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Let’s make an instant pot easy cauliflower cheese. This cauliflower cheese is easy to prep, uses steamed cauliflower, is flourless and butterless yet you will want to eat this creamy cheesy cauliflower cheese every time you have a Sunday roast.

This easy cauliflower cheese is made with fresh cauliflower, veggie stock, Philadelphia cream cheese and plenty of cheddar cheese.

Instant Pot Cauliflower Cheese
Instant Pot Cauliflower Cheese
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Easy Cauliflower Cheese

Yesterday, I shared with you instant pot cauliflower and how easy it is to steam the cauliflower florets using an instant pot pressure cooker.

I also mentioned that I always steam cauliflower in the instant pot with water unless I am making my favourite instant pot cauliflower cheese.

Well, this is our instant pot cauliflower cheese updated, and I wanted to share with my easy cauliflower cheese that tastes amazing, yet its such a lazy, healthier way of making cauli cheese.

This cauliflower cheese tastes better because we don’t boil cauliflower we steam it, retaining its amazing flavour.

This cauliflower cheese is healthier because we swap the butter and the flour and instead use cream cheese. You can keep it lower in calories for Slimming World or Weight Watchers by using lightest Philadelphia and then if you use strong cheese you will need less of it.

The cauliflower cheese is easier that is because less effort is involved. You don’t have to melt butter, then mix flour, then add milk, then add cheese. Instead after a quick onion saute, we mix cream cheese with the stock.

Today, we are going to show you how long to cook cauliflower cheese, what cauliflower mac and cheese is, how to make cauliflower cheese ahead of time and the amazing stock we use for our cauli cheese.

If you are looking for more delicious cauliflower recipes do try: air fryer frozen cauliflower, soup maker cauliflower soup, cauliflower in microwave, microwave cauliflower rice, instant pot cauliflower mash or our personal favourite instant pot cauliflower.

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Can You Cook Cauliflower Cheese In Ninja Foodi?

Yes, you can cook cauliflower cheese in Ninja Foodi.

You can cook cauliflower cheese in any electric pressure cooker such as the instant pot, or any multi cooker such as the ninja foodi.

If using a ninja to make our cauliflower cheese, we recommend instead of the extra minute under pressure, that you swap it for 5 minutes using the air fryer function.

What Is Cauliflower Cheese?

For our USA readers that might not have heard of cauliflower cheese, then it is an English food staple.

Cauliflower cheese involves cauliflower cooked and then a yummy cheese sauce poured over.

Whilst it is associated with one of the many sides served at Christmas, us Brits also love a cauliflower cheese as a main meal and because of the effort to boil the cauliflower in one pan, then make a cheese sauce in another pan and then bake it in the oven, we love the instant pot cauliflower cheese because it transforms it into an easy cauliflower cheese. 

Instant Pot Cauliflower Mac & Cheese

Wait a minute isn’t instant pot cauliflower cheese, really instant pot cauliflower mac and cheese or keto cauliflower mac and cheese or known as mac and cheese cauliflower casserole?

Yes, it sure is.

Think of it as the language barrier between what we have in the UK vs the USA.

In the US cauliflower cheese was never a thing until Keto became popular and it became a delicious alternative to mac and cheese. Though of course with the high fat of keto I am sure a lot of cream was involved.

I totally get why its called an instant pot cauliflower mac and cheese, because when I do explain it to American readers I often say imagine swapping macaroni for cauliflower. 

Can You Make Cauliflower Cheese The Day Before & Reheat?

Yes, you can make cauliflower cheese the day before and reheat. It’s a brilliant time saver. Especially, if your plan is to make cauliflower cheese for your Christmas dinner and you already have enough other things to deal with.

How Long Does Cauliflower Cheese Stay Fresh?

Our cheats cauliflower cheese will stay fresh in the fridge, covered up with foil or cling film for up to 3 days. After this, the cauliflower really doesn’t taste very nice.

So, if you are making a Christmas cauliflower cheese, aim it cook it on the 22nd to 24th December.

Though, what we do in the Milner house is make a cauliflower cheese in a big batch on the 23rd December and then freeze it in pyrex dishes and its just perfect for the next few months when you want cauliflower cheese for dinner.

Why Does My Cauliflower Cheese Go Watery?

The reason your cauliflower cheese goes watery, is because you have the extra water from the cauliflower, adding to the cheese sauce and its like a tap dripping on your cheese sauce, watering it down.

The plan B is this cheats cauliflower cheese. We use less liquid and then we allow it to go overly thick. Then the condensation from the cauliflower simply makes it perfect.

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Cauliflower Cheese Instant Pot Ingredients

Cauliflower Cheese Instant Pot Ingredients

Cauliflower – We recommend a medium or large cauliflower that you have chopped into cauliflower florets. They must be medium florets to make a cauliflower cheese with.

Liquid. You will need some instant pot veggie stock to make this recipe. We make it in bulk and then freeze it. We also make it from veggie peelings when we are making other instant pot recipes.

Cheese. There are two types of cheese needed to make this easy cauliflower cheese. The first is the cream cheese which makes the creamy cheese sauce and helps you skip making a roux. The second is some grated cheese that you would normally add to cauliflower cheese or a mac and cheese. If you go with a sharp/mature cheddar it will be more flavoursome.  

Seasoning – Then you will need some seasoning. You can keep it simple with salt and pepper, and of course add any of your favourite dried seasonings. Mixed herbs or oregano are my favourite as you always have them in, and they taste so good with this cauliflower cheese.

Can You Recommend An Instant Pot?

I often get asked which electric pressure cookers we recommend and which one we use. In 95% of our instant pot recipes, we use either this instant pot duo (we have both the 6qt and 8qt) or the Ninja Foodi air fryer and pressure cooker in 1. You can click on the links above and read up on them.

Plus, we recommend you head over to our instant pot recipes category as we have many electric pressure cooker recipes and have been using instant pots for 5 years.

How To Cook Cauliflower Cheese In Instant Pot?

  • Steam. The first step is to steam your cauliflower. Place the veggie stock into your instant pot, add the steamer basket and cauliflower in medium florets. Pressure cook cauliflower for 4 minutes followed by a quick pressure release. Follow our instant pot cauliflower recipe for more in depth instructions.
  • Prep. Next peel and slice your onion whilst you wait on the cauliflower being steamed. You can also get out the remaining ingredients so that you are well prepared.
  • Saute. When the instant pot beeps, and you have done a quick pressure release, put the cauliflower into an instant pot safe container, and save the veggie stock. Then sauté with a little olive oil your onion until softened.
  • Stir. Next add the cream cheese to the onion and gradually add the veggie stock liquid until you have a sauce. Add in the grated cheese and keep stirring.
  • Finish. Then pour the cheese sauce over the cauliflower and add some extra grated cheese. Deglaze the instant pot with some water. Then add the trivet and the container with the cauliflower cheese and cook on zero minutes.

You now have an easy recipe for cauliflower cheese. 

How Long To Cook Cauliflower Cheese?

It takes about 10 minutes in total to make this cauliflower cheese. You have a 4 minute pressure cook, plus two times to take it to pressure, along with about 3 minutes to saute the onion, followed by creating the creamy sauce.

What To Eat With Cauliflower Cheese?

You can make cauliflower cheese as a main meal, but you can also eat cauliflower cheese with other things.

My favourite is to have cauliflower cheese as part of a main meal such as air fryer turkey crown, air fryer sage and onion stuffing balls and air fryer pigs in blankets.

Keto Cauliflower Mac & Cheese

If you are on Keto then using low fat cream cheese is probably not suited to you, but the rest of the recipe is.

To make it more keto friendly swap the Philadelphia for heavy cream/double cream, mascarpone, or another creamy option.

Listen To Instant Pot Cauliflower Cheese

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More Instant Pot Side Dishes

instant pot cauliflower cheese

This instant pot cauliflower cheese is an updated post and was originally shared with you back in 2018 on Recipe This.

Your cauliflower cheese in instant pot recipe is below, note you can print it out with or without photos, adjust servings, or click between metric and imperial depending on where you are in the world.

Though before you do, don’t forget to subscribe, and grab your FREE VIP Pass to Recipe This. You will get access to our latest recipes first, you will be able to request recipes, you will have access to free mini courses, free instant pot ebooks and useful instant pot cook time charts and so much more.


Instant Pot Easy Cauliflower Cheese

Let’s make an instant pot easy cauliflower cheese. This cauliflower cheese is easy to prep, uses steamed cauliflower, is flourless and butterless yet you will want to eat this creamy cheesy cauliflower cheese every time you have a Sunday roast.
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 20 minutes
Servings: 2
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Cheese Sauce

  • 1 Medium Onion
  • 2 Tsp Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • 165 g Philadelphia Cream Cheese
  • 115 g Mature/Sharp Cheddar Cheese
  • 2 Tsp Dried Mixed Herbs

Kitchen Gadgets


  • Let’s start with the cauliflower. Add the veggie stock to the bottom of the instant pot, then add the steamer basket and then add cauliflower which you have chopped into medium florets.
    How To Cook Cauliflower Cheese In Instant Pot?
  • Pressure cook cauliflower for 3 minutes so that the cauliflower is still firm and just fork tender as it will carry on cooking. Then do a quick pressure release.
    How To Cook Cauliflower Cheese In Instant Pot?
  • Remove the cauliflower and place in your container, then also put the veggie stock to one side. Peel and slice the onion and start sauteing it in the instant pot with a little olive oil.
    How To Cook Cauliflower Cheese In Instant Pot?
  • When the onion has softened add the cream cheese and then slowly add the veggie stock until you have a creamy cheese sauce.
    How To Cook Cauliflower Cheese In Instant Pot?
  • Add in grated cheese and then cancel sauté to stop the cheese sauce spitting at you and stir in extra seasonings.
    How To Cook Cauliflower Cheese In Instant Pot?
  • Pour the cheese sauce over the cauliflower and add some extra grated cheese.
    How To Cook Cauliflower Cheese In Instant Pot?
  • Place a cup of water (240ml) into the instant pot and deglaze it to stop it burning. Add the trivet and the container and pressure cook the cauliflower cheese on zero minutes. This will melt the cheese and finish the sauce and then serve.
    How To Cook Cauliflower Cheese In Instant Pot?


Liquid. We recommend using our instant pot veggie stock and like us you can save it in the freezer for when you are making recipes like this cauliflower cheese.
Zero. If you are not aware of what zero minutes means, read our zero minutes guide.
Thanks for reading our cauliflower cheese instant pot recipe on Recipe This. We have many more instant pot recipes for you to check out next. Though if you would like to see more veggie recipes then do check out our instant pot potatoes and carrots next.


Calories: 659kcal | Carbohydrates: 27g | Protein: 25g | Fat: 53g | Saturated Fat: 29g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g | Monounsaturated Fat: 15g | Cholesterol: 141mg | Sodium: 1200mg | Potassium: 1094mg | Fiber: 7g | Sugar: 12g | Vitamin A: 1948IU | Vitamin C: 143mg | Calcium: 563mg | Iron: 2mg
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About Sam & Dom

Hi! I am Sam and along with my chef hubby Dom we love sharing with you easy everyday recipes using kitchen gadgets. We are also the authors of The Complete Air Fryer Cookbook, an amazing air fryer cookbook filled with 140+ everyday air fryer recipes.

Beyond the air fryer we also love the instant pot, slow cooker, soup maker, ninja foodi, pie maker and several other kitchen gadgets.

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