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How to Make Cauliflower Rice

Learning how to make Cauliflower rice is so easy with these simple directions! This riced cauliflower recipe is endlessly versatile. Serve it as a simple side dish or use it as foundation for a hearty meal.

Is there anything cauliflower can’t do? Readers love this cauliflower mash recipe I shared a while back. Today, we’re turning an ordinary head of cauliflower into rice!

Riced cauliflower cooked in a skillet with wooden spoon.

Why this Recipe Works

The versatility of cauliflower makes it one of my favorite veggies to cook with.

It has a mild taste, meaning you can pair with just about any spices, seasonings or flavors. It also has enough structure to hold up to all kinds of preparation, from pan frying to baking to steaming.

Since cauliflower is low in carbs and calories, it’s an ideal swap for starchier foods like potatoes and rice. Even if you’re not watching your carbs, sometimes it’s nice to change up the usual heavy starch element for a nice serving of veggies instead.

With this cauliflower rice recipe, you’ll never be without a quick and healthy side dish that goes with just about any main course!

Serve it up with:

PRO TIP. With just a little extra work, you can make this into Cilantro Lime Cauliflower Rice for taco Tuesday!

Ingredient Notes

Ingredients needed to make riced cauliflower.

Cauliflower. Half of a large head of cauliflower is usually plenty. If you have a large family–or are serving a crowd–feel free to use the entire head in this recipe.

Olive oil. I cook the riced cauliflower in a bit of oil to soften it and add flavor.

Salt and pepper. Add these to taste before serving. Feel free to add other spices and seasonings you enjoy in your rice, if you’re serving this on its own as a side.

NOTE: One large head of cauliflower will make about 6 1/2 cups of riced cauliflower. This will cook down to about 4 1/2 cups of cooked cauliflower rice.

Today’s recipe only uses 3 cups of that rice cauliflower…storing the remaining uncooked riced cauliflower in the freezer for later. 3 cups will cook down to about 2 cups of cooked riced cauliflower. Hope this helps!

Tips and Tricks

There are two methods for turning cauliflower into rice.

How to make cauliflower rice with a food processor.

The food processor is the quickest method. Process florets a few times until you see rice sized pieces.

Depending on the size of your food processor, you may need to add the cauliflower in batches. Be careful not to over process and turn your cauliflower into puree or powder!

How to make cauliflower rice with a box grater.

You can also use a box grater to make cauliflower rice.

Use the side with the largest holes, running the cauliflower over the grate until it’s broken down into small pieces.

Recipe FAQs

How do you use cauliflower rice?

I use cauliflower rice in any recipe that calls for rice. Try it in Chicken Fried Cauliflower Rice or this Chicken and Rice Casserole.

Can you rice the cauliflower ahead of time and store for later?

It’s best to use the cauliflower rice right after you grate it. Waiting to cook it can result in the cauliflower producing an unpleasant smell. Freezing it is another great option if you don’t plan to cook it right away. After grating, freeze uncooked cauliflower rice in a freezer bag for up to 1 month.

How long does cooked cauliflower keep?

Cooked cauliflower rice can be stored in the fridge for about 3 days.

Can you freeze cooked cauliflower rice?

Cooked cauliflower rice can get mushy as it thaws, so I don’t recommend freezing it. If you can’t eat all the cauliflower rice right away, cook half now and freeze the rest uncooked.

Do you have to squeeze the moisture out first?

This is up to you. If your cauliflower seems especially watery, you can place it in a strainer and squeeze out the excess water with a paper towel.

Cauliflower rice served in small bowls.

More Low Carb Dinners

Yield: 2 cups

How to Make Cauliflower Rice

Cauliflower rice in a skillet on a wooden spoon.

Learning how to make Cauliflower rice is so easy with these simple directions! This riced cauliflower recipe is endlessly versatile. Serve it as a simple side dish or use it as foundation for a hearty meal.

Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 7 minutes
Total Time 17 minutes

Ingredients

  • 1 medium to large head of cauliflower
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Instructions

    1. Wash and dry the head of cauliflower. Chop cauliflower into large pieces.
    2. Add the pieces of cauliflower to a food processor and pulse a few times until it turns into coarse pieces. Be careful not to over process as the cauliflower will turn into mashed cauliflower. Depending on how much cauliflower there is, it may have to be added to the food processor in batches.
    3. If using a box grater, grate the cauliflower using the side with the largest sized holes, until it all has been “riced” or broken into smaller pieces.
    4. Add about 3 cups of uncooked riced cauliflower to a large skillet on the stove top. Drizzle 1 tablespoon of olive oil over the cauliflower and saute until softened, about 7-10 minutes. Covering the skillet with a lid will help the steam soften the rice.
    5. Season to taste with salt and pepper and serve immediately,

Notes

  • It’s best to use the cauliflower rice right after you grate it. Waiting to cook it can result in the cauliflower producing an unpleasant smell. Freezing it is another great option if you don’t plan to cook it right away.
  • Freezing the cauliflower rice is a great idea for future use. After grating it, place the uncooked cauliflower in freezer bags for up to 1 month.
  • Cooked riced cauliflower will keep in the refrigerator in an airtight container for up to 5 days.
  • Use this in place of any recipe that calls for regular rice. 
  • A large head of cauliflower yields 6 ½ cups of uncooked riced cauliflower, This will cook down to about 4 ½ cups. Today's recipe amount calls for making the cooked rice, preparing 3 cups uncooked, storing the rest in the freezer.

Nutrition Information:

Yield:

4

Serving Size:

1/2 cup

Amount Per Serving: Calories: 62Total Fat: 4gSaturated Fat: 1gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 3gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 95mgCarbohydrates: 6gFiber: 3gSugar: 3gProtein: 3g

Replace the starch in your dinner with this cauliflower rice! Easy to make, this riced cauliflower is endlessly versatile and delicious.

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