Southern Hot Honey Cauliflower Bites are the perfect vegetarian game day snack, complete with a sweet and spicy sauce that’s ideal for dipping.
If you’re planning a game day get-together for this weekend, or just looking for a vegetarian-friendly appetizer that everyone will love, these cauliflower bites are perfect.
Crispy, crunchy cauliflower florets coated in a spicy and sweet Southern hot honey sauce. Everyone (vegetarian and not) will be eager to dig into this snack on game day or any day.
Plus, this recipe isn’t just an appetizer. These hot and sticky cauliflower bites are endlessly versatile! From grain bowls to pizzas, you can enjoy this flavorful roasted cauliflower in so many delicious ways.
Tricks to The Crispiest Cauliflower Wings
To make sure your wings get as crispy as possible, follow these simple tips:
Make sure each wing has plenty of space on the baking sheet. The airflow helps things crisp up.
Make sure you’re using fresh, not soggy or stale, breadcrumbs.
Line the baking sheet with parchment paper.
Let the wings cool for 5 to 10 minutes before serving them.
Ingredients for Hot Honey Cauliflower
Here’s what you need to make these baked cauliflower bites:
Cauliflower. Cut the head into evenly-sized medium florets.
Bread crumbs. You can make your own seasoned breadcrumbs for the most crispiness. See the notes below the recipe for how-to. Store-bought panko also works.
Flour. I use organic all-purpose from Bob’s Red Mill.
Almond milk. Or another plant-based milk (unsweetened).
Hot honey. My favorite is Mike’s Hot Honey.
Spices. I use red pepper flakes, garlic powder and smoked paprika.
The Best Hot Honey Sauce
The sticky and sweet sauce that coats your baked cauliflower bites is the star of this dish. Here’s what you’ll need to make it:
Unsalted butter. You can use vegan butter if you’re dairy-free.
Garlic. I recommend fresh!
Raw honey. This is less refined and has a cloudy look compared to pasteurized honey.
Spices. The heat in this hot honey sauce comes from cayenne, chili powder, smoked paprika, onion powder, and red pepper flakes.
How to Serve Hot Honey Cauliflower
To serve these spicy bites, I recommend enjoying them fresh out of the oven. You can serve them as a vegetarian appetizer with forks and napkins. They’re delicious with a side of ranch dressing.
Or turn the bites into a savory and saucy salad topper! You can also incorporate the cauliflower into pasta, top homemade pizza or make a vegetarian grain bowl with cauliflower and beans.
How Long to Bake Cauliflower Bites
The baking time will vary depending on your oven. Check the wings after 20 minutes, to make sure they’re nice and crunchy but not burning. If necessary, pop the wings under the broiler for 5 to 10 minutes for an extra crispy crust.
More Cauliflower Bite Appetizers
Crispy cauliflower makes the perfect vegetarian (or vegan) sub for wings!
Preheat your oven to 450 degrees Fahrenheit and line your baking sheet with parchment paper. NOTE: Doing this step is a MUST to prevent sticking.
In a medium bowl, add the milk, flour, hot honey, garlic powder, salt, black pepper, smoked paprika, and red pepper flakes, and whisk together until fully combined. Set aside.
In a separate bowl, add bread crumbs and set aside also.
Now, dip each cauliflower into batter (shaking off any excess) and then toss into bread crumbs. Then lay each cauliflower side by side on the baking sheet (about an inch apart). Repeat until all cauliflower are coated.
Bake for 30-35 minutes or until golden brown and “crunchy” looking. NOTE: If not crispy enough, turn on broil and bake for another 5-10 minutes.
TO MAKE THE HOT HONEY SAUCE:
Place all ingredients in a medium saucepan over medium-high heat and whisk together until it begins to boil. Reduce heat to low-medium and let everything simmer for about 15 minutes or so, stirring occasionally. Once thickened enough to desired consistency, remove from heat and let cool.
Once cauliflowers are crisp, remove from oven and toss them in the sauce until fully coated. Add coated cauliflower back to baking sheet and place them back in the oven (turning oven on broil) for about 5-6 minutes.
To serve, add cauliflower bites to a salad, tacos, atop pasta, as a topping on pizza, with quinoa or rice, or by themselves with Vegan Ranch dipping sauce.
Tips & Tricks
STORAGE: Best if consumed within the same day. Store leftovers in a tightly sealed container in the refrigerator for up to 2 days. Reheat in oven when ready to serve.
HOMEMADE BREADCRUMBS: To make your own breadcrumbs, simply grind 1-2 cups of cubed bread into a food processor until finely chopped. Place crumbs onto a parchment lined baking sheet and spread out evenly. Bake for 5-6 minutes in the oven set at 350 degrees Fahrenheit, stirring occasionally. Once brown + crisp, remove from oven and let cool. Continue recipe steps and store remaining breadcrumbs in a tightly sealed container.