Mashed Cauliflower

Love mashed potatoes? Then you’ll love mashed cauliflower. It looks so similar that at first you might do a double take! But cauliflower actually has more nutrients than potatoes. (That can be our little secret.) This makes a great base for our Summer Squash Sauté, or a super side for the Herby Roast Chicken.

kitchen gear

  • Cutting board
  • Sharp knife (adult needed)
  • Medium-sized heavy-bottomed pot with lid
  • Wooden spoon or heatproof spatula
  • Measuring cup
  • Measuring spoons
  • Colander
  • Potato masher (or handheld blender or food processor)
  • Pot holder



  • 1 large head cauliflower, leaves removed and discarded
  • 1 cup water
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 3 tablespoons plain yogurt
  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter (optional)
  • 1⁄4 teaspoon salt



  • Use your hands and the small, sharp knife to separate the cauliflower into florets and chop the stem fine. (“Florets” are the branched clusters at the top of the cauliflower.) Throw away the tough inner core.
  • Put the pot on the stove, add the cauliflower and water, and set the heat to high. Bring the pot to a boil. (You’ll know the water is boiling when you see bubbles breaking all over its surface.) Cover and turn the heat down to low.
  • Cook the cauliflower until very tender, 15-35 minutes depending on the size of the cauliflower florets. If there is liquid left in the pot, drain the cauliflower in the colander and return it to the pot.
  • Mash, using a potato masher, or blend with a handheld blender or food processor.
  • Add the olive oil, yogurt and, if using, butter, salt, and pepper and mash until smooth. Serve right away, or cover and refrigerate up to 2 days. 

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