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How to Make the Best Cauliflower Rice

Vespa's recipes have appeared in "Midwest Living" and "Taste of Home". She belongs to Cook's Recipe Testers for "Cook's Illustrated".

Cauliflower Rice With Paleo Curry

Cauliflower Rice With Paleo Curry

Move over rice. Here comes cauliflower rice! Even my vegetable-loathing husband enjoys this rice substitute. It´s a natural side for many Asian and curry dishes. You can make a quick and nutritious stir-fry by substituting cauliflower for traditional white rice. This is also a great option for those who are on low carb diets. It's an easy way to coax kids and husbands into eating more veggies.

When using the right cooking method, the cauliflower takes on a texture similar to rice. Although I don't choose to eat a bowl of cauliflower rice by itself, I do find when mixed with curry or other Asian dishes that I don't notice that I'm eating cauliflower.

Cauliflower's Health Benefits

Cauliflower is a cruciferous vegetable. It contains sulfur compounds which help lower the risk of colorectal and lung cancers. Combining cauliflower with turmeric may help prevent and fight prostate cancer. This vegetable is rich in vitamin C, vitamin K and many minerals. It´s chock full of dietary fiber and a variety of anti-inflammatory nutrients.

Choose cauliflower heads that don´t have any brown or soft spots. Better yet, look for cauliflower with the bright green leaves still intact. Try orange or purple cauliflower for beautiful color and more antioxidant benefits!

Cruciferous Vegetable and Gas Formation

Although cauliflower is a cruciferous vegetable and a great source of glucosinolates, which can help lower the risk of cancers such as colorectal and lung cancer, consuming this vegetable may also cause discomfort in sensitive individuals. Why?

Cauliflower contains cellulose, a non-digestible carbohydrate which can cause gas and bloating. Although broccoli and cabbage are worse offenders, caution should be used if you have a gas and bloating problem and aren´t used to eating cauliflower.

Cauliflower also contains purines, which form uric acid in the body. This may trigger a gout attack in susceptible individuals.

So do the benefits outweigh the risk? We all know that adding vegetables to our diet is important for overall health. But if cauliflower isn´t a regular part of your diet and you tend to have an issue with bloating and/or flatulence, start slowly. Enjoy just ¼ cup of cauliflower rice at first. If you don´t notice any bloating after a few hours then you can gradually add more to your diet.

Since cauliflower is high in cellulose, it´s always a good idea to consume cooked rather than raw cauliflower. Make sure the cauliflower is well-cooked so it will be easier for you to digest.

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How to Cook Cauliflower Rice

Although cauliflower rice can be stir-fried or even microwaved, we've found that oven baking dries it out a little, giving it a texture similar to rice. Microwaving tends to make the "rice" soggy.

Prep timeCook timeReady inYields

10 min

15 min

25 min

8-12 servings, depending on size of cauliflower

Ingredients

  • 1 medium head cauliflower
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon turmeric, optional
  • 1 teaspoon cumin, optional
  • salt, to taste

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 375 F.
  2. Using a box grater or food processor, grate cauliflower using the largest grating holes.
  3. Spread on baking sheet.
  4. Drizzle with olive oil.
  5. Sprinkle with spices and salt.
  6. Bake for 15-20 minutes, stirring once or twice, until golden brown and steaming.
  7. Serve with paleo curry or as a rice substitute with any dish.

Why Use Turmeric?

Besides adding color to cauliflower rice, turmeric also offers many health benefits. As mentioned above, turmeric combined with cauliflower can be useful in preventing and/or treating prostate cancer. It has powerful antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. This spice, which is actually derived from a root, lowers risk of heart disease and has even been known to control blood sugar. It also aids digestion.

A friend who suffers from diabetes found that when taking turmeric mixed with water and unpasteurized apple cider vinegar before eating a meal, her blood sugar is so well controlled that her doctor has been able to decrease her meds. Of course, always consult your physician before adjusting any prescribed medications.

Comments

Vespa Woolf (author) from Peru, South America on September 13, 2016:

Thanks DDE!

Devika Primić from Dubrovnik, Croatia on September 13, 2016:

A great idea for cooking. Your recipes are creative and unique.

Vespa Woolf (author) from Peru, South America on September 04, 2016:

Thank you MsDora!

Dora Weithers from The Caribbean on September 04, 2016:

In addition to the recipe, the nutrition information on the ingredients make this article very helpful. Thank you.

Nudely on August 30, 2016:

I hate to tell you this, but any recipe which has cauliflower in it is considered a bio-hazardous toxin and should only be handled by qualified lethal-matter disposal teams. :(

Vespa Woolf (author) from Peru, South America on August 30, 2016:

AliciaC, I'm glad you plan to try this recipe! Enjoy and thank you for commenting.

Vespa Woolf (author) from Peru, South America on August 30, 2016:

Rodric29, I hope it works out for you. I'm glad you found ways to dress up broccoli and cauliflower. That really is the key. Thank you for your comment.

Linda Crampton from British Columbia, Canada on August 30, 2016:

This article is very well timed for me because I recently heard about cauliflower rice and planned to learn a more about it. It sounds like a great version of the vegetable, especially with the addition of spices or curry. Thanks for sharing the recipe and the health information.

Rodric Anthony from Surprise, Arizona on August 30, 2016:

I really did not like cauliflower in the past, but I made a dish with cauliflower and broccoli with curry and it tasted great. I am going to try this out. My youngest son dislikes rice, so maybe he will eat this. He tends to not mind veggies.

Vespa Woolf (author) from Peru, South America on August 30, 2016:

I'm glad you appreciate the benefits of turmeric and cumin, Kaili Bisson. Thank you for your comment!

Vespa Woolf (author) from Peru, South America on August 30, 2016:

I'm glad you make cauliflower rice ChitrangadaSharan. Thank you for your comment!

Kaili Bisson from Canada on August 30, 2016:

This sounds wonderful, and I am definitely going to give it a try. I like the cumin and turmeric additions...those spices are always a hit in this household!

Chitrangada Sharan from New Delhi, India on August 30, 2016:

Excellent presentation of this delicious recipe!

I do prepare cauliflower rice but in a different way. I would love to try this. Very suitable for kids and elderly as they get all the nutrition in a single recipe.

Thanks for sharing!

Vespa Woolf (author) from Peru, South America on August 30, 2016:

FlourishAnyway, I hope you can give this a try. thank you for your comment!

FlourishAnyway from USA on August 29, 2016:

What a neat way to sneak some vegetables into the family's diet. I would gladly give this a try just because it seems unusual and is a vegetable based dish.

Vespa Woolf (author) from Peru, South America on August 29, 2016:

Yes Ericdierker, this may not work in your household!

Eric Dierker from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A. on August 29, 2016:

Really cool, it is on my vegetable list when shopping this evening. We eat way to much rice, I like this. My Vietnamese wife may balk at first.

Vespa Woolf (author) from Peru, South America on August 29, 2016:

AudreyHowitt, if you enjoyed the cauliflower pizza crust then I'm sure you'll enjoy this delicious rice substitute. Enjoy and thank you for your comment.

Vespa Woolf (author) from Peru, South America on August 29, 2016:

Audrey, I'm so glad you've also experienced the benefits of ACV. I hope you see even more benefits with the addition of turmeric. Yes, I've seen the cauliflower rice at Trader Joe's, too, but it's is so easy to make at home and much fresher when made from scratch. I hope you enjoy it! Thank you for your comment.

Audrey Howitt from California on August 29, 2016:

I haven't tried this yet, but I have made pizza crust with cauliflower and loved it--Can't wait to try this as well!

Audrey Hunt from Idyllwild Ca. on August 29, 2016:

Being a vegetarian I'm excited about cauliflower rice. I've seen it at Trader Joe's in bags but prefer to follow your recipe and make my own. Turmeric has long been a 'friend' of mine. I take it to help my blood sugar and arthritis. Glad you talked about the advantages of turmeric. I drink Braggs vinegar with water daily but until now never considered adding turmeric.

Great suggestion.

Sharing and thanks!

Audrey

Vespa Woolf (author) from Peru, South America on August 29, 2016:

Thanks for your enthusiastic comment Suzie HQ! Enjoy!

Suzanne Ridgeway from Dublin, Ireland on August 29, 2016:

Hi Vespa, Cauliflower rice is certainly the new "buzz" word so this looks perfect for me to give a try! Do like cauliflower so it would make a lovely change for me and get more nutrients less carbs at same time! Thanks a million, 5 star all the way for your easy to follow recipe with great photos!

Vespa Woolf (author) from Peru, South America on August 29, 2016:

That's a good question, Carb Diva. I can taste the cauliflower if I eat the "rice" by itself. But combined with other dishes like curry or a stir-fry, I don't notice the flavor at all. Yes, please let me know what the family thinks! It is a great way to add more vegetables to your diet.

Linda Lum from Washington State, USA on August 29, 2016:

I've been fascinated by the cauliflower rice thing. We aren't trying to avoid rice (carbs), but I'm always looking for a way to push more vegetables into our diet. Trader Joe's sells bags of the stuff, but it seems a bit pricey in comparison to a sack of uncooked rice.

You make this sound so easy--I'm going to try it. Will let you know how my family feels about it.

What about you? Can you "taste" the cauliflower, or does it become a blank canvas like white rice?