bowl of roasted cauliflower macaroni and cheese

roasted cauliflower mac ‘n cheese

  • Author: simplegraytshirt
  • Prep Time: 25 mins
  • Cook Time: 15 mins
  • Total Time: 40 minutes
  • Yield: 8 servings 1x
  • Category: dinner
  • Method: cooking
  • Cuisine: american


a healthier version of classic mac ‘n cheese and with roasted cauliflower.  Even your pickiest eater will love this recipe!



  • one head of cauliflower
  • 1 tablespoon of olive oil
  • 12 oz pasta (take out about 1/2 cup from 1 lb. box)
  • 5 tablespoons of butter
  • 6 tablespoons of flour
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder (or 1 frozen cube)
  • 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 5 cups skim milk (you can use any type you like, but we have skim at all times)
  • 16 oz hand grated cheese (I like to use 8 oz of cheddar and 8 oz smoked mozzarella)


roast cauliflower

  1. cut the cauliflower into small florets, about the same size as your pasta shape
  2. spread out on a parchment lined sheet pan and drizzle with olive oil, salt and pepper to taste.
  3. roast at 425 degrees about 30 minutes (until caramelized a bit but not falling apart or charred)

macaroni and cheese

  1. while the cauliflower is roasting, start making mac ‘n cheese
  2. bring water to a boil for the pasta, once boiling, cook pasta per directions on the box
  3. while the pasta cooks, shred your cheese and gather the rest of your ingredients
  4. drain pasta and begin making cheese sauce
  5. melt butter in the same pan that pasta cooked in over medium heat
  6. once melted, add in the flour whisking continously until it become fragant
  7. continuing to whisk, slowly add in the milk, being sure to get any flour clumps fully incorporated into the sauce
  8. add in the garlic, paprika, salt and pepper
  9. keep whisking every few minutes until the mixture comes just to boil
  10. remove from heat and stir in the cheese you have grated
  11. once the cheese is fully incorporated, return to medium heat and add the pasta and 2 cups of the roasted cauliflower to the pot
  12. stir until everything is well coated and heated through
  13. serve just like that or transfer to a 9×13 baking dish, cover with crunchy topping and broil for 3-5 minutes (watch carefully so it doesn’t burn).
  14. enjoy!


if you want to make this “fancy”, you can use any of the following crunchy toppings and bake the mac ‘n cheese for a few minutes at the end before serving: french fried onions, ritz crackers, panko breadcrumbs.  The topping adds a nice texture, but is totally optional.

please, please, please grate your own cheese.  the shredded cheese you buy has stabilizers in it and won’t melt as nicely.

Keywords: roasted cauliflower, macaroni and cheese, mac 'n cheese, cauliflower

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