Cauliflower Bacon Gratin

This Cauliflower Bacon Gratin is a delicious dish to serve for a cozy gathering, or a holiday potluck or meal. A winner at every table!

I’m so in love with this time of year, the bright blue skies, flowers popping up everywhere, the longer days, spring break with my kids all home, and Easter – all right around the corner.

I’m reminded of why I should love, and be so grateful for, this day – with all of the beauty around us.

Cauliflower Bacon Gratin

I wrote about it before (I want my life to be fueled by love), but Bob Goff is not only a joyful, playful person, he gets the meaning of living, the call on our lives to truly be present and live in the moment.

Bob Goff, Love Does (book)

“There is only one invitation it would kill me to refuse, yet I’m tempted to turn it down all the time. I get the invitation every morning when I wake up to actually live a life of complete engagement, a life of whimsy, a life where love does. It doesn’t come in an envelope. It’s ushered in by a sunrise, the sound of a bird, or the smell of coffee drifting lazily from the kitchen. It’s the invitation to actually live, to fully participate in this amazing life for one more day. Nobody turns down an invitation to the White House, but I’ve seen plenty of people turn down an invitation to fully live.” – Bob Goff, Love Does

Make a simple invite

One simple way that I can reach out to people is to invite them over for dinner.

Cauliflower Bacon Gratin

Loving Ranunculus flowers

Since it’s a gorgeous season for ranunculus flowers, I was thrilled when I saw these staring at me in Fred Meyer.

I loaded my cart and brought 3 home, and have been enjoying them since.

Cauliflower Bacon Gratin

Two are now planted in an outdoor pot, and it sure is fun to buy grocery store flowers, enjoy them for a tablescape, and then put them where they really are happy – in a garden bed.

Cauliflower Bacon Gratin

Cauliflower Bacon Gratin

Setting the table is easy.

Make the invitation.

Plan an easy menu, with today’s Cauliflower Bacon Gratin (perfect side dish for Easter!)

Cauliflower Bacon Gratin

It’s super easy; undercook the cauliflower (boil), and add in the bacon and homemade cheesy sauce. Bake with bread crumbs and chives!

Cauliflower Bacon Gratin

Enjoy the season, my friends.

Don’t let a day slip by where you haven’t fully lived and loved.

Cauliflower Bacon Gratin

Cauliflower Bacon Gratin

Yield: 8-10

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 30 minutes

Total Time: 45 minutes

Ingredients:

  • 10 slices of bacon, cooked and chopped
  • 8 cups of cauliflower, cut into bite-sized pieces
  • 6 Tbsp. flour
  • 3 Tbsp. butter
  • 4 cups 1 % milk (thicker sauce, use light whipping cream)
  • 3 cups sharp cheddar cheese (I use Tillamook’s Extra Sharp) plus a little more for topping
  • 1 tsp. nutmeg
  • Salt & pepper
  • 3/4 cup breadcrumbs
  • Fresh parsley, chopped

Directions:

  1. In a large skillet over medium-high heat, cook the bacon until crispy and browned. Set aside on paper towel.
  2. Heat a large pot of salted water on high until boiling. Add the cauliflower and cook for 3 minutes. Drain and set aside.
  3. In the same pot, melt the butter. Whisk in the flour, stirring constantly. Stir in the milk, and stir constantly until thick and creamy. Stir in the cheese, nutmeg, and salt & pepper to taste.
  4. Add the cauliflower and bacon to the cheese mixture and toss to combine. Pour into an 9x13 baking dish and top with bread crumbs and a sprinkle of cheese.
  5. Bake at 375F for 30 minutes or until bubbly and golden.
  6. Sprinkle with fresh parsley before serving.

More Cauliflower recipes:

Cauliflower White Cheddar Soup {RE}

Moroccan Lentil Cauliflower Soup {RE}

Creamy Cauliflower Mash with Kale {Skinnytaste}

15-minute Cauliflower Rice {Pinch of Yum}

Cauliflower Bacon Gratin - delicious side dish for Easter or springtime entertaining

9 comments

  1. I am absolutely, positively going to make this. We love every ingredient listed. :)

  2. I made this last night and it was really, really good. I used it as a main dish with a green salad as a side (lemon vinaigrette–acidity to cut the richness of the main dish). I will say that I originally tried the proportions you listed to make the bechamel sauce, even though I thought they might be a bit off, and indeed, the flour/ butter turned into a dough. So, I threw that out and started over using the bechamel proportions I’ve used in the past–5 tbs butter, 4 tbs flour, 4 c half and half, and about 2 tsp salt and 1/2 tsp freshly grated nutmeg. (For others reading this who have never made bechamel: melt the butter over medium-low heat, add flour while whisking, and allow it to become a sandy/ golden brown. You may need to turn the heat to medium for this. Then, add in the half and half a cup at a time and turn the heat up to almost boiling while you whisk it. It should take about 7-10 minutes for it to get thick.) Anyways, it could’ve just been me who had that experience with the dough forming, but I wanted to offer the suggestion, should others encounter it. Hope you don’t mind! I also garnished with chives, like you had in the pictures. The end result was quite delicious. I gave some to my mother, who says she hates cauliflower, and she even loved it. Thanks for the great recipe! :)

    • Thanks for your input Meredith. I had several friends make it for Easter this year who told me they loved the recipe! :)

    • Great, Sandy! Then the issue was likely just a fluke! :) I just defrosted some leftovers for dinner. Yummy!

  3. I’m going to try this but as my hubby is following a ketosis diet I’ll substitute Almond milk in place of the regular and use crushed pork rinds in place of the bread crumbs.

  4. Does this dish re-heat well? I wanted to make it a day ahead of time.  Mostly concerned that the cauliflower could end up mushy.   If no worries, any suggestions on time and temperature to re-heat it? 

  5. I am making this for an Easter side dish. I was curious if I can make this Saturday, leave it in the fridge overnight and bake on Sunday? Would that make the cauliflower too mushy or not turn out the same? 

    • Sorry, I didn’t get back with you on this. Did you try to make it up ahead of time? I think it would be fine, as long as you bake it fresh!

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