Pic of Cauliflower cheese

Cauliflower cheese

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Cauliflower cheese

Side Serves 4 35 min
Soothing and reassuringly simple to make, cauliflower cheese is comfort food at its best. You should have almost zero waste from your cauliflower, apart the very base of the stalk or the odd discoloured leaf it is all useable; not only thrifty but tasty too.

Cook's notes

If you want to jazz it up a bit you can add some greens into the mix too, wilted spinach or some lightly cooked leeks would be ideal. A little crispy bacon folded through the mix could some crunch, as would a scattering of stale breadcrumbs as crispy topping.


  • 1 large cauliflower
  • 40g butter
  • 40g plain flour
  • 500–550ml whole milk
  • 100g mature Cheddar, grated, plus extra for sprinkling on top
  • 50g Parmesan, grated (or replace with more Cheddar, if you prefer)
  • pinch of grated nutmeg
  • 1 tsp English mustard
  • salt and black pepper
Image of Cauliflower cheese


Prep time: 15 min
Cooking time: 20 min
  • Step 1

    Turn your oven to 200°C/Gas 6 to preheat. Break the cauliflower into generous florets, cut the stalk into batons, and slice the leaves into manageable pieces. Boil or steam the cauliflower for about 4 minutes, leaving it with a good bite. Drain it well.
  • Step 2

    Make the sauce by melting the butter in a pan over a low heat. Add the flour and stir it into the butter to make a paste, cook it gently for a couple of minutes until it smells faintly biscuity. Gradually add the milk, stirring constantly with a whisk until you have a thick sauce. Let it bubble gently for a few minutes while still stirring. Stir in the grated cheeses, nutmeg and mustard. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
  • Step 3

    Pack the cauliflower into a snug fitting oven dish and pour over the cheese sauce. Sprinkle with the extra grated Cheddar and bake in the oven for around 15 minutes, or until golden on top.

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