Mock Mashed Potatoes

January 3, 2012

in Soups, Salads & Sides


Mashed potatoes are one of my all-time favorite savory foods. They epitomize comfort food to me, and I love to try different variations of herbs and substitutions (like vegetable broth in place of dairy) to help lighten them up. However, there is such a thing as too much mashed potatoes.


For whatever reason, my family never seems to have them around Thanksgiving or Christmas, so this year, I decided to change that. I made roasted garlic and sage mashed potatoes for Thanksgiving, and recently, Emily’s caramelized onion mashed potatoes for Christmas.


I made A LOT. Like, a full stock pot’s worth both times, just to make sure there were plenty to go around. And then I proceeded to eat leftovers for a solid week after each holiday. I think it’s safe to say I made up for not having them for the last 25 years.

And yet, yesterday I found myself craving mashed potatoes again. I mean, technically I haven’t had any this year…


I figured I needed to cool it on the potatoes for fear I’d turn into one, and decided to create a mock version using cauliflower and cannellini beans instead. I’ve tried using all cauliflower in the past, but it tends to be a little watery on its own, and the texture isn’t quite right. The cannellini beans definitely help to make it thicker and creamier, and they also pack an awesome protein punch.


But most importantly? These taste good. Really, really good.


Mock Mashed Potatoes (Mashed Cauliflower & Cannellini Beans)
Recipe type: Side Dish
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 8-10
  • 1 Tbs. Olive Oil
  • 2 Cloves Garlic, sliced
  • 1 Head Cauliflower, roughly chopped
  • 3 C. Cooked Cannellini Beans
  • ½ C. Vegetable Broth
  • 2 Tbs. Fresh Parsley, sliced (chives would also work well)
  • Salt & Pepper to Taste
  1. Heat oil in a small frying pan over medium heat. Add sliced garlic, and cook until slightly browned.
  2. Meanwhile, place 1-2 inches of water in a large pot and bring to a simmer over medium-high heat.
  3. Place cauliflower in a steam basket and place in pot. Cover and steam until fork tender, about 10 minutes. Remove and set aside.
  4. In a food processor, combine garlic-infused oil, cauliflower, cannellini beans, vegetable broth, and parsley, and puree until smooth. Scrape down the sides as needed, and season with salt and pepper.
  5. Serve warm and enjoy!

When it comes to the holidays, are you a big mashed potato fan? Or would you rather save room for another carb, like freshly-baked bread? Or maybe pie? It’s a tough call for me when pie enters the mix.

If you answered bread, I have a great bread-baking post coming your way later in the week. It’s a little time-intensive, but the ingredients are simple (flour, water, yeast) and the end result is so very worth it.

{ 37 comments… read them below or add one }

StoriesAndSweetPotatoes January 3, 2012 at 5:18 pm

I wonder if this would be good with one those purple or yellow cauliflower heads…maybe not. But purple mashed potatoes would be awesome!


Amanda January 3, 2012 at 5:24 pm

I’m not sure I’ve ever tried a purple cauliflower before…assuming the flavor is similar, I’d say that would be awesome!


Tiff January 3, 2012 at 7:12 pm

I like that idea! For Thanksgiving, I faked out the family by serving half potatoes and half cauliflower, but I never though of opting for beans.


Amanda January 3, 2012 at 7:33 pm

Thanks, Tiff! I was really happy with how this recipe turned out. I bet half potatoes and half cauliflower is great!


Kait January 3, 2012 at 8:23 pm

OMG I love this. Hopefully Wegmans will not be out of pre-chopped cauliflower next week and I can get it cheap and enjoy this! THANKS!.


Gina @ running to the kitchen January 3, 2012 at 10:44 pm

I love mashed potatoes but for some reason we always tend to have roasted ones instead during the holidays. I just bought some parsnips with the intent to do some sort of mash with them this week. beans may be going in them as well!


Amanda January 4, 2012 at 2:24 am

Mashed parsnips and beans sounds very promising. Let me know how it turns out!


Lauren @ Oatmeal after Spinning January 4, 2012 at 2:53 pm

I am actually NOT a mashed potato fan! I would rather have bread or a sweet potato any day! On Thanksgiving, my mom always bakes a plain sweet tater for me. :)
But- I do love mashed cauliflower! I have never added beans- that is a great idea, and would make it more of a “meal.”
I like to puree pretty much any type of root vegetable- your idea of adding beans kind of opens up a whole new set of doors though…


Amanda January 4, 2012 at 3:19 pm

I also LOVE sweet potatoes. My favorite way to make them is to slice them really thick and roast them at 400 for 20 mins,and then 350 for another 30 mins. Amazing, and so sweet!


Kris | January 4, 2012 at 3:58 pm

YAYYYYY!!! I can eat this on my grain free, low GI spike diet!! I can’t have potatoes so this is FAB! Thank you lovie!



Amanda January 4, 2012 at 4:59 pm

Woo hoo! Good luck with your diet! :)


Elina (Healthy and Sane) January 5, 2012 at 2:42 am

Mashed potatoes don’t do much for me (except on occasion at a restaurant when it’s probably full of butter… I don’t want to know that ;) ) but this recipe is definitely intriguing. I’ve tried the 100% cauliflower too and wasn’t impressed and cannelini beans are always so fantastic!


Amanda January 5, 2012 at 12:36 pm

I agree, using all cauliflower is a bit watery. The cannellini beans help to give it a more authentic texture. You could also try upping the ratio of beans if you find that it’s still not quite right, or even using a mixture of cauliflower, beans, and a little bit of potatoes.


Elina (Healthy and Sane) January 26, 2012 at 9:18 pm

Made this last night – I liked it :)


Amanda January 26, 2012 at 9:20 pm

Yay! Thanks for letting me know!


sals January 7, 2012 at 11:43 pm

Made this for dinner tonight and made my husband try to guess the ingredients (he was convinced it was mashed potatoes) – we both agreed it was delicious! Love that it packs a lot of protein, too. I didn’t have any veg broth, so I subbed soymilk and it worked fine. Great recipe!


Amanda January 8, 2012 at 2:43 am

That’s great! I’m so happy to hear that it turned out well (and that your husband thought it was the real deal :)). Thanks for letting me know!


Brittnee January 11, 2012 at 5:52 pm

Just found your site from Tasty Kitchen. These mock mashed potatoes look awesome. Even though I almost hate cauliflower, I think with a little butter they might make perfect “mashed potatoes”.


Amanda January 11, 2012 at 5:58 pm

Thanks, Brittnee! The cannellini beans help mask some of the cauliflower flavor too. :)


CarolS June 19, 2012 at 2:30 pm

I am so having these for dinner tonight! Sounds yummy!


Steve October 19, 2012 at 9:41 am

Looks great! Is that 3 cups of cooked beans, or 3 cups of dried beans, cooked?


Amanda October 19, 2012 at 9:49 am

3 cups of cooked beans. I’ve edited the recipe to be more clear. :)


Ceil November 16, 2012 at 7:18 am

Hi Amanda:

This is a very creative spin on mashed potatoes- a food that I absolutely adore! Will give your recipe a try if I can find the cauliflower.


Vib January 5, 2013 at 8:44 pm

Thanks so much for sharing! I’m on a “slow carb” diet, and your recipe fits right in! :)


Amanda January 7, 2013 at 9:39 am

I hope you enjoy it! :)


Shahila January 8, 2013 at 5:27 pm

This recipe looks amazing. Definitely going to make it this weekend for my parents, who I’m proud to say have jumped on the health-conscious wagon. Is this something I could refrigerate and then microwave the next couple of days?


Amanda January 8, 2013 at 6:19 pm

Awesome! You can definitely make it in advance and re-heat it. :)


Kerry January 24, 2013 at 1:37 pm

Just made this …added a sprinkle of grated cheese. Sooooo good…and I didn’t feel guilty for having a second bowl! Thanks!!!


Amanda January 24, 2013 at 2:05 pm

I’m so glad you enjoyed the recipe! Definitely no need to feel guilty for having seconds…or thirds. :)


Elizabeth March 4, 2013 at 9:53 am

Hi Amanda,
I was trying new recipes for a healthy way of eating for my family, and I thought this recipe sounded wonderful. I always change recipe’s a little, just my way I guess. I added onion to the garlic oil, I also used homemade turkey stock. Also, when I finished blending, I sprinkled top with low fat cheddar and baked for 15 minutes on 400 degrees. My family decided they liked it, so thanks for the recipe!


Amanda March 4, 2013 at 10:06 am

Hi Elizabeth! I do the same thing when I’m making recipes – I can’t help changing one or two things. It’s fun to put your own spin on it and make it your own. :) I’m glad your family enjoyed the mock mashed potatoes!


Rob July 22, 2013 at 4:10 am

Sounds good I plan to make this tonight. Any idea on calorie content?


Amanda July 22, 2013 at 8:21 am

I hope you enjoy the mock mashed potatoes, Rob! I’m not sure about calorie count, but you can probably plug the ingredients into an online tool to get an idea.


Connie November 24, 2013 at 10:33 pm

Are the beans drained, or in their liquid?


Amanda November 25, 2013 at 9:14 am

Hi Connie. :) The beans are drained.


Nadine March 17, 2014 at 1:13 pm

I made these last night to bring into work today to celebrate St. Paddies day with a potato bar and those who were adventurous to try them all thought they were great and asked for the recipe. I must admit they’re not quite the same as a big ole bowl of mashed potatoes but they are a great option for us low carbers! The addition of the beans gives it the substance that just cauliflower lacks, brilliant!
Nadine recently posted…Thirty Word Thursday-Dinner


Amanda March 17, 2014 at 2:07 pm

Oh, I’m so happy you made the mock mashed potatoes, Nadine! The beans definitely give them a bit more heft than cauliflower alone, and also an extra protein boost!


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