Home » sides » (Actually Good!) Cauliflower Mash 🥔 gluten free & keto

(Actually Good!) Cauliflower Mash 🥔 gluten free & keto

This keto cauliflower mash, with its epic browned butter sauce, is one ideal and easy low carb side dish! As with one simple trick, the resulting mash is thick and scrumptious (rather than soupy or wet!).

Keto mashed cauliflower with browned butter and thyme
Low Carb & Keto Mashed Cauliflower

Low Carb & Keto Cauliflower Mash

i.e. Faux-Tato Mash!

If you’ve tried keto cauliflower mash in the past, but weren’t too into it’s watery qualities (ahem, soup!)… you’re going to love this simple hack!

You’ll simply be roasting the cauliflower florets, as opposed to boiling or steaming them. You see, cauliflower is roughly 90% water (while potatoes are roughly 80%), so you definitely don’t want to be introducing more to the mix!

And yes, the florets will become a tad dry while roasting, but you’ll then introduce more liquid (and lusciousness!) in form of some sour cream and browned butter!

The resulting mashed cauliflower is incredibly tasty, and has a lovely bite and texture to compliment all your favorite dishes!

p.s. its particularly good with my keto Swedish meatballs (you’re welcome!). 

Freshly roasted keto cauliflower florets
Low Carb & Keto Mashed Cauliflower
Keto cauliflower mash with a serving spoon
Low Carb & Keto Mashed Cauliflower

Keto mashed cauliflower with browned butter and thyme

Low Carb & Keto Cauliflower Mash

This keto cauliflower mash, with its epic browned butter sauce, is one ideal and easy low carb side dish! As with one simple trick, the resulting mash is thick and scrumptious (rather than soupy or wet!).
5 from 24 votes
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 35 minutes
Course Side Dish
Cuisine American, European
Servings 4 people
Calories 198 kcal


  • 1 head cauliflower
  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 4-6 thyme springs
  • 1/4-1/3 cup sour cream to taste
  • 3 tablespoons salted butter
  • 2 cloves garlic ran through a press
  • 1/4 cup Parmesan optional*
  • kosher salt to taste
  • freshly ground black pepper to taste


  • Preheat oven to 400°F/200°C and break up the cauliflower head into florets. transfer onto a rimmed baking tray, drizzle with olive oil, season with salt and place a handful of thyme springs on top. Roast for 20-25 minutes, or until it just begins to brown. 
  • Transfer roasted cauliflower florets to a food processor and blend with the sour cream. Set aside while while you make the brown butter sauce. 
  • Heat up the butter in a small saucepan over medium/low heat. Continue to cook the butter for a couple minutes until it just begins to turn golden. Add in the garlic, a couple more thyme springs and continue to cook for 2-3 minutes until everything is nice and browned. 
  • Pour in about half of the browed butter and parmesan (optional) onto the cauliflower and continue to process. Check for seasoning and if need be, feel free to adjust the texture with a touch of heavy cream (or even a tad of unsweetened almond milk). 
  • Reheat right before serving. 


*Parmesan adds an awesome flavor kick in this mashed cauliflower! Having said that, there are certain main dishes where it's taste might be a bit too overwhelming; so use accordingly.  


Calories: 198kcal | Carbohydrates: 7g | Protein: 5g | Fat: 17g | Saturated Fat: 9g | Cholesterol: 35mg | Sodium: 230mg | Potassium: 450mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 3g | Vitamin A: 400IU | Vitamin C: 68.5mg | Calcium: 120mg | Iron: 0.7mg
Keyword gluten free, grain free, keto, low carb
Whip up this recipe?Comment below or drop me a line @gnomgnom._ and tag #gnomgnomyum!


  1. Caroline Kutz says:

    Hola…what size head of cauliflower or better yet, how many grams of cauliflower should be used? Am dying to try out the recipe. Gracias, Caroline

  2. Kim says:

    5 stars
    Dare I say it, BETTER than mashed potatoes. Loved how flavorful and thick in texture this is- and I had it for leftovers the next day with about a minute hit in the microwave and it tasted even more savory and delicious. Added to the fav list.

  3. Shaay Gallagher-Starr says:

    This looks amazing. I also like mashed turnips, so I think I may roast both turnips and cauliflower and then mash them together. I’ll also try this as written and report back! The thyme brown butter sounds amazing. I also love sage browned butter with Parmesan…. another variation to try!

    I appreciate the time and energy you put into creating these recipes for all of us, Paola. I recommend your blog and cookbooks all the time. As a diabetic with inflammation and arthritis, staying off sugar and starches keeps me both healthier and more comfortable. You make my life so much easier with your recipes! Thank you! <3

  4. Lisa says:

    5 stars
    Can’t believe I haven’t commented on this recipe before now since I’ve adopted this as my favorite technique for making cauliflower mash. I’ve made it a few times. I like this even better than the steaming method I used to do. Way creamier and more flavorful. Thanks Paola!

  5. Liz says:

    Just FYI – for a quick califlower mash – I chop the califlower up and put it in the microwave with a tblspoon of heavy cream and some butter. 6 mins on high – stir – 6 mins on high
    Then I blend with a stick blender and add some grated chedder cheese and blend again.
    Very yummy and quick

  6. Sharon says:

    How long would this keep in the fridge if made ahead. OR has anyone tried making this ahead of time & freezing it. Or would it get watery if frozen.

  7. Becca says:

    I’m super excited to try this! Your recipe of baked Brie has changed my life 🙂

    Quick question-what do you do with the other half of browned butter?
    Thanks so much!

  8. Kimmy says:

    5 stars
    Made this tonight and OMG talk about drool worthy! Even my hubby tried it (he hates cauliflower) and he ate more than me! Thank you for the pro tip with the oven! Can’t wait to try out some more recipes!

    • Paola van der Hulst says:

      Kimmy how awesome to hear that even the cauls-hating hubby enjoyed 😂! Thanks so much for reporting back, hope you keep enjoying!

  9. Myra says:

    5 stars
    I don’t normally leave reviews of recipes…but this was too good not to. Oh my gosh, I remember trying mashed cauli years ago and it was HORRIBLE. But been doing keto a few months and NEED something similar to potatoes to get rid of the craving. Gave this a try and I was THRILLED. So good, just can’t believe it. This will be a weekly recipe at our house.

  10. Karma says:

    5 stars
    I tried this using frozen. First I par-boiled, then roasted in the oven. But it roasted down to hardly anything. Ha! The bag said it had 5 cups in it. Not so. So the problem was that I used my big vitamix to blend, and there wasn’t enough cauliflower to get it to blend. Then transferred to a small bowl and tried the blender. The texture just didn’t work : ( But I know this recipe is good using fresh cauliflower. The flavor is maybe less like cauliflower when it’s steamed, but then it gets soupy. In the past, I’ve used a tiny amount of instant potato flakes to get a nice consistency, but unfortunately this adds carbs : ( So, for all who want to try to use frozen cauliflower, you might want to try it with more than one bag if you’re trying to use a standard size vitamix to blend.

  11. Joanne Kuhn says:

    5 stars
    This was amazing! I did use garlic ghee as a quick substitute for the browned butter and it was so good. I had chicken and gravy and the cauliflower mash tasted so much like mashed potatoes it was a game changer!!!!!

  12. Heather Jeffers says:

    5 stars
    I am forever grateful to have stumbled upon gnom-gnom, as I eat Keto and paleo to combat multiple autoimmune issues. Paola, every recipe I’ve tried has been amazing! From your chocolate cake to your pad Thai, and now an incredible cauli mash! Thank you so much for creating such loveliness for us foodies on a mission to heal!!!

    • Paola says:

      Heather you are too kind to say!! I’m forever grateful to you guys too 😉

      And I hope keto (and paleo!) are working for your autoimmune- they’ve been a godsend for mine!! Finally got off all my meds this summer! Mission to heal for sure! 🙂

  13. Kate says:

    5 stars
    This was very good. Roasting the cauliflower gave it a pleasant nutty flavor which was enhanced by the browned butter. Not soupy at all.

  14. Roxana Lopez says:

    I have not been a fan of cauliflower mash, but this looks and sounds amazing! Your method is unique, as are your recipes. I love to see whatever you come up with next. Thank you for all the time you spend developing and sharing your recipes.

  15. Sandra M says:

    Do you think it would work to roast pre-riced frozen cauliflower in the oven to try for the same effect? My family is pretty picky and tends to reject cauliflower due to flavor/texture they dislike. BUT they would be willing to try for a good mash that is similar to potato mash.

    • Paola says:

      Yeah you can definitely give your cauliflower rice a roast! Do keep in mind that you still taste the cauliflower, it’s just yummy and doesn’t have that wet texture 😉

      • Sandra McGrandle says:

        Thanks Paola! I like the cauliflower taste myself and I think the better texture and the butter will make it more appealing for my family. How long would you suggest roasting the frozen cauliflower rice? I’m guessing since it’s both frozen and already riced that this will make a difference on the cook time.

        • Paola says:

          If I remember correctly, last time I roasted cauli rice it took about 8 minutes for it to become golden. I would just keep an eye on it 😉 xo!

  16. Denise says:

    5 stars
    Love the idea of the thyme and garlic browned butter. Having a rib steak tonight, think I’ll pour this over the steak! (mouth watering)

Leave a Reply

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.