Sesame Cauliflower

Sticky Sesame Cauliflower makes a great vegan and gluten-free appetizer.

Coated with a sticky sauce, these cauliflower bites also pair well with rice or noodles.

sesame cauliflower served in a red pan

Few days back I was reading this article that cauliflower is now one of the most sought after vegetables from being grossly ignored before.

I thought it was really funny how cauliflower is suddenly being used everywhere.

There is cauliflower pizza crust, cauliflower rice, cauliflower gnocchi- you name it!

In India though, cauliflower was never ignored. It was always a very popular vegetables. Aloo Gobi still remains one of the most popular Indian dishes.

It’s no wonder that it’s also the most popular recipe on the blog. I grew up eating cauliflower in simple stir fry like aloo gobi or in gobi paratha.

But, now that I cook on my own I try to come up with different recipes to use it.

This time around, I tossed cauliflower florets in a sticky sauce and made this Sesame Cauliflower. It came out really well!

These Sticky Sesame Cauliflower Bites

✓ are vegan & gluten-free

✓ makes a great appetizer

✓ pairs well with rice or noodles

✓ are coated in a sweet & flavorful sauce

The sesame seeds on top provide a nice texture which I love. I have used white sesame seeds here, you can use a mix of white and black.

Baked or Fried?  So for this sesame cauliflower recipe, I baked my cauliflower florets.

You can most definitely fry them. Like I have mentioned before, I don’t have a super nice relationship with deep frying and I do it only when absolutely necessary.

In this case, I figured I could just bake them in stead of frying and it worked for me.

sesame cauliflower served with white rice in a blue bowl

Are these super crispy?  No, these cauliflower bites aren’t super crispy.

I have used a coating of rice flour which gives them a crispy exterior but I do think they will be crispier if you deep fry them.

So it’s up to you! If you want them extra crispy, deep fry them.

These come together pretty quickly, the only thing that takes time is to bake the cauliflower.

I always put them in the oven and then start working on the sauce. By the time the cauliflower is baked, the sauce is done too.

And then you just have to toss the two together and it’s done.

Sticky Sauce

These cauliflower bites are coated in a sticky sauce which is made with tamari (gluten-free soy sauce), maple syrup, rice vinegar, ketchup, sriracha and toasted sesame oil.

Of course there’s a lot of ginger and garlic as well. That’s like mandatory for me in Asian inspired recipes.

The ingredient list for the sauce might seem long, but it only takes a minute or two to add everything together in a bowl and stir.

And honestly, if you like Asian food or cook a lot of Asian food at home, then these should be staple in your pantry.

I kept these sesame cauliflower gluten-free. If you don’t care about these being gluten-free, you can very well use regular soy sauce in place of tamari and all purpose flour in place of rice flour.

Serving Suggestions for Sesame Cauliflower

These would make great appetizer or snack.

However I sometimes also eat them as a meal. Just pair it with brown rice or white rice or quinoa to make a meal.

Even cauliflower rice would work. See, cauliflower is everywhere these days. No escaping!

Also, these are best when served immediately. They retain their crunch and just taste better when served straight from the pan.

 

Method

1- Before you start, line 1 large or 2 regular size baking sheet with aluminium foil. Spray the aluminium foil nicely with a oil spray. Set it aside.

Cut the cauliflower into florets, rinse and then pat dry each floret using a paper towel.

2- Now, to a large bowl add rice flour, black pepper and garlic powder. Whisk to combine.

3- Then start adding water, little at a time, whisking after each addition until it forms a batter like consistency. It shouldn’t be too thick nor too thin but should be able to coat the cauliflower.

4- Next, dip each cauliflower floret into the batter. Make sure it’s well coated and then take it out, dripping off any excess batter and place on the prepared baking sheet.

step by step picture collage of making sesame cauliflower

5- Repeat with remaining florets and then arrange all of them on the prepared baking sheet.

6- Bake at 450 F degrees for 20 minutes. You may turn them once at the half way mark.

7- So while the cauliflower is in the oven, work on your sauce.

In a large bowl whisk together tamari, maple syrup, rice vinegar, tomato ketchup, sriracha and toasted sesame oil. Set it aside.

Heat a tablespoon of avocado oil on medium heat. Once hot, add the chopped garlic and ginger and cook for 1 minute until they start changing color to golden brown.

8- Stir in the prepared sauce and stir. Also add 2 tablespoons of water and stir.

step by step picture collage of making sesame cauliflower

9- Add in the salt and stir.

10- In a small bowl, whisk 2 teaspoons cornstarch with the remaining 2 tablespoons water. Stir to combine. Add this cornstarch slurry to the pan and mix.

11- Let the sauce come to a boil, it will start to thicken immediately.

12- Turn off the heat. Add the cooked cauliflower to the pan and toss to combine, making sure all florets are well coated with the sauce.

step by step picture collage of making sesame cauliflower

Sprinkle 1 tablespoon of sesame seeds and chopped green onion on top. Serve sesame cauliflower immediately as an appetizer or as a side with rice.

sesame cauliflower bowl with rice

If you’ve tried this Sesame Cauliflower Recipe then don’t forget to rate the recipe! You can also follow me on FacebookInstagram to see what’s latest in my kitchen!

Sesame Cauliflower

Sticky Sesame Cauliflower make a great appetizer or snack. These vegan and gluten-free cauliflower bites also pair well with rice, noodles or quinoa!

sesame cauliflower served in a red pan
Course Appetizer
Cuisine Asian
Keyword sesame cauliflower
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 45 minutes
Servings: 3
Calories: 400 kcal
Author: Manali
5 from 1 vote
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Ingredients

  • 1 medium head cauliflower (around 730 grams with stalks), cut into medium sized florets, around 6 cups cauliflower florets
  • 1 cup white rice flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 cup + 2-3 tablespoons water, 240 ml + 30-45 ml

Sauce

  • 3 tablespoons tamari, 45 ml, or use regular soy sauce
  • 3 tablespoons maple syrup, 45 ml
  • 1 tablespoon rice vinegar, 15 ml
  • 1 tablespoon tomato ketchup, 15 ml
  • 1.5 teaspoon sriracha, 7.5 ml, or to taste
  • 1 teaspoon toasted sesame oil, 5 ml
  • 1 tablespoon avocado oil, 15 ml, or use any flavorless oil
  • 6-7 large garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 1 inch ginger, finely chopped
  • 4 tablespoons water, 60 ml, divided
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt, or to taste
  • 2 teaspoons cornstarch
  • 1 tablespoon sesame seeds
  • green onion, chopped, for garnishing

Instructions

  1. Before you start, line 1 large or 2 regular size baking sheet with aluminium foil. Spray the aluminium foil nicely with a oil spray. Set it aside. Cut the cauliflower into florets, rinse and then pat dry each floret using a paper towel.

  2. Now, to a large bowl add rice flour, black pepper and garlic powder. Whisk to combine. Then start adding water, little at a time, whisking after each addition until it forms a batter like consistency. It shouldn't be too thick nor too thin but should be able to coat the cauliflower.

  3. Next, dip each cauliflower floret into the batter. Make sure it's well coated and then take it out, dripping off any excess batter and place on the prepared baking sheet.

  4. Repeat with remaining florets and then arrange all of them on the prepared baking sheet.

  5. Bake at 450 F degrees for 20 minutes. You may turn them once at the half way mark.

  6. So, while the cauliflower is in the oven, work on your sauce. In a large bowl whisk together tamari, maple syrup, rice vinegar, tomato ketchup, sriracha and toasted sesame oil. Set it aside.

  7. Heat a tablespoon of avocado oil on medium heat. Once hot, add the chopped garlic and ginger and cook for 1 minute until they start changing color to golden brown.

  8.  Stir in the prepared sauce and stir. Also add 2 tablespoons of water and stir.

  9. Add in the salt and stir.

  10. In a small bowl, whisk 2 teaspoons cornstarch with the remaining 2 tablespoons water. Stir to combine. Add this cornstarch slurry to the pan and mix.

  11. Let the sauce come to a boil, it will start to thicken immediately.

  12. Turn off the heat. Add the cooked cauliflower to the pan and toss to combine, making sure all florets are well coated with the sauce.

  13. Sprinkle 1 tablespoon of sesame seeds and chopped green onion on top. Serve sesame cauliflower immediately as an appetizer or as a side with rice.

Recipe Notes

You can use all purpose flour in place of rice flour if you don't want to keep this gluten-free. In that case, you can also use regular soy sauce in place of tamari.

Nutrition Facts
Sesame Cauliflower
Amount Per Serving
Calories 400 Calories from Fat 72
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 8g 12%
Saturated Fat 1g 5%
Sodium 1363mg 57%
Potassium 749mg 21%
Total Carbohydrates 72g 24%
Dietary Fiber 5g 20%
Sugars 17g
Protein 9g 18%
Vitamin A 0.5%
Vitamin C 116.1%
Calcium 11%
Iron 10.6%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

4 thoughts on “Sesame Cauliflower


  1. This looks absolutely delicious. Reminds me of General Tso’s Chicken with a twist. Please tell me what constitutes a portion as I am limited to 60 carbs per meal but the extra 12 carbs sound worth it. 🙂

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