Jalapeño Popper Cauliflower "Mac" and Cheese - Keto and Low Carb
Print Recipe
4.75 from 4 votes

Jalapeño Popper Cauliflower "Mac" and Cheese - Keto and Low Carb

All the flavors of jalapeño poppers made into a creamy and delicious cauliflower "mac" and cheese!
Prep Time5 mins
Cook Time5 mins
Total Time10 mins
Course: Side Dish
Servings: 7
Calories: 355kcal
Author: Keto Cooking Christian

Ingredients

  • 1 large head cauliflower  cut into small bites
  • 8 ounces cream cheese softened
  • 1 1/2 cups shredded cheddar cheese I use a cheddar blend
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • 5 strips of uncured bacon cooked and crumbled (bacon grease reserved)
  • 3 teaspoons bacon grease melted
  • 2 jalapeño peppers minced (see notes)
  • 2 tablespoons grass-fed butter
  • 1-2 tablespoons hot water
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • Optional: fresh cilantro for garnish

Instructions

  • Add the cauliflower florets to a microwave save bowl with a plate (or paper plate) on top  Microwave for 7-8 minutes or until slightly tender (or your desired texture).  You can steam it instead, if you don’t have or want to use a microwave, but I would not boil it, it might be too watery.
  • While the cauliflower is cooking, heat a sauce pan over medium.  Add in the butter and bacon grease, then sauté the jalapeño peppers until tender, should take just about 2-3 minutes.  Add in the cream cheese and stir until melted.  Add the remaining ingredients and still until well combined and all the cheese has melted.
  • Add in 1-2 tablespoons of hot water if needed, to reach your desired consistency.  I added in 1 tablespoon, to thin it out a tiny bit.  I purposely made this sauce on the thicker side, because I cannot stand when a "mac & cheese" type sauce is too thin and just drips off the cauliflower.  I prefer each piece to be coated nicely in the sauce, and why wouldn't you!?  The sauce is fantastic!
  • Once the cauliflower is cooked through, you don't need to drain it or pat it dry.  The small amount of moisture will be perfect with this sauce, which as I mentioned, is on the thicker side.  Pour the sauce over the cauliflower and mix well to coat each piece, then serve.
  • I garnished mine with some fresh chopped cilantro, but you can use parsley, scallions or minced jalapeño. If you are a fan of cilantro, you could also mix a tablespoon or so right into the sauce. I LOVE cilantro and will most definitely be doing that next time I make this! 
  • Store leftovers in the fridge for a few days. It reheats beautifully in the microwave or stovetop.

Notes

The amount of jalapeño pepper that you use is entirely up to you, and will depend personal preference.  I would recommend using 2  jalapeño peppers for a mild to medium level of heat and flavor.  If you're like me and love a spicy kick and a stronger jalapeño flavor, you'll want to use a bit more.  
If you're not sure how much to use,  you can make the sauce with just 2 jalapeño's, taste it and see how you like it.  Then, you can quickly sauté more and mix it in the sauce to give it more heat and flavor.

Nutrition

Calories: 355kcal | Carbohydrates: 7g | Protein: 12g | Fat: 31g | Saturated Fat: 19g | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 3g