OK, guys. This is big.
Have you tried cauliflower wings? They’ve been a thing on the internet for a while, but I only recently gave them a try. And before you roll your eyes and say cauliflower isn’t your wing (get it? It’s a pun) or vegetable of choice, hear me out. This is one recipe you don’t want to miss.
While I haven’t tried the traditional “hot wing” recipe using hot sauce yet, this one by Hot For Food looks amazing and I used it as a basis for developing this recipe.
The original idea for these wings came from a reader (hi!) who requested a recipe for curry-spiced cauliflower breaded in chickpea flour and served with chimichurri sauce – a beloved dish from a local restaurant in their area.
I tried to wrap my brain around that concept, did a little research on chickpea breading methods, and then got to work. Spoiler alert – the results were mind blowing.
This recipe requires just 9 ingredients you likely have on hand right now.
Cauliflower may be a cruciferous veg that gets mixed reviews from people, but I happen to love it (have you tried this masala spiced tofu scramble yet?).
It’s coated in a brown rice- (or chickpea flour-) based batter seasoned with curry powder and tandoori masala spice blend. YUM.
Tandoori masala is an Indian seasoning blend comprised of spices like coriander, ginger, cardamom, and nutmeg (find a traditional recipe here). And curry powder, while not used in traditional Indian cooking, is an invention of the British to evoke the flavors of Indian cuisine.
First, it’s baked to roast the cauliflower until slightly softened. And then the fun part – tossing in a curry paste glaze!
It’s simple: red curry paste*, maple syrup, coconut oil, and a little water.
The result is a beautiful red sauce that coats the cauliflower before it’s thrown back into the oven and roasted until golden brown, sticky, and all kinds of delicious.
*Note: learn more about red curry paste and its origin here.
The chutney sauce is optional, but I highly recommend it! Plus, it’s easy and comes together while your wings are roasting.
I hope you guys LOVE these wings. They’re:
& Insanely delicious
How does one enjoy cauliflower wings? As a snack, appetizer, side to curry or salads, when the “big game” is on (or whatever the sporting folks say). I personally devoured these as a late lunch. However you enjoy them, you can’t go wrong.
If you try this recipe, you have to let me know how it goes! I love seeing your comments, ratings, and your photos tagged #minimalistbaker on Instagram. Cheers, friends!
Spicy Red Curry Cauliflower “Wings”
- 3/4 cup brown rice flour or chickpea flour*
- 1 healthy pinch sea salt
- 1/2 tsp curry powder
- 2 tsp tandoori masala spice (see notes for DIY blend + where to buy // reduce for less heat!)
- 1/2 cup unsweetened plain almond or rice milk
- 6-8 Tbsp water
- 1 head cauliflower (large stalks removed, cut/torn into bite-size pieces)
- 1/4 cup red curry paste (ensure vegan friendly – Thai True + Thai Kitchen are best)
- 2 tsp melted coconut oil
- 2-3 tsp maple syrup (to taste)
- 2-3 Tbsp water (to thin)
- Preheat oven to 450 F (232 C) and line a baking sheet with parchment paper (important or the wings will stick).
- Next, prepare batter. Mix dry ingredients together, and then add almond milk and lesser amount of water to start (6 Tbsp as original recipe is written // adjust if altering batch size). Stir with a whisk or fork until well combined. You want the batter thick but pourable so it can adhere to the cauliflower – too runny and it won’t stick. Add only enough water until you reach the right consistency. Add more brown rice flour if it becomes too thin.
- Once the oven is preheated, add the cauliflower to the batter to coat. Shake off excess and place on baking sheet. Give each piece 1 inch of room to prevent sogginess. Depending on the size of your cauliflower this may require cooking on two baking sheets or in two batches (or more if increasing batch size).
- Bake for 25 minutes. In the meantime prepare the sauce by whisking together curry paste, coconut oil, and maple syrup. Add just a bit of water to thin so it resembles a glaze consistency.
- Once the cauliflower has finished baking, remove from oven and dip/toss in the glaze 1-2 pieces at a time. Shake off excess, then place back on baking sheet and bake for another 20-25 minutes, or until browned on the edges and the glaze has caramelized.
- While baking, prepare chutney (optional), by adding all ingredients to a blender and blending until creamy and smooth. Taste and adjust seasonings as needed, adding more garlic for zing, salt for saltiness, maple syrup for sweetness, or water to thin.
- Let cauliflower cool slightly and then serve immediately. Best when fresh. The wings can be frozen (either at the glazed stage or the glazed and baked stage) and then reheated in a 350-degree F (176 C) oven until warmed through.
*I buy my Tandoori Masala blend at Whole Foods. However, you can also make your own DIY Tandoori Masala Blend: 3 Tbsp ground cumin, 2 Tbsp garlic powder, 2 Tbsp smoked paprika, 3 tsp ground ginger, 2 tsp ground coriander, 2 tsp ground cardamom. Multiply as needed.
*I tested this recipe with both chickpea and brown rice flour and both worked! But I will say the overall texture was better with brown rice flour. If not gluten free you can use unbleached all-purpose flour.
*Method adapted from the talented pair at Hot For Food.