Cauliflower Spinach Bake

Cauliflower Spinach Bake

Total Time 55 mins
Servings 8

Ingredients
  

  • 1 large cauliflower (3 pounds) cut into small florets
  • 2 cups milk divided
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 2 tbsp. all-purpose flour
  • 4 oz. cream cheese cubed
  • 3 cups freshly grated sharp cheddar cheese divided
  • 1/2 tsp. paprika
  • 1/2 tsp. ground mustard
  • 1/2 tsp. kosher salt plus more for cooking cauliflower
  • 2 tbsp. unsalted butter
  • 1/2 cup breadcrumbs
  • 1 cup lightly packed fresh baby spinach
  • 1/4 cup shredded parmesan cheese
  • Fresh ground black pepper

Instructions
 

  • Preheat the oven to 350 F degrees.
  • Cauliflower: Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Season the water with salt and add cauliflower. Cook cauliflower in the boiling water for no more than 4-5 minutes or just until tender-crisp. Immediately drain over a colander.
  • Cheese Sauce: In a small saucepan, warm 1 1/2 cups milk, plus a bay leaf over medium heat. Whisk together the remaining 1/2 cup milk and the flour until there are no lumps.
  • When the milk begins to lightly bubble around the edges, whisk in the flour/milk mixture. Reduce the heat to low and add the cream cheese. Whisk until smooth and slightly thickened.
  • Discard the bay leaf. Stir in 1 cup of cheddar cheese and whisk just until melted. Then add 1 more cup of cheese, whisking until melted and smooth.
  • Remove the saucepan from the heat and stir in the paprika, mustard, and salt. Season with ground black pepper, to taste. Set aside.
  • Breadcrumbs: In a medium non-stick skillet, melt butter over medium heat. Add breadcrumbs and stir until completely coated with butter.
  • To Assemble: Add half of the cauliflower to a 10 X 10 baking dish. Top with spinach and then the remaining cauliflower. Pour the cheese sauce over the cauliflower. Using a spoon, lightly move the cauliflower around so it is evenly coated with the sauce.
  • Top with the remaining 1 cup of cheddar cheese, breadcrumbs, and Parmesan cheese.
  • Bake, uncovered, for 13-15 minutes or just until the cheese has melted. Broil for additional 2-3 minutes until golden brown. Serve immediately.
Keyword Cauliflower, Spinach