Deep Fried Cauliflower – Jo Cooks

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This Deep Fried Cauliflower recipe brings a delightful crunch to every bite, enveloping tender cauliflower in a golden, crispy coating. It’s the ultimate snack for Super Bowl parties or any festive occasion, sure to score big with your guests!

freshly made deep fried cauliflower in a metal basket.

The Perfect Game Day Snack

I’ve got a real treat for you with this Deep Fried Cauliflower recipe – it’s my go-to for game days and get-togethers. Imagine biting into these golden, crispy morsels, each one bursting with flavor and cooked to perfection. Trust me, it’s so easy to whip up and is always a hit with friends and family, turning any occasion into a memorable feast.

ingredients needed to make fried cauliflower.
  • Cauliflower: If you’re not a cauliflower fan, this batter works wonderfully on mushrooms as well.
  • All-Purpose Flour: It helps in forming the batter which gives the cauliflower its crispy coating. You can use a gluten-free blend as well.
  • Cornstarch: This adds lightness and crispiness to the batter. If needed, you can substitute arrowroot powder for cornstarch.
  • Baking Powder: It helps the batter to puff up and become airy when fried. In a pinch, you could mix baking soda with cream of tartar as an alternative.
  • Salt: Kosher salt or sea salt are suitable substitutes.
  • Hot Sauce: This adds a spicy kick to the batter. You can substitute it with chili paste or a dash of cayenne pepper for a similar effect.
  • Breadcrumbs, Italian Seasoned: They provide the final crispy coating. You can substitute with panko breadcrumbs for a lighter texture, and add Italian herbs for flavor.
  • Oil for Frying: Essential for achieving that perfect golden crispiness. Any neutral oil like canola, vegetable, or peanut oil works great.

Making this Deep Fried Cauliflower is a breeze, and I promise, it’s as fun as it is tasty.

process shots showing how to make fried cauliflower.

First up, grab a large bowl and whisk together your all-purpose flour, cornstarch, baking powder, and a pinch of salt. Then, pour in the water and hot sauce, mixing until everything’s nice and smooth.

process shots showing how to make fried cauliflower.

Now, dip each piece into the batter, making sure they’re well coated but not dripping. Next, roll each piece in the Italian seasoned breadcrumbs. You want a good, even coat on each one.

process shots showing how to make fried cauliflower.

Heat your oil in the deep fryer to 365°F (185°C). Fry the cauliflower in batches, so they don’t get too crowded and stick together. You’re looking for a beautiful golden brown color.

process shots showing how to make fried cauliflower.

Once they’re fried to perfection, let them rest on paper towels to drain any excess oil. If you’re feeling a little extra, sprinkle some salt over them for that final flavor boost.

a few pieces of fried cauliflower florets on a white plate.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I make this recipe in an air fryer?

Yes, you can! To adapt this recipe for an air fryer, preheat it to around 360°F (180°C). Spray or brush the battered and breaded cauliflower with oil and air fry in batches until golden and crispy, usually about 15-20 minutes. Just remember to flip them halfway through for even cooking.

What dipping sauces pair well with Deep Fried Cauliflower?

There are so many delicious options! Classic choices include ranch dressing, blue cheese sauce, or a tangy marinara sauce. If you like a bit of heat, try a spicy aioli or a sweet and sour sauce for a different twist.

How can I keep the cauliflower crispy if I’m not serving it immediately?

The best way is to keep it warm in the oven. Preheat your oven to a low temperature, around 200°F (95°C), and place the fried cauliflower on a wire rack over a baking sheet. This keeps them warm and crispy until you’re ready to serve.

Can I use frozen cauliflower for this recipe?

Absolutely! Just thaw the cauliflower first and pat it dry to remove excess moisture. This helps the batter and breadcrumbs stick better and ensures a crispy finish.

a few pieces of fried cauliflower florets on a white plate.


Once cooled, you can keep the leftovers in an airtight container and refrigerate them for up to 3 days. While it’s best enjoyed fresh, if you do need to store it, reheating in an oven or air fryer can help bring back some of the crispiness. I wouldn’t recommend freezing fried cauliflower as the texture might change.

freshly made deep fried cauliflower in a metal basket.

More Delicious Cauliflower Recipes To Try

freshly made deep fried cauliflower in a metal basket.

Deep Fried Cauliflower

Prep 10 minutes

Cook 20 minutes

Total 30 minutes

This Deep Fried Cauliflower recipe is a real crowd-pleaser, turning simple cauliflower into crispy, golden bites of heaven. Perfect for game days or as a snazzy appetizer, these delicious morsels are coated in a light, flavorful batter and fried to perfection.

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  • In a large bowl, whisk together flour, cornstarch, baking powder, and salt. Stir in water and hot sauce until the batter is smooth.

  • Take each cauliflower piece and give it a good dunk in the batter, making sure it’s evenly coated. Let the excess batter drip off. Roll the battered cauliflower in the breadcrumbs until they’re completely covered.

  • Heat your deep fryer to 365°F (185℃). Fry the cauliflower pieces in batches until they’re golden and crispy.

  • Drain them on paper towels to get rid of any extra oil. Sprinkle a little salt over them if you like – it’s optional.


  1. No Deep Fryer, No Problem: If you don’t have a deep fryer, you can still make this recipe in a deep skillet or a heavy-bottomed pot. Just fill it with enough oil to cover the cauliflower pieces and use a kitchen thermometer to monitor the oil temperature.
  2. Oil Temperature is Key: Maintaining the correct oil temperature (365°F/185°C) is crucial for getting that perfect crispy texture. If the oil is too cool, the cauliflower will absorb too much oil and become greasy; if it’s too hot, it will burn on the outside before cooking through.
  3. Season to Taste: Feel free to adjust the seasoning in the batter or add extra spices to the breadcrumbs to suit your taste. A little garlic powder, smoked paprika, or even some grated Parmesan can add a great flavor boost.

Nutrition Information

Serving: 1servingCalories: 284kcal (14%)Carbohydrates: 57g (19%)Protein: 9g (18%)Fat: 2g (3%)Saturated Fat: 1g (6%)Polyunsaturated Fat: 1gMonounsaturated Fat: 1gSodium: 547mg (24%)Potassium: 450mg (13%)Fiber: 4g (17%)Sugar: 4g (4%)Vitamin A: 4IUVitamin C: 48mg (58%)Calcium: 121mg (12%)Iron: 3mg (17%)

Notice: Nutrition is auto-calculated for your convenience. Where relevant, we recommend using your own nutrition calculations.

freshly made deep fried cauliflower in a metal basket.

Did You Make This?

We love seeing what you made! Tag us on Instagram at @jocooks or hashtag #jocooks so we can see your creations!

Originally Shared October 2012.

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