Home > Recipes > Meal > Sides > Creamy Mashed Cauliflower (20-minutes or less!)

Creamy Mashed Cauliflower (20-minutes or less!)

4.03 from 42 votes

What’s Inside: Potatoes are great, but you know what could be as good or even better? Cauliflower. This easy mashed cauliflower recipe is dairy-free, vegan, low carb, keto-friendly, and an AIP-approved mashed potato alternative. Can be made with fresh or frozen cauliflower too!

vegan mashed cauliflower that's dairy-free and low-carb

Yes, Mashed Cauliflower Is as Good or Better than Mashed Potatoes

Now, I hold no grudges against mashed potatoes. But with all the stretchy pants, sweet tooth indulgences, and excess eating many of us are guilty of during the holidays, the less blood sugar spikes, the better.

Just keeping it real, folks. When there’s an entire Thanksgiving or Holiday meal ahead of me, and I don’t feel like wasting my allotted sugar or stomach space on heavy, dairy-laden mashed potatoes.


Just getting started on AIP (or need a refresh)? Sign up here to receive a 1-week AIP Meal Plan using some of my most popular AIP recipes to make it stress-free and delicious.


Not only is this creamy mashed cauliflower recipe EASIER and FASTER to make as their spud sisters, but they’re EQUALLY DELICIOUS. Yes, I said it. While they’re not as fluffy as potatoes due to the lack of starch, they are still super comforting and are the perfect pillow for gravy (which is really all you need out of a good mash anyway).

delicious and easy vegan mashed cauliflower that's dairy-free and low-carb

How To Make the Best Creamy Mashed Cauliflower

Where traditional mashed potatoes can get weighed down with butter, sour cream, and cheese, the beauty of this vegan mashed cauliflower is that it is simple and delicious.

You definitely have to be a fan of cauliflower to enjoy this easy side dish. (If you’re not, we may not be able to be friends … ) The light, nutty flavor of the cauliflower really shines through in this recipe, and it’s enhanced with the salt, pep, and fresh chives. Sautéed or roasted garlic would also be divine here. Get creative!

You can use fresh or frozen cauliflower in this recipe, there’s no difference nutritionally (and sometimes the frozen version can be even fresher), so go with whatever is most attainable and convenient for you. While using cauliflower florets are preferred, you can also use cauliflower rice (just add more, of course).

Everyone loves a good side, am I right? Don’t miss my roundup of 20+ Gluten-free Side Dishes (Perfect for every occasion) including Paleo and AIP-friendly recipes right here.

how to make mashed cauliflower that's dairy-free and low-carb

Serve Mashed Cauliflower at Your Thanksgiving or Holiday Meal

This mashed cauliflower pairs perfectly with all the fixings for a full-blown Thanksgiving dinner, like roasted turkey, cranberry sauce, green veggies, and gravy (check out this match made in heaven below!). And trust me, your friends and family will appreciate that this side dish leaves plenty of room in their bellies for the rest of your holiday spread!

vegan mashed cauliflower with mushroom gravy
Don’t miss my herbed mushroom gravy recipe to drizzle on top!

You can find my recipe for mashed cauliflower below! And make sure to check out my roundup of healthy Thanksgiving basics to ensure you stay on track this holiday season and impress your guests with a delicious, clean, homemade meal.

how to make vegan mashed cauliflower

More Healthy Veggie Side Dishes

If you like this healthy homemade mashed cauliflower, make sure to save these healthy side dishes and Thanksgiving recipes when planning to host your own holiday feast:


Video: Watch How To Make The Recipe

vegan mashed cauliflower that's dairy-free and low-carb

Creamy Mashed Cauliflower (20-minutes or less!)

4.03 from 42 votes
Mashed potatoes are great, but you know what’s as good or even better? Creamy mashed cauliflower that's dairy-free and low-carb! This easy mashed cauliflower recipe is vegan, keto-friendly and an AIP-approved mashed potato alternative. Can be made with fresh or frozen cauliflower too.
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 20 minutes
Yield: 6 people


  • 2 heads cauliflower, chopped into florets (or approx. 20-24 oz. florets, fresh or frozen)
  • 2 cups water
  • 2 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 Bunch of fresh chives for topping
  • pinch of sea salt and pepper (omit for AIP) to taste


  • Bring water to boil and place florets in a steam rack on top, covering until tender and you can easily pierce with a fork (but they’re not falling apart), approx. 7-8 minutes or so. Alternatively, you may steam in the microwave for 3-4 minutes (do in 2-3 batches in a bow.) If using cauliflower rice, a steam basket won't work. You can try sauteéing in 1 Tbsp of extra-virgin olive oil in a non-stick or cast iron skillet just until soft and you'll need the amount of ounces as noted above.
  • Once ready, remove the florets and add to a food processor with extra-virgin olive oil, sea salt and pepper to taste. (you may need to do this in batches if you have a small food processor). You may alternativeely mash using a hand masher, an emulsion blender in a largee mixing bowl or pot if you don't have a food processor.
  • Transfer the mashed cauliflower to a serving dish and top with more oil or butter/ghee and fresh chives and sea salt if needed. Hot tip: check out my herbed mushroom gravy as a perfect topping.
Diet: American
Course: Side Dish
-Alison Marras
This post may contain affiliate links. Please read my disclosure policy.

browse more recipes:

30-minutes AIP Cauliflower Dairy-free Gluten-free Grain-free Holidays Low-carb Nightshade-free Nut-free Paleo Recipes Sides Whole30
Start nourishing your body easily + consistently

I believe your healing journey with real food can be a stress-free lifestyle, filled with joy and flavor, giving you the time and energy to live more.

Subscribe to my newsletter, and you’ll receive the latest recipes and my best wellness tips to make this a lifestyle!

Join Now

join the conversation

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Recipe Rating

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.


  1. Hi there, I would love to make this but I’m curious about the nutrition information. Do you have that? Thanks!

    • You can plug that into something like myfitnesspal to confirm, I don’t normally post it.

  2. Love the idea of making mashed cauliflowers instead of the usual mashed potatoes. I like trying different recipes for my guests to try and will definitely make this soon.

  3. I make this ALL THE TIME! It’s one of our favorites with steaks and chops — makes me feel like I’m having mashed potatoes but so much healthier and without feeling guilty.

  4. Love this alternative to mashed potatoes. We do love cauliflower, and I know this would go over well at the dinner table.

you might also like