So, sometimes you just want something that tastes like you shouldn’t eat it! I realize that lately there has been this battle in my mind (thanks a f-ton ED), so I’m going back and forth between the need to not cook at all, which is not my nature at all, and just wanting the easiest thing I can make.

Fast forward to this last week, when I REALLY didn’t want to cook, but the desire for snack-food was overwhelming. I had been craving some serious weekend food for a few days with no desire to make it, so this particular night I swallowed my laziness and decided to create some crazy-amazing ‘wings’. Now the hardest part about a cauliflower wing, or any other vegan wing-replacement, is that they never seem to be crispy enough without frying them. AND, if you’re like me, and strive to eat a plant-based, low-fat lifestyle, this is especially unsatisfying. Fortunately for all of you, and my cravings, I’ve cracked the code!

So, read on to get a recipe for super simple, and amazingly delicious Caulihots! You can skip tossing them in the sauce and eat them just like a nugget if you like, or even pick a different flavor sauce to make! Regardless, these bad boys are the best I’ve ever found!

Vegan, Gluten Free, Amazing

Crunchy & Waiting to be sauced!

Ingredients:

-2 bags of Cauliflower pieces, frozen
-2 C GF Flour blend
-1 1/2 tsp onion powder + 1 tsp
-heavy dash salt
-heavy dash pepper
-1 – 1& 1/2 C water
-1/2 C almond flour
-1 C GF Panko bread crumbs
-1 C GF bread crumbs
-Frank’s Red hot sauce (about 1/3- 1/2 C)
-3/4 C vegan butter
-2 Tbsp minced garlic

Directions:

1. Preheat oven to 450 degree (F). Thaw or defrost cauliflower pieces (I nuked them for about 4 minutes in the microwave)

2. In a large bowl, mix GF Flour blend, Onion powder (saving the 1tsp for later), salt, pepper until combined.

Both batters prior to any liquids
3. Slowly mix in the water until the consistency is similar to a pancake batter. You want it thin enough to easily coat your nug’s.

4. In a separate large Ziploc Bag (I used a gallon freezer one since they’re sturdier), mix Almond flour, GF Panko Bread Crumbs, GF Bread Crumbs, and any additional seasonings you might want. I chose to just keep the seasonings to the wet coating, but you could easily add some additional to the dry, especially if you’re not making these into wings.

Ready for the oven!
5. Work through the cauli-pieces in batches, first coating evenly in the wet batter, then coating evenly in the dry. Setting each batch out in one layer on a Cookie Sheet. I love to use the Silpat silicone sheets on my baking sheets to prevent sticking and promote the crunchy outsides!
6. One trick for making Step 5 easier is to use a slotted spoon to remove ‘batches’ of the cauliflower from the batter and put them in the bag of the dry coating. I then like to seal the Ziploc bag with extra air in it and toss gently to coat. Then I use a different slotted spoon (or my hands) to carefully remove the coated pieces and arrange on the sheet.

7. Once all cauli-nug’s are coated, and arranged on the baking sheet. Bake for around 20 min, turning halfway. The baking time is fluid based on your oven and desired crispy-factor. I have a convection oven, so a shorter baking time is required. If you don’t have convection, bake long enough to get the outside to be crispy and crunchy to the bite.

Crispy perfection
8. While the nug’s are baking, in a small saucepan, melt the vegan butter, adding in the garlic and final teaspoon of the onion powder. I personally prefer to melt these ingredients at a low-medium heat and add the hot sauce in the final stages, but you can also add it in at the beginning. Once the mix is melted and at a low-simmer, add in hot sauce and reduce for a 1-2 minutes until the sauce slightly thickens.

9. When cauli-nug’s are cooked and crunchy, pour into a large bowl and toss with the extra garlicky hot sauce. Serve immediately!

Go ahead, drool!
*NOTE: You can choose to eat these without the sauce, choose a different sauce, or tweak the sauce listed for a different experience based on your personal flavor preferences. I am going to be trying these with several other types of sauces and situations in the coming months now that I’ve figured out a way to make them crunchy! The possibilities are endless!
Also, you may use non-GF options to make these nug’s, but we’re a GF house-hold, so that is how we roll.
Comment with any questions, and if you make these, post them on Instagram and tag me! @Ambergirl1226 on Insta or @Amber Mullis Welch on Facebook!!
Hope everyone has a fantastic Tuesday!
Amber