The ‘faux carb’ trend, which emerged a few years ago, has seen carbohydrate-heavy products being replaced by nutritionally dense and low-calorie vegetables. This has led to the development of pasta and rice alternatives like courgetti and butternut squash lasagne sheets.
A byproduct of this trend is the surge in popularity of the humble cauliflower, which provides an appealing blend of versatility and strong nutritional credentials. The proliferation of low-carb/gluten-free/grain-free diets has promoted the use of cauliflower in a variety of formats, not only at home, but also in restaurants and supermarkets.
Using Mintel Global New Products Database (GNPD), we select 10 interesting and unexpected foods made with cauliflower.
Cauliflower porridge (US)
Made with diced and freeze-dried cauliflower, as well as almond protein powder, Purely Elizabeth’s Strawberry Hazelnut Cauliflower Hot Cereal can be prepared just like instant oatmeal and is ready in under two minutes. According to the company, cauliflower mimics the look and mouthfeel of oats and is ideal for the growing paleo and keto communities as well as grain-free dieters.
Cauliflower sausages (UK)
Aldi’s The Deli Masala Roast Cauliflower Sausages comprise garam masala spiced roast cauliflower sausages with red onion, brown rice and yellow split peas. The product is not only suitable for vegetarians and vegans, but also free from gluten, artificial colours, flavourings and preservatives.
Cauliflower rice (Australia)
You probably already know about this – cauliflower rice has emerged in the last few years as a popular substitute for rice. Healthy Heart Cauliflower Rice is a microwavable and vegan-friendly product which claims to have 85% less calories and 90% less carbohydrates than white rice.
Cauliflower ketchup (France)
Les 3 Chouettes Organic Yellow Pop Ketchup with Cauliflower and Curry is claimed to be ideal with chicken or fish nuggets, vegetable fries or hot dogs. It has been formulated with organic cauliflowers grown near Paris.
Cauliflower ice cream (US)
A truly unique product, Peekaboo Organic Chocolate Ice Cream with Hidden Cauliflower targets those who know they should eat vegetables, but don’t get enough of them. The kosher certified product is claimed to be packed with vitamins and minerals including vitamin A and C, and manganese.
Cauliflower pancakes (US)
Trader Joe’s Cauliflower Pancakes are made with riced cauliflower and elevated by the delicate flavor of leeks and umami of parmesan. This kosher certified product can be enjoyed warm and crisp, dappled with apple sauce or sour cream and sprinkled with herbs, and can be cooked in the oven or on the stove-top.
Cauliflower crisps (Canada)
Popcorners Flourish Slightly Salted Toasted Cauliflower Veggie Crisps are said to be made with wholesome ingredients and real vegetables including cauliflower, chickpeas, rice and yellow peas. These toasted, crunchy crisps are not fried, but popped to perfection and are free from GMOs, gluten, dairy, nuts, artificial flavours, colours and preservatives.
Cauliflower schnitzel (Israel)
From Israel, Tivall Vegetarian Cauliflower Schnitzel is a good alternative to meat that can be oven baked. With 99 calories per schnitzel, it’s not only suitable for vegetarians and flexitarians, but also for consumers who are trying to cut down on calories.
Cauliflower bread (Brazil)
As consumers are looking for low-carb or carb-free bread, Natural Fit Low-Carb Cauliflower Sliced Bread offers a functional alternative with health benefits. Cauliflower is a versatile and highly nutritious food, has a low carbohydrate content and is rich in fiber and vitamins. This gluten-free bread also contains white bean flour, which is a source of phaseolamin, a substance that is said to decrease carbohydrate absorption in the body.
Cauliflower nuggets (UK)
M&S Food Plant Kitchen Cauliflower Popcorn is a ready to cook vegan and vegetarian product made with crispy coated cauliflower mini florets with spicy buffalo dip. This product fits into the growing trend for ‘dirty’ vegan ready meals, designed to make the plant-based category more indulgent and creative.
Cauliflower pizza (US)
Last but not least, cauliflower pizza crusts have received notable media coverage over the last few years. The brand Caulipower was founded by the mum of two children with coeliac disease to provide them with delicious alternatives to carbs. The brand sells ready-made pizza and pizza crusts, but also cauliflower tortillas and chicken tenders breaded with dried cauliflower.