Fast, flavourful fat-free vegetable nuggets!
I have a new Gourmia air fryer and I’m slightly obsessed with cooking all the things in it. I was a little skeptical at first but after my first batch of sweet potato fries turned out really well, I was hooked. I’ll have more air fryer recipes coming your way soon but for now I’m delighted to start you off with this one, which you can prepare in a conventional oven as well. These cauliflower nuggets are irresistibly delicious, with their crunchy exterior and lick-your-fingers-clean sauce. You can easily coat the cauliflower nuggets and refrigerate them until you’re ready to cook, if you’re a make-ahead kind of person like I am. If you like this dish, I highly recommend you try my roasted cauliflower with spicy peanut sauce which you can also prepare in an air fryer or conventional oven.
- 1 small head cauliflower
- 2 eggs, beaten
- 2 cups (500 mL) Panko bread crumbs
- 1/3 cup (90 mL) honey
- 4 garlic cloves, minced
- 1/3 cup (90 mL) water, divided
- 1 1/2 tablespoons (22.5 mL) soy sauce
- 1/2 teaspoon (2.5 mL) Sriracha (or more, to taste)
- 2 teaspoons (10 mL) cornstarch
To garnish: sesame seeds and finely chopped green onions or chives
- Preheat air fryer or regular oven to 400F.
- Cut cauliflower into bite-sizes pieces (about 1 inch/2.5 cm).
- Put beaten egg in one bowl and Panko in a second bowl.
- Dip cauliflower pieces in egg then roll in Panko until evenly coated; place on a baking sheet until they are all coated.
- If cooking in an air fryer, carefully transfer half of the coated cauliflower pieces to the air fryer’s basket, placing them in one layer with a little bit of space between each one. Re-insert the basket into the machine. Set the timer for 15 minutes.
- Check after 15 minutes to see if cauliflower bites are golden brown on the outside. Cook for up to 5 minutes more if needed. Repeat with remaining pieces.
- If cooking in a conventional oven, place all the coated cauliflower pieces on a parchment-lined baking sheet and bake for 20 – 25 minutes at 400F.
- While cauliflower cooks, prepare sauce by putting honey, garlic, 1/4 cup (60 mL) of the water, soy sauce and sriracha into a small pot. Bring to a boil then reduce heat to medium low and simmer for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally.
- After 5 minutes, put remaining 2 tablespoons (30 mL) of water and cornstarch in a small bowl; stir to blend, then add to sauce in pot. Increase heat and stir as mixture comes to a boil. Cook for 2 minutes, until thickened, then remove from heat.
- Shake cooked cauliflower out of the airfryer basket onto a clean baking sheet and keep warm in the oven until the second batch is cooked, following the above process.
- Transfer all the cooked cauliflower onto a serving platter and drizzle the sauce over top. Add garnishes if desired and serve hot.
Serves 2 – 3 people as a main course or 6 – 8 as an appetizer.
Note: I received a Gourmia Air Fryer to test, but ideas and opinions are, as always, my own.