Cauliflower ‘wings’ with spicy barbecue sauce

Nov 09, 2023
Source: Getty Images.

Do you like buffalo wings? They are saucy, sticky, perfectly seasoned and classically crispy. Buffalo wings make great snacks, but they can also be turned into a delicious light dinner.

I recently discovered some buffalo wings made using cauliflower and I just had to give them a go at home. This particular recipe gave me the same saucy, crispy and crunchy textures on the outside while delivering a perfectly cooked cauliflower floret on the inside. They were a bit of fun to make too; a side dish worth talking about, an appetiser for a get-together, or a snack for watching the Tokyo Olympics.

Depending on the size of your cauliflower, you should make enough for about 30 pieces, which is what I’ve included in the recipe below. This particular recipe is perfect for vegans and vegetarians and those wanting to cut back on their meat consumption or eager to eat vegetables in new and different ways.

Makes 30


  • 1 medium head of cauliflower (you may need to double the batter and sauce quantities if using a large head)
  • 3/4 cup flour (all-purpose gluten free flour or regular all purpose flour)
  • 3 tbsp corn starch
  • 3/4 cup unsweetened soy milk (you want a slightly thicker vegan milk for good battering results)
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp ground black pepper
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 cup panko breadcrumbs seasoned with salt and pepper (gluten-free breadcrumbs also works)
  • 1 1/2 cups barbecue sauce


  1. Preheat oven to 230C. Prepare a baking sheet by lining it with a silicone baking sheet or greased foil.
  2. Using a knife, remove florets from the cauliflower (cut off the leaves and don’t use the most of the stems. Leave a little piece on at the ends to hold on to). Chop the cauliflower into smaller pieces to resemble the size of the wings.
  3. In a separate bowl, whisk flour, corn starch, milk, salt, ground black pepper and garlic powder in a bowl to make the batter. In another bowl, place the breadcrumbs.
  4. Toss cauliflower in the batter mixture (you may need to do this in batches), using a spatula or spoon to coat. Transfer coated cauliflower to the breadcrumbs and coat completely, then place onto the baking sheet, giving each wing enough space. Repeat until all of the wings are coated.
  5. Bake for 20 minutes.
  6. Meanwhile, prepare your barbecue sauce by warming it in a microwave safe bowl (you can also do this in a pot on the stove).
  7. Remove wings from oven. Toss into sauce and use tongs or a spoon to coat. Remove and place onto the baking sheet. Return to oven and cook for a further 5 minutes before serving.
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