Sneaky Sneaky

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I promised you an excellent side dish recipe last night – here it is!


I was watching Restaurant Impossible a few weeks ago, and Chef Irvine made a cauliflower-mashed potato dish as a way to ‘sneak’ more veggies onto kids’ plates.  I’m not a cauliflower fan but obviously love mashed potatoes, so it seemed like a pretty good idea to me.


Cauliflower Mashed Potatoes


Ingredients (six servings):


  • 4 medium Yukon gold potatoes
  • 1 head of cauliflower
  • 1/4 cup butter or Earth Balance
  • 1/4 cup milk (cow, soy, whatever)
  • Salt, pepper, and garlic powder to taste
  • 2 tablespoons chopped dill




  • Wash potatoes.  You can leave skin off or peel the potatoes.  Chop into 2-inch squares and boil for 20 minutes or until soft.
  • Meanwhile, wash cauliflower.  Chop into large pieces.  Boil for 20 minutes or until soft.
  • Using a mixer or a hand masher, combine potatoes and cauliflower.  Add Earth Balance, milk, salt, pepper, garlic powder, and dill.
  • Serve and enjoy!


Had some for breakfast today – kind of a more lunch-for-breakfast but really tasty.  Who says you can’t have arugula for brekkie?


I’ve heard that some people take issue with ‘sneaking’ veggies into kids’ food.  They argue you should just get kids to like veggies outright.  I can see their point, but like I said, even I’m not a huge fan of cauliflower.  So if I can convince myself to eat it by combining it with mashed potatoes – hurrah! 


Other fun ways to sneak in veggies, fruits, and other healthy foods:


Sub out oil for applesauce in cake and muffin recipes

Add a handful of spinach to fruit smoothies

Add pureed carrots or squash to pasta sauce

Make black bean brownies

Bake up some zucchini bread

Make homemade hummus and add spinach or roasted peppers (here’s my Spinach Hummus recipe)


How do you sneak in more veggies?  And P.S. – HAPPY FRIDAY!



  • Sarena (The Non Dairy Queen) August 17, 2012, 9:25 am

    I’ve done this before too and the key is the yukon gold potatoes since they’re so buttery! Dinner looks perfectly delicious! YUM!

  • Ashley O. @ The Vegetable Life August 17, 2012, 9:25 am

    Yum, now I am craving mashed potatoes!!!!!!

  • Claire @ Live and Love to Eat August 17, 2012, 9:37 am

    My husband called me out when I tried to pass pure mashed cauliflower as potatoes – maybe adding some real starch would fool him!

  • Ben August 17, 2012, 9:38 am

    We took the same idea from Chef Irvine earlier this summer (you were watching a re-run, right?), except we left the potatoes out entirely. It’s still really good and your mind really thinks it is mashed potatoes. And the best part is, it doesn’t have all the carbs!

  • Kristy @ Kristy's Health Revolution August 17, 2012, 9:48 am

    I also get the point of not ‘sneaking’ veggies into food, but I’m not opposed to it either. This is a great example of that. If I were feeding this to children, I wouldn’t try to hide the fact that there was cauliflower in it!

    But, yes, I LOVE adding cauliflower to mashed potatoes! It gives it a nice, light texture, doesn’t it? Yum!

  • Erin August 17, 2012, 9:58 am

    I love cauliflower mashed “potatoes”!!
    Sometimes I’ll do just cauliflower and throw some broccoli and basil in it to…freakin delicious!

  • Helen August 17, 2012, 10:02 am

    I understand the debate, but I think as long as you are still offering veggies in their ‘pure’ form it’s ok to sneak it in other places as well. I have heard of pureed butternut squash in mac & cheese – that way it is still creamy but you can cut out some of the cheese and stuff. Besides cauliflower I have heard of using kohlrabi, but I also read the kohlrabi has more liquid in it and you wouldn’t add as much when you mash it. I haven’t tried it yet – we normally eat our kohlrabi roasted.

  • Alex @ Brain, Body, Because August 17, 2012, 10:02 am

    Cauliflower rice, too!

  • Michelle @ Eat Move Balance August 17, 2012, 10:02 am

    Funny! I just did a post two days ago for Cauliflower and Turnip Mash. Very similar. Isn’t it outstanding?!? My husband and I were both pleasantly surprised by how the cauliflower tastes so darn good! And the turnip addition, I would think, is similar to how you incorporated a few potatoes.

    • Caitlin August 17, 2012, 10:07 am

      Oh that sounds delish!

  • Janelle August 17, 2012, 10:06 am

    I did this with turnips the other day! I’m not a huge fan of the taste of turnips, but they are not bad mixed with potatoes. 🙂

  • Christine @ BookishlyB August 17, 2012, 10:07 am

    I throw in a few with all the salad dressing and cruotons.

  • Anna August 17, 2012, 10:08 am

    My mom sometimes adds pureed white beans to cauliflower/potato. You can taste the beans *a little* but it gives it a really fabulous texture & a nutrition boost!

  • Angela August 17, 2012, 10:12 am

    As a person who follows whole30/paleo mashed Cauliflower is a big one for us. Taste just like mashed potatoes if you ask me! so good!!!!

  • corrie anne August 17, 2012, 10:15 am

    I used cauliflower as rice the other day!!! It was for a paleo recipe so it had meat, but I’ve been planning a way to do it with chickpeas! You basically just food process the cauliflower then steam it with some coconut milk, maybe some honey, and whatever other seasoning you want.

  • Kendra @ My Full-Thyme Life August 17, 2012, 10:15 am

    Happy Friday to you too! Our toddler is NOT a fan of veggies. We’ve tried all different kinds and he will only eat peas on occasion, corn on the cob (we give him a small cob), and roasted cauliflower. He is great with fruit and would it it exclusively if we’d let him! At some point I think you have to sneak in the veg to make sure they receive the benefits from them. Thank you, thank you for reminding me about the mashed cauliflower! Hubby and I used to make it all the time and haven’t in so long. This is a great idea for our little man!

    Caitlin, you say you don’t like cauli but have you ever had it roasted??? You can do this with either cauliflower or broccoli and boy oh boy is it delicious! I’ve made believers out of the harshest cauli critics! 😉

    • Caitlin August 17, 2012, 10:17 am

      I have not had it roasted – that sounds GOOD.

      • Brigid August 17, 2012, 1:17 pm

        Roasted cauliflower is amazing! It’s the only way we serve it at home.

  • Alex @ Raw Recovery August 17, 2012, 10:16 am

    I love Restaurant Impossible. Robert (yes, we’re on a first name basis) makes me laugh but he’s kind of a drama queen, which I find even more funny.

    I’ve made cauliflower mashed potatoes before but not using any potatoes and I really enjoyed it. It’s also good with a vodka red sauce on it or a regular pasta sauce. 🙂

  • Megan R August 17, 2012, 10:23 am

    I like to add mushrooms to ground turkey for turkey burgers. Not only does it add some veggies, but it also stretches out the turkey and makes more burgers.

    I like to cut veggies up small or shred them and add them to quinoa.

    I also made a lasagna with eggplant instead of noodles. That worked out really well! (

  • Elizabeth M. August 17, 2012, 11:03 am

    My sister got a cookbook that was all about sneaking in fruits and veggies to make things more healthy. For months after that my brother-in-law would always look at his food sceptically and ask my sister, is this REALLY mashed potatoes? Or did you sneak something in. Hahaha. Cracked me up!

    I love to add things in to recipes to add more nutrients. Like I made chili last night and grated up zucchini, it was great!

  • Courtney August 17, 2012, 11:12 am

    I’ve made these a few times and it’s always delicious!

  • Rachel O. August 17, 2012, 11:29 am

    i made a recipe for a mashed cauliflower dip – there was cheese involved so it wasn’t 100% healthy. but it made an otherwise fat laden dip healthified. so 50% goodness, 50% veggie goodness.

    i believe the recipe came from whole foods –

  • Sarah August 17, 2012, 11:40 am

    I just got a potato ricer for my birthday and I bet it would make the cauliflower even harder to detect!

    I haven’t mixed any veggies into potatoes yet, but once I accidentally grabbed the vanilla soy milk instead of regular for my potatoes. Nothing a bunch of salt couldn’t fix!

  • Laura @ She Eats Well August 17, 2012, 11:52 am

    I love roasting any and all vegetables pretty much. I also love sweet potatoes with some Earth Balance and/or almond butter – such a treat! I also love steamed carrots tossed in a bit of honey and orange rind or sauteed spinach mixed into tomato soup! Veggies are delish!

  • Megan @ Megan's Munchies August 17, 2012, 12:10 pm

    I definitely need to sneak more veggies into my diet! Going to try these mashed potatoes!

  • Katie @ Peace Love and Oats August 17, 2012, 12:18 pm

    Lol I love veggies so no need to sneak! Green smoothies are a great way to add in veggies!

  • Sam @ Better With Sprinkles August 17, 2012, 12:58 pm

    While I see why you should encourage your kids to like veggies outright, sneaking them a few extra doesn’t hurt!

    Whenever I make jarred tomato sauce, I bulk it up with lots of veggies – I add chopped onion, bell pepper, mushrooms and spinach. Not exactly sneaky, but it does the trick 🙂

  • Annette@FitnessPerks August 17, 2012, 1:26 pm

    I don’t think there’s anything wrong with sneaking in veggies AND having veggies around too –so they get used to seeing them & eating them. I think any way to get kiddos to eat & love veggies rocks. 😉

    Looks awesome! I need to try this recipe.

  • Laura @ My Pink Thumb August 17, 2012, 1:29 pm

    I’ve heard of this but have yet to try it. Now that local cauliflower is in season though, I just might have to give it a shot!! As for sneaking vegies into things, I actually did a post on that very topic earlier this year! 🙂

  • Dani August 17, 2012, 2:13 pm

    Ha. There’s no sneaking vegetables for a 37 yr old man. BUT whenever I make him smoothies, I sneak some spinach in there. Can’t taste it, and he doesn’t gripe. Done deal.

  • Ellen @ Wannabe Health Nut August 17, 2012, 2:18 pm

    What a tasty (and easy!) recipe—looks like a delicious breakfast. I’m a huge fan of sneaking in veggies, I don’t think there’s anything wrong with it. You might have to do it with kids initially, but the more veggies they have, the more they will natural develop a taste for them. (I don’t have kids, but the rule does apply to adults *ahem* boyfriends, so…) And I am a HUGE fan of putting spinach in my smoothies. You can’t even taste it, so why wouldn’t you?! I also like to put them in eggs—I made a 5-veggie omelette last night for dinner and it was really good. (Sweet potato fries on the side, of course!) And hmm…what else…I just try to incorporate veggies whenever I can, even if it’s baby carrots with my 6″ Veggie Delight from Subway. 🙂 Getting into the practice of eating them—even in small portions—is a great thing to do and eventually it becomes second-nature to have them all the time!

  • Cait August 17, 2012, 2:18 pm

    what brand of english muffins are those?

    • Caitlin August 17, 2012, 2:28 pm


      • Cait August 18, 2012, 10:31 am


  • Jaclyn @ JustJac! August 17, 2012, 2:44 pm

    HAPPY Friday to YOU!!

    I love this idea.. I can see the argument of whether ‘sneaking’ veggies into kids food is a good idea, too, but I think that in the end it probably is a good idea, if you mix it with the ‘real’ thing. I don’t see any issue in this kind of cauli/potato recipe lol 🙂 it looks good to me. I also am not a huge fan of C but I’ve been interested in trying some of the pizza crust recipes out there using it.

    I have to ask though… how is the taste??

    • Caitlin August 17, 2012, 3:00 pm

      it was pretty tasty 🙂

  • Lisa August 17, 2012, 3:56 pm

    I’ve been doing the cauliflower and potato mash thing for a couple of months, more for ME because its a great way to bring down the calories of the potatoes with a meal (and I’m not a good vege eater), now when I make mashed potatoes my kids always ask if I’m doing them with cauliflower, and complain if I DON’T!! So no “hiding” here – they love it 🙂 (but for some reason, this struggle to eat veges mama, has kids who love veges – don’t know how that happens! LOL)

  • Jess August 17, 2012, 4:36 pm

    I grate zucchini into pasta sauces and ground meat. Too small to pick out or taste, so I get extra veggies in!

  • Jolene (Homespun Heritage) August 17, 2012, 4:49 pm

    I grew up eating mashed potatoes almost daily for years…(My dad had this thing…) so it got to the point where I just wouldn’t eat them anymore; outside of holidays! Now you’ve got me in the mood for them…and I really like creamed cauliflower so I will be making this for sure!

  • Amber K August 17, 2012, 4:53 pm

    I love smoothies to fit in more fruits/veggies and veggie mashes as sides sort of like this one. But I’ve also blended spinach and mixed it into mashed potatoes, makes them a fun color for my nieces and nephews too!

  • Jen August 17, 2012, 6:34 pm

    I add shredded zucchini and carrot to meatloaf for added moisture + veggie benefits – no kids here but I do have a hubby who isn’t a huge fan of veggies beyond corn and mashed potatoes! That being said, he surprised the heck out of me when he tried my green monster smoothie and actually liked it, so now whenever I have a GM I make one for him too.

  • Julia H. @ Going Gulia August 18, 2012, 9:51 am

    I’m a big fan of adding veggies into food. Spinach seems to be my main go-to for this: I always add spinach into my smoothies, as well as to soups/sauces. It’s so easy that it’s silly NOT to do it!

  • Michele August 18, 2012, 11:59 am

    I make this with frozen cauliflower. I cook it (and the potatoes) in the microwave and it is so easy! I also put some light sour cream and chives in it. Delicious!

  • Melissa August 20, 2012, 3:03 pm

    I like your advice to add a handful of spinach to the smoothies. That’s the name of my blog,
    “A Handful of Spinach.” 🙂
    Oh, and I love cauliflower mash and we’ve been eating it for years.

  • Julie August 20, 2012, 4:11 pm

    I have always subbed applesauce for oil in baked goods, but not in an effort to “sneak” it in. I do it because it’s one of those rare times when you make something a lot healthier & it actually tastes better! Makes cakes WAY moister!

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