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Buffalo cauliflower on a place with dipping sauce next to it.

Buffalo Cauliflower Recipe

Teri & Jenny
A delicious baked Buffalo Cauliflower Recipe that is simple to make and very satisfying. It's a great, vegetarian game day appetizer that you can feel good about!
5 from 1 vote
Prep Time 15 mins
Cook Time 22 mins
Total Time 37 mins
Course Appetizer
Cuisine Amercian
Servings 6
Calories 176 kcal

Ingredients
 
 

cauliflower

  • 1 1/2 cups panko breadcrumbs
  • 1/2 cup rice flour
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons tapioca starch
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground mustard
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/4 cups buttermilk
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 small head cauliflower (about 12 ounces) trimmed and cut into bite sized florets
  • 1 cup buffalo sauce
  • salt and pepper to taste

garnish

  • 2 green onions thinly sliced

Instructions
 

  • Preheat oven to 400˚F. Line a baking sheet with cooking spray and set aside.
    A baking sheet lined with parchment and oiled to make buffalo cauliflower.
  • Pour half of panko into a food processor and blend until finely ground.
    Panko in a food processor to make the coating for buffalo cauliflower.
  • Add ground panko to other half and stir together. Set aside.
    The breading for buffalo cauliflower in a glass bowl.
  • Place rice flour, tapioca starch, garlic powder, onion powder, dry mustard, and salt into a large mixing bowl and whisk together.
    Ingredients for buffalo cauliflower in a bowl for the dredging.
  • Add buttermilk and egg and whisk together until evenly combined and no lumps remain.
    Buffalo cauliflower in a batter in a bowl with a whisk.
  • Add cauliflower florets into batter and fold together until every pieces is completely coated.
    Cauliflower florets added into a batter for buffalo cauliflower.
  • Working in small batches, remove cauliflower florets from batter, shaking off as much excess batter possible. Transfer florets to panko and evenly coat.
    Buffalo cauliflower being dredged in breadcrumbs.
  • Shake off any excess panko and transfer coated florets to prepared baking sheet, spacing each piece about 1/2” to 1” apart. Once all cauliflower florets are coated and on the baking sheet, spray with cooking spray until well coated. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
    Cauliflower florets baked on a baking sheet.
  • Bake florets in oven for 20 minutes or until lightly browned and tender. Remove florets from oven and cool, about 2 minutes.
    Cauliflower florets baked on a baking sheet for buffalo cauliflower.
  • Pour 1/3 sauce into a mixing bowl and add 1/3 of the florets. Gently toss florets until evenly and lightly coated. The heavier the coating, the less crispy your buffalo cauliflower will be. (Alternatively, use a pastry brush, lightly brush sauce onto each floret for a more crisp result). Repeat until all florets have been coated.
    Baked cauliflower tossed in a buffalo sauce.
  • Transfer florets back to the baking sheet and bake for an additional 4 minutes.
    Buffalo cauliflower on a baking sheet.
  • Transfer buffalo cauliflower to a platter. Sprinkle cauliflower with sliced green onions and serve immediately with ranch or bleu cheese dressing.
    Buffalo cauliflower on a place with dipping sauce next to it.

Notes

Tips and Tricks for Success

  • Adding an egg to the batter will help the coating stick to the cauliflower.
  • Processing half of the panko in a food processor, to create a finer crumb, will also help the panko from falling off the cauliflower once baked. Leaving the other half coarse will help with the crunchy exterior.
  • Really shake off as much excess batter and panko during the dredging process to create a thin and even coating and prevent a gummy exterior.
  • Brushing the sauce onto the cauliflower florets (similar to the way Korean fried chicken is sauced) will also help keep the breading on the cauliflower. If you're short on time, you can gently toss the sauce and breaded cauliflower together in small batches, although some of the crunch will be lost with the thicker coating of sauce.
  • To retain maximum crunch, simply skip the coating with the sauce and the additional baking step and drizzle the buffalo sauce over the florets OR serve the buffalo sauce on the side as a dipping sauce.

 

Freezing

  • To Freeze: Follow recipe instructions until florets are fully coated in panko. Then transfer florets to a parchment lined baking sheet, 1/2 inch apart and place in the freezer until florets are fully frozen. Transfer frozen florets to a resealable freezer bag, removing as much air as possible before sealing and store in the freezer for up to 3 months.
  • To reheat:  Preheat oven to 425˚F. Transfer frozen cauliflower to a baking sheet, 1/2 inch apart, and bake for 25 minutes. Remove baking sheet from oven, spray florets with cooking spray and return to oven for an additional 15 to 20 minutes or until browned and tender. Remove florets from oven and brush with buffalo sauce.

 

Using an Air Fryer

  • Set the air fryer to 375˚F and air fry for about 10 minutes (this may need to be done in batches, depending on the size of your air fryer). Then fry for an additional 2 minutes once coated in sauce.
  • If using from frozen air fry for 12 to 14 minutes. Then an additional 2 minutes once coated in sauce.
 

Nutrition

Calories: 176kcalCarbohydrates: 30gProtein: 7gFat: 4gSaturated Fat: 1gCholesterol: 33mgSodium: 1611mgPotassium: 307mgFiber: 2gSugar: 5gVitamin A: 162IUVitamin C: 28mgCalcium: 104mgIron: 1mg
Keyword baked buffalo cauliflower, cauliflower recipe
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