cauliflower mac and cheese

Cauliflower Mac and Cheese

  • Author: Amy Palanjian
  • Prep Time: 10
  • Cook Time: 20
  • Total Time: 30 minutes
  • Yield: Serves 6-8 1x
  • Category: Dinner
  • Method: Stovetop
  • Cuisine: American


Use yellow or white cheese according to your child’s color expectations!


  • 1 small head cauliflower, stem discarded and chopped into small pieces (about 4 cups)
  • 2/3 cup milk. warmed slightly
  • 1 pound elbow or other mini pasta shape
  • 1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • pinch garlic powder


  1. Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Add the cauliflower and cook for about 8-10 minutes or until soft when poked with a fork.
  2. Use a fine-mesh strainer or slotted spoon to remove the cauliflower and add to a blender. Add the milk, cheese, butter, salt, and garlic powder. Blend until smooth.
  3. Meanwhile, add the pasta to the boiling water from Step 1 and cook according to package directions. Drain and return to the pot.
  4. Stir the cheese sauce into the pasta and serve warm.


You can make the cheese sauce up to 3 days ahead and store it in an airtight container. Warm for 15-30 seconds in the microwave before stirring into the pasta.

Use whichever kind of pasta your family likes best.

I usually buy blocks of cheese and grate the cheese since it tends to be less expensive, but you can use purchased grated cheese if you prefer.

Omit the garlic powder if you’re at all worried that the kids may not like it.

Stir the sauce into the pasta right before serving.

Store any leftovers in an airtight container in the fridge for 3-5 days. Warm for 30-60 seconds in the microwave to serve.

yummy family food
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