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Cauliflower Alfredo Sauce Recipe

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If you’re looking for a healthier, low-calorie, low fat version of a regular alfredo sauce, this Cauliflower Alfredo Sauce is it!  It’s delicious, creamy, and very silky, without using any cream!  When I was making this recipe, my main objective was simplicity: I wanted to make the process as simple as I could.  In this recipe, all you will do is to combine cooked cauliflower, chicken bullion cube (you can use organic version, too), Parmesan cheese, salt and pepper, and nutmeg (optional) in a food processor, and you’re done!   I used cooking water to thin the sauce, which makes this cauliflower sauce completely cream-free!
Without further ado, here are step by step photos and instructions.  Clean the cauliflower head from green leaves and chop off any dark spots. Your cauliflower head should look nice and clean:

Cauliflower head

Chop it into reasonably large but manageable pieces. Place chopped cauliflower in the big sauce pan with water, bring to boil and boil for 30-40 minutes until cauliflower is really soft. Remove from heat and drain cauliflower from water. You should have about 3 and 1/2 cups of cooked and sliced cauliflower pieces. Do reserve some cooking water.

how to make cauliflower alfredo sauce from scratch

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Dissolve 1/2 of a chicken bullion cube in 1/2 cup of very hot reserved cooking water. In a food processor, combine drained cooked cauliflower and 1/2 cup of hot reserved cooking water you just made with 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese, and 1/4 teaspoon of salt, and process really well, until a very creamy sauce forms:

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Feel free to add more cooking water (using small amount at a time, such as 1/4 measuring cup) to thin the sauce if it is too thick. This will make 2 and 1/4 cups of cauliflower sauce.

using food processor to make cauliflower alfredo sauce

Transfer sauce into a large sauce pan and keep it warm on the stove top.

making alfredo sauce from scratch

Season with salt and pepper, and nutmeg (optional), to taste.

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Mix it up with some cooked pasta:

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Cauliflower Alfredo Sauce Recipe

Prep Time: 30 minutes

Cook Time: 40 minutes

Total Time: 1 hour, 10 minutes

Yield: 2 and 1/2 cups of sauce

Cauliflower Alfredo Sauce Recipe

Ingredients

  • 1 cauliflower head
  • 1/2 cup hot cooking water
  • 1/2 chicken bullion cube
  • 1/2 cup Parmesan cheese
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • salt and pepper, to taste
  • nutmeg, to taste (optional)

Instructions

  1. Clean the cauliflower head from green leaves, and chop it into reasonably large but manageable pieces. Place it in the big sauce pan with water, bring to boil and boil for 30-40 minutes until cauliflower is really soft. Remove from heat and drain cauliflower from water. You should have about 3 and 1/2 cups of cooked and sliced cauliflower pieces. Do reserve some cooking water.
  2. Dissolve 1/2 of a chicken bullion cube in 1/2 cup of very hot reserved cooking water.
  3. In a food processor, combine drained cooked cauliflower (from step 1) and 1/2 cup of hot reserved cooking water you just made (from step 2) with 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese, and 1/4 teaspoon of salt, and process really well, until a very creamy sauce forms:
  4. Transfer sauce into a large sauce pan and keep it warm on the stove top. Season with salt and pepper, and nutmeg (optional), to taste.
http://juliasalbum.com/2015/01/cauliflower-alfredo-sauce-recipe/

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{ 36 comments… add one }
  • Allison January 20, 2015, 8:54 am

    Anyone tried this? I don’t like cauliflower but wondering if this masks the taste for people who may not be a fan. I love alfredo but a healthier version is always a great idea.

    • Terri January 27, 2016, 11:54 am

      I have made this several times and love it. I also love cauliflower, however, it does not have a sting cauliflower taste. I do add a splash of milk and a couple tablespoons of butter on it and serve it over whole wheat linguine. If I want extra protein, I add some ricotta or cottage cheese to a single serving when it’s done and blend it. Delicious and so healthy! I would recommend it highly.

    • Lindsey March 29, 2016, 12:26 pm

      I absolutely loved it. I may or may not have added a little more parmesan than the recipe calls for. lol 😉

      So easy and cheap. Give it a try! I poured my sauce of chicken breasts and baked it in the oven.

  • Shashi at Runninsrilankan January 20, 2015, 9:11 am

    Julia – this cauliflower and Parmesan “alfredao sauce” is simply so BRILLIANT! I am so loving the sound of this healthier version!

  • Matt January 20, 2015, 8:22 pm

    Looks delicious!

  • Stacy | Wicked Good Kitchen January 27, 2015, 12:39 am

    Beautiful healthified Alfredo Sauce, Julia! We made a sauce very similar back when I was doing Atkins low carbing and enjoyed it with zucchini noodles. Thank you for sharing, my friend. Will be pinning this one, for sure!

  • Laura Dembowski January 30, 2015, 12:08 pm

    I absolutely love cauliflower alfredo sauce! I make it with chicken stock and add a little almond milk at the end for creaminess. I mix it with Shirataki noodles which are low cal and gf!

  • Blythe February 17, 2015, 6:18 pm

    Do you know if it freezes well?

    • Dar April 25, 2016, 6:34 pm

      Did u try freezing it?

  • TotsMom March 4, 2015, 9:34 pm

    I just made this tonite. I liked it, but no one else in my family liked it. To me, it was very flavorful, but also very bland, if that makes sense. It did have a nice flavor, I seasoned it with the bullion and some Flavor God Garlic Lover’s seasoning. But the lack of fat was very apparent in the taste. It was creamy, but not rich at all, which I guess is the point. If you are used to eating a clean, healthy diet (I am), then you will like this recipe. If not, then you’ll probably not care for it. Adding some butter, cream or half-and-half will probably make it go over better with ppl who prefer traditional alfredo sauce.

    • Tasha March 10, 2016, 11:21 pm

      I was wondering this exactly.

  • Mal March 12, 2015, 7:42 pm

    Love this recipe, made it last week and it’s so good! Just curious, have you tried freezing leftover sauce? If so does it reheat well?

  • Jolie May 11, 2015, 5:28 pm

    Made this tonight! After reading about the mild flavor, I added sautéed 1/2 onion and 3 cloves of minced garlic along to the food processor. It was incredible!

  • Erin May 28, 2015, 9:31 pm

    This looks incredible! Can’t wait to try it.

  • Melissa October 21, 2015, 12:58 pm

    I just made this to have for dinner tomorrow (as I am anticipating a busy day) and it is awesome! I used vegetable broth to boil my cauliflower in instead of water and a chicken bouillon cube. (to make it vegetarian). I tasted it after it was pureed…so good! Thanks for the recipe! 🙂

  • Valeria October 24, 2015, 12:25 pm

    I did it today. I added powdered garlic and a LITTLE bit of butter… delicious! also added sliced mushrooms.. YUM

  • Patricia January 12, 2016, 7:37 am

    If you cook the cauliflower that long you will kill the nutritional value.

  • Hannah January 30, 2016, 10:07 am

    Does anyone know how many calories are in a cup of this sauce?

  • Jodi January 30, 2016, 9:09 pm

    I added onion, garlic, about 1/2 cup of almond milk, and a little more Parmesan than the recipe calls for and it was rich as any Alfredo sauce I’ve ever had.

  • Jessie Hansen March 1, 2016, 9:27 pm

    Totally made this tonight, totally loved it. Even my kids, ages 3 6 and 9, ate it up and said it was great. I had seen cauliflower alfredo before but it used the special yeast so i never made it. glad to know this works super well without it. Still waiting for my husband’s response on it (he is at work) but I am going to say this is a keeper.

  • Sheila March 6, 2016, 7:41 pm

    I made sauteed shrimp alfredo with this sauce and it was so delicious! My husband also loved it, which makes life so much better!!! Thank you so much!

  • Sheenam March 16, 2016, 9:08 am

    Cant wait to try this! This looks incredible

  • Lisa Nye August 7, 2016, 6:13 pm

    I made this tonight and we loved it, I added about 1/8 tsp. garlic powder because we love garlic in alfredo. Thanks for the recipe! YUMMY!!!!

  • Marina Moreno August 27, 2016, 8:15 pm

    This looks amazing! Any suggestions on what I can use instead of the cheese? We are dairy free.

    • Sylvia March 23, 2017, 12:05 pm

      I use unflavored soy milk and nutritional yeast (for the cheesy flavor) I also use smart balance dairy free buttery spread

  • Rachel September 1, 2016, 12:43 pm

    Is there a way to make it without the parmesan…aka dairy free???

    • Sylvia March 23, 2017, 12:08 pm

      I use nutritional yeast for the cheesy flavor. I also use smart balance dairy free buttery spread to make a roux and unflavored soy milk.

  • Jackie January 19, 2017, 2:30 pm

    I am going to have to pick up a head of cauliflower next grocery trip to try this. It looks great. Definitely add the nutmeg to the sauce, that is the little something that you can taste (but aren’t quite sure what it is) in a good alfredo sauce. I would think it should freeze fine becaue there isn’t any cream or milk to separate or curdle. I might try freezing it in an ice cube tray. Pop out one or two cubes to use for a single serving. I will likely add a tiny bit of butter as others have noted.

    • Julia January 31, 2017, 2:10 am

      Thank you, Jackie, for stopping by! Yes, just the right amount of nutmeg tastes great in this cauliflower sauce. I think freezing should work fine, too, because there is not enough cream or cheese to cause separation.

  • M February 11, 2017, 11:43 am

    Wow! How many g of pasta for this Alfredo sauce recipe?

  • Rayna March 15, 2017, 1:51 pm

    I was Leary to try. But I did it. Very good, put some cayenne and garlic powder in it. Love it. I got to know how many cal.

  • Jennifer May 22, 2017, 12:49 pm

    Just finished making your sauce and it’s amazing!!!! Absolutely delicious! So smooth and creamy! I made a big batch of this and froze several Jars in my airtight Infinity Jars. https://infinityjars.com/collections/kitchen

  • Aranka July 15, 2017, 7:58 am

    Made it today and serving it tonight over zucchini noodles with some baked chicken cubes and crumbled bacon. Used somewhat more parmesan though. Tastes incredible! Thank you for this amazing recipe, Jennifer!

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