I’m violating some of my own rules by posting this: two food entries in a row (since they’re typically my “lazy” posts) and posting on a Saturday night. But as I found out about two hours ago that the Superbowl is apparently tomorrow night- my sports illiteracy is showing- and I’ve been watching Top Chef reruns all day during chores, I can make an exception… not to mention that this was going to be my dinner anyway.
Despite being six hours apart and both incredibly busy, my mom and I have both been attempting to find the holy grail of buffalo cauliflower recipes. Honestly, I was perfectly content with tossing a bag of frozen cauliflower with some Frank’s buffalo sauce, baking it for like a half hour, and calling it a day. But after a second lackluster attempt on both our parts, I set out on a mission.
This final method yielded a slightly crispy buffalo outside with a tender, warm center. Third time apparently was the charm. It’s not as crispy as an actual buffalo chicken wing but as far as substitutions go, it’s pretty darn tasty. Feel free to take my opinion with a grain of salt, as I could honestly eat buffalo sauce by itself- and might have licked the bowl clean after this recipe (judge away.)
Since I’m making an effort to eat less animal products and more cruciferous veggies, as well as save money, I often head to the frozen grocery aisle over fresh produce, especially during winter. Not only am I cooking for one but there’s seriously nothing that breaks my heart more than throwing out veggies I either forgot about or just bought in over-enthusiastic and unnecessary abundance. While this can alter some dishes or recipes, frozen veggies have also been touted as just as nutritious, if not more so, than their fresh counterparts. But no matter fresh or frozen: as long as you’re eating real foods, you’re probably doing just fine. Even if sometimes those real foods are slathered in buffalo sauce and cozied up to some dipping ranch.
CRISPY BUFFALO CAULIFLOWER BITES
Prep time: ~1 hour
- 12 oz. bag frozen cauliflower
- Nonstick spray
- 1/4 cup flour of your choice (I used white-wheat)
- 1/4 cup water
- 1/4 cup hot sauce of choice (I used Kroger’s mild wing sauce**)
- 1 tablespoon unsalted, full-fat butter (melted)
- 1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
- dash of garlic salt
- dipping sauce of your choice (optional)
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil and lightly spray. Toss frozen cauliflower on the pan and bake for 15 minutes.
- While the veggies are baking, whisk together the flour and water in a medium-size mixing bowl.
- Take cauliflower out of the oven and let cool for a minute or two- you don’t want to burn your fingers! Once cooled enough to touch, cut down any unruly pieces.
- Thoroughly toss the cauliflower in the batter mixture until completely covered and return the veggies to the pan.
- Cook battered cauliflower for 15 minutes. During this, whisk together the hot sauce, melted butter, lemon juice, and garlic salt in a medium-size mixing bowl.
- Remove cauliflower and make sure it’s lightly browned. If not, return to oven for a few minutes. If it’s good to go, thoroughly toss the cauliflower in your sauce. Return your sauced veggies back to the pan.
- Bake for another 20 minutes and then you’re ready to enjoy this immediately! These are best right out of the oven or can be freshened up with a quick trip in the oven or toaster oven.
*As I try to practice the ideals of intuitive eating, I simply eat until I am comfortably full. Tonight, I was fine with a little over a half of the above amount. BUT if you’re preparing this for two, I’d say double the recipe just to be safe and enjoy any potential leftovers.
**Just a head’s up for my veggie readers: Kroger’s Mild wing sauce contains anchovy paste. Frank’s RedHot Buffalo wing sauce, however, is vegetarian friendly and (in my opinion) even better tasting!
This recipe will go through yet another experimental recipe gauntlet, as I believe it could easily be made accessible to vegans. By swapping butter for coconut oil and finding a plant-based hot sauce, I think the cauliflowers would still get that flavorful crisp on the outside.
What are your favorite Superbowl snacks? Who are you cheering for in the ritual of sports ball? Will there ever be enough episodes of Top Chef to quench my foodie thirst? If you have any questions, whether they are recipe-related or not, please write me in the comments below or contact me on my various social media outlets. Also, if you have anything you’d like to see in a future video or post, just let me know. I love hearing from y’all!
Be kind. Live authentically. Practice gratitude. Hustle daily. Work hard. Stay humble.
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