Let’s talk about cauliflower. It’s funny how food trends change. Cauliflower is having a hot moment right now, but it wasn’t too long ago, that I was hearing that cauliflower wasn’t healthy because it was “starchy” and “white vegetables lack nutrients.”
Nutrients In This White Vegetable
Now cauliflowers low net carbs, are helping it’s popularity. Also I know that we talk a lot of color here, but white vegetables aren’t lacking in nutrients because they lack “color.” White vegetables also have specific nutrients that are beneficial. Also just fyi, there are cauliflower varieties that aren’t white. These are becoming more popular and available, but there are green, orange, and purple cauliflower varieties.
All cauliflower has a lot in the way of phytonutrients and micronutrients. Like other cruciferous veggies it contains antioxidants like glucosinolates, small amounts of many vitamins and minerals and is a good fiber source. Let’s talk about glucosinolates for a minute. Glucosinolates are sulfur containing metabolized in our GI system and those metabolites have been shown to do a some pretty cool things. In vitro studies, they caused apoptosis (cell death) in cancer cells. In observational studies, they have been associated with decreased risk of a variety of cancer types including prostate, breast, and colorectal. They may also be anti-inflammatory and decrease the production of histamines. Pretty cool right? And that is just one of the many important nutrients found in cauliflower!
Low Carb Cauliflower
Maybe now we understand why cauliflower seems to be popping up in the grocery isles and recipes everywhere from pizza to oatmeal. Actually I think that has to do more with people’s fear of carbs. Now I don’t think we need to replace grains with cauliflower as grains have their own important nutrient package, but adding cauliflower to our diet wouldn’t be a bad idea and could help prevent some disease. I’ll share a few of my favorite ways to ADD cauliflower.
Pink Cauliflower Smoothie
- 1/2 cup frozen cauliflower
- 1/2 cup strawberries (fresh or frozen)
- 1/2 banana (fresh or frozen)
- 1 cup strawberry kefir
- water to desired consistency
- Blend ingredients until smooth. Add water to desired consistency.
Fajita Cauliflower, Rice and Bean Bake
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 2 tablespoons fajita seasoning
- 1 small bell pepper
- 1 cup celery, diced
- 1/2 white onion, diced
- 2 cups riced cauliflower
- 2 cans kidney beans, drained and rinsed
- 2 cups cooked rice
- 2 cups pepper jack cheese, shredded
- Toppings: Avocados and fresh tomatoes
- Heat olive oil in a large skillet. Add onion, pepper, celery, cauliflower and fajita seasoning. Saute until onions are tender.
- Toss everything together in a casserole dish.
- Bake at 350 for 20 minutes or until the cheese is melted and middle is warm.
Creamy Cauliflower Bisque
- 2 tablespoons butter or olive oil
- 1 white onion, chopped
- 1 head cauliflower, chopped
- 4 cups chicken broth
- 3/4 teaspoon nutmeg
- 2 cups cream or half and half
- salt and pepper to taste
- In a large pot, heat butter or olive oil, add chopped onions and cauliflower and saute until tender, about 10-15 minutes.
- Add chicken broth and nutmeg. Bring to boil then simmer with lid on for 20 minutes.
- Remove from heat and add 2 cups of cream or half and half.
- Used immersion blender to mix to consistency you like. Add salt and pepper to taste.
Easy Weeknight Chicken Stir-fry
- 1 pound chicken breasts
- 1/3 cup soy sauce
- 1/2 tablespoon ginger powder
- 1 tablespoon garlic powder
- 1 teaspoon onion powder
- 3 tablespoons honey
- 1 cup water
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 5 cups chopped veggies of choice
- 2 cups riced cauliflower
- 2-3 cups cooked rice I like to cook mine in 1/2 water and 1/2 broth
- In a crockpot place chicken, soy sauce, ginger, garlic, onion and honey.
- Cook on low for 8 hours or on high for 4-5 hours. Once the chicken is cooked, shred.
- Heat olive oil, in a large skillet, add veggies and saute until tender.
- Add the chicken and sauce from the crockpot as well as well as the rice. Mix until evenly dispersed and serve warm.