Spicy & Crispy Kung Pao Cauliflower

  13 rater(s)

Kung pao cauliflower? Although it may not be traditional, it is mighty tasty. Cauliflower is a very versatile ingredient that really absorbs all the bold flavors of this recipe. The sauce has the perfect balance of salt, spice, and sweetness. Spice up your life with this healthy take on a traditional Asian classic.

Spicy & Crispy Kung Pao Cauliflower
  • Prep Time:15m
  • Cook Time:40m
  • Total Time:55m


For the Cauliflower

  • 1/4 c + 1 tbsp corn starch
  • 1/4 c + 2 tbsp gluten free bread crumbs
  • 1/4 c + 1 tbsp water (use more if necessary)
  • 1/2 tsp. cayenne pepper
  • 2 tsp. low sodium soy sauce or liquid aminos
  • 1/4 tsp. sea salt
  • 1/4 tsp. sesame oil

For the Kung Pao Sauce

  • 1 tsp. olive oil
  • 1 tsp. olive oil
  • 8-10 dried red chilies
  • 1/2 tsp. coarsely crushed sichuan peppercorns (or grind black peppercorns and mix with red pepper flakes)
  • 2 tbsp. cashews, finely chopped
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 inch piece of ginger, peeled & minced
  • 2 tbsp. scallions, chopped

Sauce Mix

  • 2 1/2 tbsp. low sodium soy sauce or liquid aminos
  • 1 1/2 tbsp. rice vinegar
  • 1 tbsp. organic cane sugar
  • 1/4 c + 2 tbsp water
  • 1 tsp. corn starch


  1. Preheat your oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit. Rinse your cauliflower florets and set aside, while you whisk the rest of the cauliflower ingredients in a bowl to make the batter. Let the batter rest for several minutes, adding more water if it is too thick. Dip the florets into the batter, evenly coating them, and set them on a baking sheet that is lined with parchment paper.
  2. Place the baking pan in the oven and bake for about 30 minutes. You can use a fork to poke the florets to see if they are tender. The batter should also be slightly brown when you remove them from the oven.
  3. While the cauliflower is baking, you can make the sauce. Warm 1 tsp of oil in a frying pan over medium heat and add the chilies and peppercorns (or peppercorn mix that you make) and saute until you can smell the aroma. You don't want to brown them!
  4. Add the remaining Kung Pao Sauce ingredients and cook for about a minute before reducing heat to a simmer. Simmer for about 5 minutes and then add the scallions.
  5. Combine all of the Sauce Mix ingredients in a bowl before pouring the mixture into the pan. Increase the heat to medium and bring the sauce to a boil. This will thicken the sauce so be careful not to cook too long. Once it is a good consistency, remove from the heat.
  6. Add the baked cauliflower florets to a large bowl and drizzle the sauce over them. Toss to evenly coat the florets and then plate. If you have extra sauce, you can save it in an airtight container in the fridge. It will keep for 5-7 days.