Loaded Cauliflower Casserole

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Loaded cauliflower casserole is a low carb twist on classic comfort food. Easy to make and ready in 30 minutes, this cauliflower casserole recipe is sure to satisfy!

Suitable for low-carb, keto, and gluten-free diets. 

top down view of the completed loaded cauliflower casserole

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You don’t have to sacrifice flavor to incorporate more veggies into your diet. Creamy cheeses, crispy bacon, and your favorite spices make this loaded cauliflower casserole a low-carb win!

This easy cauliflower casserole is an effortless and satisfying meal. Just like my Walking Taco Casserole, it’s an easy one-dish recipe that’s perfect for fuss-free dinners at home and taking to potlucks or parties. 

At its core, this flavorful cauliflower casserole recipe is a low-carb alternative to classic comfort food, making it an excellent choice for those seeking healthier options without compromising on taste. The star ingredient, cauliflower, is steamed to perfection, providing a tender base that easily absorbs the richness of other elements. 

Creamy Cauliflower Bake

So, what makes this cauliflower casserole so darn good? Crispy bacon bites add a smoky and savory element, while a blend of cheddar and Monterey Jack cheeses contributes a creamy texture and delightful tang. The seasoning, a savory mix of garlic powder, Italian seasoning, black pepper, and sea salt, creates a dish that’s both comforting and indulgent.

Whether you’re following a low-carb diet or simply looking to diversify your menu, loaded cauliflower casserole infuses creativity into healthier eating!

a serving of the baked cauliflower with cheese on a plate

Why Make This Recipe

  • Low-carb comfort — Even when you are counting carbs (and maybe especially when you’re counting carbs), sometimes you just need good comfort food. 
  • Adaptable — If loaded baked potato flavors aren’t your favorite, just use the cauliflower as your base for your family’s favorite style cuisine!  You can even sub in broccoli and add carrots. 
  • Simple — Sometimes a simple meal is the best. I like creating in the kitchen, but every so often I need a break, and this casserole can give me just that! 
a wooden spoon removing a portion from the casserole dish

Making casseroles is a great way to save time and money. Check out these casseroles for more flavorful ideas your family will love. 

Ingredient Notes

  • Bacon: Purchase pre-packaged bacon bits found with the salad dressings at the grocery store or cook your own bacon and chop it into bits. Substitute with turkey bacon or vegetarian bacon for a different taste.
  • Cauliflower: Fresh cauliflower florets are the main vegetable base, providing a low-carb alternative to traditional casseroles. You can replace it with broccoli florets or a broccoli/cauliflower mix for variety. You can also use mashed cauliflower or mashed potatoes.
  • Sour Cream: This adds creaminess and a tangy flavor. Greek yogurt or plain yogurt can be used as a substitute for a slightly different taste.
  • Cream Cheese: Adds richness and creaminess. Mascarpone or ricotta cheese can be used instead for a different texture.
  • Garlic Powder: Adds a savory garlic flavor. Fresh minced garlic can be used as a substitute for a stronger taste.
  • Italian Seasoning: A blend of herbs like oregano, thyme, and basil. You can make your own blend or use dried oregano, thyme, or basil individually.
  • Ground Black Pepper:  Adds a hint of heat and flavor. White pepper can be used as a milder alternative.
  • Sea Salt: Enhances overall flavor. Regular table salt or a low sodium/no sodium blend is fine.
  • Cheddar Cheese: Adds a sharp and tangy flavor. Substitute with shredded Colby, Monterey Jack, or a blend of your favorite cheeses.
  • Monterey Jack Cheese: Adds a mild and creamy flavor. Substitute with Pepper Jack or Gouda for a different taste.
  • Parsley: Adds a fresh, herbaceous flavor. Substitute with chopped chives or green onions for that loaded baked potato finish. 
the ingredients needed to make this cauliflower casserole recipe

So, ready to learn how easy it is to make this delicious cauliflower casserole? Gather up those ingredients and let me show you…

Handy Tip: Use Good Kitchen Tools!

For the best tools to help make your recipe even easier and more successful, check out my collection of the Best Kitchen Tools on Amazon.

How To Make Loaded Cauliflower Casserole Recipe

Don’t forget to check out more of my casserole recipes for delicious meals your whole family will love.

Get complete ingredients list and instructions from the recipe card further below.

top down view of chopped bacon cooking in a skillet

Step 1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F / 200 degrees C and cut the bacon into bits. Heat a non-stick skillet and cook bacon for 2 minutes.

the casserole ingredients combined in a mixing bowl

Step 2. In a large mixing bowl, combine half of the bacon bits, sour cream, cream cheese, garlic powder, Italian seasoning, pepper, salt, half a cup of cheddar cheese, and half a cup of Monterey Jack cheese. Add the cauliflower and stir.

the ingredients spread inside a casserole baking dish

Step 3. Grease a 9×13-inch baking dish. Add the cauliflower mixture and spread out evenly.

the casserole ingredients topped with bacon bits

Step 4. Sprinkle the remaining half of the bacon bits evenly on top of the casserole.

the unbaked casserole topped with shredded cheese

Step 5. Top with the remaining shredded cheese, and bake in the oven for 20 minutes, until the cheese fully melts.

the baked casserole right out of the oven

Step 6. Remove from oven, garnish with chopped parsley, and serve.

Pro Tips

  • For an extra layer of flavor, cook the bacon until it’s crispy. This enhances the bacon’s texture and taste.
  • Experiment with different cheese blends. Combining sharp cheddar with a Pepper Jack or Gouda can create complex and rich flavors.
  • Adjust the herbs — using fresh instead of dried can elevate the flavor of the dish. You can also choose a different herb blend like Herbs de Provence. 
  • If you love garlic, consider using fresh minced garlic instead of garlic powder. Sauté it briefly in butter before incorporating it into the casserole for a robust garlic flavor.
  • To highlight the cauliflower’s natural sweetness, roast it instead of steaming it.  This adds a caramelized flavor and brings out the best in the vegetable.
  • Bring the cream cheese and sour cream to room temperature before blending them into the mixture. This helps achieve a smoother and more even consistency throughout the casserole.
  • Prepare the casserole in advance and refrigerate it until you’re ready to bake. This is a time-saving option, especially if you’re planning to serve it for a gathering or dinner party.
top down view of a serving of this cauliflower casserole recipe

Delicious Variations 

  • Buffalo Chicken: Add cooked and shredded buffalo chicken to the cauliflower mixture. Top with crumbled blue cheese for a spicy, tangy kick.
  • Tex-Mex: Incorporate taco seasoning into the cauliflower mix and add cooked ground beef or shredded chicken. Top with salsa, guacamole, and sliced jalapeños for a Tex-Mex flair.
  • Breakfast Edition: Create a breakfast-loaded casserole by adding cooked breakfast sausage or bacon. Top with a cracked egg for each serving and bake until the eggs are set.
  • Seafood Sensation: Incorporate seafood like shrimp or crab meat into the cauliflower mix. Add Old Bay seasoning for a coastal-inspired loaded casserole.
a serving spoon dipped inside the casserole

Prep And Storage

  • Prep Ahead – Prepare the casserole ahead, refrigerate, and bake when ready. This is convenient for meal planning and hosting gatherings.
  • Store – Allow the casserole to cool completely before storing in an airtight container in the refrigerator. It will keep for about 5 days.
  • Freeze – you can freeze this casserole cooked or uncooked. If you freeze it uncooked, assemble the casserole in an airtight container, then place in the freezer. Thaw and proceed with cooking as directed by the recipe. If you freeze it cooked, allow it to cool completely before storing in your airtight container and freezing.
  • Reheat – To reheat the casserole, thaw it in the refrigerator and then warm through in the oven.
a fork removing one bite of the finished casserole

FAQs 

Can I make substitutions for dietary preferences in loaded cauliflower casserole?

Swap ingredients to suit your needs. Try turkey bacon, vegan cheeses, or yogurt substitutes for a personalized and dietary-friendly version. I can’t guarantee the results, but I’d love to hear what you try!

How do I achieve a crispy topping on my creamy cauliflower bake?

For a crunchy crust, mix Parmesan with almond flour or crushed pork rinds. Sprinkle this over the casserole before baking for a satisfying crunch.

Is this loaded cauliflower casserole recipe suitable for a crowd?

Easily scale up the recipe for larger gatherings. It’s a crowd-pleaser that can be a delicious side dish or a main course.

Can I use frozen cauliflower instead of fresh for the casserole?

Yes, frozen cauliflower can be used. Thaw and drain it well to prevent excess moisture in the casserole. Adjust cooking times if needed.

the baked casserole ready to be served

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Looking for more EASY, delicious, and flavorful recipes? I’ve got you covered. Check out my full collection of casseroles or start a few of my most popular recipes:

Serve With:

  • A sharp knife makes it easy to cut the cauliflower.
  • Handy mixing bowls to easily combine your ingredients.
  • This casserole dish set is ideal for all sorts of recipes.
  • For the best tools to help make your recipe even easier and more successful, check out my collection of the Best Kitchen Tools on Amazon.

More Casserole Recipes

Check out even more awesome casserole recipes!

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top down view of the completed loaded cauliflower casserole
Print Recipe
5 from 1 vote

Loaded Cauliflower Casserole

Creamy cauliflower bake is ready in under 30 minutes to serve as a flavorful side dish.
Prep Time5 minutes
Cook Time20 minutes
Total Time25 minutes
Course: Side Dish
Cuisine: American
Diet: Gluten Free
Servings: 4
Calories: 560kcal
Author: Bintu Hardy

Ingredients

  • ¼ cup (115g) bacon bits
  • 6 cups (100g) steamed cauliflower florets cut into bite-sized pieces
  • ¼ cup (61.25g) sour cream
  • 8 ounces (226g) cream cheese
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
  • ¼ teaspoon ground black pepper
  • ¼ teaspoon sea salt
  • 1 cup (110g ) shredded cheddar cheese
  • 1 cup (110g) shredded monterey Jack cheese
  • Parsley for garnish

Instructions

  • Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F / 200 degrees C.
  • Cut bacon into bits. Heat a non-stick skillet and cook for 2 minutes.
  • In a large mixing bowl, combine half of the bacon bits, sour cream, cream cheese, garlic powder, Italian seasoning, pepper, salt, half a cup of cheddar cheese, and half a cup of Monterey Jack cheese. Add the cauliflower and stir.
  • Grease a 9×13-inch baking dish. Spoon cauliflower into it and top with remaining bacon. Top with the remaining cheddar cheese and Monterey Jack.
  • Bake in the oven for 20 minutes, until the cheese melts.
  • Remove and garnish with parsley, then serve.
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Video

Notes

  • For an extra layer of flavor, cook the bacon until it’s crispy. This enhances the bacon’s texture and taste.
  • Experiment with different cheese blends. Combining sharp cheddar with a Pepper Jack or Gouda can create complex and rich flavors.
  • Adjust the herbs — using fresh instead of dried can elevate the flavor of the dish. You can also choose a different herb blend like Herbs de Provence. 
  • If you love garlic, consider using fresh minced garlic instead of garlic powder. Sauté it briefly in butter before incorporating it into the casserole for a robust garlic flavor.
  • To highlight the cauliflower’s natural sweetness, roast it instead of steaming it.  This adds a caramelized flavor and brings out the best in the vegetable.
  • Bring the cream cheese and sour cream to room temperature before blending them into the mixture. This helps achieve a smoother and more even consistency throughout the casserole.
  • Prepare the casserole in advance and refrigerate it until you’re ready to bake. This is a time-saving option, especially if you’re planning to serve it for a gathering or dinner party.
  • Storage – keep in an airtight container inside the fridge for up to 5 days, or freeze for up to 3 months.

Nutrition

Calories: 560kcal | Carbohydrates: 17g | Protein: 25g | Fat: 45g | Saturated Fat: 25g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 4g | Monounsaturated Fat: 11g | Cholesterol: 119mg | Sodium: 989mg | Potassium: 624mg | Fiber: 5g | Sugar: 6g | Vitamin A: 1361IU | Vitamin C: 73mg | Calcium: 537mg | Iron: 1mg

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5 from 1 vote

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