These vegan cauliflower tots are a tasty side dish for your favorite black bean burgers. Tasty keto tots satisfy your desire for crispy tots in the healthiest way possible. See tips below for making them in an air fryer!
Truth be told, I’m always looking for delicious side dishes. The fact that this one is healthy is simply a bonus!
I’ve always loved crispy tots. It’s one reason I created sweet potato tots. So good! They can be baked, which is an added healthy bonus.
But I decided to take things a step further with this healthy cauliflower tots recipe. They’re crispy in all the right ways, but with minimal carbs and calories, I can feel free to feast away!
How to Make Cauliflower Tots
You can find the full printable recipe, including ingredient quantities, below. But first, here are some explanations of ingredients and steps to help you make this recipe perfect every time.
- Pulse cauliflower florets in a food processor.
- Cook riced cauliflower in an oiled skillet until tender.
- Add nutritional yeast flakes, flax, cornstarch, onions, and cheddar shreds to a bowl.
- Add cooked hot cauliflower rice.
- Stir to combine.
- Once it’s cool enough to handle, portion the dough into tater tot form.
- Roll the tots in the bread crumbs.
- Bake, fry in a skillet or air fry until golden brown.
- Lemon — We’ll use both the zest and the juice of the lemon.
- Oats — I used rolled oats for this recipe, but you can substitute instant oats.
- Chia — We’ll add some ground chia seeds to create a thicker texture. You can use whole chia seeds; I just prefer ground because it creates a smoother finished texture.
- Syrup — I used maple syrup, but you can substitute agave nectar.
- Milk — We’ll use almond milk for the best overnight oats! Substitute your favorite plant-based milk.
- Yogurt — I love adding some plant-based yogurt (plain, unsweetened) for an even more tangy flavor.
- Protein Powder — I add some vanilla protein powder for increased flavor and nutrients. If your protein powder is not sweetened, you may want to add an extra teaspoon or two of sweetener.
- Cornstarch — We’ll use cornstarch to thicken the lemon curd topping.
- Turmeric — A pinch of turmeric makes that lemon curd sunny yellow.
- Nutritional yeast flakes — If you’re unfamiliar with the nooch (as it’s referred to), it adds a delicious cheesy flavor that’s perfect for this side dish.
- Flaxseed — We’ll add a bit of ground flaxseed to act as a binder instead of eggs.
- Cornstarch — Speaking of binding, cornstarch also serves this purpose.
- Almond meal — I’m using almond meal to keep this recipe low-carb, but you can substitute all-purpose or gluten-free flour.
- Onion — We’ll use a bit of onion, finely chopped. You can use regular white or yellow onion, or substitute an equal amount of chopped green onion (aka, spring onions). Here are some spring onion alternatives to consider.
- Vegan cheddar shreds — Feel free to substitute your favorite vegan cheese.
- Salt — Of course, adding a bit of salt makes these tots delicious!
- Bread Crumbs — You can leave these out, but I like the crispy coating they add. Feel free to use regular or gluten-free panko crumbs.
- Olive oil — If baking your tots, you won’t need vegetable oil. A light spray with vegetable cooking spray will do the trick.
Baked Cauliflower Tots
There are many ways to prepare your tots: baked, fried, or air fried. Here are the steps for baking them:
- Preheat the oven to 375°F/190°C.
- Place tots on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper.
- Drizzle with remaining oil.
- Place the pan in the oven and bake for 20 to 25 minutes, until the outside crust is golden.
- Use tongs to turn the tots about halfway through cooking.
- Heat one tablespoon of oil in a skillet.
- Add tots (cooking them in batches, depending on the size of your pan) and cook until brown on one side.
- Use tongs to turn the tots, cooking them equally on each side.
- Transfer to a heated toaster oven.
- Repeat with the remaining tots.
Air Fried Cauliflower Tots
You can make this into a keto cauliflower tots air fryer recipe. It’s so easy to do! The air fryer gets them nice and crispy! Follow these steps:
- Preheat the air fryer to 375°F/190°C.
- Add tots in a single layer.
- Give them a light coating of vegetable cooking spray and cook for 5 minutes.
- Use tongs to flip the tots and cook for up to 5 minutes until golden brown.
Why This Recipe is a Winner
- FAMILY-FRIENDLY — Get the kids involved in shaping the tots before you cook them. Getting the kids involved in dinner makes it a fun family experience!
- VERSATILE — Add your favorite seasonings, such as garlic powder or cajun seasoning.
- MAKE-AHEAD — Make a double batch of tots and freeze them to heat and serve for impromptu family meals!
Are cauliflower tots healthy?
Yes, cauliflower tots are healthy because they’re made with nutritious cauliflower, which has very low carbs. Each tot has only 2 net carbs and around 37 calories.
Can you freeze cauliflower veggie tots?
Cauliflower tater tots are freezer friendly. Simply allow them to cool then transfer to a freezer-safe container or bag.
What to Dip Cauliflower Tots in
Serve your keto cauliflower tots with your favorite condiments, such as:
- Vegan Aioli
- Vegan BBQ Sauce
- Vegan Mayo
- Tahini Sauce
- Vegan Blue Cheese Dressing
- Vegan Thousand Island Dressing
Transfer tots to an airtight container and keep them in the fridge for up to 5 days. They can be frozen for up to 2 months. To serve, reheat them in a toaster oven or conventional oven heated at 350°F/175°C.
These cauliflower tots are pretty impressive. If you love comfort food, be sure to check out these vegan potato recipes. Here are even more cauliflower side dishes you’ll love:
- 4 cups cauliflower florets
- 1 tablespoon nutritional yeast flakes
- 1 tablespoon ground flaxseed
- 1 tablespoon cornstarch
- 3 tablespoons almond meal (see notes)
- 2 tablespoons onions, finely chopped
- ¼ cup vegan cheddar shreds
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ½ cup panko crumbs regular or gluten-free
- 2 tablespoons olive oil (omit for oil-free)
- Place cauliflower florets in a food processor and pulse until broken down in small, rice-sized bits.
- Place a large skillet over medium-high heat, adding 1 tablespoon of oil. Add the priced cauliflower and cook until heated through. Use a spatula to turn the cauliflower occasionally, allowing them to brown a bit. Cook for up to 10 minutes, until the cauliflower is tender and any moisture has cooked off.
- Add nutritional yeast flakes, flax, cornstarch, onions, and cheddar shreds to a bowl. Top with cooked hot cauliflower rice. Stir to combine. Once it's cool enough to handle, portion the dough into tater tot form (roughly 1" x 1/2"). This should make around 20 to 25 tots. Roll the tots in the bread crumbs,
- Bake: Preheat oven to 375°F/190°C. Place tots on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Drizzle with remaining oil. Place the pan in the oven and bake for 20 to 25 minutes, until the outside crust is golden. Use tongs to turn the tots about halfway through cooking.
- Skillet: Heat one tablespoon of oil in a skillet. Add tots (cooking them in batches, depending on the size of your pan) and cook until brown on one side. Use tongs to turn the tots, cooking them equally on each side. Transfer to a heated toaster oven. Repeat with the remaining tots.
- Air Fryer: Preheat air fryer to 375°F/190°C. Add tots in a single layer. Give them a light spray of vegetable cooking spray and cook for 5 minutes. Use tongs to flip the tots and cook again for up to 5 minutes until golden brown.
- Serve tots warm with your favorite toppings, like vegan aioli. Store leftovers in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 5 days or in the freezer for up to 2 months.
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The nutrition information shown is an estimate provided by an online nutrition calculator and should not be considered a substitute for a professional nutritionist’s advice.