A Warm and Satisfying Dish!
Cauliflower is a versatile vegetable, and you know I love my vegetables! There are many ways to prepare cauliflower, from grilling, mashing, and baking, to perfection in soups and salads! I love this recipe because it’s easy to put together, feeds an entire family, or is great for sharing at a dinner party.
I prepared an Au Gratin with cauliflower instead of the traditional potatoes. It’s flavorful, filling, and can be a side dish or a meal, and you may have most of these ingredients on hand in your kitchen! Gluten-Free Cauliflower Au Gratin is a recipe you may want to add to your family recipe collection!
A Little Bit About Cauliflower
Cauliflower stems from Latin, which means cabbage flowers. It’s a cruciferous vegetable and a member of the mustard family. That family includes broccoli, radishes, kale, and Brussels sprouts (I love them all!). It’s also a low-growing plant that ripens in cool weather.
Cauliflower was initially grown in Asia around the Mediterranean. So it’s not a surprise then that the largest producer in the world is China. However, North America started growing it in the 1900s, after the Europeans in the 1500s. Cauliflower is grown in various states around North America: Arizona, Florida, Michigan, New York, Oregon, Texas, Washington, and Wisconsin, but the largest producer in North America is the Salinas Valley of California (AKA the Salad Bowl of The World).
There are a variety of benefits to eating cauliflower! It may reduce cancer and heart disease and the risk of getting Alzheimer’s and other diseases. Not only that, but it’s weight loss friendly! It’s high in fiber and full of vitamins and minerals.
How Much Do You Know about Your Au Gratin?
Many of us may know au gratin as a potato dish with breadcrumbs, cheese, butter heated in the warm oven until it’s crisp with a golden-brown top. In French, the culinary phrase, au gratin means by grating or with a crust.
The original au gratin dish, gratin dauphinous, is from the southeastern region of Dauphine, France, dating back to 1788. Gratin dauphinous is prepared with sliced potatoes baked in milk or cream and sprinkled with grated cheese.
Then there is poulet au gratin with no topping; it’s roast chicken served on a layer of baked forcemeat. (Forcemeat is derived from the French word farcie or to stuff – a mixture of lean meat with fat and made by sieving or grinding the ingredients.)
Traditionally, au gratin bakes in a clay ceramic. However, au gratin was adopted into English cooking in the 19th century when the wealthy developed a taste for French food.
Au gratins are my go-to for lunch or dinner. It’s simple to throw the ingredients together and set it in the oven. It’s a great make-ahead recipe – make a batch and freeze it to heat up later for a quick meal. Go ahead and be creative! Use different seasonings and spices.
If you have kids that don’t like cauliflower, make it with broccoli or chicken. I have recipes for Broccoli Au Gratin and Potato and Mushrooms Infused with Chicken Au Gratin if you want to check those out.
Cauliflower pairs nicely with the ground beef, seasonings, and spices for this recipe. The texture and taste of the mashed cauliflower remind me of mashed potatoes. My gluten-free cauliflower au gratin is a warm and satisfying casserole for any occasion.
As a note, I left out the tomatoes this time.
Best Gluten-Free Au Gratin Recipe Without Potatoes
- 1 Large head Cauliflower rinsed well and cut into small florets
- 2 Eggs
- 1/2 lb Ground Beef, chicken or turkey
- 1 Medium Onion
- 2 Garlic cloves
- 2 tbsp Olive oil
- 1 tsp Ground ginger
- 1 tsp Ground turmeric
- 1 tbsp Paprika
- 1 tsp Each of Salt & Pepper or to taste
- 2 cups Mozzarella cheese
- 1 tbsp Parsley
- 1 tbsp Scallions
- 1 Medium tomato ((You can skip this one if allergy is a concern))
Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit
Fill a large pot with enough water to cook the cauliflower
While the water begins to boil, add one-half a tablespoon salt and cauliflower florets. Cook until tender
Drain and let it sit to cool down for a few minutes while preparing the beef and egg mixture
In a saucepan over medium heat, add olive oil, garlic, and onions
Sauté until lightly golden
Add ground beef and tomatoes, and sauté for 3 minutes
In a small bowl, beat the eggs, add salt and pepper
Mash the cauliflower, adding the egg mixture and gluten-free Flour
Brush olive oil in an oven-proof pan.
Spread the cauliflower mixture evenly into the pan
Add some mozzarella cheese over the cauliflower
Add the beef mixture