There’s a reason cauliflower has become one of my favorite foods and these Air Fried Cauliflower Bites (also called cauliflower wings) might just top the list!
Is there anything cauliflower can’t do? It’s great in soups, salads, curries, and pasta. It can magically become a fabulous sauce for almost anything. And of course, my new favorite – air fried cauliflower bites.
These air fryer cauliflower wings are incredibly versatile. It’s almost like a blank slate. Add whatever flavor your palate is craving and cauliflower bites have you covered. They can be tangy parmesan cauliflower bites. Or slathered with traditional Buffalo sauce. Even the classic salt and lemon pepper flavoring works well.
But this recipe is my favorite. A little sweet with a little heat. A bit of a crunch on the outside and tender on the inside. And tossed around in a fabulous slightly spicy honey dijon sauce that’s to die for!
Are Cauliflower Wings Healthier Than Chicken Wings
I do love great chicken wings (especially these crispy air fryer wings). And there’s definitely a time and a place for them. But the truth is that air fried cauliflower bites are definitely healthier than chicken wings.
Cauliflower is rich in antioxidants, is a good source of fiber, contains loads of vitamin C and other vitamins, and helps maintain a healthy digestive tract. And unlike chicken wings, cauliflower has no cholesterol and is very low in saturated fat. I eat a lot of cauliflower on my clean eating anti-inflammatory diet. (Be sure to check out my Free Top 10 Anti-Inflammatory Foods You Should and Shouldn’t Eat here!)
So, yes, cauliflower wings are healthier than chicken wings.
Are Cauliflower Wings Good for Weight Loss
A bit of a back story here. I switched to a “clean eating” diet almost a year ago. I did it for health reasons, but not to lose weight. (You can watch my YouTube video about why I chose clean eating here if you’re interested.)
My version of clean eating includes a large amount of cruciferous vegetables, such as broccoli, Brussels sprouts, and of course cauliflower. These are all high in anti inflammatory properties.
But guess what? Weight just melted off me. I honestly didn’t really need to lose weight, but I did. And it was mostly a loss of fat, not muscle. I can tell you that I feel better now than I have in 20 years! That’s pretty good!
I’d be willing to bet that if you consistently switch to air fryer cauliflower bites instead of chicken wings or something similar, the weight will fall off you too. (But just like anything else, you’ve got to be careful what you put on them. If you load up on high calorie, rich dipping sauces like blue cheese, you’ll defeat the purpose.)
Ingredients in Air Fryer Cauliflower Bites
- One Head of Cauliflower – the star of the show (see full recipe below)
- All Purpose Flour – can use gluten free 1:1 baking flour if preferred
- Spices for Flavor – I use garlic powder, onion powder, paprika, salt, and pepper for a base
- Slurry – this mixture of cornstarch and water is optional, but it does give the air fryer cauliflower bites that crispy coating on the outside
- Milk – to make the batter. I use soy milk to keep it dairy free
- Sweet and Spicy Honey Drizzle – this combo of honey, vinegar, and cayenne is the BOMB!
How to Make Air Fryer Cauliflower Bites
- Wash and trim a head of cauliflower, cutting it into bite sized florets. (See full recipe below)
- Whisk the dry seasonings together then add the slurry and milk to form a batter.
- Dip each floret into the batter and place in a single layer in your air fryer. Cook for 12-15 minutes at 380 degrees F.
- Remove from air fryer and drizzle with honey sauce.
- Serve with your favorite dipping sauce (I love this vegan tzatziki sauce!)
That is! Easy peasy! You will love these air fryer cauliflower bites, whether you go for the simple salt and pepper flavors, or the packed with buffalo tang. And you might even get to the point where you prefer them over chicken wings… Maybe.
Tools Used in This Recipe:
- 1 head cauliflower, trimmed and cut into florets
- 1 cup all purpose flour (can use 1:1 gluten free flour or wheat flour)
- 1 tablespoon smoked paprika
- 2 teaspoons garlic powder
- 2 teaspoons onion powder
- ½ teaspoon kosher salt
- ½ teaspoon turmeric (optional)
- Pinch of red pepper flakes (optional)
- slurry (1 tablespoon water mixed with 1 tablespoon cornstarch)
- 1 cup soy milk
- 3 tablespoons honey
- 2 teaspoons white wine vinegar
- 1 teaspoon dijon mustard
- ¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper
- Favorite dipping sauce (optional)
- Trim cauliflower and cut into 1 to 2 inch florets, set aside
- In a large bowl, mix the dry ingredients together (paprika, garlic powder, onion powder, salt, turmeric (if using), and cayenne pepper).
- Add the slurry and milk and mix well. The batter should be the consistency of pancake batter. If it is too thick, add water 1 tablespoon at a time until the right consistency.
- Spray the inside of the air fryer basket with nonstick spray or wipe with a thin layer of avocado oil.
- Dip the cauliflower florets into the batter using a fork, one at a time, allowing excess batter to drip off and arrange the florets in the air fryer basket in a single layer, leaving a little space between each one. You may have to do 2 batches, depending on the size of your basket.
- Set your air fryer temperature to 380 degrees F (preheat if your manufacturer suggests preheating. Some do. Some don't.) Cook for 12-15 minutes.
- While the cauliflower bites are cooking, in a small bowl whisk together honey, vinegar, and cayenne pepper.
- When the bites are done cooking, toss with the honey sauce. Serve immediately with your favorite dipping sauce, if desired.
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Nutrition Information:Yield: 4 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving:Calories: 252Total Fat: 3gSaturated Fat: 0gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 1gCholesterol: 1mgSodium: 390mgCarbohydrates: 51gFiber: 6gSugar: 19gProtein: 9g