Cauliflower Sushi Rice

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All Photos © Christine Elise McCarthy 2012

I love cauliflower.  It is so versatile & an unsung hero in the vegetable world.

I also love sushi.  I have a tendency to gorge in sushi restaurants – likely to the horror and chagrin of the elegant staff, chefs & proprietors.  I can’t help it.  I want all of it.  In me.  NOW.  ALL OF IT!  Except, of course, for eel & mackerel & sea urchin (though I did try it & it wasn’t bad – but it took a lot of emotional prep.  I have no time for such indulgences if I want to eat my six adult servings of more immediately palatable “regular” sushi in a reasonable period of time).

The real culprit in keeping me from winning an imaginary Coney Island-style sushi-glutton eating contest is the rice.  Damned rice.  Fattening, too, when you eat five pounds of it.  “So,” I thought, “how can I make a sushi that I can overeat without repercussions?”  Shame – sure – but I’m used to that.  I will never get used to ratcheting up the size pants I wear every few years.  That shit’s really shameful.

So – I did some research.  Turns out, not only can cauliflower be whipped into delightful fake mashed potatoes but it can also be grated into rice.  As an unapologetic carb queen – these cauliflower, guiltless versions of my favorite white foods seem like a gift from God.  I decided to attempt a cauliflower-rice-based sushi & see what happened.

I looked at a lot of other people’s ideas & recipes & reviewed their results.  The result I got here was absolutely adequate but not perfected.  I added 3 egg whites to aid in binding a crumbly cauliflower rice into a tackier thing closer to the sticky rice used in sushi.  I don’t think the eggs added anything at all except for guilt-laden animal product – so – next time I try it I think I will saute the “rice” in a little oil & maybe overcook it into a sticker substance.  It is definitely a work in progress.  However – this DID work – and it worked well enough for me to share the results.  This makes a lot of “rice,” maybe 5 cups or so – depending on the size of the cauliflower you use.



Cauliflower Sushi Rice


2 heads cauliflower – stalks & leaves discarded

3 egg whites

1/4 cup rice vinegar

1 tsp sugar

1/2 tsp salt


Heat the rice vinegar in a small pan.  Dissolve the sugar & salt in it & set aside.

Using a cheese grater or the grating blade in your food processor (FAR less messy) – grate the cauliflower.  It will immediately look like rice.

I added the egg whites & rice vinegar mix & put the cauliflower in the microwave for five minutes.  I took it out – stirred it around & zapped it again in five minute increments until I felt the cauliflower was soften & cooked through.  Microwaves vary wildly in their effectiveness.  Mine is 20 years old.  This process might take you far fewer zapping episodes.

Many versions I saw of this added no rice vinegar/salt/sugar & instead – sauteed the cauliflower in coconut oil.  I might try that next.  I might saute AND add the vinegar mix.  You should experiment, too!

Once you feel you have a cooked rice texture – chill it in the fridge.

And there you have it.  Cauliflower rice!



And here is a peek at how nicely it mimics rice in your sushi rolls!  Yeah.  That’s CAULIFLOWER!!!

One thought on “Cauliflower Sushi Rice

  1. Pingback: Sushi – Many Ways – Kale, Asparagus, Shitake, Tuna, Shrimp, Avocado and more! | Delightful-Delicious-Delovely

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