Cauliflower is naturally low in calories, even less than broccoli.
Not only is it low in calories, it also contains an extreme amount of essential vitamins that the human body clearly needs.
Why include this healthy cereal alternative in your diet?
How to easily prepare delicious cauliflower rice?
Tips for traditional and modern recipes and much more!
What is cauliflower and other interesting facts
Cauliflower ( Brassica oleracea var. botrytis ), like broccoli, belongs to the cruciferous vegetable family. Cauliflower is said to originate from Cyprus, which is why it is also commonly referred to as “Italian asparagus”.
Its white pulp, which is often called “cheese head”, is mainly consumed. This is made up of clusters of immature flowers, whereas, for example, a head of broccoli is made up of flower buds. Edible cauliflower leaves and stems are commonly used in vegetable broths or stewed root vegetable mixtures.
Cauliflower’s mildly pungent taste is caused by sulfur compounds, similar to, for example, garlic. These compounds can react with aluminum and iron during cooking, causing the cauliflower to change color (from white to gray or purple).
Is cauliflower good for health?
Cauliflower contains a minimum of calories and is also a great source of vitamins. It also provides a considerable amount of fiber, thereby promoting the feeling of satiety and therefore playing an important role in the prevention of obesity. It also contains up to 93% water, it is the consumption of low-calorie foods rich in water that is generally associated with weight loss 1 .
| Raw cauliflower|
100 g / 1 cup 2
|daily recommended dose|
|Vitamin C||48.2 mg||60%|
|Vitamin K||15.5 μg||22%|
Cauliflower is also high in antioxidants, specifically glucosinolates and isothiocyanates. These have been proven to slow down the growth of cancer cells, especially in colon, lung, prostate and breast cancer 3 .
An isothiocyanate called sulforaphane, which is contained in cauliflower, can also inhibit the viability of tumors of the cervix, ovaries and pancreas. At the same time, it has anti-inflammatory properties in the treatment of T-cell leukemia cells 4 .
Compared to other vegetables, cauliflower offers the human body a relatively large amount of vitamin C and choline. Choline is greatly involved in DNA synthesis and brain development. It also supports the production of neurotransmitters and thus ensures the healthy functioning of the nervous system. For that reason, the consumption of cauliflower is recommended as a prevention of dementia, Alzheimer’s disease and other neurological disorders 5 .
Types of cauliflower
In general, white cauliflower is the most widely grown and sold. However, there are hundreds of other species, varieties and hybrids, including purple or orange versions.
White cauliflower is just what is commonly available in stores. The most famous white varieties include, for example, Snowball, which is especially popular among gardeners for home cultivation. Then the variety Attribute Hybrid, which is suitable for the production of cauliflower rice, White Corona and Cornwall.
Orange varieties of cauliflower contain up to 25 times more beta-carotene (a provitamin A compound) than white ones. An interesting fact is that they were not artificially bred, but mutated naturally, specifically in Canada. Compared to the purple types, the orange ones do not fade in color due to heat treatment, but on the contrary – they acquire a more intense color. Famous varieties include, for example, Cheddar and Orange Bouquet.
Varieties of green cauliflower are often mistaken for broccoli, especially Romanesco varieties, which have spiral “florets” and a pointed head.
Compared to white, green cauliflower is much sweeter and not “crumbly”. So it is also very similar in texture to broccoli. Popular green varieties include Alverda, Vitaverd, Green Goddes, and from the Romanesco variety Minaret and Veronica.
Purple varieties are considered the healthiest because they contain anthocyanins (purple pigments), which have significant healing properties, for example greatly reducing the risk of cardiovascular disease. Purple cauliflower tends to lose its deep color when cooked, which can be prevented by a drizzle of lemon juice. Like green, purple is sweeter. The most famous varieties are Graffiti and Purple Cape.
How to cook cauliflower?
- Cauliflower baked in the oven . Cut the florets into centimeter slices, preheat the oven to 210 °C. Place the slices in a deep bowl, drizzle with oil, sprinkle with a little cornstarch, salt and pepper. Mix gently so that each slice is coated as much as possible. Arrange on a baking sheet and bake for 30 minutes, turning the slices halfway through baking.
- Roasted cauliflower . Prepare a deep pan, preferably a wok. See reviews and experiences with wok pans if you don’t already know its advantages. Heat two spoons of olive oil and put the whole cauliflower florets in the pan, sauté for 5 minutes. Then add 3 tablespoons of water, cover with a lid and cook for 3 minutes. Finally, uncover again, season with salt and lightly fry for the last 3 minutes.
- Steamed cauliflower in a microwave oven, suitable for preparing puree or porridge . Place the washed cauliflower florets in a microwave-safe bowl and cover with half a cup of water. Cover with a lid or a plate and cook for 6 minutes. Strain the cooked cauliflower and season with butter and salt.
Healthy cauliflower recipes
Cauliflower is not only a low-calorie, but also a gluten-free alternative to rice and cereals. Over the past twenty years, the production of cauliflower-based products has increased by an average of 78%. Especially cauliflower rice or cauliflower flour, which has even become very popular in pizzerias. Cauliflower crust or pizza crust is a really popular specialty these days. A low-carb substitute for mashed potatoes – cauliflower mash – is also worth mentioning.
Whether you want to start eating more vegetables or are even following a low-carb diet, cauliflower is definitely the right choice for you. It is a healthier alternative to all cereals. Cauliflower rice contains 7 times less carbohydrates than classic white rice.
| Steamed cauliflower rice|
100 g 6
| Boiled white rice|
100 g 7
|Energy value||23 kcal||130 calories|
|Proteins||1.84 g||2.38 g|
|Fats||0.45 g||0.21 g|
|Carbohydrates||4.11 g||28.6 g|
Cauliflower-based products are commonly available in health food stores, but you can easily make the aforementioned cauliflower rice at home.
How to make cauliflower rice
Cauliflower rice is really very easy to make. Just wash the cauliflower florets thoroughly and grate them on a coarse grater (the size of the grater holes is similar to the size of white rice). Rice can still be cooked in several ways:
- Lightly fry it in a pan with one tablespoon of olive oil until golden. Then cover with a lid and let it steam and soften for another 5 minutes.
- You can also pour the rice into a plate or bowl, cover it with a lid, a lid or just a plate and put it in the microwave for 3 minutes, where it will be steamed.
- The taste of cauliflower will stand out the most if you bake the rice in the oven. Just spread it on baking paper, drizzle with olive oil and bake in a hot oven at 200°C for at least 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.
Rice can be flavored with soy sauce, salt, pepper, paprika, basil, ground cumin, smoked paprika, turmeric or chili.
Recipes or where to use cauliflower rice
Instead of white rice, you can safely use cauliflower in sushi recipes as well as in the popular low-carb risotto. Get inspired by top dishes with cauliflower rice and try, for example, a healthier version of Indian curry.
What is cauliflower flour and how to make it?
Cauliflower flour is a powder that is ground from dried cauliflower heads and stems. It is usually sold commercially as a mixture with other gluten-free flours, for example in combination with rice or almond flour. You can easily prepare the healthiest version of cauliflower flour yourself.
Homemade cauliflower flour – procedure:
- To make the flour, use only the cauliflower florets, wash them and let them dry on paper towels for at least 1 hour.
- Then blend the rosettes in a blender to a wet powder (fine mash).
- Preheat the oven to 150°C. Spread the resulting cauliflower mash on a baking sheet in as thin a layer as possible and dry in the oven for 40 minutes.
- During the drying process, regularly stir the mash (over time it becomes a powder).
- The powder should not be allowed to turn brown, but at the same time it must be really dry like flour.
- After drying, let the flour cool completely. Store in resealable containers.
In which recipes to include cauliflower flour
Replace wheat flour in a 1:1 ratio with cauliflower flour in any recipe for pancakes, cookies or pastries. Cauliflower flour absorbs liquids better, so the dough is extremely crispy. Don’t forget to add it to your homemade pizza dough and create a favorite culinary specialty like from a pizzeria!
The best cauliflower recipes
- A Czech classic – it’s a cauliflower brain. Our great-grandmothers’ recipe is still very popular today. Try simple and tasty variations of cauliflower brain , for example with bacon or cheese.
- Another traditional dish is breaded cauliflower, or a meatless alternative to schnitzel, which is a staple of Czech cuisine. More modern variants are also excellent, from cauliflower baked in the oven to cauliflower florets coated in parmesan to fried cauliflower with mushrooms. Get inspired by (un)traditional recipes for breaded cauliflower and judge for yourself.
- Cauliflower is considered one of the healthiest and most versatile ingredients. For that reason, it has been part of recipes for cauliflower meatballs, aka patties, for decades. These are not only meat-free, but also taste excellent and are low-calorie and low-carbohydrate. Flourless cauliflower patties are a complete diet bomb!
- Cauliflower soup is similarly healthy and dietary. It is an excellent choice for cooks and non-cooks, as it is very easy to prepare. Not only the classic creamy version is popular, but also the roasted cauliflower soup or the French cauliflower soup, which is served with leeks.
- If the cauliflower dishes listed above have already become familiar to you, do not despair, you can still include cauliflower in your diet. Modern recipes offer a lot of options, don’t be afraid to try, for example, baking cauliflower with bechamel, cheese or potatoes. Check out thebest baked cauliflower tips and try something new!
Cauliflower is grown and harvested literally all year round. Some of his cultivars are very early, others late. Generally a cool weather crop, warmer temperatures make cauliflower taste bitter. It also changes color from pure white to greyish when overexposed to the sun. For this reason, the cauliflower is usually bandaged and covered with surrounding leaves, which protect the head from light. For example, the leaves of the Snowball variety perform this function naturally, i.e. they wrap themselves around the white pulp, without the need for human intervention.