Let’s find out what does cauliflower taste like?
If you have kept up with the food trends across the world, you’d know how popular cauliflower rice has become. Being a good substitute for rice and bread, this keto-friendly vegetable is more than just its taste. In case you haven’t tried cauliflower before, I’d suggest you read till the end to find out how it tastes and why it has gained so much popularity.
Remember that cauliflowers don’t necessarily have a distinct taste of their own; it is how you prepare it that makes a difference.
What is Cauliflower?
Cauliflower is one of the many vegetables that belong to the Brassicaceae family, wherein the white flesh in the middle is eaten and the remaining leaves covering the sides of the core are usually discarded. The middle white part of cauliflower is often referred to as the “curd.”
While the majority of the people consume the white part, even the stems of the leaves are edible if they are tender.
Even though cauliflower is grown and harvested throughout the year, I’d suggest you buy the ones available during the fall and winter season because they taste a lot less bitter.
Surprisingly, cauliflower is also available in four different color variants, including white, orange, green, and purple. But, the white variant is the most consumed of them all.
It is also a cruciferous vegetable, which suggests that the exterior appearance of the vegetable resembles that of a rose.
The head of the vegetable usually is 6-8 inches in size, depending on the variety of cauliflower you are buying.
What Does Cauliflower Taste Like?
Now that you know what cauliflower is, it is time I walk you through the taste of this vegetable.
If I had to explain it in a few words, I’d say it tastes sweet and nutty but has a little bitter undertone that you feel in the end.
As for the flavor of the vegetable, it is pretty mild and neutral with a crunchy texture once baked or roasted.
One of the common reasons why your cauliflower tastes bad is because of the off-season crop when it’s overcooked.
The bitter aftertaste is an acquired taste, but if you cook this the right way and seasonings, it does taste a lot better in comparison. Some even prefer eating the vegetable raw because of its crunchy texture.
In case you don’t want the bitter aftertaste at all, we’d suggest you try out the heirloom varieties first, mainly the purple variants.
Since it doesn’t have a strong flavor and taste of its own, it allows you to experiment with several spices and sauces.
Is Cauliflower a Healthy Vegetable?
Just because cauliflower doesn’t have a robust taste and flavor, it is often considered a non-nutritious vegetable. That is not the case, though.
1. High in Nutrients
Cauliflower is one of the most nutritious vegetables, providing you with an abundance of nutrients ranging from Vitamin B6, C, and K.
Aside from the vitamins, it has a high concentration of minerals, too, including potassium, folate, manganese, magnesium, and phosphorus.
2. Promotes Better Gut Health
If you often complain about poor digestion and gut health, consuming cauliflower can effectively help with that. The high water-soluble fiber content in the vegetable promotes smoother digestion and bowel movement.
For those struggling with inflammatory bowel disease and constipation, consuming cauliflower can effectively help reverse the impacts of the chronic disease.
The high fiber content further reduces the risks of heart diseases and diabetes. It might also help prevent the risks of cancer.
3. Helps with Weight Loss
In case you have been trying to lose weight, switching from the carb-rich white rice to cauliflower rice can effectively help with that. Cauliflower has high water content and low calories, both of which promote easier weight loss results.
Why Does the Cauliflower Taste Bitter?
If you have never tried a cauliflower before, it is likely you wouldn’t know how to cook it the right way. That is what contributes to the bad taste of the vegetable. The last thing you want is to make a vegetable taste repulsive and not want to eat it for the rest of your life.
What Makes a Cauliflower Taste Bad?
One of the most common reasons behind the bland and bitter aftertaste of the cauliflower is because of overcooking. If you leave the vegetable for boiling or baking for too long, the results are not going to be enticing at all.
If you are boiling the cauliflower, blanch it for 10-15 minutes. If you are baking them, don’t exceed the 10 minutes mark.
2. Different Variants
As I mentioned before, cauliflowers come in a few different color variants. If you are eating it for the first time, we’d suggest you try the colored ones instead of the white one as that has a slightly bitter taste to it.
But, since the purple cauliflowers are heirloom varieties, you might not find them readily in the supermarkets. I’d suggest you try scoping them in the farmer’s market instead.
3. Growing Conditions
If cauliflower is exposed to direct sunlight and heat for an extended period, the same does end up developing a bitter taste. The ones that are harvested too late tend to develop a very bitter taste once you cook it.
How Should One Cook Cauliflower?
Cooking cauliflower is not rocket science. There are several ways you can prepare them, depending on the kind of texture your palate enjoys. If you like your vegetables to have a crispy texture, try baking or sauteing them. If you want a smooth and creamy texture, boil or puree them.
For your convenience, I am going to share some of the best ways to cook cauliflower.
Steaming or blanching the cauliflower florets is one of the most common forms of cooking this vegetable. All you have to do is fill a pot with water and throw in the cauliflower florets in them. If required, you can even season the boiling water.
If you watch vegan channels on YouTube, you’ll come across a popular dish, Buffalo Cauliflower. It is healthy and not to mention, incredibly delectable too. For this, you need to coat the cauliflower florets, and deep fry them in some vegetable oil until they are cooked and have a brown coating on the outside. Once done, you can enjoy it with your favorite dip or sauce on the side.
It is for the health nuts who try to count their calories and don’t want to consume anything deep-fried. All you need to do is coat the florets with some spices and seasoning and spread them out on a baking tray and roast them for 10-15 minutes till the edges turn crispy and golden.
4. Puree or Rice
These two are for the individuals who are on a keto diet and want to add something substantial to their everyday meals. You can grate the cauliflower and steam them for a few minutes and consume them as the “Cauliflower Rice.” If you have been wondering how to make Cauliflower Rice, I hope this answers your question.
If you want to eat them in the puree form, slightly boil them for 5-7 minutes and then run it in a blender till it forms a smooth puree like consistency.
Which is Better – Cauliflower or Broccoli?
If you had to compare the two vegetables based on the nutrient count, both of them are pretty healthy vegetables.
They have high fiber content and low calories, enabling them to be a good inclusion for weight loss diets. Additionally, both vegetables have a good balance of vitamins and minerals. Broccoli has a slightly higher Vitamin C and Vitamin K content in comparison.
But, if I had to compare in terms of taste, broccoli has a more bitter aftertaste than cauliflower, so you need to pick and choose based on your likings.
In case you suffer from any thyroid conditions, make sure you avoid eating both the vegetables as they are goitrogens and not healthy for your malfunctioning thyroid gland.
Cauliflower is more than just a bland vegetable. Given how neutral the taste is, it allows you to try and test out some of your twists on it. You can grill them, bake them, and even steam them. If you still haven’t tried this vegetable yet, I highly urge you to do it.
Try out simpler dishes first and then make your way up from there. If you are trying to lose weight, include this vegetable to your diet right this instant.