Ok, so FULL DISCLOSURE – this is NOT a vegan recipe. I realize that nowadays seeing creamy cauliflower Alfredo one might instantly assume the cauliflower is made to be creamy in order to stand in for the cream and butter you would normally find in an Alfredo recipe. Well, not today, folks. I happen to love cauliflower and Alfredo, so in my recipe-developer brain it’s only natural for me to put the two together. Who’s with me?!?
Truth be told, this recipe evolved from the basic reality that whenever I buy a full head of cauliflower I always seem to have so much left over. As much as I love the stuff, I’m not eating it at every meal! But, I don’t want it to go to waste either. So, it occurred to me at one point that by blending it with heavy cream into a smooth, thick, sauce-like puree it could be used to enhance a common, usually veggie-less, Alfredo dish. Sounds like a win-win, am I right?
As you may know by now, I love finding ways to add veggie boosts to my favorite foods. While I’m fully aware that this recipe still calls for cream, butter and cheese, how great it is that you can also get a dose of uber-good-for-you cauliflower, too?! Well, I didn’t stop there. I also take my recipe for Kale Pesto and swirl it into my finished pasta dish. Talk about a veggie boost! You can find my kale pesto recipe here. Make it days ahead and use it to boost your toast at breakfast or sandwiches at lunch or salmon for dinner. The possibilities are endless! Cheers to extra veg!
Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Once boiling, add 2 tablespoons salt. Add fettuccine noodles or preferred pasta of choice and cook until al dente, about 10-12 minutes or according to the package instructions. Strain. Toss with 1 tablespoon of olive oil to prevent sticking.
Meanwhile, add 1/3 cup of heavy cream and cauliflower florets to a Vitamix or other powerful blender. Puree until mixture is smooth. You may need to add another 2-3 tablespoons of cream to get the mixture to blend smoothly enough. Blend in the garlic powder, cayenne pepper, 1/4 teaspoon of salt and 1/8 teaspoon of black pepper.
Place the large pot used to cook the pasta back over medium heat. Add butter and melt. Once melted, whisk in cauliflower cream and cream cheese. Stir until cheese is melted and mixture is smooth, then whisk in Parmesan cheese in small batches. Season cauliflower Alfredo with salt and pepper to taste.
Fold the noodles into the sauce and scoop into bowls. Finish with freshly chopped parsley, or top off with a dollop of kale pesto and serve warm.