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Crispy Buffalo Cauliflower Bites
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5 from 6 votes

Crispy Buffalo Cauliflower Bites

Crispy Buffalo Cauliflower Bites------If you're looking for a meatless option for your Game Day snack or any day for that matter, look no further! These bites are a guaranteed showstopper and at first glance, these beauties truly remind you of buffalo boneless chicken (and trust me, they taste just as good, if not better), however, they aren't! With a nice kick of spice coupled with a hint of sweetness from the BBQ sauce + Honey, these cauliflower bites are the perfect appetizer, snack, or addition to any entrée. Vegan + Gluten-Free options available.
Course Appetizer, Main Course, Snack
Keyword baked, bbq, bites, buffalo, cauliflower, classic, crisp, dairy-free, dinner, easy, food, gluten-free, healthy, holiday, homemade, honey, indulge, lunch, natural, plant-based, recipe, savory, snack, southern, spicy, traditional, vegan, vegetarian, veggies, weeknight meals
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 50 minutes
Servings 4 servings
Author Shanika | Orchids + Sweet Tea

Ingredients

  • 1 head of Cauliflower, chopped in medium chunks
  • 2-3 cups bread crumbs, GF if needed! (See Notes!)
  • 1 cup fresh water
  • 3/4 cup organic all-purpose flour (I use Bob's Red Mill, See Notes for GF option!)
  • 1 cup hot buffalo sauce + 2 Tbsps! (Store-bought or Homemade!)
  • 3 Tbsps BBQ sauce (For Vegan option, ensure it's Vegan approved!; See Notes!)
  • 1 Tbsp sriracha sauce
  • 1/4 cup honey (See Notes!)
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp sea salt + black pepper
  • 1 tsp smoked paprika
  • 1 Tbsp red pepper flakes
  • 1 tsp dried parsley

Instructions

  • 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 water, flour, 2 Tbsps buffalo sauce, sea salt, black pepper, paprika, dried parsley, red pepper flakes, and garlic powder 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 Sauce:

  • In the meantime, combine the remaining 1 cup buffalo sauce, honey, and BBQ sauce in a small pot over medium-high heat and let it simmer for 2-3 minutes, until bubbly. Remove from heat and let cool for 2-3 minutes before adding cauliflower. 
  • 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, atop pasta, as a topping on pizza, with quinoa or rice, or by themselves with Vegan Ranch dipping sauce.
  • Bon Appetit!

Notes

  • 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 BBQ SAUCE: 15 oz. can of tomato sauce, 3/4 cups water, 1/4 cup balsamic vinegar, 2 Tbsps sriracha sauce, 2 tsps ground mustard, 1/3 cup agave syrup, 2 Tbsps pure maple syrup, 1 tsp sea salt, 1 tsp onion powder, 1 Tbsp red pepper flakes, and 1 tsp smoked paprika. **Whip together: Place all ingredients in a medium saucepan on 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. Set aside until ready to use or store remainder in an airtight container and refrigerate for up to 2 weeks.**
  • BBQ SAUCE: If you choose to use a store-bought version, my favorite brand is Stubb’s BBQ Sauce.
  • 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. 
  • SWEETENER: For vegan option, you can always substitute honey with Agave or maple syrup.
    GLUTEN-FREE: Simply use GF flour or a GF alternative such as arrowroot starch to coat your cauliflower bites instead of regular flour. In addition, ensure that your buffalo sauce and BBQ sauce are both GF-friendly, if you're not using a homemade version. Wallah!
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