There is no such thing as a vegetable that has empty calories. Vegetables are packed with sickness fighting and positive health benefit properties, as well as antioxidants and vitamins. But, why does cauliflower tend to be somewhat overlooked when it comes to a go-to vegetable? It’s delicious AF and there are so many ways to make bomb recipes with it. Trends have taken the spotlight from many super-vegetables and many people focus mainly on kale, spinach, and other popular names. While kale and spinach are clearly amazing, people forget about how important other vegetables are and the roles they play in health benefits both inside and outside of the body.
Cauliflower is part of the vegetable family called the ‘cruciferous’ and is categorized as a superfood, however it is often overshadowed by it’s green colored relative broccoli. In terms of what cauliflower can do, it’s often better to ask what it can’t do. Cauliflower is a legitimate beast put on this Earth to rescue you. It is a natural anti-inflammatory with a large and rich amount of phytochemicals that can protect against cancer, diseases of the heart and brain, and even prevent weight gain. The antioxidants in cauliflower are a combination of very potent phytochemicals called tocopherols, ascorbic acid, and carotenoids that have been studied and proven to aide in prevention of diabetes, many types of cancer, cardiovascular diseases, and neurodegenerative disorders. Long story short, add this bad boy to your next salad.
Cauliflower and your skin-
For all the beauty buffs out there- look no further. Cauliflower acts much like coconut oil (another superfood that is eatable and wearable). Coconut oil became very famous as a moisturizer that has anti-bacterial properties, and cauliflower is very similar. To summarize the many skin benefits, cauliflower can treat acne, lighten skin tone, protect against strong UV rays, nourishes and moisturizes the skin, and fights premature aging. Not only are there skin benefits, but this vitamin-rich vegetable can aide in reducing hair loss and greying of hair, and can even help it grow. Put the coconut oil down and get on the cauliflower people!
Why is cauliflower so good for the skin? It just so happens that cauliflower is filled to the brim with toxin-fighting properties that get rid of impurities within the skin, and water is very abundant in the vegetable which keeps the skin hydrated. The antioxidants in cauliflower fight free radicals and stabilizes them, which prevents damage to cells. A few of the many vitamins in cauliflower include vitamin B2, omega-3 fatty acids, protein, dietary fiber, choline, magnesium, vitamin B1, and niacin. Each of these vitamins contribute to beautiful skin and lifelong positive health benefits.
Cauliflower in your diet-
In this day and age, people have found ways to substitute the weirdest vegetables into recipes that are abundant in red meat and carbs to make them healthier, such as lasagna. Move over eggplant, there’s a new boss in town. If you are getting tired of munching on cauliflower in a salad or as a snack, there are hundreds of recipes that disguise the vegetable. Even the pickiest of eaters can be fooled by substituting cauliflower into traditional household staples. Listed below are three recipes that anyone can accomplish, whether you consider yourself a master chef or someone who burns toast.
As a Side- Cauliflower Garlic Mashed Potatoes:
This is a modern twist on a mealtime classic that is just as mouth-watering and delicious, but so much healthier and vitamin-rich. It is a recipe that is easy for anyone and you definitely don’t have to be advanced in cooking to make this recipe turn out amazing.
What you’ll need:
- 1 head of cauliflower diced into florets
- 1 tablespoon of olive oil
- 1 smashed clove of garlic
- 1/4th cup of grated parmesan cheese
- 1 tablespoon of reduced-fat cream cheese
- ½ teaspoon of kosher salt
- 1/8th teaspoon of pepper
Directions: Literally, this recipe has three steps and can be done in 20 minutes. Start by boiling water and adding the cauliflower in until it softens (roughly ten minutes.) Get your skillet out and add the oil and garlic, cooking until softened (2 minutes.) Finally, put half of the cauliflower into a food processor and blend on high, then put the other half in and do the same. Once that’s done, add the mixture of parmesan cheese, salt, pepper, garlic, and cream cheese. Voila!
As a Bitchin’ Snack- Cauliflower Popcorn
This is a no brainer and it is exactly how it sounds. POPCORN. You heard me right, and the flavor/crunch factor is on point. Bonus: it’s simple.
What you’ll need:
- 1 head of cauliflower
- 4 tablespoons olive oil
- Salt to taste
Directions: Preheat your oven to 425 and line baking sheet with parchment paper (optional). Combine the oil and salt in a large bowl and mix together, then add cauliflower pieces. Make sure to toss until they are fully covered in the mixture. Add the cauliflower pieces onto the sheet and roast for one hour, flipping them 3-4 times throughout. Don’t worry if they get dark- the darker they get the more they caramelize which adds the most flavor. Serve immediately and enjoy!
As your Main Course- Cauliflower Pizza
This is taking pizza to the next level- all of the deliciousness but half the calories. Cauliflower pizza is a game changer and takes a little more time, but it is still relatively easy and a crowd pleaser.
What you’ll need:
- 1Lb cauliflower florets
- 2 eggs (large)
- ½ cup of grated parmesan cheese
- 1 cup of marinara
- ½ cup shredded mozzarella cheese
- ½ cup of chopped basil
Directions: Preheat oven to 400, then add cauliflower into a food processor mixing on high until it is chopped finely. After, put the chopped cauliflower into a microwave-safe bowl and cook for five minutes. Remove excess water and juice from the bowl after it’s microwaved, then add the eggs and parmesan cheese- mix thoroughly. Mold the mixture in the shape of a pizza crust on a baking sheet or pizza pan. Bake for 45 minutes then remove- add the marinara, mozzarella, and other toppings of your choice. Put the pizza into the oven and continue to bake until the cheese has fully melted.