It’s been awhile since I created a new low carb cauliflower side dish recipe, and I have to say that this new faux risotto recipe is not only delicious, but also super easy – which is definitely a win win situation.
Especially in the Summer when the last thing you want to do is slave over a hot stove for an hour. Raise your hands if you’re with me on this…
If you’ve ever made “real” risotto then you know how long it takes and how labor intensive it is, what with all of that tedious stirring and adding liquid every few minutes. Not so with this low carb cauliflower version!
This recipe is so much easier than a classic risotto using rice – you can have it ready in less than 10 minutes total with very little hand’s on time. Even faster if you use store bought cauliflower that’s already been “riced.”
I’m not convinced that the cauliflower “crumbles” are worth the extra cost, but it really depends on how much time you have on your hands – or how much you hate chopping and prepping.
Loaded with cheesy pesto flavor, this cauliflower “risotto” recipe a has a lovely creamy texture from the Mascarpone cheese that mimics the silky, clingy texture of a true risotto – without all of the starch and carbs.
You can cook the cauliflower “rice” to your liking – I left mine a little firmer for an al-dente texture in this recipe, but if you like it really soft then that would be delicious also.
I used a store-bought pesto for this because I didn’t have a lot of fresh basil to use up – but if you have a bumper crop of basil in your garden then you can easily make your own low carb pesto for this (or any) recipe that calls for it.
This is a truly versatile low carb recipe that can be easily made into a complete one pot meal with the addition of some chunks of cooked chicken.
Add a little extra pesto and cheese – maybe even sprinkle some Parmesan over the top, and you can bake it for 10 minutes and turn it into a wonderful low carb casserole that even the kids will love!
In fact I may experiment with a full on casserole version myself, and will post it if I do! If you beat me to it, let us know how it turned out in the comments!
Meanwhile, if you’re looking for more delicious low carb cauliflower casserole recipes, try my kid-friendly Low Carb Jalapeno Popper Cauliflower Casserole and/or the wildly popular Low Carb Pepperoni Pizza Cauliflower Casserole recipes!
This versatile low carb side dish recipe perfectly mimics a classic risotto but is made with cauliflower and smothered in a cheesy pesto sauce. Keto and Atkins friendly.
- 4 cups finely chopped (or grated) raw cauliflower
- 2 Tbsp butter
- 1/2 tsp kosher salt
- 1/8 tsp black pepper
- 1/4 tsp garlic powder
- 1/3 cup Mascarpone cheese
- 2 Tbsp Parmesan cheese
- 1/4 cup prepared basil pesto
- Combine the cauliflower, butter, salt, pepper, and garlic powder in a microwave safe bowl.
- Microwave on high for six minutes – or until the cauliflower is tender and done to your liking.
- Add the mascarpone cheese and microwave on high for 2 more minutes.
- Add the parmesan cheese and stir until fully blended and creamy. Cool for 2 minutes (so you don’t cook the pesto when you add it and lose the green color.)
- Stir in the basil pesto and serve warm.
Approx nutrition info per serving: 225 calories, 21g fat, 4g net carbs, 6g protein
- Category: Low Carb Side Dish Recipe
- Cuisine: Italian American
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