If you’ve found this cauliflower “mashed potatoes” recipe, you’re probably looking for a healthy alternative to the real stuff! This mashed cauliflower recipe is surprisingly delectable without the carbs or bad fats. It’s a side dish dream.
The first time I made cauliflower mashed potatoes, I brought a spoonful into my husband’s office, without telling him what he was eating. He took the bite, and asked me for more bites of “those crazy good garlic mashed potatoes.” I tricked him SO GOOD.
When I told him it was mashed cauliflower, he said he didn’t believe me, and rushed into the kitchen to find the remnants of the cauliflower head. Cauliflower mashed potatoes are his new favorite side dish.
5 Reasons Why These Cauliflower Mashed Potatoes Are the Best!
- Actually healthy. These mashed potatoes are made from 100% cauliflower (no potatoes at all!), blended with extra virgin olive oil, low-fat sour cream, and fresh garlic. You won’t miss the butter or the heavy stuff. I promise!
- They taste like the real thing! Husband approved. Read the story above for the inside scoop. I bet you’ll trick dinner guests into thinking these are real mashed potatoes!
- Speedy and easy. This recipe takes less than 25 minutes, from start to finish.
- Customizable. Want to add in turkey bacon, roasted garlic, or something more indulgent? Cauliflower mashed potatoes are a blank canvas!
- Doubles as a vegetable and a “starch.” If your plate usually has a starch and a vegetable on it like mine, now you only need one side dish because these mashed potatoes double as both. Plus, it’ll save room for more cauliflower mash!
How to Make Cauliflower Mashed Potatoes
Full instructions in the recipe card; this is just an outline!
Add an inch of water to a pot. Add cauliflower florets, cover, and turn heat to medium-high, bringing water to a gentle boil. Steam florets for 12-17 minutes until fork tender and soft.
Drain all water from the pot, and add cauliflower to a blender, along with the olive oil, sour cream, garlic cloves, and salt and pepper.
Blend on high speed until smooth and creamy, scraping down the sides of the blender as needed.
Scoop “mashed potatoes” into a bowl to serve, stirring in snipped chives, or just garnishing with them.
Ingredients for Cauliflower Mashed Potatoes
- Large cauliflower head (or florets) – you can buy a large 3-pound cauliflower head and cut the head into about 2 pounds of florets, or you can buy 2 pounds of cauliflower florets in a bag to save prep time!
- Low-fat sour cream – I like low-fat sour cream in these mashed potatoes, to keep them healthy but still enjoy the tangy taste of sour cream!
- Extra virgin olive oil – olive oil adds a creamy dimension while also adding a healthy fat.
- Garlic – fresh garlic gives us all what we’re looking for…that garlicky finish!
- Fresh chives – fresh chives add a pop of green and a hint of fresh onion.
Variations on Cauliflower Mashed Potatoes
- Don’t have a blender? Use a food processor! Don’t have either? You can hand mash these with a potato masher, but expect a chunkier result.
- Prefer Greek yogurt instead of sour cream? Go for it!
- Want more mix-ins? Try different seasoning blends or flavored salts, crispy turkey bacon bits, fresh scallions, roasted garlic, jalapeños, mushrooms or fresh herbs.
- Want indulgence? Try adding butter, brown butter, cheddar cheese, parmesan cheese, crumbled sausage, or bacon.
Storage, Reheating, and Freezing Tips
While cauliflower mashed potatoes do store well, they will develop a strong sulfur “cabbage smell…” although they will still taste good! Because of this, I recommend enjoying cauliflower mashed potatoes same-day. If you choose to store them, keep them in an airtight container for 3-4 days.
Reheat them in the microwave, in increments of 30 seconds, stirring every increment.
I do not recommend freezing them! The texture will change quite a bit.
What to Serve With Cauliflower Mashed Potatoes
Cauliflower mashed potatoes are a perfect weekday or weekend side dish. They’re also a crowd favorite during the holidays!
You can serve them with anything from Oven Baked Blackened Salmon, to Oven Smoked Brisket, to Juicy Grilled Pork Tenderloin to Turkey (after you’ve mastered How to Carve a Turkey!). Really anything you’d serve regular mashed potatoes with, you can serve these with. The options are endless.
Other Side Dish Recipes You’ll Love!
- Classic Herb Roasted Root Vegetables
- Roasted Maple Glazed Carrots
- Roasted Garlic Mashed Sweet Potatoes
- How to Cook Acorn Squash (With Maple Sage Butter)
- Colcannon Potatoes (Delicious Irish Mashed Potatoes)
- Crispy Roasted Brussels Sprouts with Garlic Cider Glaze
- Blender (or food processor if you don't have a blender)
- 3 pound cauliflower head cut into florets (about 2 pounds of florets)
- ¾ cup low-fat sour cream
- ¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
- 2 large garlic cloves peeled
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Handful of fresh chives snipped
- Add about an inch of water to a medium pot. Add cauliflower florets, cover, and turn heat to medium-high, bringing water to a gentle boil. Let florets steam for 12-17 minutes until fork tender and soft.
- Drain all water from the pot, and add cauliflower to a blender, along with the olive oil, sour cream, garlic cloves, and salt and pepper to taste.
- Blend on high speed until smooth and creamy, scraping down the sides of the blender as needed.
- Scoop “mashed potatoes” into a bowl to serve, stirring in snipped chives, or just garnishing with them.
- Buying 2 pounds of cauliflower florets (as opposed to the whole head) will save you prep time!
- Use 1/3 cup olive oil for thinner (less thick) cauliflower “mashed potatoes”.
- You can use a food processor if you don’t have a blender.