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Low Carb Mac & Cheese Recipe

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This Low Carb Mac & Cheese recipe uses cauliflower instead of traditional pasta, offering a healthier yet equally comforting version of a classic dish. With a creamy cheese sauce and flavorful seasonings, this dish is sure to satisfy your cravings while keeping your carb intake in check. Let’s dive into the recipe!

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Ingredients

  • 1 medium head of cauliflower
  • 2 tablespoons cream cheese
  • 1/4 cup heavy cream
  • 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • 1 1/2 cups shredded cheddar cheese
  • 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Chopped parsley for garnish (optional)

Instructions

Step 1: Prepare the Cauliflower

  1. Preheat the Oven:
    • Preheat your oven to 375°F (190°C).
  2. Cut and Cook the Cauliflower:
    • Cut the cauliflower into small florets. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil and add the cauliflower. Cook for 5-7 minutes until tender but still firm. Drain and set aside.

Step 2: Make the Cheese Sauce

  1. Melt the Cream Cheese:
    • In a medium saucepan over medium heat, melt 2 tablespoons of cream cheese.
  2. Add Heavy Cream and Mustard:
    • Stir in 1/4 cup of heavy cream and 1 teaspoon of Dijon mustard until smooth.
  3. Add Cheeses and Seasonings:
    • Add 1 1/2 cups of shredded cheddar cheese, 1/4 cup of grated Parmesan cheese, and 1/2 teaspoon of garlic powder. Stir until the cheeses are melted and the sauce is smooth. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

Step 3: Combine and Bake

  1. Combine Cauliflower and Cheese Sauce:
    • Place the cooked cauliflower florets in a large mixing bowl. Pour the cheese sauce over the cauliflower and stir until well coated.
  2. Transfer to Baking Dish:
    • Transfer the cauliflower mixture to a greased 9×13-inch baking dish. Spread it out evenly.
  3. Bake:
    • Bake in the preheated oven for 15-20 minutes, or until the top is golden and bubbly.

Step 4: Serve

  1. Garnish and Serve:
    • Remove from the oven and let it cool for a few minutes. Garnish with chopped parsley if desired. Serve hot and enjoy your Low Carb Mac & Cheese!

Cook Notes and Variations

Cook Notes:

  • Cauliflower: Ensure the cauliflower is cooked until tender but still firm to hold the cheese sauce well.
  • Cheese Sauce: Adjust the thickness of the cheese sauce by adding more or less heavy cream as needed.

Variations:

  • Add Protein:
    • Stir in cooked chicken, bacon, or ham for added protein.
  • Spicy Kick:
    • Add a pinch of red pepper flakes or a diced jalapeño for some heat.
  • Different Cheeses:
    • Use a mix of cheeses like mozzarella, Gruyere, or Monterey Jack for a different flavor profile.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

1. Can I use frozen cauliflower?

Yes, you can use frozen cauliflower. Thaw and drain it well before using it in the recipe.

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2. How do I store leftovers?

Store any leftovers in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. Reheat in the oven or microwave before serving.

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3. Can I make this dish ahead of time?

Yes, you can prepare the dish up to the baking step, cover it with foil, and refrigerate it. When ready to bake, add a few extra minutes to the baking time if baking from cold.

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4. What can I serve with this Low Carb Mac & Cheese?

Serve this dish with a side salad, roasted vegetables, or grilled chicken for a complete meal.

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5. Can I freeze this dish?

Yes, you can freeze the assembled but unbaked dish. Wrap it tightly with plastic wrap and aluminum foil. Freeze for up to 2 months. Thaw in the refrigerator overnight before baking as directed.

The Healthy and Delicious Delight of Low Carb Mac & Cheese

This Low Carb Mac & Cheese is a fantastic alternative to the classic dish, offering all the cheesy goodness without the carbs. It’s perfect for anyone following a low-carb or keto diet, or simply looking for a healthier version of a comfort food favorite.

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Tips for Success

  1. Use Fresh Ingredients: Fresh cauliflower and high-quality cheese will enhance the flavor of the dish.
  2. Proper Cooking: Ensure the cauliflower is cooked to the right tenderness to hold the cheese sauce well.
  3. Adjust Seasoning: Taste and adjust the seasoning as needed, especially the salt and pepper.

Low Carb Mac & Cheese is a delicious and easy-to-make dish that’s perfect for any occasion. With its creamy cheese sauce and tender cauliflower, this dish is sure to become a favorite. Try this recipe for your next meal and enjoy a comforting and satisfying dish without the carbs. Happy cooking!