Recently, cauliflower became the “it” vegetable, replacing kale as the newest trendy health food. In large part, this is due to its versatility. Think about it: What other vegetable can you roast, mash, rice, use as a pizza crust or enjoy plain?
When people say “eat the rainbow,” I think many tend to forget that there are plenty of health-conscious, “colorless” foods out there – cauliflower being one of them. Cauliflower is low in calories, yet high in many nutrients such as fiber, vitamin C, choline, B vitamins and antioxidants that are said to help fight inflammation and eliminate cancer-causing chemicals.
So why not jump on the bandwagon? Here are some fun ways to add cauliflower to your family’s diet:
- Give it a fun name. I may have told my kids it was “white broccoli” or even “white broccoli trees” the first time I served it to them. They love broccoli, so this helped get them over the hurdle of trying it. They know the difference now and while cauliflower is not one of their favorites, they still eat it.
- Serve it with other familiar vegetables. Try a “California” blend that includes broccoli, cauliflower and carrots. You can find these in steamable bags in the frozen section of many grocery stores. If broccoli and carrots aren’t your family’s favorite, try garlicky potatoes, green beans and cauliflower or cauliflower and jalapeño mac and cheese (leave out the jalapeño for a milder flavor).
- Try it roasted. If your kids don’t love the natural taste of cauliflower, try roasted cauliflower. Roasting softens the vegetable, giving it a naturally sweet, nutty flavor. Want even more flavor? Toss in a few more vegetables to make a roasted veggie medley.
- Mash it up. Mashed cauliflower can be used in place of or in addition to mashed potatoes. Mixing it with potatoes is a good way to ease this super veggie into your child’s diet. Over time, adjust the ratio of cauliflower to potatoes, if desired.
- Forget grains. Try riced cauliflower as a substitute for grains. Most grocery stores carry pre-riced cauliflower in their freezer sections, which is incredibly convenient, or you can make your own. Mix it with rice and use it in a stir fry; if you’re feeling extra adventurous, use it in place of rice!
- Make pizza night healthy. Replace flour-based dough with cauliflower for a healthier take on this beloved food. Whether you’re buying a cauliflower pizza crust at the grocery store or making one from scratch, have your little ones help you make your pizza. You can even have pizza for breakfast with this cauliflower crust breakfast pizza!