is all I buy anymore – my family doesn’t seem to notice any difference. I don’t eat it often, but it’s less guilt free this way.

  15. Your chicken looks like it is spreading out to get a suntan! We love the Dreamfield pasta around here – my diabetic daughter’s blood sugar always spiked after any kind of pasta meal, but we never have that problem with Dreamfield. I’d be happier if it were a little cheaper, however.

  16. PLEASE try my orange soy version (well Grill 225’s ;)). Its so good! I bet you will love brussels after that 🙂 . I totally want to make this macaroni and cheese. Sneaking in more veggies is always a good thing.

  17. Everything looks so good! I’m with you on Brussels — I’ve tried to like them so many times!

  18. Hope your week goes by fast!
    Your chicken looks lovely, like a sunbathing beauty! I like Brussels, but they have to be cooked all the way, can’t stand them crunchy!
    I’m going to make that mac and cheese, I love cauliflower. I made a potato and cauliflower mash last week, very tasty! 🙂

  19. I was thinking about trying brussels sprouts too, but now that you still don’t like them, I probably won’t either!

    I would eat that cauliflower mac and cheese!

  20. Never had brussel sprouts just because I don’t think I’d like them…lol! 😉 Your mac and cheese with caulflower looks and sounds great! Glad your back to cooking for your SIL, I’m sure she is too 🙂

  21. I am having plenty of fun sitting at my own desk 😉 Sorry you still don’t like the sprouts, I love those little guys. I managed to get off my butt and roast some veggies yesterday, so good.

  22. The cauliflower mac and cheese looks so good! I need to pick up some flavorful cheese to try it out.

  23. OK…don’t laugh…well, you probably will. The first chicken picture on the grill? The way the wings are tucked and the legs stuck back? My cat lies like that. All you need is a fluffy white head on that, and it’s NEVA! The cauliflower mac and cheese looks great too, but NOTHING like my cat! 🙂 Have a great day Vat!!! Hugs.

  24. The cauliflower mac looks & sounds great! I used to make a similar dish but had totally forgotten about it…

    I used to seriously dislike Brussles sprouts when I was young, but now I love them, especially roasted. Can’t get enough of them! 🙂

    Have a great week!

  25. Great for your SIL – I wish I lived closer I would pay you too. She should be proud of herself for losing so much weight YAY!

    Your cauli/mac looks really good. I am huge fan of cauliflower and in fact we are having some tonight with grilled chicken! 😀 Pooldad is out there now grilling away. We use paprika and garlic on our chicken in lieu of s/p – it is so nummy and he will put bbq sauce on a few pieces for him and the kid b/c they like it.

    Thanks for all your loving comments and support. I am feeling better everyday and it is such a boost when I see your smiling face over at my place. Your the best Bizzy. Thanks.

  26. I’ve made cheddar cheese sauce from cauliflower before. Surprisingly good. We had it on baked potatoes with broccoli – a lot healthier than Wendy’s. You inspired me to try something tnonight since I was making cauliflowers, and I made a cauliflower parmesan cream sauce to put over the cauliflower florets while they were roasting. Needs a tweak or two, but all in all, pretty good. Thanks for the idea.

  27. I really like the cauliflower puree subbing in for some of the cheese! I’ve also heard of using a butternut squash puree too, but this sounds like it would taste more like the original.

  28. I can’t WAIT to make the cauliflower mac & cheese! I know it’ll be a hit in my house – not to mention a great way to get Natie to eat more veggies!!!

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