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Creative Cooking with Creamy Cauliflower Sauce (plus Protein)

Updated on June 25, 2014

Love Pinch of Yum's Cauliflower Sauce? You'll Really Love This!

The blogger, Pinch of Yum, has made a splash on Pinterest and beyond with her cauliflower-based sauce. It makes a pretty amazing alternative to the heavy, rich, and unhealthy alfredo sauce. Cauliflower Sauce is both flavorful and versatile, as well as being a delicious way to get your veggies.

As a vegetarian, I wondered if there was a good way to add protein to this already nutritious sauce. I also started to get creative about how I could use my protein-enhanced version in a variety of dishes. On this page, I'll share all of my successful experimentation with you, and I would love to hear how you use either the original Cauliflower Sauce or one of my protein-enhanced sauces.

All photos on this page are my own unless otherwise credited.

The Best Vegetarian Cookbook I've Ever Used

Forks Over Knives - The Cookbook: Over 300 Recipes for Plant-Based Eating All Through the Year
Forks Over Knives - The Cookbook: Over 300 Recipes for Plant-Based Eating All Through the Year

I have learned so much from this cookbook - everything from why I should use kosher salt instead of table salt to how to prepare a wide variety of ethnic dishes. This is quite possibly the only cookbook you would ever need to take on the vegetarian lifestyle. There are lots of vegetarian cookbooks out there, but this one does it it all with more than 300 recipes including: recipes for every meal, light snacks and desserts, pastas, beans, grains, soups and hearty stews. It's not just about vegetables. It's about "plant-based eating," which is so much more nutritiously well-balanced. Pick it up today to change how you eat, for your lifestyle and/or your health.

 
Creamy Cauliflower Sauce with beans
Creamy Cauliflower Sauce with beans

I fell in love with Pinch of Yum's Creamy Cauliflower Sauce several months ago when a friend pinned it on Pinterest. Since then, I've pinned it myself and have seen it multiple times through a variety of other people I'm following. Needless to say, it's getting pretty popular, and with good reason.

Take a rich, unhealthy, but totally worth it flavor like alfredo sauce, and make it healthy? Everyone steps forward for a taste.

As a vegetarian, I am always looking for ways to add protein, which is what brought me to experiment with the recipe. Neither protein source - beans of tofu - change the flavor significantly. Both make it more creamy, the tofu especially. So, here's my protein punch up of the Pinch of Yum recipe:

  • Prep time: 15 min
  • Cook time: 20 min
  • Ready in: 35 min
  • Yields: 8-10 (depending on recipes)

Ingredients

  • Pinch of Yum's Creamy Cauliflower Sauce Recipe ingredients (including cauliflower, green onions, garlic, vegetable broth, milk, butter, salt, and pepper)
  • 1 15 -oz can of cannelini beans or 1 12-oz package of soft tofu
  • 1/2 cup Parmesan cheese (optional)
  • 2 Tbsp. olive oil

Instructions

  1. Prepare Creamy Cauliflower Sauce according to Pinch of Yum's instructions. Follow the recipe linked below.
  2. During the pureeing process, add beans or tofu, Parmesan cheese, and olive oil. Blend or food process until creamy.
  3. Make sure all ingredients are mixed well, especially if you have to process in batches.
  4. Enjoy!!
Cast your vote for Creamy Cauliflower Sauce (plus Protein)

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Are You Ready to Try Cauliflower Sauce?

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Zucchini Ribbon "Pasta" Alfredo

Zucchini Ribbon "Pasta" Alfredo
Zucchini Ribbon "Pasta" Alfredo

Zucchini Ribbon "Pasta" Alfredo

I've been interested lately in how I can use vegetables instead of noodles. I kind of thought it would take too long to turn my zucchini into ribbons, and then it occurred to me that it would be 15-20 minutes minimum to boil noodles. I'm happy to report, ribboning zucchini is a quick and easy process with delicious results.

Tossed and sauted with some other flavorful goodies (such as your favorite herbs), and here's a tasty, nutritious one-pot dish.

  • Prep time: 10 min
  • Cook time: 5 min
  • Ready in: 15 min
  • Yields: 1-2 people

Ingredients

  • 1 Tbsp. olive or grapeseed oil
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 2 -3 green onions, chopped
  • 1 Roma tomato, chopped into large pieces
  • 2 medium zucchini, peeled and ribboned
  • 1/2 cup Creamy Caulflower Sauce (plus protein), prepared

Instructions

  1. Prepare vegetables. To ribbon zucchini, peel with a hand peeler, place on cutting board, then use hand peeler to cut ribbons off the vegetable. Stop when you reach seeds.
  2. Heat the oil in a large frying pan. Add garlic and saute for about 1 minute.
  3. Add green onions and saute for about 1 minute more, or until onions begin to soften.
  4. Add tomatoes and saute for about 2 minutes.
  5. Add zucchini ribbons and saute for 3-4 minutes or until softened. I like them with just a tiny bit of crunchiness left in them so they don't get mushy.
  6. Stir in Creamy Cauliflower Sauce (plus protein) until heated through.
  7. Enjoy!

A Few Kitchen Tools for This Recipe - availble on Amazon

OXO Good Grips Swivel Peeler
OXO Good Grips Swivel Peeler

This is a really basic, old-school tool that is perfect for making vegetable ribbons. The thickness is great as a replacement for traditional noodles. I love OXO's good grips tools as well since they feel better in the hand.

 
Circulon Infinite Hard Anodized Nonstick 4-1/2-Quart Extra Deep All Purpose Pan
Circulon Infinite Hard Anodized Nonstick 4-1/2-Quart Extra Deep All Purpose Pan

This extra-deep all purpose pan is pefect for tossing and sauteing vegetables. If you get a little carried away with your veggie tossing, the sides catch most everything, but it still has plenty of surface in the bottom to heat evenly.

 

What noodle would you like to use most with this recipe?

What noodle would you like to use most with this recipe?

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Saucy Spinach on Toast

Saucy Spinach on Toast
Saucy Spinach on Toast

Saucy Spinach on Toast

Some people call this comfort food "S*** on a Shingle" or "SOS." I was raised on "Creamed Turkey on Toast." As an adult and vegetarian, I simply haven't found the perfect replacement, but when I have a craving for my mom's SOS, Saucy Spinach on Toast pretty much does the trick for me.

I'll admit... it's not a very photogenic dish, but don't let that keep you from trying it.

  • Prep time: 5 min
  • Cook time: 5 min
  • Ready in: 10 min
  • Yields: 2 people

Ingredients

  • 2 -3 ounces spinach
  • 1 cup Creamy Cauliflower Sauce (plus protein)
  • 4 pieces of toast

Instructions

  1. Steam the fresh spinach (or thaw and press the frozen spinach) using any method you like, but feel free to check out my quick and easy veg steaming method linked below.
  2. Stir into Creamy Cauliflower Sauce (plus protein). Heat together slowly in a sauce pan until warm through.
  3. While warming the sauce, drop your toast.
  4. Place two pieces of toast on a plate and top with spinach-y sauce.
  5. Enjoy!!

Crazy about This Corningware Dish for Steaming - available on Amazon.com

After steaming, drain off the water, mix the sauce and spinach right in this dish so you don't have to dirty another one. Easy peasy, lemon squeezy!

CorningWare 2-1/2-Quart Oval Casserole Dish with Glass Lid
CorningWare 2-1/2-Quart Oval Casserole Dish with Glass Lid

This casserole dish has a million and one uses, not the least of which is steaming. The Corningware surfaces clean up great in the dishwasher or during hand dish washing. It's works like a charm in the oven or microwave. This is a standard in my house that gets used at least once a week.

 

What's your favorite vegetarian "SOS" topping?

What's your favorite vegetarian "SOS" topping?

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"Pink" Sauce Spinach & Mushroom Lasagna

"Pink" Sauce Lasagna
"Pink" Sauce Lasagna

"Pink" Sauce Spinach & Mushroom Lasagna

I learned about "pink" sauce - a combination of white sauce (alfredo) and red sauce (marinara) - from a local pizza place we like. It's wonderful on pizzas, so I thought I would give it a shot in our favorite lasagna recipe.

I was right... Delish!!

  • Prep time: 30 min
  • Cook time: 1 hour 30 min
  • Ready in: 2 hours
  • Yields: 8 people

Ingredients

  • 1 30 -oz. container lowfat cottage cheese
  • 5 ounces fresh spinach
  • 4 ounces fresh button or baby portabella mushrooms, sliced
  • 8 ounces mozzarella cheese, shredded
  • 1/2 cup Parmesan cheese, shredded
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 tsp dried basil
  • 1 tsp dried oregano
  • 1 tsp onion salt
  • 16 ounces spaghetti sauce
  • 1.5 cups Creamy Cauliflower Sauce (plus protein)
  • 10 no-boil lasagna noodles

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Combine cottage cheese, spinach, mushrooms, 3/4 of the mozzarella cheese, Parmesan cheese, beaten egg, minced garlic, herbs and spices in a large bowl. Mix well.
  3. Pour about 1/2 cup of spaghetti sauce in the bottom of a 13x9 inch baking dish and spread so the whole bottom is coated. This keeps the noodles from sticking.
  4. Mix the remaining spaghetti sauce and the Creamy Cauliflower Sauce in a separate bowl to make "pink" sauce that looks like the photo below.
  5. Place a single layer of noodles down on top of the sauce in the 9x13 baking dish.
  6. Put 1/3 of the cheese mixture on top of the noodles and spread into a thin layer covering the noodles.
  7. Pour 1/3 of the "pink" sauce over the top of the cheese mixture and spread around to cover.
  8. Repeat steps 4-6 2 more times.
  9. Top the whole dish with the remaining mozzarella.
  10. Cover with foil and bake one hour.
  11. Remove foil and bake for another 20-30 minutes, until cheese on top is golden brown.
  12. Allow to set up for 5 minutes.
  13. Serve and enjoy!
"Pink" Sauce for Lasagna
"Pink" Sauce for Lasagna

Best Baking Dish for Lasagna - available on Amazon.com

Pyrex  Easy Grab 4-Piece Value Pack, includes 1-ea 3-qt Oblong, 2-qtOblong, Red Plastic Covers
Pyrex Easy Grab 4-Piece Value Pack, includes 1-ea 3-qt Oblong, 2-qtOblong, Red Plastic Covers

This is the set I own. It's perfect for lasagna - to make at home or to take on the go. Also the best baking dish for bars, casseroles, oven baked soups, and more, this glass dish gets used a lot in my kitchen. I love the easy fit lids for storage and travel!

 

What color is your favorite sauce for pasta dishes?

What color is your favorite sauce for pasta dishes?

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Link Party Connections

Here are parties and blog hops this page is linked to. Click on any of them to find hundreds more ideas, recipes, crafts, and much more!

I would love to read about your ideas!

How would you use Creamy Cauliflower Sauce? - And what do you think of the added protein?

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    • smine27 profile image

      Shinichi Mine 3 years ago from Tokyo, Japan

      This looks amazing and healthy.

    • Merrci profile image

      Merry Citarella 3 years ago from Oregon's Southern Coast

      I might have to try this today, instead of alfredo sauce. It's amazing how many ways you can use it! Love it! I think the added protein sounds good too!

    • Brite-Ideas profile image

      Barbara Tremblay Cipak 3 years ago from Toronto, Canada

      it sounds very good - I would certainly use it on pasta :)

    • ecogranny profile image

      Kathryn Grace 3 years ago from San Francisco

      I absolutely must try this! Fettucini Alfredo with spinach is one of my all time favorite comfort foods, so I will be trying this with whole wheat fettucini one day soon. I love your idea of adding the white cannellini beans. They would increase the smooth factor too, I imagine. I am sharing this page on my contributor Facebook page titled "Cooking with Whole Grains & Whole Foods." Come on over and see it!

    • profile image

      RinchenChodron 3 years ago

      I haven't tried it yet - but I definitely will! Thanks for the suggestions.

    • Judy Filarecki profile image

      Judy Filarecki 3 years ago from SW Arizona and Northern New York

      I use spiral zucchini fettuccine all the time and this sounds like an exciting addition to it. If you want to spiral it even faster, look at my lens: https://hubpages.com/food/the-spiral-slicer-for-gl... I spelled fettuccine wrong when first writing the lens, but the link will still get you there. I can't wait to try this sauce.