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Cheddar Cauliflower Bites | A delicious appetizer, these cheddar cauliflower bites and the ultimate bite sized comfort food. Plus, easy swaps for vegan or gluten free options. | SeasonedVegetable.com #vegetarian #appetizer #fallrecipe
Cheddar Cauliflower Bites
Prep Time
10 mins
Cook Time
45 mins
Total Time
55 mins
 
A delicious appetizer, these cheddar cauliflower bites and the ultimate bite sized comfort food.
Servings: 24 bites
Ingredients
For the cauliflower
  • 1 small head cauliflower, diced (about 1 pound)
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper
For the cheese sauce
  • 2 tablespoon butter
  • 2 tablespoon flour
  • 1 cup milk
  • 8 ounces shredded cheddar cheese
For the cauliflower bites
  • 4 to 6 ounces frozen hash browns, thawed
  • Olive oil spray
Instructions
Roast the cauliflower
  1. Heat oven to 350°F.
  2. Toss diced cauliflower with olive oil, salt and pepper. Spread on a lined baking sheet.
  3. Roast cauliflower 10 to 15 minutes until just tender. Then remove from oven and set aside.
Make the cheese sauce
  1. While the cauliflower is roasting, make the cheese sauce.
  2. In a small saucepan over low heat, melt butter. Whisk in flour and let cook 1 to 2 minutes. Keep whisking so the flour does not burn.
  3. Pour in milk while whisking until sauce begins to thicken slightly.
  4. Gradually whisk in shredded cheese until smooth.
Make the cheddar cauliflower bites
  1. Heat the oven to 450°F.
  2. Grease a mini muffin tin with olive oil spray.
  3. Generously press thawed hash browns into each well.
  4. Bake 10 to 15 minutes until the hash browns are just brown. Leave hash brown cups in the muffin tin. Then reduce oven to 350°F.
  5. Mix cauliflower into the cheese sauce. With the hash brown cups still in the tin, fill each cup with the cheese cauliflower mixture.
  6. Return to oven and bake another 5 to 10 minutes.
  7. Let cool slightly, then use a spoon to remove cheddar cauliflower bites. Transfer to a dry paper towel to absorb excess oil before serving.
Recipe Notes

SEASONED SECRET

Be sure to fill the well all the way to the top, and be generous in how much potato you put in each well. They will shrink in volume as they cook.

VEGAN

Check out this vegan cheese sauce from Minimalist Baker. They key component will be how thick your sauce is. You want the cheese sauce to stick to the cauliflower as a binding agent to keep it all together. Alternatively, skip the cheese and make buffalo cauliflower bites.

GLUTEN FREE

You can use sweet rice flour instead of regular wheat flour to make your roux. Or skip the sauce entirely and just sprinkle some cheese on top of the cauliflower inside the potato cups and melt.

OMNIVORE

Bacon and ham are the most natural additions. My 5 year old self would request diced hotdog. Grown up me would suggest breakfast or spicy sausage. Be sure to cook your meat thoroughly before mixing together with the cheese sauce and roasted cauliflower.

CHECK THE FRIDGE

Don’t have cauliflower? Broccoli, carrots, parsnips, cabbage, Brussels sprouts, or a combination of these would be great as a substitute. Or mix all the above with cauliflower. This recipe is perfect for using up any leftover raw or roasted vegetables in your fridge. Did I mention the awesomeness of cheese and roasted vegetables?

FROM SCRATCH

Instead of using frozen hash browns, shred russet or yukon potatoes using a box grater or food processor. Be sure to press all the moisture out of the shredded potatoes. You can use a cheese cloth, dish towel or fine mesh strainer.