Mashed Cauliflower with Caramelized Onion and Roasted Garlic

Caramelized Onion and Roasted Garlic Mashed Cauliflower

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Since first falling in love with the dish in restaurants and recreating it at home, I just about OD-ed on mashed cauliflower.  Determined to keep things fun and exciting, I amped up the flavor with a few new add-ins and found a new veggie buddy for it to hang out with.  A few months ago it was all about the mashed cauliflower and spaghetti squash…. but now I’m really digging the cauli n’ kale combo!  These little tweaks are enough to  keep this veggie on my plate until my next foodie crush comes along.  Though, knowing me, I really like to get around when it comes to my veggies.  =)

Mashed Cauliflower with Caramelized Onion and Roasted Garlic

Mashed Cauliflower with Caramelized Onion and Roasted Garlic
Recipe type: side
  • 1 head of cauliflower
  • ½ a large onion, chopped or sliced [use a little extra if you love onions!]
  • 3-4 cloves of garlic
  • 2 tbsp plain greek yogurt
  • ¼ tsp kosher salt
  • ½-1 tsp extra virgin olive oil [or your favorite oil!]
  • freshly ground black pepper, to taste [I used lots]
  • dried parsley [again... looooots!]
  • chopped green onions + any extra S+P you'd like to toss in to the mix

  • Round off the meal with some grated sharp cheddar and and some steamy delicious kale

  • Vegansaurus Chefs: use almond/coconut milk instead of greek yogurt + skip ze cheese
  1. First grab your gahhhhhlic! You can skip the roasting to save on time but having a some deeelish roasted garlic on hand is worth its weight in gold. You can add it to pretty much anything and everything, and in a pinch it makes some positively magical garlic bread. So snap your oven or toaster oven to 400F, grab a bulb of garlic, peel back a few layers of the skin, and chop off the top so you can see some meaty garlic on top. Drizzle with a little oil and season with S+P if you'd like, then wrap in foil or parchment paper and roast for 30 minutes.
  2. Cut + separate into large florets. Blanch for approx 15 minutes in shallow, boiling water. (just enough to cover the tops) I'm in the habit of seasoning the water with some freshly ground black pepper and a pinch of kosher salt -- feel free to follow suit! Once the cauliflower is tender enough to mash [test a small piece if you'd like!] remove from heat and strain in a colander. For whipped, texture-less cauliflower whip out your food processor, and for thick, smashed-potato-like cauliflower toss directly into a pot [my method. less clean up, great texture!]. I'm big on fork-mashing and then calling it a day.
  3. While your cauli is blanching and your garlic is roasting its face off, caramelize your onions. It's just like sauteing, only you'll turn the heat up a teeny bit more and encourage the golden browning that you'd avoid otherwise. If this is your first time, allrecipes has a great tutorial. Heat your skillet to medium-high with approx ½ teaspoon of oil, add chopped onions, and stir frequently. Add a pinch of salt to help those babies give up a little liquid and feel free to add a little water or broth to the pan to help de-glaze the brown bits that stick.
  4. So by now you should toss your cauliflower into a pot, adjust heat to medium, and add a few cranks of freshly ground black pepper and ½ tsp salt. If you haven't started mashing yet, go for it! Then add a few cloves of garlic and your gorgeously caramelized onions and stir to incorporate. Next give it a taste! Adjust seasonings as needed. I always add a little extra salt + pepper and a generous sprinkle of parsley. Garnish with chopped chives or dried parsley + paprika and serve steaming hot.


Caramelized Onion and Roasted Garlic Mashed Cauliflower
Caramelized Onion and Roasted Garlic Mashed Cauliflower

Round it out with some fresh cheddar and some steamed kale, it’s a delicious combo!

Caramelized Onion and Roasted Garlic Mashed Cauliflower

So… How was it?
I really really reeeeeallly love it with a little grated cheddar and served a top a bed of silky, fluffy, sauteed kale.  It channels a loaded baked potato minus all the craziness.  Feel free to add a dollop of sour cream or greek yogurt and extra green onions on top.  As you can see by the photo, my plate runneth over.  It was a comfort foodie kind of day =)  Glor. I. Ous.  If you love mashed potatoes… or mashed cauliflower… or just plain love food — then I’m certain you’ll love this too!

Here are a few other dishes you can whip up with cruciferous cauliflower:

How do you spice up a dish you’ve made over and over again?


  1. says

    I am convinced caramelized onion or roasted garlic will turn any dish from just “meh” to absolutely stellar.  I’m filing this dish for later!

  2. says

    I love making mashed cauliflower!! Chili is something I  make ALL.THE.TIME. and my husband and I just find a billion ways to eat it: plain, with spaghetti squash, on top of a potato, with eggs… you name it!!

  3. Jessica says

    I love the idea of subbing cauliflower for potatoes! I have seen recipes similar to this all over the place, and have been wanting to try it for awhile, but still haven’t done it! Your recipe sounds great, I can’t wait to try it at home…I’m pinning it to my “Recipes” board on Pintrest right now!

  4. says

    I love mashed cauliflower.  Sometimes when I make mine I add 1 small potato , just to thicken and bind it better.  I don’t think my daughter would know what actual mashed potatoes are, all we have a mashed cauliflower!

  5. says

    This looks great with the kale. I didn’t grow up with cauliflower so I am kind of scared of using it plus I have really no idea if I would like it. I have debating for a while to try it out and this was the way – all mashed up.  You sold me with the garlic and onions though. Delish!

  6. TheMrsatSuccessAlongtheWeigh says

    I am SOOOOO making this!!  This look amazing!  I’ve got some asiago and chipotle cheeses on hand so I might use those.

  7. Sprint2theTable says

    I am just entering a love affair with cauliflower.  Roasted has been my first method, but this is on track to be next!  I love the caramelized onions in it.  Yum!

  8. says

    This is Fantastic! As are all of your recipes, seriously :) I love how much healthier this is than regular mashed potatoes (which is what I would compare it to!) Thanks for the idea pretty lady 

  9. says

    Anything with caramelized onions is a keeper. I’ve never done straight up mashed cauliflower, I’ve always combined it with potatoes but I need to give this a shot. Over some kale with cheese on top, it’s practically a meal :)

  10. Ashley Palmer says

    All I had to do was read the title of this post and the recipe was bookmarked immediatly! Looks amazing!!!

  11. macnic says

    MMMM, I just did a take on this last week – mashed the cauliflower with onion dip. YUM. I’m going to try your version.

  12. jess_gonzalez22 says

    mmm this looks heavenly. I keep trying to incorporate more vegetables into my diet while at college…and this looks like a winner for sure 😀

  13. Robyn :) says

    I do not like cauliflower, but I am now buying a basket of produce every 2 weeks where you do not know ahead of time what you are getting so I figure if I get a cauliflower head I should probably try to find something to make with it I might like!!  LOL.  This looks pretty good :)

  14. says

    OoOh gotta love those mystery boxes!!!! I want to sign up for one!

    If you get cauli def try this with the cheddar and kale add-on to amp up the flavor — this way the focus isnt entirely on the cauli and you can fall in looove with it =) xoxo

  15. says

    I don’t think I’ve commented before, but I just want to say this looks perfect!! Exactly what I’m craving at the moment. I love recipes like this that are so simple, quick and good! Thanks!

  16. nicoleandgwendolyn says

    yes yes yes!  because of you, i am in love with mashed cauliflower forever.  my dog loves it, too.  i shall absolutely be trying this version.  thank you! :)

  17. says

    Oh, perfect!  I love mashed cauliflower and was planning on making it when something else hit me…I think I’m gonna have to make THIS one!   BRAVO!

  18. Tara@SugarSpiceandBacon says

    Wow! This looks delicious! I have some leeks I got from the farmers market and have been meaning to use…I think I’ll add them to this and see how it works! 

  19. Sloane@MylifeinFlorida says

    This looks great! I need a way to get me fiance to like Mashed Cauliflower. This may be it.  

  20. Lacy @ NYCityEats says

    Mashed cauliflower sounds spectacular! I’ve never thought to try it before but really it is a great substitute for potatoes. This sounds soooo delicious with the roasted garlic & onions mmm. Looks amazing!

  21. Jonnique Bell says

     This looks so good and healthy! Stumbled upon your blog and your newest follower. Can you please add your recipe to my Taste This Thursday party!?

  22. Firstcomeflowers says

    Sounds absolutely fab. I love roasted cauliflower ans recently saw Martha slice and sauted cauliflower steaks. time for me to get busy with the cauliflower.

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