Healthy holiday side: Enjoy big taste and fewer calories with this cauliflower mac and cheese.


By JULIE BRINKLEY


This recipe for cauliflower mac and cheese will fit perfectly into your holiday meal plans while allowing you to continue fitting perfectly into your favorite jeans.


What I love most about this easy-to-make recipe is that you’ll get all the taste of traditional mac and cheese, but with fewer calories.


And hey, if cauliflower can be mac and cheese, you can be anything you set your mind to!

WHAT YOU NEED


3 cups cauliflower, steamed and chopped


1 cup low fat shredded cheddar


1 cup low fat shredded colby jack

2 Tbsp half and half

2 Tbsp reduced fat cream cheese


1/4 tsp garlic powder


1/4 tsp onion powder


1/4 tsp ground mustard

HOW TO MAKE IT


Preheat oven to 350 degrees.


In saucepan over medium-low heat, warm half and half, cream cheese, garlic powder, onion powder, and mustard (feel free to use any combination of spices you like).


Whisk until creamy; do not allow to boil. Mix cheese together in bowl and pour 1 1/2 cups of cheese mixture into the saucepan; stir until completely melted.

Add cauliflower and gently fold until cauliflower is covered.


Place mixture into baking dish and top with remaining shredded cheese. Bake for 20-25 minutes until cheese is browned. (If desired broil for the last 2 minutes of baking time).


Optavia: Makes 2 servings with 1 lean, 3 greens and 3 condiments (per serving). No healthy fats are required.