Nashville Hot Cauliflower Wings

10-ingredient Nashville hot cauliflower wings with and optional 5-ingredient spicy dipping sauce. A fantastic appetizer that’s vegan, naturally gluten-free, and oil-free.

Batch of Nashville hot cauliflower wings on a white plate with a side of sliced pickles.

Why you’ll love them

To put it’s simply: who wouldn’t love them?!? When some thing this delicious also happens to be good for you, there’s no reason why you should pass on this spicy appetizer. And here’s why…

  • Simple- Cut up some cauliflower, whip up the batter, dip ’em, bake ’em. Doesn’t get much easier than that when in comes down to it.
  • Nutritious- I love combining seasonal produce with plant protein. And that’s exactly what you’ll get when you make this appetizer.
  • Kid-friendly- You might not have guessed it from the “hot” portion of this recipe but you can TOTOALLY leave out the cayenne pepper in the batter to turn this into a heat-free snack the kids will love.
  • Free from- This appetizer is perfect for anyone at the party: vegan, gluten-free, oil-free. Make it nut-free by replacing the almond milk with flaxseed, oat, or soy milk. It’s amazing like that.
Hands holding a split open Nashville hot cauliflower wing revealing a purple cauliflower floret with more cauliflower on a white plate in the background.

Nashville Hot Batter

Begin by cutting up your cauliflower into large florets. In a small bowl, combine the flaxseed meal and water. Let your flaxeggs sit for about 10 minutes to gel.

In another small bowl, combine the almond milk and apple cider vinegar. Allow that to rest for 10 minutes for your vegan buttermilk. While those are resting…

In a large bowl, whisk together the chickpea flour, salt, garlic, paprika, pepper, and cayenne. Once the flaxeggs and vegan buttermilk are ready, add them to the dry ingredients along with the secret ingredient- pickle juice! I know what you might be thinking. Pickle juice? But trust me, it adds a subtle brine-y flavor that you really can’t get any other way. So add it. For me.

The batter will be thick but that’s what you want because it’s a thick batter that will stick to the cauliflower. Gently dunk each cauliflower floret into the batter coating into all the nooks and crannies. Allow the excess batter to run off and place on a parchment-lined rimmed baking sheet. Continue dipping the florets and drizzle any extra batter over the prepared cauliflower to ensure that everything is fully coated.

Bake the cauliflower wings in a 375*F oven for 20 minutes. They are done when the batter is firm and a light golden-brown color. Allow them to cool slightly before serving with the spicy dipping sauce.

Spicy Dipping Sauce

While the Nashville hot cauliflower wings are baking prepare the optional spicy dipping sauce. Note that this is NOT oil-free. Whisk together the desired amount of cayenne, brown sugar, paprika, and garlic powder. Add the spice mixture to melted vegan butter and mix thoroughly. Serve on the side or drizzle over the baking cauliflower wings.

Remember that just as the cauliflower wings, you can alter the spiciness of the sauce by adding as much or as little cayenne as you’d like. Be sure to let me know down in the comments just how spicy you make these bad boys. As always, enjoy friends!

Batch of Nashville hot cauliflower wings on a white plate with a side of sliced pickles.

Ingredient Health Benefits

Cauliflower- fiber, vitamin C, biotin, folate, sulforaphane to block cancer-causing chemicals

Flax- Omega-3 fats, soluble and insoluble fiber

Garlic- phytochemicals

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Nashville Hot Cauliflower Wings

10-ingredient vegan appetizer, Nashville hot cauliflower wings with and optional 5-ingredient spicy dipping sauce. Naturally gluten-free, and oil-free.
Prep Time20 mins
Cook Time25 mins
Total Time45 mins
Course: Appetizer, Side Dish
Cuisine: Gluten-Free, Grain-Free, Oil-free, Vegan
Keyword: chickpea flour, easy, flax egg, heat, hot, quick, simple, spicy
Servings: 6 people
Author: Erin

Ingredients

  • 1 head cauliflower, cut into florets
  • 1 cup vegan buttermilk (1 cup almond milk & 1 tsp apple cider vinegar)
  • 2 flax eggs (2 tbsp flaxseed meal and 5 tbsp water)
  • 2 cups chickpea flour
  • 1 tsp salt
  • ½ tsp garlic powder
  • ½ tsp paprika
  • ¼ tsp pepper
  • ¼ tsp cayenne more for a spicier batter
  • ¼ cup pickle juice

Nashville Hot Sauce

  • ¼ cup vegan butter
  • ¼-3 tsp cayenne to taste
  • 1 tsp brown sugar
  • ¼ tsp paprika
  • ¼ tsp garlic powder

Instructions

Nashville Hot Cauliflower Wings

  • Preheat the oven to 375°F. Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper.
  • In a small bowl, combine the flaxseed meal and water and allow to sit for 10 minutes until jelled.
  • In another small bow, combine the almond milk and apple cider vinegar. Allow to sit for 10 minutes to form a "buttermilk".
  • In a large bowl combine the chickpea flour, salt, garlic powder, paprika, pepper, and cayenne. Whisk to combine.
  • Add the prepared flaxeggs, vegan buttermilk, and pickle juice to the dry ingredients. Whisk until smooth.
  • Gently dip the cauliflower florets into the batter turning several times to ensure even coating. Place on the prepared baking sheet and continue coating the cauliflower.
  • Bake the cauliflower wings for 20-25 minutes. They are finished once the batter has set and is a light golden-brown color. Allow to cool slightly before serving.

Spicy Dipping Sauce

  • While the cauliflower wings are baking prepare the sauce.
  • In a medium-sized bowl, whisk together the brown sugar, paprika, garlic powder and desired amount of cayenne.
  • Add the melted vegan butter and whisk to combine. Drizzle over warm cauliflower wings or serve on the side for dipping.
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