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As the weather cools down, I’m in comfort food mode. And, low carb comfort food often means cauliflower is involved. How about an easy loaded cauliflower casserole?
How To Make Loaded Cauliflower Casserole Healthy
Okay, that header is a trick question. If you ask me, loaded cauliflower casserole is already healthy! The cauliflower is a delicious way to make a low carb comfort food side dish that’s packed with veggies.
Now, don’t attack me for calling this side dish healthy. Sure, cauliflower casserole does have butter, sour cream, cheese, and bacon in it.
Some people may be wondering if I’m crazy to consider it healthy. But, I’m not one to fear fat. I believe that it can be a good thing if you use unprocessed sources. I use grass-fed butter and uncured bacon. And, a casserole like this is much healthier than one with potatoes.
I like to make my easy cauliflower casserole using whole cauliflower florets instead. That way, I get the flavor of roasted cauliflower and don’t have to wash my food processor. The entire prep time is just around ten minutes, which is awesome for busy weeknights.
Twice Baked Cauliflower Casserole
If you’ve seen any of my other low carb cauliflower recipes, you know that I’m a big fan of roasting the cauliflower first.
This is my method with pretty much every baked cauliflower casserole that I make. Always, always roast it first. So much more flavor that way! Try my pesto chicken bake and cheesy beef marinara casseroles to see what I mean.
So, it’s no surprise that my favorite way to make an easy cauliflower casserole is a twice baked version. The result is actually a little similar to cauliflower mac and cheese with keto cheese sauce.
Can you guess the first step when making this cheesy cauliflower casserole? Roast the cauliflower florets, of course! That way, you get some crispy edges to the florets, without the smell and blandness of steaming.
While that’s doing its thing, mix all the loaded toppings together. These are all the ones you’d expect on a loaded baked potato.
Garlic, sour cream, cheddar cheese, bacon, and green onions! So good. You could use chives instead of the onions, if you want to.
Next, stir the toppings into the roasted cauliflower casserole dish. Add some more cheese and bacon on top, then bake again. Baking the second time only takes five to ten minutes.
Don’t let the concept of twice baked cauliflower throw you off this recipe, because it’s still super quick. Baking twice doesn’t have to mean a lot of time or effort. It’s just about half an hour for the whole thing!
Cheesy Cauliflower Casserole for the Family
For a deliciously cheesy cauliflower casserole that the whole family will love, this is the one. It’s a dish you can serve for picky family members that don’t want to eat vegetables. It’s pretty much the epitome of comfort food. I’ll bet they won’t mind the veggies with all that cheese and bacon in there! And if they are still feeling leery, then try out low carb cheesy cauliflower tater tots on them.
Loaded cauliflower casserole is also a yummy option if you have guests coming over. You can prepare most of it in advance. We all love that convenience when hosting, right? Just complete the final second baking step right before serving.
If your family still insists on potatoes, you can make the same toppings for you and them. Then, just bake in two separate casserole dishes. It’s easy to make one version with potatoes and one with cauliflower. If you ask me, the cauliflower and cheese casserole is the much better version, anyway.
Easy Cheesy Loaded Cauliflower Casserole Recipe:
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Easy Cheesy Loaded Cauliflower Casserole Recipe
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Preheat the oven to 450 degrees F (232 degrees C).
- In a large bowl, toss the cauliflower florets with butter. Season with sea salt and black pepper.
Transfer the cauliflower to a small 1.5 quart (1.4 L) casserole dish in a single layer. (Line the pan unless it's glass or stoneware. If there's too much cauliflower to fit in a single layer, roast on a larger baking sheet instead.) Roast in the oven for 15-20 minutes, until crisp-tender.
- Meanwhile, in the same bowl, whisk together the sour cream and heavy cream, until smooth. Stir in the minced garlic, half of the cheddar cheese, half of the bacon bits, and half of the green onions. If desired, season sauce with sea salt and black pepper. (Don't oversalt - it will get more salty as the cheese melts later.)
- When the cauliflower is done roasting, take it out and leave the oven on. Add the cauliflower to the bowl and mix with the sauce.
- Return the cauliflower mixture to the casserole dish. Top with remaining cheese and bacon bits.
Bake for 5-10 minutes, until the cheese melts. Top with remaining green onions.
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Serving size: 1/2 cup
Video Showing How To Make Loaded Cauliflower Casserole:
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