Crispy Buffalo Cauliflower Bites

These crispy battered and fried cauliflower bites tossed in homemade buffalo sauce are a great vegetarian alternative to buffalo chicken wings.  I love just about anything tossed in buffalo sauce, and you don’t have to be vegetarian to love this recipe – the first time I made them I think I ate a whole head of cauliflower! The cornstarch and rice flour batter is gluten free without its being forced to compromise on the crunch and flavor. This combination lightly coats the cauliflower and once fried the cauliflower florets are perfectly crisp.

Buffalo sauce is extremely easy to make at home – all it takes is a hot sauce of your choice, a bit of melted butter, vinegar, Worcestershire and garlic whisked together. Served alongside carrots, celery and ranch or blue cheese these cauliflower bites make for a perfect meatless game day appetizer.

 

Ingredients:

For the buffalo sauce:

¼ cup melted butter

¼ cup hot sauce of choice, I use Frank’s Red Hot®

1 tablespoon distilled white vinegar

1 teaspoon Worcestershire

1 clove garlic, minced

 

For the cauliflower:

1 large head cauliflower, cut into florets

Vegetable oil, as needed, for frying

½ cup cornstarch

¾ cup rice flour  

½ teaspoon baking powder

1 teaspoon garlic powder

1 teaspoon kosher salt

½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

 

For serving:

Carrots, for serving

Celery, for serving

Ranch dressing or blue cheese dressing, for serving

 

Instructions:

For the buffalo sauce:

In a small bowl whisk together the butter, hot sauce, vinegar, Worcestershire and garlic until completely combined. Set aside until ready to use. If not using right away, store the sauce in an airtight container for up to a week – whisking to combine before using.

 

For the cauliflower:

Fill a large pot with enough oil to reach 2-inches up the side of the pan. Heat oil to 350°.

In a large bowl whisk together the cornstarch, flour, baking powder, garlic powder, salt and pepper. Slowly add ¾ cup cold water, whisking until a thin batter forms (about the consistency of pancake batter). If needed, add more water 1 tablespoon at a time until the desired consistency is reached.

Working in batches, dip the cauliflower in the batter, letting the excess batter drip off. Add to the hot oil and deep-fry until the cauliflower is golden brown, about 4 minutes.  

Remove to a large bowl and toss with ¼ cup of the buffalo sauce. Serve immediately with carrots, celery and ranch or blue cheese dressing.

 

Serves 4 as an appetizer.  

 

 

 

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