Table of Contents
Is cauliflower low carb?
Yes, it is! We’ll show you why you should go for cauliflower if you want to lose weight and eat healthily on a ketogenic diet—professional tips on preparing it and the tastiest recipes with the flowering vegetable.
Gone are the days when cauliflower was skimmed with butter or drowned in gallons of hollandaise. Today, athletes, models, and fit influencers enjoy their cauliflower as a delicious low-carb keto diet alternative to rice, flour, or pasta. How does it work?
Ingredients and nutritional values of cauliflower
Cauliflower contains countless minerals and vitamins, such as vitamin B or C. The latter is essential for good connective tissue and is suitable for athletes who strive for a toned body.
Is cauliflower low carb? Cauliflower is also a very low-calorie vegetable, coming in at just 22 calories per 100 grams. In addition, its carbohydrate value is only 2 grams per 100 grams of cabbage – making it the perfect low-carb alternative to rice or pasta.
Average nutritional values per 100 grams of cauliflower:
- Calories 22 kcal
- Vitamin C 65 mg
- Vitamin B6 50 µg
- Iron 0,5 g
- Folic acid 50 µg
- Protein 1.9 g
- Fat 0 g
- Carbohydrates 2 g
Cauliflower is low-carb and so healthy!
Unlike other types of cabbage, cauliflower is a very digestible, even easily digestible vegetable, because:
- Cauliflower also contains almost no sugar.
- Cauliflower contains mustard oils, which have anti-inflammatory and antibiotic effects.
- Cauliflower consists primarily (nearly 90 percent) of water.
- Cauliflower has hardly any fat.
Thanks to its easy digestibility, cauliflower is suitable even for people with a sensitive gastrointestinal system. Other types of cabbage often burden the gastrointestinal tract, as they are difficult to decompose and digest.
The result is stomach discomfort, bloating, or flatulence. The finer cell structure of cauliflower is good for the stomach, so the vegetable is even suitable for light foods or baby food.
Facts about the low-carb keto food cauliflower
Cauliflower got its name because it’s a flower. Or rather, the white, narrow florets are buds that haven’t unfolded into flowers yet.
If it were not harvested, the florets would grow apart, sprout, and yellow flowers would appear after some time.
By the way, just like cauliflower, broccoli and artichoke also belong to the flowering vegetables. But the cabbage in the name is also justified. Like Brussels sprouts, cauliflower belongs to the vegetable cabbage and thus to the cruciferous family.
The cauliflower probably originated in Asia Minor, where it developed from a cabbage flower mutation. Before it made its way to us in the USA, it first came to Italy and Greece. Today, it is impossible to imagine American cuisine without the vegetable.
Cauliflower, just like asparagus, retains its white color only when it is not exposed to sunlight. For this reason, the head of the cabbage is covered with its large green leaves. If the cabbage shows yellowish or purple spots, it is a sign of insufficient protection from sunlight.
In this country, white cauliflower is particularly popular. However, it is also available in purple, green, or even yellow. However, there is little difference in taste between the color varieties. Only the rather pointed Romanesco, even in floret form, tastes more intense and aromatic.
When is cauliflower in season?
Cauliflower is in its peak season from July to September, but you can also find the tasty cabbage in supermarkets in June, October, and November.
After the season, we must store the cabbage to benefit from the harvest for a few more months. The ideal storage temperature is 0 to 1 degree Celsius.
Cabbage is not sensitive to cold and does not ripen after harvest. So for cauliflower storage, a cool, dark cellar or the refrigerator’s vegetable compartment is best.
However, cauliflower is not a storage vegetable, meaning we should eat it as soon as possible or after about seven days at the latest.
Preparing cauliflower correctly
When it comes to preparing cauliflower, opinions differ: some love it raw, others cook it al dente, while others cook it through and turn it into a puree or soup.
If you want to benefit from all the health advantages of cauliflower, you should always eat it raw. According to the University of Warwick (England) analysis, the loss of bioactive ingredients is 20 to 30 percent after just five minutes of boiling in water. After 30 minutes, this even increases to 75 percent.
These cauliflower cooking methods are suitable:
Raw: The raw consumption of cauliflower is not yet so well known and famous in the USA. However, the white cabbage tastes very tasty, completely uncooked, and can be eaten chopped up in a raw vegetable salad, for example, or as a whole floret between meals.
Steamed: If you want to prepare your cauliflower gently and firmly to the bite, you can cook it. To do this, heat some water, salt, and lemon juice in a pot and then place the washed, portioned florets in a cooking tray. After about 20 – 25 minutes, the cabbage will be steamed and ready to eat.
Roasted: Cauliflower has experienced a real renaissance in recent months, becoming the lauded vegetable for all fitness enthusiasts. Why? Because chopped up and roasted, it can easily be used as a rice substitute. With Cauliflower Rice, you save unnecessary carbohydrates and still don’t have to sacrifice taste.
Cooked: Of course, you can also cook cauliflower in boiling salted water. When cooked whole, the cabbage takes about 30 minutes to cook. The individual florets are already done after 10 to 15 minutes. Tip: The cooking water can make a great sauce thanks to the nutrients and flavors it contains.
When cooked, we can then store the cauliflower in the refrigerator for about 2-3 days.
Recipes with cauliflower
Cauliflower goes well with countless dishes thanks to its almost neutral taste, how about for example:
- Cauliflower pizza with zucchini and chicken: light pizza delight with lots of protein and few carbohydrates.
- Cauliflower mint salad with kefir dressing: raw vegetables can be so delicious!
- Vegetable curry with coconut and cauliflower rice: fruity curry with a figure-friendly low-carb rice variation.
- Crispy cauliflower: a tasty and straightforward variation that also has an anti-inflammatory effect thanks to turmeric.
But if you do want to go sweet, cauliflower also goes wonderfully with brownies, making them super moist, low-carb, and even gluten-free.
Or how about “cauliflower rice pudding” with cinnamon and sugar? Cook the chopped cauliflower in milk and refine it with delicious spices to taste.