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One-Pot Cauliflower Mac and Cheese

  • Servings4


No draining or cheese sauce-making required! Cauliflower stands in for milk in this nostalgic, cleaned-up comfort food recipe that’s ready in as little as 20 minutes. The easiest method for this is using a multi-cooker, but stovetop instructions are included if you don’t have one.


Frozen riced cauliflower can stand in for the florets, eliminating the mashing. The sauce won’t be as creamy but it will still be loaded with feel-good veggies!



One-Pot Cauliflower Mac and Cheese

  • Servings4


  • 1 Tbsp (15 mL) unsalted butter or olive oil
  • 3/4 cup (180 mL) whole grain or gluten-free panko bread crumbs
  • 1/4 tsp (1 mL) dried thyme
  • 1 cup (250 mL) frozen peas, warmed
  • 1/4 tsp (1 mL) ground black pepper
Cauliflower mac and cheese
  • 3 cups (750 mL) water
  • 2 1/2 cups (625 mL) whole grain or gluten-free orecchiette or elbow macaroni
  • 3/4 lb (350 g) frozen cauliflower florets
  • 1 Tbsp (15 mL) unsalted butter or vegan butter
  • 1 tsp (5 mL) dried onion flakes
  • 1/4 tsp (1 mL) grated nutmeg
  • 2 cups (500 mL) grated old cheddar cheese or meltable vegan cheddar cheese
  • Salt, as needed


Per serving:

  • calories581
  • protein29 g
  • total fat26 g
    • sat. fat16 g
  • total carbohydrates61 g
    • sugars2 g
    • fibre10 g
  • sodium436 mg



For bread crumbs, in your multi-cooker, press sauté on the normal setting. Add butter or olive oil, waiting until butter is melted or olive oil is shimmering before adding bread crumbs and thyme. Stir until bread crumbs have toasted, 2 to 4 minutes. Transfer to bowl until ready to serve. Wipe out or wash pot to remove any crumbs.


For mac and cheese, in your multi-cooker, add water, pasta, cauliflower, butter, onion flakes, and nutmeg. Close lid and ensure it is sealed (not venting). Select pressure cooker function on high and cook for 9 minutes. Quick release using the venting lever (best to do this under a running kitchen exhaust fan). Once pressure has released, open lid and vigorously stir and mash with wooden spoon to break up cauliflower, creating a creamy sauce. Stir in cheddar cheese until melted, close lid, and rest for 5 minutes. Stir again before serving topped with bread crumbs, warmed peas, and black pepper.


Stovetop mac and cheese

Make the bread crumbs using the same directions but in a large pot over medium heat, then wipe out or wash pot. Add water, pasta, cauliflower, butter, onion flakes, nutmeg, and salt to large pot. Bring everything to a boil, reduce to medium, and cook for 10 to 15 minutes, stirring often, until noodles are cooked. Add additional water if it looks dry before noodles are tender. Mash cauliflower to form sauce, and stir in cheese until melted. Taste and season with salt, if needed. Cover and rest for 5 minutes before serving. Stir pasta and serve topped with bread crumbs, peas, and black pepper.



Going Pro

Going Pro

You might think of protein as something you mainly get from a meal and, therefore, not a component of dessert. But, if you’re going to opt for dessert from time to time, why not consider working in ingredients that go big on this important macronutrient? It’s easier (and more delicious) than you may think! Protein is an essential part of every cell in your body and plays a starring role in bone, muscle, and skin health. So, certainly, you want to make sure you’re eating enough. And it’s best to spread protein intake throughout the day, since your body needs a continual supply. This is why it can be a great idea to try to include protein in your desserts. When protein is provided in sufficient amounts in a dessert, it may help you feel more satiated and help temper blood sugar swings. Plus, in many cases, that protein comes in a package of other nutritional benefits. For instance, if you’re eating a dessert made with protein-packed Greek yogurt, you’re not just getting protein; you’re getting all the yogurt’s bone-benefitting calcium and immune-boosting probiotics, too. Adding nuts to your dessert doesn’t just provide plant-based protein, but it also provides heart-healthy fats. Yes, desserts need not be just empty calories. Ready for a treat? These protein-filled desserts with a healthy twist are dietitian-approved—and delicious.