How To: Turn Boring Ol' Cauliflower into Delicious Pizza Crust, Chips, & Fried 'Rice'

Turn Boring Ol' Cauliflower into Delicious Pizza Crust, Chips, & Fried 'Rice'

Many of you have heard of "ricing" cauliflower. If you haven't, you're missing out making this one-note vegetable into a variety of main and side dishes. The ricing process is so simple, fast, and easy that even the most novice cook can swing this. One you complete this prep step, you will have an ingredient so versatile that you can easily fool your kids into eating their veggies without them ever knowing it.

How to Rice the Cauliflower

  1. Chop the base off one cauliflower, quarter it, and then rough chop it.
  2. Place pieces in a blender, then fill with water until cauliflower is covered.
  1. Blend for about 20 seconds or until you see that little pieces of "rice" have formed.
  2. Drain, and you're done.
  • Tip: If you're not going to use it right away, store it in the refrigerator for 4–5 days in a container or freeze it in a ziplock bag. However, if you're ready to get cookin', follow these simple recipes to transform this plain vegetable into three fun, creative dishes.

1. Pizza Crust

Using finely minced cauliflower to form a healthier crust has been around for a while, but it's just really taken off since so many people have gone gluten-free. Frankly, it's delicious.

Ingredients:

  • nonstick spray
  • 2 cups riced cauliflower
  • 1 large egg, lightly beaten
  • 1¼ cups shredded part-skim mozzarella cheese
  • 2 Tbsp. Parmesan cheese
  • kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • ¼ cup tomato sauce
  • 2 cloves garlic, sliced
  • fresh basil leaves, optional

Directions:

  1. Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper, and preheat your oven to 425ºF.
  2. Place cauliflower in a large bowl and microwave for 4-5 minutes, or until soft.
  3. Remove from the microwave and let cool. (Ed. Note: if your cauliflower seems excessively watery after microwaving it, place it in a colander and let it drain. Alternately, you can dump the cauliflower in a clean kitchen cloth or paper towels and squeeze it to get rid of the excess moisture.)
  4. Mix in the egg, one cup mozzarella, Parmesan cheese, and salt and pepper.
  5. Once combined, pat into a 10-inch round on the prepared pizza pan.
  6. Spray lightly with nonstick spray and bake for 10-15 minutes, or until golden.
  7. Top the pizza with the sauce, ¼ cup mozzarella, garlic, and basil.
  8. Bake in the oven until melted and bubbly, about another 10 minutes.

Cauliflower Chips

These chips are unbelievable: satisfying, salty, full of umami, and they actually contain nutrients, too.

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup riced cauliflower
  • 1 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • ½ tsp. parsley
  • ½ tsp. basil
  • ½ tsp. dill
  • ½ tsp. chives
  • ½ tsp. garlic powder
  • ½ tsp. onion powder
  • ½ tsp. pepper

Directions:

  1. Preheat your oven to 450°F.
  2. Add all ingredients to a bowl and stir.
  3. Line a baking sheet or stone with parchment paper.
  4. Place about 1 Tbsp. of mixture on the prepared baking sheet, one inch apart.
  5. Bake for 5–7 minutes.
  6. Turn chips over.
  7. Bake for another 5–7 minutes.

Fried "Rice"

Cauliflower fried "rice" is a great way to replace the empty calories of white rice with a nutritious vegetable. Even better: it tastes good.

Ingredients:

  • 2 Tbsp. olive oil
  • 1 clove of garlic
  • ½ cup sweet onion, chopped
  • 1 cup riced cauliflower
  • ½ cup mushrooms
  • ¼ cup chopped, fresh spinach
  • 1 egg
  • soy sauce
  • sun-dried tomatoes/chopped cashews/sesame seeds (optional)

Directions:

  1. Heat oil in skillet.
  2. Add onion and garlic, then sauté several minutes until aromatic and lightly browned.
  3. Add cauliflower, mushrooms, and spinach, then cook over medium heat, about 4 or 5 minutes.
  4. Add a few dashes of soy sauce, then stir.
  5. Crack the egg into the rice, then cook over low heat for 1-2 more minutes.
  6. Remove from heat.
  7. Add sun-dried tomatoes, chopped nuts, and/or sesame seeds to garnish.

How Do You Like Your Cauliflower?

If you don't like the idea of ricing your cauliflower, there's other ways you can cook it besides steaming it. For instance, you can make roasted whole cauliflower with whatever seasonings you want, and it'll come out delicious and easy-to-cut every time. You could also cut then roast it if you want.

What's your favorite way to use cauliflower in the kitchen?

More Essential Vegetable Hacks

Photos by Michele Giannusa/Food Hacks

5 Comments

I have heard about cauliflower pizza crust but I always thought it would be too complicated to make. But this seems very easy! I'm excited to try this. I am the only one in my family that likes cauliflower but I bet that can change if I try these different ways to make it. Thanks Michele!

You're welcome Rose! They will love it - it's delicious.

Um...am I missing something? I do t see serving size for any of these recipes...I would love to know how much each of these recipes makes

Hi Paolo - They all average 2-4 servings. The pizza would be larger than a personal size pie (but not much more than that.) For the chips, about a dozen but depends on the size. And for the rice, as a side dish you'd get four servings, but as a main I would say two servings at most.

Hope this helps!

Thanks Michele, this is exactly what i needed :-)

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