Cauliflower Vanilla Pudding

Some have said that cauliflower is the new kale.  Cauliflower is now being used in many recipes either as an ingredient substitute or as the main ingredient.  While using cauliflower may be a new trend ingredient, I have been using it for years in many of my recipes.  One of my favorite ways to use cauliflower is to showcase it as the star ingredient in vanilla pudding.

Cauliflower is a wonderful, healthy food that can be eaten cooked or raw.  It is available year round, whether it be fresh from the produce aisle or frozen from the freeze aisle.  Cauliflower is known for having detox, antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, digestive and cardiovascular benefits.  It is full of phytonutrients, vitamin K, vitamin C, vitamin B and omega 3’s.  Cauliflower is low in fat, low in carbohydrates and high in fiber.  The fiber content in cauliflower keeps you full and satisfied for a long time.

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When selecting fresh cauliflower look for a clean, white, compact bunch.  A dirty or muted colored bunch should be avoided. Fresh cauliflower is also sold pre-cut but typically does not last as long as cauliflower sold in a bunch with the leaves still attached.  Frozen pre-cut cauliflower is available in the frozen section at most grocery stores.  Frozen cauliflower is a great way to purchase cauliflower since it freezes well and does not compromise the health aspects of the cauliflower.  Since the cauliflower is frozen it is always readily available and is a great choice for this cauliflower vanilla pudding recipe.

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Because of cauliflower’s fiber content, it creates a very thick and wonderful pudding.  The resulting pudding is dairy free, vegan and amazingly delicious.   You would be hard pressed to tell the difference between this cauliflower pudding and a traditional dairy based pudding.  It is a great healthy alternative that will leave you feeling great.

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The recipe below makes about 4 servings (depending on serving size).  The pudding can be served hot or cold.  Other flavor extracts can be added to the pudding to create a wide array of pudding flavors.  Unsweetened cocoa powder (about 2 tablespoons) can be added to create a chocolate cauliflower pudding.

Cauliflower Vanilla Pudding

1 bag of frozen cauliflower (16 ounces)

2 cups water

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/8 teaspoon pure Stevia extract (or 3 tablespoons cane or coconut sugar)

1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract (or 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla powder)

4 to 5 ice cubes 

In a medium sized sauce pan, add frozen cauliflower, 1/2 cup water, salt and pure vanilla extract.  Cover pan and heat (over high heat) to a boil.  Reduce heat to medium/high heat and cook for about 10 minutes.  Remove cauliflower from the stove and allow to cool slightly.  Pour cooked cauliflower into a food processor or blender.  Add the rest of the water (1 1/2 cups) to the cauliflower.  Blend on medium speed for about 1 minute.   Carefully add ice cubes to the mixture and continue to blend, on medium speed, for another minute.   Pour pudding into serving dishes.  Pudding can be served warm or cold by placing covered in the refrigerator.  

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