Who doesn't love cheesy cauliflower? There won't be any leftovers with this delicious baked cauliflower with cheese dish. Tender cauliflower, bubbling cheesy white sauce, topped with even more cheese. This is the cauliflower and cheese recipe you have been looking for.
There is something comforting when you combine cauliflower, white sauce, and cheese. Definitely not an everyday side dish, but deliciously delightful when you do indulge.
I make this staple when I need a little food comfort. The whole family loves it, even Harley. Though she is a cheese addict, so that's to be expected.
Cheesy cauliflower is the side that slips in perfectly for lots of occasions. Works well with the Sunday roast, mid-week panfried chicken, the weekend barbecue, or even a side for Christmas dinner along with the baked ham.
Baked cauliflower and cheese is the perfect all-rounder. Plus it is relatively easy to make. I hope you enjoy one of my favourite recipes.
- Cauliflower: Pick a fresh and unblemished cauliflower without any black spots on it. This recipe also works well substituting brocolli.
- Butter: Use what you have on hand, salted or un-salted. Just remember to taste the cheese sauce once cooked and season as needed.
- Cheddar: You can use packaged grated cheddar cheese, but I prefer to freshly grate for this dish. I find tht the block cheddar has more taste.
- Flour: All-purpoose/plain flour.
- Parmesan: Parmesan, Grana Padano, or Parmigiano Reggiano can be used, it is up to personal preference and taste. If using parmesan go for good quality and one with a sharp taste.
- Milk: I use what is in the fridge when making cheesy parmesan, which means it is generally low fat/light milk. For the sake of sharing the recipe I have used full fat milk.
- Dijon Mustard: You could use a little American mustard, German mustard or horseradish cream in its place. Personally I stick to Dijon.
- Gruyére: Gruyére can be substituted with Swiss cheese if you and your hip pocket prefer. It will taste different, but just as delicious.
- Cream: Adds a further richness to the cheese sauce. If you are wanting to make a lighter version of cheesy cauliflower leave out the cream and replace with an equal amount of milk.
What to Serve with Cheesy Cauliflower
I personally could sit down to a bowl of cheesy cauliflower by itself. It obviously works wonderfully as a side dish, but it also stands its ground as the main event. Some suggestions below.
- Cheesy cauliflower with a crisp garden salad and fresh crusty bread.
- If you have the oven on already for baked sticky pork chops, baked ocean trout, or baked skinless chicken thigh cutlets, then adding a side of baked cauliflower and cheese is an obvious call.
- It works wonderfully as a barbecue side dish, try it with Australian BBQ prawns, or BBQ rainbow trout.
- Always a big hit as a side when I make corned beef with my family.
- Makes a lovely accompaniment with poulet en demi deuil, chicken in mourning.
- And if looking for sides to serve alongside try roasted Dutch carrots, parmentier potatoes, or braised red cabbage with bacon.
Scroll to the bottom of the page for a printable version of this recipe.
Pre-heat oven 190°C (375°F).
Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Place cauliflower in the pot and cook for 2 minutes.
After 2 minutes drain cauliflower in a colander and place to the side.
In a small saucepan warm milk, but do not boil.
As you are warming the milk place a pan over medium heat with butter. Once melted add flour.
Whisk butter and flour for 2-3 minutes until it becomes a sandy colour and is foaming/bubbling
While whisking continuously slowly add the warm milk to the butter/flour mixture. Keep whisking until incorporated, smooth, and starts to thicken.
Then whisk through mustard and cream. Keep gently whisking until sauce thickens.
Reserve 2 tablespoons of the grated cheeses, gruyére, cheddar, and parmesan to sprinkle on top of the cheesy cauliflower bake.
Add remaining cheeses to the sauce and whisk until melted and incorporated.
Season sauce to taste and remove from the heat.
In a 1.9L/8 cup lay the blanched cauliflower out evenly.
Pour cheese sauce over the cauliflower.
Sprinkle the cauliflower and cheese sauce with the reserved cheese.
Place in the oven for 40-45 minutes or until golden and bubbling. Serve immediately
Cheesy Cauliflower Bake
- 1 (1kg/2lb) cauliflower | cut into florets and thickly sliced
- 25 grams (1½ tablespoon) butter
- 25 grams (1½ tablespoons) plain/all purpose flour
- 350 mls (1½ cups) milk
- 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
- 125 mls (½ cup) pouring cream
- 100 grams (3.5oz) gruyére | grated
- 100 grams (3.5oz) cheddar | grated
- 50 grams (1.8oz) parmesan | grated
- Pre-heat oven 190°C (375°F).
- Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Place cauliflower in the pot and cook for 2 minutes.
- After 2 minutes drain cauliflower in a colander and place to the side.
- In a small saucepan warm milk, but do not boil.
- As you are warming the milk place a pan over medium heat with butter. Once melted add flour and whisk for 2-3 minutes until it becomes a sandy colour and is foaming/bubbling.
- While whisking continuously slowly add the warm milk to the butter/flour mixture. Keep whisking until incorporated, smooth, and starts to thicken.
- Then whisk through mustard and cream. Keep gently whisking until sauce thickens.
- Reserve 2 tablespoons of the grated cheeses, gruyére, cheddar, and parmesan to sprinkle on top of the cheesy cauliflower bake.
- Add remaining cheeses to the sauce and whisk until melted and incorporated.
- Season sauce to taste and remove from the heat.
- In a 1.9L/8 cup lay the blanched cauliflower out evenly.
- Pour cheese sauce over the cauliflower and sprinkle with reserved cheese.
- Place in the oven for 40-45 minutes or until golden and bubbling. Serve immediately
All measurements are Australian metric standard. All measures are level, and cups are lightly packed unless specified. 1 teaspoon = 5ml / 1 tablespoon = 20mls / 1 cup = 250ml /4 teaspoons = 1 tablespoon.
- 1 teaspoon equals 5ml
- 1 tablespoon equals 20 ml (Nth America, NZ & UK use 15ml tablespoons)
- 1 cup equals 250ml (Nth America use 237ml)
- 4 teaspoons equal 1 tablespoon
- I use the below unless specified in my recipes.
The recipe's nutritional information is an approximation based on an online calculator. It is meant solely for reference purposes. If you're looking for precise details, be sure to double-check with your own research.