Baked Caulimac and Cheese

Recipe by Mandy Pagano

Recipe originally published on on 4/2/21. It has been lightly edited for re-publication.


Y'all know I'm southern. If there is one staple comfort food that a southerner must have that isn't a grit, it's baked macaroni and cheese. It is 100%, hands-down considered a savory delicacy in southern culture... and the macaroni part is totally out on keto.

Never fear!

With the use of cauliflower as an all-purpose, low-carb utility vegetable, mac and cheese can sort-of be on the table again.

Now, back in the day, I would have used milk and flour to thicken, but otherwise this recipe is pretty darned close to how I made my cheese sauce before. The entire process is basically the same, with some strategic swaps, and the result is what is probably my daughter's favorite dish of all time.

It's southern kid approved, y'all. #ketomomwin

Notes: I like my mac and cheese super sharp, but I just listed cheddar as the ingredient, so you can choose how sharp or mild you would like your sauce and topping. Feel free to mix up cheeses, too. Adding some smoked Gouda to the mix is a nice change up, and is especially pleasing to adult palates.


[tasty-recipe id="3663"]

Baked Caulimac and Cheese

  •  Author: Mandy Pagano
  •  Prep Time: 15 minutes
  •  Cook Time: 20 minutes
  •  Total Time: 35 minutes
  •  Yield: 8 servings
  •  Method: Baked
  •  Cuisine: Southern
  •  Keywords: cheese, family-favorites, kid-friendly, baked, vegetables, vegetarian, cauliflower, cauliflower-rice, mac-and-cheese, meatless


  • 20 oz (567 g) frozen cauliflower rice, prepared according to the package directions
  • 2 tbsp (1 oz/28 g) butter, salted
  • 1 1/2 c (12 fl oz/355 ml) heavy cream
  • 3/4 tsp sea salt
  • 1/4 tsp ground black pepper
  • pinch mustard powder
  • 1/4 tsp glucomannan powder
  • 8 oz (227 g) shredded cheddar cheese
  • 4 oz (113 g) sliced cheddar cheese


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F and prepare an 11"x7" baking dish.
  2. Spread the cooked caulirice evenly in the bottom of the prepared baking dish and set aside.
  3. In a saucepan, melt the butter over medium heat.
  4. Once the butter is melted and foamy, stir in the heavy cream and cook over medium heat until it starts steaming.
  5. Whisk in the seasonings, then sprinkle the glucomannan powder into the heavy cream while whisking thoroughly.
  6. Continue to cook over medium heat until it just starts to thicken. Turn the heat to low.
  7. Add the shredded cheese, a handful at a time, while whisking to melt and combine. When the cheese is all in and melted into the sauce, remove from the heat and pour over the caulirice in the baking dish.
  8. Stir well to distribute the cheese sauce evenly, then smooth the top and lay cheese slices so that they cover most of the casserole.
  9. Bake at 350 degrees F for 20 minutes, or until the cheese on top is good and bubbly.
  10. Remove from the oven and let stand ten minutes before serving.
  11. Enjoy!


  • Serving Size: 1/8 Casserole
  • Calories: 366 cal
  • Fat: 33.2 g
  • Carbohydrates: 6.2 g
    • Fiber: 1.8 g
    • Net Carbs [total carbs - (fiber + sugar alcohol)] : 4.4 g
  • Protein: 12.7 g

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