Cauliflower Mash

Cauliflower Mash is a straight alternative for a classic American dish: mashed potatoes. Even though mashed potatoes are a welcome side to almost every dish: beef, fried chicken, roast chicken, duck, roast fish, etc, it’s not exactly low-carb or keto friendly. Worry not! This Cauliflower Mash is going to replace your mashed potatoes – and you won’t ever look back. As a dead ringer for those creamy soft potatoes, this mash hits all the spots and the great thing is you won’t feel guilty about it because you’re basically eating your veggies!

How long do you steam cauliflower to make the mash?

In developing the recipe, I found that boiling the cauliflower between 8 and 10 minutes to be perfect. Yes, boiling. Since we are going to remove a fair amount of the water, I found the extra effort to steam the cauliflower (i.e. having to wash a steam basket, etc) didn’t have any impact on the final result. So, save yourself the trouble and just throw that albino broccoli into a vat of boiling water.

How do you know when the cauliflower is cooked?

For this recipe, we want our cauliflower to be ‘fork tender.’ To test, simply extract a piece of cauliflower from the boiling water and poke it with a fork – if it slides off with no assistance, it’s ready. However, if you can place your fork vertical, prong-side down and the cauliflower does not slide off, give it another minute in the boiling water and try again. It usually takes about 8-10 minutes to cook a fresh head of cauliflower in boiling water.

Cauliflower - Black Tie Kitchen
The star of the show, Cauliflower.

My mash came out watery. What gives?

There was too much water (duh). You need to squeeze out more water next time. You can use a fine mesh cheesecloth/nut milk bag and squeeze out the water if the sieve method was insufficient. The reason I don’t suggest the cheesecloth method is that you can actually squeeze out too much water. Yup, you read that correctly – too much water. If you end up with very dry cauliflower paste, you will have to add more cream/butter – which ultimately results in a overly fatty cauliflower mash that is not palatable and will have you hating me. For the creamy version you want it to feel like sandy wet mud, where, if you squeeze it with your hand, it comes spurting out everywhere.

Is Cauliflower Mash good for you?

Yes… and no. It really depends on your diet. If you’re on a very low-carb or keto diet – it will fit right in with your macros as you’ll be hitting your fat requirements. If you’re on a low-carb/high protein diet, it might be a bit high in the fat realm. Last but not least, if you’re lactose intolerant, you will have to substitute the heavy cream with an oil and a nut milk (e.g. coconut oil and almond milk) in order to get the same creamy consistency. Outside of that – cauliflower is considered a vegetable – and no one will ever tell you that you’re consuming too many veggies!

Why are the ingredients estimated?

The quantities are estimates because we add a little bit at a time until we reach our desired taste and smoothness. Every head of cauliflower is different: be it the size, the moisture content, etc. By adding a little bit of cream and butter at a time, it allows us to slowly get to our ideal mash rather than adding an exact amount of ingredients and having the dish turn out crappy!

Is it really that good?

Yes, yes it is. To put it into perspective, my mom, my dad, AND my grandfather loved it. That’s rare. My mom put it on her top two recipes that I’ve developed (she’s a tough critic apparently).

Cauliflower Mash - Black Tie Kitchen

Super Smooth Cauliflower Mash

Yield: 4 servings
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Additional Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 25 minutes

This cauliflower mash will replace mashed potatoes and you will never look back!


  • 1 head of cauliflower
  • 3-6 tbsp unsalted butter
  • 4-8 oz heavy cream
  • 1 clove of garlic
  • kosher salt
  • black pepper
  • nutmeg



The Easy Method

  1. Bring a pot of water to boil.
  2. In the meantime, rinse and de-leaf your cauliflower head. Cut away the green parts from the stems, but don't discard them! They're still delicious cauliflower. Then cut the florets and stems into bite size pieces.
  3. Once the water is boiling, add the cauliflower and salt the water. Cook for 8 minutes.
  4. Once the cauliflower is fork tender, remove it and drain in a colander. gently squeeze the cauliflower with a fork/spatula to remove a little more excess water.
  5. Place cauliflower into a food processor. Add half the butter, half the cream, black pepper, salt, and the clove of garlic.
  6. Blend the cauliflower, adding little amounts of cream and butter until it is at your desired consistency.
  7. Remove and enjoy!

The Super Smooth Method

  1. Bring a pot of water to boil.
  2. In the meantime, rinse and de-leaf your cauliflower head. Cut away the green parts from the stems, but don't discard them! They're still delicious cauliflower. Then cut the florets and stems into bite size pieces.
  3. Once the water is boiling, add the cauliflower and salt the water. Cook for 8 minutes.
  4. While the cauliflower boils, mince the clove of garlic and set aside.
  5. Using a fork, poke the cauliflower - if it slides off the fork, it is tender and ready. If it does not easily slide off the fork without provocation, let the cauliflower cook for another minute, then try again!
  6. Drain the cauliflower and set aside to cool.
  7. Once the cauliflower has cooled, place it through a potato ricer into a sieve atop a bowl. The sieve will catch the 'rice' while the water will drain into the bowl.
  8. Once you have 'riced' the cauliflower, press it against the sieve in order to drain as much water as possible. It does not need to be bone dry, but dry - about the consistency of sandy, semi-moist, dirt. Then place the cauliflower remnants into a bowl.
  9. In a small saucepan, melt 3 tbsp of unsalted butter over low heat. Then add the minced garlic and cook over low heat until the garlic is fragrant. Then add it into the bowl with the cauliflower.
  10. Add some salt and heavy cream into the bowl and using an immersion blender, blend the cauliflower mixture.
  11. Add small amounts of heavy cream and butter at a time until you reach a consistency that you want in your cauliflower mash.
  12. Add black pepper and a pinch of nutmeg to the cauliflower and blend again. Season to taste.
  13. Serve with salted butter and chopped chives!
  14. Enjoy!


  • You can also use a cheesecloth/nut milk bag to dry the cauliflower, but it has the potential to squeeze out too much water, which will require more cream/butter and make the mash too rich in fat and not palatable.
  • Calories for this dish will vary a lot. Since it's made to taste, you will have to find what tastes best for you and calculate how much butter/cream you use.

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Nutrition Information
Serving Size 1/4 of yield
Amount Per Serving Calories 214Total Fat 19gSaturated Fat 13gCarbohydrates 9gNet Carbohydrates 6gFiber 3g

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