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cauliflower mac and cheese

5-Ingredient Cauliflower Mac and Cheese

Amy Palanjian
Use yellow or white cheese according to your child's color expectations!
5 from 8 votes
Prep Time 10 mins
Cook Time 20 mins
Total Time 30 mins
Course Dinner
Cuisine American
Servings 8
Calories 317 kcal


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


  • 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.
  • 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 if using. Blend until smooth.
  • Meanwhile, add the pasta to the boiling water from Step 1 and cook according to package directions. Drain and return to the pot.
  • Stir the cheese sauce into the pasta and serve warm.


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


Calories: 317kcalCarbohydrates: 46gProtein: 13gFat: 9gSaturated Fat: 5gPolyunsaturated Fat: 1gMonounsaturated Fat: 2gTrans Fat: 1gCholesterol: 24mgSodium: 213mgPotassium: 317mgFiber: 3gSugar: 4gVitamin A: 262IUVitamin C: 24mgCalcium: 149mgIron: 1mg
Keyword cauliflower mac and cheese, mac and cheese
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