Grandma made the BEST potato salad - though it wasn’t a super traditional potato salad, it was full of flavour, colour, and texture. This cauliflower potato salad recipe is a very accurate keto version of her original!
It had potatoes, hard-boiled eggs, and a creamy dressing ... and that was about all it had in common with other potato salads.
Rather than any of the traditional ingredients - like Dijon mustard (or yellow mustard), pickle juice, fresh dill, or celery salt - hers got the bulk of its flavor from copious use of Italian dressing, which the potatoes were actually marinated in.
The seasonings from the dressing made kind of a spicy mayo - SO good!
There was no red onion or chopped dill pickles, but there were plenty of radishes, green onions, and celery. (It uses green onion rather than the fresh parsley or fresh chives in many potato salad recipes.
It was served at all of our family gatherings that would have a potato salad, it was our default, and I LOVED it.
As I got a bit older, it was my favorite potato salad to bring to any summer BBQ. Just a really great recipe, once I “translated” it from her instructions!
When I went keto, I knew I’d have to come up with a low carb potato salad - a healthier version of hers.
It took a few tries, but I finally landed on a keto potato salad that tastes shockingly like the real thing!
The Nutritional Info
Whether you’re on the Atkins diet, a general keto diet, low carbing, or not even aiming for weight loss at all, this cauliflower salad is a fantastically healthy potato salad alternative for all kinds of meal plans!
This decadent keto cauliflower potato salad comes out to only 178 calories, 5 grams of total carbs, 2 grams of fiber, and less than 3 grams of net carbs per serving. FAR fewer carbs than any regular potato salad, it won’t raise your blood sugar levels!
For reference, the source material for this faux potato salad - the real potato salad it was designed around - clocked in at 409 calories, 33 grams of carbs / 28 grams of net carbs per serving.
Between it being a great option for diabetics and those following a low carb lifestyle, a tater salad that is generally non offensive to picky eaters, the small amount of prep time involved, and the fact that it’s a great make ahead option?
This is an excellent recipe to whip up as a side dish for your summer cookouts!
This recipe uses only simple ingredients that are readily available in any grocery store. I tend to look at them in 3 parts: The cauliflower, the dressing, and the salad ingredients.
I use a large head of cauliflower - fresh.
While I love the convenience of frozen cauliflower - especially when making mashed cauliflower - it just doesn’t work as well for this.
To really mimic the texture of potatoes in a regular potato salad, you want the cauliflower to have a bit of bite to it. Once defrosted and cooked, previously-frozen ends up to slightly mushy cauliflower.
The texture of the cauliflower is also the reason for the cooking process I use in this recipe - dry steamed cauliflower*, rather than boiling it in a large pot of water.
While I’m usually all for riffing on a recipe, I wouldn’t recommend deviating from the cooking instructions when making this low carb mock potato salad.
* It steams in its own moisture that releases as it cooks, without the addition of any additional water.
Because of the high carb count of regular Italian dressing - and the fact that cauliflower behaves differently from potatoes - I make a quick, homemade dressing.
As far as substitutions go, you can swap the olive oil out for avocado oil if desired.
Also, the white vinegar can be swapped out in favor of another acid, like lemon juice or apple cider vinegar.
To finish out the recipe, you will need:
Full fat mayo*
Hard boiled eggs
* You can substitute avocado mayo, Greek yogurt, and/or sour cream for all or part of the mayo, if you’d like.
How to Make Low Carb Cauliflower Potato Salad
The full recipe is in the recipe card at the end of this post, here is a pictorial walk through.
In a small bowl, whisk together dressing ingredients, set aside.
Cut cauliflower into small florets - bite-sized florets - place cauliflower florets in a large microwave-safe bowl.
Cover loosely with plastic wrap, microwave on high for 4-5 minutes. Stir cauliflower pieces well, microwave for another 3 minutes. Remove from microwave, drain well.
Note: If you have a steamer, you can cook the cauliflower in a steamer basket, if you prefer. You want the cauliflower slightly softened, with a bit of firmness to it - like potatoes in potato salad!
Place cauliflower in a large mixing bowl..
Note: If possible, chill your steamed cauliflower before proceeding.
Add mayo (⅓ cup if you like a drier salad, more if you like it creamier), gently stir until cauliflower and vegetables are evenly coated.
Gently fold in the egg slices, season with salt and pepper to taste.
This cauliflower potato salad is a great way to get a good dose of veggies in, alongside your meat.
For a light lunch, serve it with some rotisserie chicken - it’s a favourite meal of mine!
I also love this with BBQ chicken thighs. It really goes well with all kinds of meats, I basically have a batch of this in the fridge at all times, in the summer!
More Low Carb Recipes for Salad
Looking for more keto friendly recipes for salads? From simple salads to indulgent main dish salads, I’ve got you covered!
Low Carb Creamy Cucumber Salad
Colourful Keto Coleslaw
Keto Broccoli Salad
Low Carb Caesar Salad
Keto Vietnamese Noodle Salad
Keto Taco Salad
Buffalo Chicken Salad
Chicken Bacon Ranch Salad
Italian Sub Salad
Keto Taco Salad
Mediterranean Chicken Salad
Salad Meal Prep
Seafood Cobb Salad
Sesame Ginger Chicken Salad
Shawarma Chicken Salad
Steak Salad with Creamy Wasabi Dressing
Thai Pesto Salmon Salad
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Cauliflower Potato Salad
- ¼ cup Olive oil
- 1 ½ tablespoon White vinegar
- ½ teaspoon Sugar substitute
- 1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
- 1 teaspoon Garlic powder
- ½ teaspoon Black pepper
- ½ teaspoon Onion powder
- ¼ teaspoon Smoked paprika
- ¾ teaspoon Salt
- 1 head Cauliflower
- 6 Radishes thinly sliced
- 4 Celery ribs
- 3 Green Onions Thinly Sliced
- ⅓-1/2 Cup Full Fat Mayo
- 4 Large Eggs Hard boiled and sliced
- Ground Pepper
- Whisk together dressing ingredients, set aside.
- Cut the cauliflower into small florets, place in a large, microwave safe dish.
- Cover loosely with plastic wrap, microwave on high for 5 minutes. Stir well, microwave for another 3 minutes. Remove from microwave, drain well.
- Whisk the dressing again, pour over the hot cauliflower and toss well to coat. Transfer to a large mixing bowl, allow to cool to room temperature.
- Add radishes, celery, and green onions, folding them into the seasoned cauliflower.
- Add mayo (⅓ cup if you like a drier salad, more if you like it creamier), gently stir until cauliflower and vegetables are evenly coated.
- Gently fold in the egg slices, season with salt and pepper to taste.
- Transfer to an airtight container, chill for at least 1 hour before serving.