Crunchy Baked Hot Honey Cauliflower. I turned a favorite chicken dinner that’s loved by all into an even better vegetarian appetizer/dinner! Cornflake-crusted cauliflower baked up on a sheet pan until crispy and delicious. Each cauliflower “wing” is tossed in my sweet honey sauce with the perfect combination of spices and sea salt. Then serve these little delicacies with a homemade creamy sauce. Together they make a delicious appetizer to serve up to family and friends.
I wasn’t going to make this recipe. Wait, let me rephrase. I was always going to make this recipe, but I wasn’t thinking I would share this recipe. It felt, at the time, a little too soon after the very popular crunchy hot honey chicken recipe that I shared just over a month ago.
These “wings” are basically the same, but swap the chicken for cauliflower.
So it wasn’t rocket science to think this recipe up. But then I made the recipe and the entire family just couldn’t get over how delicious the cauliflower was. My mom said it was stupid not to share this, especially with the Super Bowl coming up on Sunday. And when my mom disagrees with my decisions, I almost always end up doing what she says.
Moms always know, have trust in that.
So here we are, the Monday before Super Bowl Sunday, and I have the best game-day appetizer. Really, the best.
Why are cauliflower “wings” better than chicken? It’s simple, the cauliflower soaks up all the sauce…like all of the sauce.
The chicken just has sauce as a coating…of course, still delicious. But the cauliflower acts differently when paired up with my creamy wing sauce. Oh so yummy!
Start with the coating. Cornflakes are the star, they give the chicken that perfect crunch. I’ve tested other cereals, but everyone in the family agrees cornflakes have the best taste and crunch. Even over Panko.
I use Nature’s Path, Organic Corn Flakes Cereal, which is naturally gluten-free and non-GMO. I order it online, but if you’re looking for something in-store, Whole Foods and Trader Joe’s are both good options.
You can also just use a box of basic cornflakes too.
Crunch the cornflakes up in a food processor with paprika, onion powder, and garlic powder. Then add the parmesan cheese, this is secret #2, especially when talking about using cauliflower versus chicken. The cheese adds a salty flavor that melts over the cauliflower and helps coat and flavor each floret.
Next, dredge the florets through eggs beaten together with hot sauce. Nothing fancy, just bake, flip, and bake again.
Totally no fuss.
While the wings are baking, warm the honey on the stove with hot sauce, cayenne, and chipotle chili powder. The chili powder adds a very subtle smokiness to the sweet, spicy, and salty sauce.
Use as little or as much of the sauce as you’d like. But personally, I end up drizzling every last drop of sauce over the cauliflower because it’s SO DELICIOUS.
Oh, and the wing sauce!! Do not skip this. It adds so much to the recipe. The spicy, saucy “wings” need a creamy sauce to cut the heat. I make my sauce with yogurt, then a squeeze of lemon juice, Worcestershire, chives, and then either crumbled blue cheese or parmesan. Well, I always, always use blue cheese, it’s just kind of a non-negotiable for us.
So yummmy with the spicy sauce!
And then serve!! Lots of sauce on the side for dipping. The perfect game day appetizer, but equally great when served over rice to make a meal.
Either way, each “wing” is delish.
Looking for more game day recipes? Here are a few to try:
Lastly, if you make these Crunchy Baked Hot Honey Cauliflower, be sure to leave a comment and/or give this recipe a rating! Above all, I love to hear from you guys and always do my best to respond to each and every comment. And of course, if you do make this recipe, don’t forget to tag me on Instagram! Looking through the photos of recipes you all have made is my favorite!
Crunchy Baked Hot Honey Cauliflower
Calories Per Serving: 370 kcal
Nutritional information is only an estimate. The accuracy of the nutritional information for any recipe on this site is not guaranteed.
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- 1. Preheat the oven to 425° F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.2. In a food processor, combine the cornflakes, parmesan, paprika, onion powder, garlic powder, and a pinch of salt. Pulse until you have fine crumbs. Alternatively, you can crush the crumbs in their package, or a ziplock bag by stepping on them. Dump the crumbs into a shallow bowl.3. Beat the eggs in a bowl, add the hot sauce and cauliflower, and toss well to coat.3. Dredge the cauliflower through the crumbs, covering fully. Place on the prepared baking sheet. Place on the prepared baking sheet. Drizzle with olive oil. Bake for 15 minutes, then flip and bake another 10-15 minutes, until crisp all around.4. To make the honey sauce. In a sauce pot, warm together the honey, hot sauce, cayenne, chili powder, onion powder, and garlic powder, plus a pinch of salt. 5. To make the creamy wing sauce. Combine all ingredients in a glass jar. Season with salt and pepper. If needed, thin with milk or water. 6. Drizzle the warm honey sauce over the cauliflower. Add the herbs. If the sauce thickens, warm for 5 seconds in the microwave. Serve with the wing sauce for dipping. Enjoy!