This broccoli cauliflower parmesan gratin is topped with almond meal and almond milk to make it a healthy version of comfort food.
Let’s talk about the definition of comfort.
For me, that word conjures up many things…sweatpants, chocolate, clean sheets and cheesy vegetable gratins that aren’t really all that bad for you to name a few.
We’ll get to that last one in a minute or two.
Now let’s talk about the definition of discomfort.
Prior to yesterday, I would’ve had many things on this list…allergies so bad you can’t see out of your tearing up eyes, 400m of burpees, breaking your big toe when the heaviest girl on the soccer team kicks it full force head on, stuff like that.
Now, however, I’m convinced that there is nothing that can define that word better than sitting through a 2 hour one on one sales pitch about time shares when you have absolutely no intent of buying one.
This little mini-vacation we’re on right now in Florida all started back in July when I was casually booking a Hilton hotel in Milan for a few nights for our Italy trip.
At the end of the call, they asked me to listen to their Hilton Grand Vacation packages that were available to me for being “such a loyal diamond member” and I said yes fully anticipating to listen to the quick sales pitch, say my usual “thanks, but no thanks” and hang up 500 Hilton points richer.
I’m a point whore and I’m cool with it.
But then I heard 4 nights for $150, 15,000 points and a $100 rebate and next thing you know, we’ve got a trip to Orlando booked.
Fast forward to Nov. 6 12:30pm at Mr. Porter Metcalf Jr’s desk at Hilton time share headquarters in Orlando, Florida and that “pretty good deal” is looking like it got run over by a train as I’m being assaulted to buy a timeshare.
I’m in sales.
I get the “sales pitch”, really I do.
But if someone were to tell me no, to my face, 7 (yes, 7) different times I’m pretty sure I’d say “well, thanks for your time” and move on.
Anyway, Porter was not me.
We sat there for 2 hours, politely declining “our chance to give our future kids (which we don’t plan on having) the vacations they deserve” over and over and o.v.e.r. again.
We were brought in front of sales managers, “diamond member” managers and then closing managers as if our “no, thanks” was a “YES, YES, YES! Pretty please, we want in” and it was the most uncomfortable 2 hours of my life.
I felt like I was released from jail after a 10 year prison sentence when we got in that elevator at the end.
We both just looked at each other and all I could say was “I’m sorry, I swear I’ll never even listen for the 500 points next time”.
But comfort…comfort is good.
And broccoli cauliflower gratins are hella good.
Especially when that cheesy, crusty topping isn’t a calorie bomb that defeats the purpose of the underlying vegetables in this one.
Just don’t do time shares.
- head of broccoli
- head of cauliflower
- head of garlic
- extra virgin olive oil
- salt & pepper
- almond milk
- whole wheat flour (or GF flour)
- parmesan cheese
- almond meal
How to Make Healthy Broccoli Cauliflower Gratin
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F and cut the cauliflower and broccoli into bite size pieces. Toss in olive oil, salt, and pepper, then transfer to a baking dish.
Drizzle the remaining oil over the head of garlic and wrap it in foil. Place the garlic and veggies in the oven and roast for 30 minutes.
Remove from the oven and set aside.
Melt the butter over medium heat in a saucepan.
Squeeze the cloves of roasted garlic into the butter and mash with a spoon. Add the flour and cook for 30 seconds.
Whisk in the almond milk and stir until it thickens.
Remove from the heat and stir in the parmesan cheese.
Pour the sauce over the roasted broccoli and cauliflower. Sprinkle the almond meal on top and bake for another 20 minutes.
Remove from the oven and serve!
What to Serve with Cheesy Broccoli Gratin
This dish is super comforting and easy enough to serve with weeknight meals, but here are some of our other holiday favorites.
- Tart Cherry Cranberry Glazed Turkey
- Stuffed Cornish Hens with Cranberries and Apples
- Apple Cider Braised Lamb Shanks
FAQs and Expert Tips
- While you can store the leftovers and reheat later, gratins are best on the day you make it, so the topping is nice and crisp.
- You can use this same recipe and swap out the veggies for something totally different. Brussels sprouts would be delish!
- If you like, add in some ham, bacon or sliced sausage links for protein (or a one pan meal).
- Make ahead dishes are great when you are feeding a crowd. To make this gratin beforehand, follow all of the instructions except for the topping. Whip that up just before you are ready to serve and bake it for the last 20 minutes.
- For easy cleanup, grease your dish before you start.
- Make sure your veggies are dry before placing them in the oven so they get nice and crispy.
- Be sure to sprinkle almond meal on top and not almond flour. The meal is courser and gives more of the breadcrumb consistency. If you don’t have almond meal, you can coarsely pulse almonds in a food processor or blender to make your own.
- Have leftover veggies? Try my buffalo turkey cauliflower skillet or buffalo broccoli cheddar bites.
Gratin is any dish that is baked with cheese, butter and/or breadcrumbs on top.
Sure can! Simply swap the butter for a vegan butter. For the parmesan cheese, you can opt for a vegan cheese or nutritional yeast to get the same cheesy flavor.
For this gratin, I would not recommend frozen broccoli and cauliflower. We want them to crisp up and fresh produce works the best in this case.
MORE GRATINS TO TRY:
Roasted Broccoli Cauliflower Gratin
- 1 small head of broccoli
- 1 small head of cauliflower
- 1 small head of garlic
- 2 1/2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- salt & pepper
- 1 tablespoon butter
- 1/2 cup almond milk
- 1 tablespoon whole wheat flour or GF flour
- 1/2 cup parmesan cheese grated
- 2 tablespoons almond meal
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
- Cut broccoli and cauliflower into bite-size pieces and toss with 2 tablespoons of the olive oil plus salt & pepper. Transfer to a baking dish.
- Slice off the top of the head of garlic and drizzle with the remaining 1/2 tablespoon of olive oil. Wrap in aluminum foil and place directly in oven on rack.
- Roast garlic and vegetables for about 30 minutes.
- Remove from oven and set aside.
- In a small sauce pan over medium heat, melt the butter.
- Squeeze the garlic out of the cloves into the melted butter and mash with a wooden spoon.
- Add the flour and cook for 30 seconds.
- Add the almond milk and whisk until the mixture thickens.
- Remove from heat and stir in the parmesan cheese until melted.
- Pour mixture over the top of the roasted broccoli & cauliflower.
- Sprinkle almond meal on top and bake again for 20 minutes.
- Remove from oven and serve warm.
This website provides approximate nutrition information for convenience and as a courtesy only. Nutrition information can vary for a variety of reasons. For the most precise nutritional data use your preferred nutrition calculator based on the actual ingredients you used in the recipe.
Gina Matsoukas is the writer, founder, photographer and recipe developer of Running to the Kitchen — a food website focused on providing healthy, wholesome recipes using fresh and seasonal ingredients as much as possible. Her work has been featured in numerous media outlets both digital and print, including MSN, Huffington post, Buzzfeed, Women’s Health and Food Network.