Keto Cauliflower: 5 Reasons Why Cauliflower Is The Ultimate Keto Food
Why is keto cauliflower the ultimate ketogenic food? Let's find out the reasons why this cruciferous vegetable should always be in your meals.
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In this article:
- What Is Cauliflower?
- What Are the Types of Cauliflower?
- How to Choose and Store Cauliflower
- The Keto Cauliflower Pizza Crust
- What to Remember When Cooking Keto Cauliflower
Why Keto Cauliflower Is Best for the Ketogenic Diet
What Is Cauliflower?
Before I talk about the reasons why cauliflower is the ultimate keto food, let me first tell you what it is so you have a little background. Cauliflower is a type of cruciferous vegetable belonging to the Brassicaceae family, which includes cabbage, kale, and broccoli. Its name comes from the Latin word caulis, meaning “cabbage with a flower.” Its florets consist of immature flower buds connected to its central stalk. Farmers keep this vegetable away from sunlight to prevent over-maturity and chlorophyll pigment.
What Are the Types of Cauliflower?
This vegetable has four major groups: Northern European annuals (with many varieties), Northwest European biennial, Italian, and Asian. Typically, you see it as white, but it also comes in various colors, such as orange, purple, and green. The orange one has higher nutrients and higher levels of Vitamin A than the white one. Purple cauliflower has anthocyanins (antioxidants), which are also responsible for its color. People call the green one broccoflower; it can be the spiky variant or the normal curd shape.
Now you know the background of keto cauliflower, it’s time to discuss the benefits of cauliflower in your keto meal plan.
1. Low in Net Carbs
What's cool about keto cauliflower is it's low in carbs and tastes like a potato, very starchy, but it doesn't have starch in it. A cup of cauliflower has 1.4 g of fiber and net carbs of 1.2 g, which is perfect.
2. Rich in Vitamins and Minerals
There are a couple of additional things about cauliflower that make it really great beyond just being low carb. It has a lot of vitamins, such as B1, B2, B3, B5, B6, B9, C, E, and K1. It also has a lot of trace minerals, especially manganese, which is good as an antioxidant.
3. Contains Phytonutrients
Cauliflower also has phytonutrients. In fact, all cruciferous vegetables are high in phytonutrients. But, what are phytonutrients? They mainly act as specialized antioxidants that help in the turning on and off of certain genes and in the maintenance of your deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA).
4. Promotes Weight Loss
Keto cauliflower has the potential to aid you in achieving your weight loss goals. It is low in calories where a cup of it only has 25 calories. This means you can eat a lot of it without the need to worry about gaining more weight. You can also make it as a low-calorie, low-carb substitute for plain or keto fried rice or flour. Because it is high in fiber, cauliflower can help with your metabolism and make you feel full fast, making you eat less.
5. Easy to Add to Your Meals
Aside from the great health benefits of cauliflower, the vegetable is also very easy and versatile to prepare or include in your diet. You can eat it raw which requires little preparation. Its florets are great as snacks where you can dip in hummus, sour cream, or other types of vegetable-heavy cream. You may also make it as cauliflower mash, cook it with olive oil, coconut oil, garlic, shredded cheese, or combine it with casseroles, stir-fries, salads, and soups.
How to Choose and Store Cauliflower
Although this vegetable is easily available, it’s still helpful to know how to pick the best ones. First, look for those with tightly bundled, clean, creamy white florets (or the other colors if available) and bright green leaves. Avoid those with yellow-spotted florets and saggy leaves because they are not fresh and are less nutritious. Be careful with dark-colored patches as well because this may indicate a disease like downy mildew. You can store keto cauliflower in the fridge for five days, and those cut florets need to be eaten within four days or less because they don't last long.
Downy Mildew Definition: A type of plant disease of the foliage or a fungal infection affecting growing plants in cool, moist weather.
The Keto Cauliflower Pizza Crust
There are many different ways to prepare cauliflower. The one I like is the gluten-free pizza crust where you can taste pizza made of a cauliflower crust. It's delicious! You can also get this type of crust in stores.
What's really important when you get a crust is to look on the label and make sure it has cauliflower in it. Some companies add ingredients like tapioca, starch, and dextrin, which are not keto-friendly. You can also get cauliflower rice, which is getting more popular or you can make cauliflower fried rice. It tastes almost identical to rice, which is very starchy but without the starch and provides dietary fiber. Another crowd favorite is Cajun Waffle Fries they are crispy and delicious!
What to Remember When Cooking Keto Cauliflower
One thing to remember when you are cooking cauliflower is the more you cook it, the more nutrients you destroy. Three minutes of boiling equals 10 mins of steaming. So, if you were to steam for 5 minutes or boil for 2 minutes, you preserve a lot more nutrients. The best way to do it is just to saute the cauliflower florets. Although you might cook it for a long time, you still get some nutrients.
Pair It with Cheese
Sometimes, when I go to restaurants, I find they have roasted cauliflower with cheese on the menu. I order it and eat the whole cheesy cauliflower. But, there are a lot of ways to pair keto cauliflower with other low-carb foods without going to restaurants. You can get creative with it.
Keto cauliflower is definitely one of the top ketogenic foods to add to your diet because they are not only low in carb count, but they’re also loaded with nutrients. Prepping dishes or a low-carb meal with cauliflower can be fun as well because you can experiment with different flavorful and delicious easy keto cauliflower recipes!
What is your favorite keto cauliflower recipe? Share it in the comments section below!
Disclaimer: Our educational content is not meant or intended for medical advice or treatment.