Spicy Orange Cauliflower Bites

PREP TIME20 minsCOOK TIME25 minsTOTAL TIME45 minsCOURSEMain Course, Side Dish, SnackCUISINEAsian, ChineseSERVINGS2


  • Air-Fryer
  • 1 small head of cauliflower washed and cut into florets⁣⁣
  • cilantro stems or chopped green onions for garnish⁣⁣
  • oil for cooking⁣⁣


  • ¾ cup [94g] all-purpose flour or gluten-free flour
  • ¾ cup [175ml]⁣⁣ cup water or plant milk
  • ½ teaspoon salt⁣⁣
  • a few shakes of white pepper⁣⁣


  • ¾ cup freshly squeeze orange juice from 2 oranges
  • 1½ tablespoons [22ml]⁣⁣ soy sauce or tamari
  • 1 tablespoon rice vinegar⁣⁣
  • 1 tablespoon red chili flakes or chili of choice
  • 1½ tablespoons maple syrup⁣ or 1 tablespoon sugar adjust depending on the sweetness of your orange⁣⁣
  • cornstarch slurry mix 1 tablespoon cornstarch in 2 tablespoons water⁣⁣


  • Pat cauliflower florets dry with a paper towel or let them air dry in a colander.⁣⁣
  • Whisk together batter ingredients in a bowl until well combined. The batter should be thick enough to coat the florets⁣⁣.
  • Preheat the air fryer to 390°F [220°C]. Dredge cauliflower florets in the batter, shake off excess and place them on the air fryer rack.
  • Air ‘fry’ until golden brown, about 8 – 10 minutes with a shake in between, if needed. See notes to bake these in the oven.
  • In a heated non-stick pan, slowly pour in the orange juice along with the sauce ingredients, except cornstarch slurry.
  • Bring the mixture to a rolling boil and stir until the sugar has melted, then stir in the cornstarch slurry.
  • Add in the cauliflower florets, and quickly toss everything together until well-combined.
  • Serve immediately with a sprinkle of chopped cilantro or scallions and toasted sesame seeds.


To bake the cauliflower bites:

  • Preheat oven to 450°F [230°C]. Dredge cauliflower florets in the batter, shake off excess and place them on a lined baking sheet.⁣⁣
  • Brush or spray each floret with oil and bake until golden brown for about 20 mins, flipping halfway. (You can also turn the broiler to low & broil for about 3 mins to get the roasted look at the top)⁣⁣

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