Keto Loaded Cauliflower Casserole with cream cheese, cheddar, and bacon is the perfect low-carb comfort food. It satisfies all your cravings without any unwanted carbs.
You won’t miss the carbs with this meal! Adding cream cheese, butter, and bacon to cauliflower makes a dish you can’t wait to eat. It’s filling and delicious, and you can eat it anytime without worrying about breaking your diet.
The best part about this dish is that you can serve it as a side dish or as a main dish. If you’re looking for a quick and easy dinner idea, this dish is definitely substantial enough to serve as a main dish.
If you’re craving Mac and Cheese, but don’t want to eat the pasta, replacing it with cauliflower is a great alternative. The dish comes out tasting very much like a creamy mac and cheese. It’s irresistible.
Looking for other cauliflower dishes you can enjoy on a low-carb diet? Try this cauliflower rice. It’s a great accompaniment to grilled chicken or any stir fry – anything you’d otherwise serve with rice! I also love air fryer cauliflower as a quick snack.
Ingredients You’ll Need
- Cauliflower florets – chopped into bite-sized pieces
- Cream cheese – softened to room temperature and cut into chunks
- Heavy cream – This adds a lot of richness to the dish, but you can use half and half if you want to cut down on the fat.
- Unsalted butter – softened to room temperature
- Italian cheese blend – I like the flavors of this Italian blend. It usually has mozzarella, Parmesan, fontina and asiago cheese in it. You can use whatever shredded cheese you like though. Cheddar or mozzarella are easy options.
- Bacon – cooked and crumbled
- Seasonings: garlic powder, salt and black pepper, fresh chives
Tips for Making Loaded Cauliflower
There are a few things to keep in mind when making loaded cauliflower. First of all it, it must be baked. If you try to make this on the stovetop, or put it in the microwave, the cauliflower will begin to lose water and the dish will turn out runny instead of creamy.
I always roast the cauliflower on a sheet pan before adding it to the other ingredients in the casserole. The raw cauliflower needs a bit of extra time to cook, and roasting it adds incredible flavor. Roasting also allows it to dry out a little bit. All three of these things are necessary for the best loaded cauliflower.
Finally, I think it’s best to add some of the bacon to the casserole and reserve some for the top once it’s cooked. If you add the bacon to the top of the casserole and then bake it, the bacon will get too crispy.
I have also used bacon lardons to stir into the casserole, rather than bacon strips. The lardons are thicker and meatier. Then I use crumbed bacon for the topping.
How to Make Loaded Cauliflower
- Before you get started, place the oven rack in the center position and preheat to 425º F.
- Roast the cauliflower florets on a sheet pan in the oven for 10 minutes. Take them out and let them cool slightly.
- Add the cooked cauliflower to a large bowl. Add cream cheese, heavy cream, butter, half the bacon crumbles, garlic powder, salt and pepper, plus half the shredded cheese. Stir it all up until it’s well mixed.
- Transfer the mixture to a casserole dish and top it with the remaining shredded cheese. Place the casserole in the oven and roast until cheese is melted and nicely browned on top, around 10-15 minutes. Remove from the oven and serve immediately topped with remaining bacon and fresh chives.
How Many Carbs in Each Serving?
This dish contains 7 total grams of carbs per serving, which is 1/6th of the dish. With one gram of fiber, that brings the total to 6 net grams of carbs.
Because of the high fat content, this is a good keto side dish when you’re looking to boost your intake of fat. However if you’d rather lower the calories and fat, you can substitute the heavy cream with half and half and use just one cup of shredded cheese instead of 2.
Can I Use Frozen Cauliflower?
Frozen cauliflower is already blanched (partially cooked) so it doesn’t take as long to cook as from raw. So using frozen cauliflower can save a little time in this recipe. You do still want to roast the frozen cauliflower and let it cool slightly before combining with the other ingredients, so it doesn’t impart a lot of extra water.
Can I Steam the Cauliflower Instead?
Yes, you can steam the cauliflower instead of roasting it, if that’s easier for you. It will take about the same amount of time – 10 minutes. You can also cook the cauliflower in the air fryer for 10 minutes on 375 degrees F. The main thing is that the cauliflower gets completely cooked before adding it to the dish, because it won’t have enough time to go from raw to cooked otherwise.
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Keto Loaded Cauliflower Casserole
- 4 cups cauliflower florets chopped into bite-sized pieces
- 6 ounces cream cheese cut into chunks
- 1/4 cup heavy cream
- 3 tablespoons unsalted butter softened
- 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
- 2 cups Italian cheese blend shredded
- 4 strips bacon cooked and crumbled
- 1 tablespoon fresh chives chopped
- Place oven rack in center and preheat to 425ºF.
- Roast cauliflower on a sheet pan in the oven for 10 minutes. Cool slightly.
- Add cauliflower to a large bowl. Add cream cheese, cream, butter, half the bacon crumbles, garlic powder, salt and pepper and half the shredded cheese. Stir until combined.
- Transfer to a 9"x13" casserole dish and top with remaining shredded cheese. Place in pre-heated oven and roast until cheese is melted and nicely browned on top, around 12-15 minutes. Remove from oven and serve immediately topped with remaining bacon and fresh chives.
- Add 1/2 cup cooked bacon lardons for a more meaty dish.
- Each serving contains 6 net grams of carbs.
The information shown is an estimate provided by an online nutrition calculator. It should not be considered a substitute for a professional nutritionist’s advice.
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Laura is an avid home cook and recipe creator. She shares her favorite low-carb recipes here that are both easy to make and full of flavor, so you don’t even miss the carbs.