bowl of curly brown rice pasta with bacon and cauliflower pieces, fork in the bowl, bowls of chili flakes and parmesan cheese beside it, 2 garlic bulbs in the background

PASTA WITH CAULIFLOWER AND BACON

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This Pasta with Cauliflower and Bacon is a family favourite in our house! It’s quick and easy to whip up making this a delicious and comforting dinner any night of the week!

Plate of bowtie pasta with pieces of bacon and chunks of cauliflower, grated parmesan cheese on top in the centre with some chili flakes, salt and pepper, hand holding the fork

Every time I’m at Momma’s, I’m willing to bet, this Pasta with Cauliflower and Bacon will guaranteed make an appearance. And today, I’m at Momma’s. And while this Pasta with Cauliflower and Bacon will be guaranteed delicious (like it always is), I’m at Momma’s for a completely different reason today.

BEFORE WE TALK PASTA WITH CAULIFLOWER AND BACON

I can’t even tell you how blessed I (WE) feel! Hip Hip Gourmet gained a new member!!! She may not be able to walk, talk or even fully see me yet but, and I ain’t being bias or anything, I truly didn’t know the meaning of PERFECT until I laid eyes on this sweet gal – my teensy tiny niece!!! She is joy in tiny human form and I’ve never been so in awe in my life. Just WOW!!!

She marks the first little babe to enter our family and I’m lucky enough to be staying with her for at least the first month! I’m going to be the help around the house while my sister and her husband adjust to first-time parent life. I’m going to be the cleaner, the errand runner, the grocery shopper, the cook and of course, the new proud Auntie. So quick and easy dinners is in order for the near future.

CUE: PASTA WITH CAULIFLOWER AND BACON

This dish is one of my Momma’s long-term go-to’s and likely one of the first meals my perfect little niece will be fed when she goes to Nonna’s after she, you know, grows a few teeth. It’s a quick, super simple and reliable meal that’s both satisfying and flavourful.

large black cast iron skillet of curly brown rice pasta with bacon and cauliflower pieces, two garlic bulbs in the background, a small clear bowl of parmesan cheese with a small silver spoon in it and a smaller bowl with chili flakes in it beside the skillet

WHAT YOU’LL NEED TO MAKE THIS PASTA

ingredients for pasta with cauliflower and bacon - cauliflower, bacon, pasta of choice, olive oil, parmesan cheese, salt and pepper, garlic
Complete list of ingredients and amounts can be found in the recipe card below.

It doesn’t take very many ingredients to bring this delicious Pasta with Cauliflower and Bacon to life. Let’s get into them in a little bit more detail down below:

  • Pasta: You could really go for whatever kind of Pasta you want! I’ve used a whole bunch of different varieties in the past such as Penne, Farfalle, Rotini, etc.
  • Cauliflower: The star of the dish! Cooked to tender perfection before being added to the pasta.
  • Bacon: Adds the perfect saltiness and crunch to the dish. Who knew that bacon and cauliflower were like a match made in Heaven? PRO TIP: Chop it up before cooking so it’s quicker to cook and cooks evenly.
  • Cheese: Optional but not really?! Gets added to the final dish at the end. We love sprinkling on a bit of Freshly Grated Parmesan or Asiago for an extra cheesy boost of flavour.
  • Garlic: Cause we don’t make a pasta dish in this house without adding a little bit of garlic! Fresh garlic is best in this recipe.
  • Olive Oil: For sautéeing, adds flavour. You can use a different oil, such as avocado or butter, instead if you prefer.
  • Salt/Pepper: As always. For balancing out the flavours and extra seasoning.
skillet of curly brown rice pasta with bacon and cauliflower pieces, large wooden spoon holding some up above the rest of the skillet

KEY TIPS TO MAKING PASTA WITH CAULIFLOWER AND BACON

  • Blanche the Cauliflower in a pot of boiling water for 2 minutes before adding it to the skillet with the remainder of the ingredients at the end. This will soften them up perfectly and cook them just enough.
  • Drain the Garlic and Bacon mixture after cooking on a paper towel lined plate. This will drain off most of the grease before adding it back to the pan with the Pasta.
  • Don’t add the garlic to the hot skillet too early as it only needs 1-2 minutes to cook with the bacon. It will burn if added too early.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
HOW DO I REHEAT LEFTOVER PASTA WITH CAULIFLOWER AND BACON?

You can reheat leftover Pasta with a bit of oil in a large skillet over medium heat, stirring frequently. Alternatively, you may use a microwave.

WHAT SHOULD I MAKE WITH THIS PASTA WITH CAULIFLOWER AND BACON?

I love serving this Pasta with Garlic Bread, a garden salad or a small soup to start such as this classic Lentil Soup.

WHICH TYPE OF PASTA WORKS BEST FOR THIS RECIPE?

This is where the recipe gives you a bit of wiggle room in terms of what kind of Pasta you could use. I find it works best with bite sized (short) Pastas such as Fusilli, Penne or Bow Ties rather than long Pasta like Spaghetti or Linguini. But that’s not to say it wouldn’t be just as delicious with those types!

bowl of curly brown rice pasta with bacon and cauliflower pieces, fork in the bowl, bowls of chili flakes and parmesan cheese beside it, 2 garlic bulbs in the background
close up of a bowl of curly brown rice pasta with bacon and cauliflower pieces

PASTA WITH CAULIFLOWER AND BACON

Yield: 6 Servings
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 25 minutes

This one was on repeat growing up as it crosses all the T's and dots all the I's - quick, easy and delicious!

Ingredients

  • 1 head Cauliflower, chopped into florets
  • 1 pkg Pasta of Your Choice*
  • 6 Strips Bacon, chopped
  • 3 Cloves Garlic, minced
  • 2 tbsp Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • Salt and Pepper, to taste
  • Freshly Grated Asiago or Parmesan Cheese, optional, for topping at the end

Instructions

  1. Add the cauliflower florets to a pot of boiling water. Cover and cook for 3 minutes. Drain and chop into bite size pieces. Set aside.
    pot of cooked cauliflower florets on a single burner cooktop
    cutting board with a large knife on it beside chopped cauliflower florets
  2. Heat a non-stick pan over medium heat and add the chopped bacon. Cook, stirring frequently, for 3-4 minutes or until the bacon is starting to really cook and sizzle. Add the minced garlic and cook, stirring, an additional 1-2 until the bacon is nice and crispy. You don't want to burn the garlic so make sure the pan isn't overly hot and that you don't add it in too soon - you don't want to cook it for more than a couple minutes. Drain the grease by placing the mixture on a paper towel lined plate. Set aside.
    cooked bacon pieces with garlic and grease on a paper towel
  3. Cook the pasta according to the package directions.
    colander of brown rice curly pasta
  4. Add the oil to a non-stick skillet over medium high heat. Add the bacon and garlic mixture and the cauliflower, mixing until well combined.
    cast iron skillet of bacon and cauliflower pieces
  5. Add the cooked pasta, reduce the heat to medium, and cook for an additional couple minutes. Season with salt and pepper to taste and garnish with freshly grated asiago or parmesan cheese, if desired.
    black skillet overflowing with brown rice curly pasta sitting on top of bacon and cauliflower pieces
    brown rice curly pasta with cauliflower and bacon pieces in a black cast iron skillet on a single burner cooktop

Notes

  • We love using bow-ties, fusilli or penne for this pasta dish
  • Nutrition Information:
    Yield: 6 Serving Size: 1
    Amount Per Serving: Calories: 172Total Fat: 11gSaturated Fat: 3gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 7gCholesterol: 15mgSodium: 338mgCarbohydrates: 11gFiber: 3gSugar: 2gProtein: 9g

    Nutrition is only an estimate and calculated using Nutritionix.

    Did you make this recipe? I love seeing your creations!

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