Cauliflower is a vegetable that didn’t seem to get a lot of love before the low-carb style lifestyles hit the scene. Now it’s regularly served as the star of lots of delicious low-carb favorites, especially as a look-alike substitute for rice and potatoes. I’ve tried quite a few varieties of these popular low-carb cauliflower dishes and I’ve liked many of them a lot.
I always enjoy throwing some cauliflower florets into hearty vegetable stews, and other times I like to roast it with herbs then drizzle it with lots of butter. But, my favorite way to eat this stunner of a vegetable is when it’s perfectly, crispy fried!
When I was whole lot younger and still living with my parents, my mom used to deep-fry breaded cauliflower florets and we always thought it was such a weird and delicious treat. Fried cauliflower is definitely a dish I associate with my mom and I’ve always considered it one of her personal specialties. However, she told me very recently that a woman she met from Italy, many years ago, was the source of her recipe for breaded cauliflower.
Lately we’ve been on a breaded food kick around my place and I’ve thought about making my mom’s recipe for fried cauliflower more than once in the last few weeks. I just haven’t been motivated enough to get to it before now!
So, when I was thinking up recipes to share this weekend, the first recipe that came to mind was my mom’s fried cauliflower. However, I changed it up a little bit though and this is my lightened-up spin on the recipe: it’s baked and not fried in oil. My mom breads her fried cauliflower in a seasoned, flour-based coating and my oven-fried version is coated with Italian seasoned bread crumbs and Parmesan cheese. I think it’s a heavenly dish whichever way it’s made.
The cauliflower florets roast to a perfect, tender crisp texture and it makes for a really nice bite underneath that crunchy coating. We enjoyed this dish as an appetizer and served it with some cool, creamy ranch dressing, but this dish is really versatile and it will work as a terrific side dish with some roasted or grilled meat or even a satisfying vegetarian main!
Crispy Oven-Fried Cauliflower printable recipe
Prep Time: 30 min
Cook Time: 30 min
Yield: 4-6 servings
- 4 cups cauliflower florets
- 1 cup Italian-seasoned bread crumbs
- 2 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese (I used the canned Kraft brand)
- 1 teaspoon paprika
- 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
- 1 large egg, slightly beaten
- 1 tablespoon milk
- non-stick cooking spray (I used canola oil spray)