Cauliflower rice: a reverse way to healthier Thermomix meals

Thermomix recipe for cauliflower rice or mock rice

Surely I’m not alone in welcoming the new year with thoughts of ‘doing better’ in some areas of life. For many of us, as we vacuum the last cookie crumbs of Christmas and recycle chocolate boxes from well-meaning guests we silently vow to a healthier outlook with renewed intentions for diet and exercise.

Last year was a turning point for me, as I took health matters in hand to battle the onset of diabetes by embracing a daily exercise regimen. Now that all holiday sweet treats have happily been given away and the season of excess is officially behind us, I’m happy to jump back on the bandwagon of health with even more vigour. The reverse power of Thermomix makes cauliflower rice a healthy ingredient that’s not only easy and fun but oh-so versatile!

Thermomix cauliflower rice recipe“We eat first with our eyes…”
A simple way to serve more nutrition (raw or cooked) meals is by making ‘mock rice’ from cauliflower. Cauliflower rice has the look of white rice and when topped with sauce, you’ll hardly notice a difference. The subtle, natural earthy-sweetness is downright tasty even! Before you know it, you will forget that this is your healthy moment. So just relax, turn off the brain and let the eyes, mouth, and body enjoy the experience.

Mock rice is not just for raw foodies. It can easily be steamed in the Thermomix simmer basket and used just as any cooked rice. Perfectly suitable for tricking kids and others into eating more vegetables too: begin by mixing your cauliflower rice with cooked rice and no one will notice. Gradually use less and less rice to more cauliflower and before long, you will be feeling chuffed and healthier!

Mock cauliflower rice made in Thermomix

Health benefits

I love this mock rice ‘trick’ because cauliflower has a much lower glycemic load than rice and only about one quarter the calories of rice. It has fewer carbs and more protein. I’m not making any health claims here, just sayin’… For info about nutritional values, I always return to this site. (There’s a bit of a learning curve to using the site but customizing for results for accuracy makes it worthwhile.)

REVERSE your engines for Thermomix mock rice!

Start with about 500 g. cauliflower florets (that’s 17.6 oz for friends using Thermomix in USA) broken into manageable chunks. Toss these into Thermomix bowl and spin about 5 seconds/REVERSE/speed 5. By “whacking” instead of “chopping” we retain the kernal-like quality of cauliflower so it resembles more of a grain than a fine mince. By using the florets and not the stalk, this will result in a pile of large-grained rice-like cauliflower. At this point, I transfer the mock rice into a large bowl. Any harder bits of stalk that may have slipped in and didn’t succumb to “whacking” in reverse can be returned to the Thermomix and chopped (forward) for a second or two to fully break down, then mixed in with the other mock rice. Use this refreshingly raw mock rice in salads, raw pilafs, or with your favorite raw or cooked sauces.  (see a simple Thai sauce below)

Use simmering basket for cooked version of mock rice

Once cauliflower is converted to mock rice it can easily be cooked to your desired level of tenderness. Keep it on the raw side for a lightly refreshing and satisfying crunch, or steam it till very soft — your choice. Just fill Thermomix simmering basket with raw cauliflower rice, add 500 g (17.6 oz) water and cook for 10-12 minutes/Varoma/speed 3. Voilà!

4.9 from 7 reviews
Thai-ish Sauce with Cauliflower Rice
(for about 500 g./17.6 oz mock rice) (can be used with regular rice too!) This sauce is inspired by Thai seasonings but doesn’t tick all the usual boxes because it avoids use of added sweetener. Also works for those Thermomix fans who don’t have easy year-round access to Thai basil and mint etc. You can of course, add these in if available.
Cuisine: Thermomix
Recipe type: Thai
Ingredients
  • 30 g (1 oz) light oil (such as canola)
  • 30 g (1 oz) fish sauce
  • 40-45 g (1.4-1.5 oz) fresh lime juice (one lime, juiced)
  • 1-2 cloves garlic
  • 1 medium dried red chili pepper (add more if you love heat!)
  • 1 small chunk fresh ginger (about 5 g, or the size of a hazelnut)
  • 1 handful fresh coriander (cilantro)
  • optional: ½ capsicum (red bell pepper), divided into 4 large chunks
  • more options: 1-2 Tbsp. coconut milk, small handful peanuts, 1 tsp. sesame oil, toasted sesame seeds for garnish
Instructions
  1. Put all first six ingredients and half the coriander/cilantro into Thermomix and blend for about 10 seconds, speed 8.
  2. Add remainder of the coriander (cilantro) and capsicum if using. Chop roughly for 2-3 seconds/speed 5. Serve over raw or cooked mock rice. If serving with raw cauliflower rice, consider adding the sauce some time before serving and allowing flavors to marinate for a while. Extra yummy!

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See 58 comments from people who cook with Thermomix:

  1. Quirky Jo January 7, 2012 at 1:14 am #

    Oooh, thank you for this recipe – I’ve been wanting to try this idea for a while but just haven’t gotten to it!! And I’m trying hard to cut down on grains, so this will be perfect! YUM – this is going on next week’s menu, for sure! :D

  2. Johann Kruger January 7, 2012 at 4:50 am #

    Just made this and had it with a lamb curry …. brilliant! As a low carb follower this recipe is the the answer. Thanks.

  3. Penny Shilling January 7, 2012 at 9:04 pm #

    No, you are certainly not alone. Check out my blog: http://a-penny-for-your.blogspot.com/2012/01/youre-not-that-fat.html
    It had the most amount of hits very quickly and many emails and comments from people trying to do the same thing. Thermomix makes it easy to make amazing food doesn’t it!

  4. ThermomixBlogger Helene January 7, 2012 at 10:13 pm #

    Thanks Jo — I’m sure you’ll love it and will have plenty of ideas for quirking it up ;-)

  5. ThermomixBlogger Helene January 7, 2012 at 10:14 pm #

    Wow Johann — great way to go. I love this combo. WooHOO, thanks for sharing!

  6. Gretchen January 9, 2012 at 1:35 am #

    I love this recipe for many reasons. Cheap, versatile, tasty, low kilojules, low carbs, gluten free etc……. What is not to love? Thank you Helene.

  7. ThermomixBlogger Helene January 9, 2012 at 9:17 am #

    Glad you like it Gretchen — I’m always happy to know you are cooking, eating, and visiting this blog ;-)

  8. Mara January 9, 2012 at 10:52 am #

    You’re back, yay!!!
    At home we call this “fake cous-cous” LOL. My children gulp it down… but then again, I still haven’t found a single thing that my kids won’t eat. They take after their mother ;-)

  9. ThermomixBlogger Helene January 9, 2012 at 1:22 pm #

    Hi Mara — well, I’m “sort of back”… very busy here working on a new project to be announced soon on a blog near you ;-) I like the idea of calling this “cous cous” as it really does have that crumbly texture. So it looks like rice, behaves like cous cous, and “feeds” like both! Happy New Year to you ;-)

  10. Ceejay January 10, 2012 at 5:53 am #

    How appropriate and timely this post is Helene! Many many thanks. I’m thinking I’m rather glad I like cauliflower right about now! :) x

  11. Liese January 10, 2012 at 6:07 am #

    We looooove cauliflower rice and as a “high raw” foodie I can tell you there is absolutely no need to steam it! It’s totally delish and so much better for you like that!

  12. ThermomixBlogger Helene January 10, 2012 at 1:24 pm #

    I Ceejay — thanks for visiting. I wasn’t too sure how much I was ‘liking’ cauliflower myself before trying this, but using it REPEATEDLY for the past two weeks as a rice substitute has made me like it all the more. I think I’m addicted to feeling virtuous while pigging out (oink oink)…

  13. ThermomixBlogger Helene January 10, 2012 at 1:30 pm #

    Hi Liese; I fully agree with you, this is a great transition food for people who want to experiment with more raw foods. Works for me! Thanks for your input — the more we can share simple raw food ideas, the more we can help each other eat for health ;-)

  14. Julie November 24, 2012 at 11:06 pm #

    Love it! Haven’t seen the dried red chilli pepper before?

  15. Paddywagen January 13, 2013 at 5:09 pm #

    Used it to make Mock Fried Rice- incredibly easy and tasty! What a great idea!

  16. ThermomixBlogger Helene January 16, 2013 at 9:39 pm #

    Great idea Paddywagen! Thanks for this suggestion ;-)

  17. France March 2, 2013 at 12:13 am #

    wheeeee! your post has got exactly what I was looking for. Got my thermomix today, want to make cauliflower rice, BINGO! thanks!!

  18. ThermomixBlogger Helene March 3, 2013 at 11:34 pm #

    Yay! I’m glad you found what you needed here France… watch for a new Cauliflower recipe coming soon ;-) (as soon as I get a minute to blog it!)

  19. tanya July 5, 2013 at 4:48 am #

    So the cauliflower is not cooked? Will need to try this, thanks for posting

  20. ThermomixBlogger Helene July 10, 2013 at 5:10 pm #

    Hi Tanya; I think if you read the article completely you’ll find that cauliflower done this way can be used cooked or raw. It’s your preference and all good!

  21. Rose Hewartson October 1, 2013 at 3:55 am #

    I made this tonight – it was brilliant. I miss not having rice with a curry and this fit the bill perfectly!

  22. ThermomixBlogger Helene October 3, 2013 at 9:05 pm #

    Glad to hear it Rose. I had the same feelings as you. This is a surprising little trick because it fills the gap and lets us feel virtuous at the same time ;-)

  23. Melissa October 8, 2013 at 8:37 pm #

    I am obsessed with this recipe! Eating it for lunch and dinner!

  24. ThermomixBlogger Helene October 14, 2013 at 8:15 pm #

    What about breakfast Melissa?!? I’m sure you could find a way… ;-)

  25. Steve January 19, 2014 at 5:05 am #

    Hi Helene, I did send you a tweet on this, I added an onion, then cooked it in the TM still in the bowl for 10 minutes with a little olive oil. My question is, the quantity is too much for me, do you think if I kept half of it back it would freeze okay? I guess putting it in the fridge for a few days would not hurt, but then you must use it quite quick, whereas freezing gives you more time.

  26. ThermomixBlogger Helene January 22, 2014 at 10:36 pm #

    Hi Steve; I think you could certainly freeze this, but I’m personally not keen on freezing and rarely do it. I would rather just make smaller batches and eat it all up over the next day, in salad or added to soup etc. That’s just me though… you should try freezing it and see how it goes… (it may change the texture.)

  27. MeganJane June 26, 2014 at 4:47 am #

    I can’t believe I’ve waited this long to try cauliflower rice! My DH hates rice, so I made it tonight to go with slow cooked Apricot Chicken. I sautéed onion and garlic in butter, added stock and then cooked the cauli in the basket for 10 minutes on speed 5. Super duper!!

  28. Helene April 4, 2016 at 2:53 am #

    This was seriously delicious! Thank you so much for an extremely tasty dish!

  29. Helene April 4, 2016 at 2:56 am #

    Oh and I can’t believe we share the same first name!

  30. ThermomixBlogger Helene April 6, 2016 at 9:39 am #

    Hi Helene ;-) — Thanks for trying the recipe, and taking time to share your feedback!

  31. Simone May 4, 2016 at 5:57 pm #

    Thanks Helene for the info about the REVERSE speed. I was making cauliflower rice in the Thermi for quite a while but it was always too mushy.
    (I finally bought Cauli rice at Trader Joe’s). Now I will definitely give it another try.

  32. Sarah July 4, 2016 at 5:07 am #

    Thanks, I eat this all the time. What I am really interested in is what is on top of the rice though? That looks like some kind of delicious curry that I’d like to try!

  33. ThermomixBlogger Helene July 4, 2016 at 11:09 am #

    Thanks for your interest in this recipe Sarah … the topping on this Thermomix Mock Rice is the “Thai-ish Sauce”… you’ll find that recipe featured just above the comments on this page :) Best wishes and happy mixing to you!

  34. Jenny October 16, 2016 at 8:56 pm #

    Helen could you tell me how many calories are in this Califlower rice please,I haven’t tried it yet but it sounds

  35. ThermomixBlogger Helene October 16, 2016 at 9:08 pm #

    Hi Jenny — sorry but I don’t offer nutritional counts for my recipes. I find these to be generally unreliable due to the variations in our ingredients etc. If someone really needs to know, they can always do the math themselves using numbers for the exact ingredients (oils etc) that they are using. For the basic Cauliflower however, I just checked with Google and it tells me that using a full 500 grams of cauliflower for this would be about 125 calories. That’s without adding sauce of course. You also have to take into account of course, how many servings you will make from the 500 grams at your house… Thanks for visiting the blog Jenny, sorry I can’t be of more help :)

  36. Melanie October 18, 2016 at 12:55 am #

    I love this I actually added mine to bok choy, broccolini and baby corn in the wok for 2 minutes so it still had bite to it, with a little bit of Asian marinade used on my steamed pork. Had intentions of doing 25% rice but did not need it. Will definitely make again.

  37. ThermomixBlogger Helene October 18, 2016 at 11:20 am #

    Yay Melanie! Thanks so much for coming back to the blog and sharing your success with other readers. This mock rice surprised me too the first time I made it… it deserves to be sampled :)

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