How to Make Cauliflower Rice


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Cauliflower rice is a wonderful low-carb, grain-free rice alternative. It’s also a sneaky way to get more veggies into your diet. Watch the recipe video below and see how easy it is to make at home.

What pairs well with cauliflower rice? My Shredded Chicken, Slow Cooker Rotisserie Chicken and Slow Cooker Pulled Pork are delicious. With a few extra spices or a flavorful sauce you could easily turn it into a tasty meal!

Cauliflower rice in a bowl.

Cauliflower rice (lovingly called “cauli rice”) is a healthy, low-carb, grain-free, less starchy replacement for rice. Now, I’m not necessarily a low-carb girl – I do eat white rice and other organic grains – but it’s always nice to get some extra veggies into your meals and switch things up.

Cauliflower, while sometimes not as popular as its cruciferous cousin broccoli, offers an array of health benefits. It’s high in antioxidants and vitamin C (providing 73% of your daily vitamin C needs in one cup!). It’s also a known cancer fighter, thanks to its well-studied anti-inflammatory properties.

But here’s what I love. Cauliflower rice tastes delicious and is great for weekly meal prep. Make up a batch and add it to your meals for a veggie boost all week long.


You can make, cook and enjoy homemade cauliflower rice in less than 30 minutes. Just follow these steps:

  • Remove the cauliflower florets from the head of cauliflower
  • Grate the cauliflower florets using either the grater attachment on your food processor or a box grater
  • Sauté 1/2 an onion with a little olive oil in a pan to add flavor to the cauliflower rice.
  • Add the grated cauliflower to the pan and sauté for 5-7 minutes
  • Season with salt and pepper and serve or add some of the tasty flavor enhancements mentioned below
Cauliflower rice being made in a food processor.
Making cauliflower rice on the stove.

A Few Extra Tips

You can use the chopper attachment on your food processor (the one you probably use most often) instead of the grater attachment, but I find that the cauliflower grains are much more consistent with the grater attachment.

The chopper attachment tends to mush the florets on the bottom and not chop the florets higher up. If you don’t have a food processor, just slice your cauliflower head in half (or quarters) and use a box grater.

Cauliflower rice in a bowl with herbs.

How To Make Cauliflower Rice in a Vitamix

Did you know you can also make this in your Vitamix? Simply follow the instructions below.

  1. Cut the cauliflower into smaller pieces and place them in the Vitamix (No more than 2/3 full).
  2. Fill with water just until the cauliflower lifts above the blade.
  3. Pulse until desired consistency is reached, about 6-8 times.
  4. Pour the mixture through a sieve and pat the cauliflower dry.
Cauliflower rice in a bowl with herbs.

Can you Freeze It?

Yes! Absolutely. Once you’ve riced the cauliflower, divide the raw cauliflower rice into Stasher Bags or my favorite Glasslock Storage Containers. It’ll stay good for up to 6 months. Then, when you’re ready to eat it, just toss it frozen into a sauté pan as per the instructions below and cook a few additional minutes.

6 Tasty Cauliflower Rice Recipes

  • Cauliflower Fried Rice: Your Asian restaurant favorite fried rice, made healthy.
  • Cauliflower Rice Tabbouleh: A delicious veggie spin on traditional tabbouleh that swaps bulgar with cauliflower rice. It’s healthier and gluten-free!
  • Asian Cauliflower Rice with Ginger Shrimp: This is a bowl full of flavorful goodness with creamy avocado, and spicy shrimp.
  • Garlic Parsley Cauliflower Rice:  Follow the below recipe, then stir fry 3-4 cloves of minced garlic after sautéing the onions. Cook the cauliflower rice for 5-7 minutes and stir in freshly chopped parsley before serving.
  • Cilantro Lime Cauliflower Rice: Follow the below recipe, then stir fry 1-2 cloves of minced garlic after sautéing the onions. Cook the cauliflower rice for 5-7 minutes and stir in a handful of finely chopped fresh cilantro. Top it off with a squeeze of 1-2 limes over the rice.
  • Mexican Cauliflower Rice: Follow the below recipe, then stir fry 2 cloves of minced garlic after sautéing the onions. Cook the cauliflower rice for 5 minutes, then add 2 tomatoes (finely diced), 2 tablespoons tomato paste, 1 jalapeno pepper (seeds removed and finely diced), 1/2 tsp cumin, juice from 1 lime, and finely chopped fresh cilantro. Stir it all together for a couple of minutes then serve.

Cauliflower rice is also used as the base in my Cauliflower Pizza Crust recipe!

Want more greens? Give my broccoli rice a try. You can substitute it for cauliflower in any of the low-carb recipes above.

Cauliflower rice in a bowl with herbs.

How to Make Cauliflower Rice – Easy Recipe!

5 from 25 votes
Prep: 15 minutes
Cook: 10 minutes
Total: 25 minutes
Servings: 4 servings
Author: Lisa Bryan


Cauliflower rice is a great grain-free rice alternative. It provides a healthy, veggie base for so many meal options and tastes delicious! Make sure to watch the recipe video above to see how I make it.



  • 1 head of cauliflower
  • ½ medium yellow onion, diced
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste


  • Remove the florets. Slice the cauliflower head in half and use a knife to remove all the florets. Cut some of the larger florets into smaller pieces so they'll fit within the chute of your food processor.
  • Grate the cauliflower. Insert the grater adapter into your food processor and start feeding the cauliflower florets through the top. Depending on the size of your food processor, you may have to empty it halfway through.
  • Saute the onion. Heat the oil in a large pan over medium heat and sauté the onion for 3 to 4 minutes, until softened and translucent.
  • Saute the cauliflower. Add the cauliflower rice to the pan and sauté for another 5 to 7 minutes, until warmed through and slightly tender. Season with salt and pepper.
  • Serve. Serve immediately while warm as a healthy side dish.


Calories: 119.7kcal | Carbohydrates: 12.2g | Protein: 4.2g | Fat: 7.4g | Saturated Fat: 1.2g | Sodium: 63.9mg | Fiber: 4.5g | Sugar: 4.8g
Course: Side Dish
Cuisine: American
Keyword: cauliflower rice, cauliflower rice recipes, how to make cauliflower rice
Did you make this recipe?Mention @downshiftology or tag #downshiftology!

Recipe originally posted October 2016, but updated to include new photos and information. 

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Recipe Rating


  1. I’ve made the cauliflower rice 3 times now, loved it.  Last time it turned out like mashed potatoes and I think I did everything the same.  What did I do??

  2. In your recipe, you say that one head of cauliflower is one serving. Can you say how much (say in cups) one head of cauliflower actually yields? I suppose it would depend on the size of the head. Where I live, grocery prices have skyrocketed so much, a head of cauliflower costs $5.99 (on sales sometimes for $3.49).5 stars

    1. If you don’t have a food processor, just slice your cauliflower head in half (or quarters) and use a box grater.

  3. Oh my gosh, awesome recipe, delicious. I isome for breakfast top with to fried eggs. I love the fact that you freeze the extra. Love your vidoes. Thank you.5 stars

      1. Lisa , after cooking cauliflower rice can I add this to my stuffed pepper recipe instead of my usual rice? Thank you very much!

  4. i have heard so much about cauliflower rice but have not tried yet. your recipe let me try this recipe at home last sunday. You know it come out as a surprised for us, we all love . i am back here just to you thanks for the recipe. I have not look for any other recipe for that. Bye5 stars

    1. Hi Mobasir – So glad this recipe turned out well for you! You’ll have to give my other cauliflower rice recipes a try now :)

  5. I love all your recipes. You are awesome! Easy healthy recipes. This is going to be my new addiction watching and making your recipes. Thank you!5 stars

  6. I love cauliflower rice but I always buy it pre-made because I figured making it at home would be too difficult! But this recipe made it so easy – thank you for that!5 stars

  7. I am so glad to find your videos/ recipes 
    You make it look so easy and inspire others 
    Cauliflower rice turned out lovely 
    Thank you xox 5 stars

    1. Hi Nabila – Welcome to the Downshiftology community! I’m glad you are enjoying these recipes :)

  8. Thanks for the video. I’m a visual learner and your video made it so easy for me to try this today. I made the lime and cilantro version w/onion and garlic. I added some cooked cilantro and lime marinated chicken breast strips to it for a complete meal. Fantastic!5 stars

    1. Oh yay! I’m glad you found the video helpful Marcia. The cilantro lime cauliflower rice is a favorite of mine as well!

  9. tossed some keffir lime leaves in at the end and covered the pan for a few minutes to steam off the heat. It really picked up that wonderful scent form the leaves and a decidedly Thai touch.5 stars

    1. Oh yum! That sounds like a wonderful addition to the cauliflower rice. I love keffir lime as well and all those Thai flavors.

  10. I used the chop setting on my food processor and had to shake up the florets for them all to be properly grated, but it was FAST and I added a whole head of cauliflower (chopped) to olive oil, green onions, chopped garlic, and a pat of butter. Delicious. I won’t be making rice anytime soon5 stars

    1. That sounds delicious with all of the flavors you added! So happy you loved it, Julie!

  11. Thanks so much for your easy instructions, your cauliflower rice sounds delicious and I feel I’m ready to try it now, my worst fears was that it would be mushy, your cooking time sounds perfectly right!5 stars

    1. No, it’s not mushy at all! It’s just lightly sautéed and still maintains the same texture as normal rice. :) I hope you enjoy it Patty!

    1. Yes, cauliflower rice is a great low-carb option to swap in so many different recipes. I hope you enjoy!

  12. This is such a great tutorial for making cauliflower rice. Love the flavoring ideas, and I’d go for the cilantro lime. That sounds fabulous!5 stars

    1. It’s a great substitute and bonus way to eat more veggies! ;) Hope you enjoy the recipe Emily.

  13. What a fantastic recipe – so healthy and so light! It will definitely help me to include more vegetables in my weekly schedule. And I bet it will be great with some chicken, too!5 stars

  14. I was just looking at the grater attachment that came with my food processor the other day thinking, wonder if I’ll ever use this? I love cauliflower rice and have been paying a boatload for it frozen. I will definitely give this a try. Love these ideas! Thanks.

    1. Yes, that grater attachment is perfect for making cauliflower rice! Hopefully you’ll save a bit of money making it at home now. :)

  15. This is an awesome recipe. I added mushrooms and garlic and it came out delicious. I made a good bit as I am using it for meal prep. Now to get my husband to try it. Thank you

  16. I was really nervous about making this for my family as they’re all pretty adverse to trying something new. But my husband was recently told he had diabetes so I thought it a good excuse to make them try it. It was Sooo good and easy to make !!! I didn’t feel to guilty about going back for seconds ? and I don’t think we will ever go back to rice !! ?

    1. Yay! I’m so happy to hear you both love the cauliflower rice Melissa! And it’s definitely a great, healthy options so go back for those seconds. ;) x

  17. Before freezing, I always wrap bundles and squeeze the extra liquid out. This helps especially when making a cauliflower salad.

  18. I’ve been wanting to try this for some time now but I think my brain has
    been wired toward rice for too many years to accept Cauliflower for rice. However, I’ve been put on a Low-carb diet and decided that I may as well give it a try. Thanks to your simple instructions, and yummy taste suggestions, I’m now hooked. Can’t imagine why bland rice has been such a staple in my diet for so many years when I could have been enjoying tasty, flavorful cauliflower. Also appreciate the tip on freezing now that caulis are so cheap at the moment.

    1. Glad you gave the recipe a try Wendy! It’s funny how we get these notions in our head, isn’t it? But better late than never to enjoy cauli rice! :) x

  19. It looks so easy to do , I want to do this because so many of my friends are Vegan and gluten free , so the more natural the better , ta and bye for now , I will be looking you up again!
    Matt in the UK x

    1. Glad you found the recipe and post helpful Matt! Cauliflower rice is definitely a healthy alternative than many will love. :)

  20. Made this for dinner. The family LOVED it! Even those that are not fans of cauliflower. They all voted to keep this recipe. So easy with the food processor. I know there is nothing in it to keep the cail fresh or to keep it from sticking together as in the store bought cauli-rice.

    1. Wonderful! So happy to hear the family loved it! And definitely give the fried rice version a try – that’s a reader favorite. ;) x

  21. Thanks so much for the video of how easy it is to “rice” cauliflower! I just tried it and it worked great in my food processor. I have tried the packages, but this is so much fresher. I am looking forward to cooking.

    1. That’s great Sharon! So happy you found the video helpful. Enjoy your cauliflower rice. :) x

  22. I usually buy fresh cauliflower… today i bought Trader Joe”s cauliflower rice in the bag. I let you know how it comes out. LOVE your cutting board. Where can I get one!

      1. I sautéed 2cloves garlic, onion 2stalks celery, 2 carrots some baby bell mushrooms. 2 tablespoons of coconut aminos and cauliflower rice. Omg. Yummy
        Yikes! Cutting board is expensive …

      2. That sounds amazing! Love everything you sautéed together! The cutting board is expensive, but it’s huge and really good quality. They do have smaller versions as well that are a bit less expensive. :) x

  23. Loving this recipe after a heavy holiday meal. Can’t wait to try it this week! Bet this would be wonderful with baked chicken. – Jess

    1. Yes – it would be fab with baked chicken! And I hear you on lightening up after the holidays. My body is craving ALL the veggies. :) x

  24. Such beautiful cauliflower rice! I have been meaning to make this myself, but haven’t gotten to it yet. Definitely need to. Glad you didnt flood the basement!

  25. I really need to give cauliflower rice a try. Every time I see it, i think how good it looks and then completely forget to add cauliflower to my shopping list. I love all the extra tips in this post. I hadn’t heard a lot of them before! And glad your parent’s basement remains unflooded! ;)

    1. It really is super versatile, though I personally love the lime cilantro rice. And yes, I think my parents are happy I didn’t flood their basement either! Lol. ;) Thanks Tracy!

  26. I have been procrastinating on cauliflower rice for ages now (for no apparent reason at all)! I love all the different flavour ideas you’ve given here, and GORGEOUS pictures btw! Thanks so much for the recipes!

    1. Cauli rice is shockingly easier than you think. And once you do it once, you’ll be hooked! Thanks Tina! :)

  27. Haha! Love the stream-of-conscious storytelling there! + I <3 cauliflower rice & thanks for the video. I'm in LOVE w/ your cutting board & fascinated by the gizmo under your large saucepan when you plate the rice. What are you using, dear Lisa? I must have those! xo

    1. Thanks Suzi! Yeah, I’m in love with that walnut cutting board as well. It’s from John Boos & Co. And that gizmo thing is a portable induction stovetop…since I’m filming in the basement and not in a kitchen. ;) If you have a kitchen, you don’t need one of those. Unless you’re camping. With electricity. Haha. xo

      1. I’ll certainly take both the cutting board & gizmo with me if I’m ever caught glamping! Thanks, Lisa! xo Suzi

  28. Thank goodness nothing bad happened during filming! I’m not a rice fan, but definitely LOVE LOVE LOVE cauliflower rice – so versatile, as you proved with your variations. Thanks for another great video/recipe!

    1. I know, can you imagine?! That would have definitely called for a blooper reel – lol! ;)