Crispy Parmesan Cauliflower Bites will be the hit of your party or dinner table! They're low-carb, keto-friendly, gluten-free, and melt-in-your-mouth delicious. Follow our easy breading technique to get these in your belly quick.
Sometimes I think I could start a PR firm just to represent cauliflower! I sing its praises in so many recipes.
Cauliflower Muffins and Cauliflower Grits will make you second guess the need for rice. This amazing vegetable even makes an appearance on pizza night as cauliflower pizza bites or crust. And, these Parmesan Cauliflower Bites will sit proudly alongside traditional wings on any low-carb party table.
This versatile vegetable just needs to be advertised correctly.
For example, this tasty finger food could be called Parmesan Cauliflower Poppers. The florets are lightly coated in butter and then breaded with Parmesan cheese, paprika and roasted until crispy. You'll want to pop one of these "wings" in your mouth as soon as they come out of the oven!
They will literally put a smile on your face, especially if you use our easy breading technique.
- Melted butter makes the breading stick to the cauliflower.
- Cauliflower Florets - A small head of cauliflower yields about 3-4 cups.
- Breading - In order to keep this recipe low-carb and gluten-free, we did not add any breadcrumbs. It's a simple combination of Parmesan cheese, paprika and black pepper.
- Use a different type of hard cheese, like Asiago cheese or Romano cheese.
- Add whole wheat panko breadcrumbs. We used this breading variation to make Parmesan Chicken Nuggets which will also work here.
How to Bread Cauliflower the Easy Way!
Now, for a little rant and a tip...I really do hate to mess up lots of dishes and/or clean up a mess. If you feel that way too, use a "1" big bowl with a tight-fitting lid and let it quickly do all the dirty work. Here's how:
- Melt butter in a small bowl and pour it over the cauliflower florets that are in the big bowl, close the lid and gently shake to coat them with butter. Open the lid and check to see that the butter is distributed evenly. Toss the florets a little more if necessary.
- Tip: Use a silicone pastry brush to fill in any gaps.
- Note: When using this technique, it's important not to have lots of butter "leftover" in the bottom of the bowl when you add the breading.
- Prepare the Parmesan cheese breading in a separate small bowl. Sprinkle the cheese breading mixture over the top of the florets.
- Close the lid and gently toss again.
- Note: These steps can be done in smaller batches if desired.
- Spread the cauliflower out on a baking sheet (or in an air fryer) and bake until crispy.
Note: Large plastic freezer bags can also be used for this technique.
No fuss, no muss...except please be aware that the paprika makes these crispy cauliflower bites the pretty color that they become...and that color doesn't play well with a white shirt! It's not a bad idea to enjoy them with a fork.
We use the same no-mess breading process for Healthy Chicken Tenders and Broiled Scallops with a Parmesan Crust too. It really works!
Air Fryer Cooking Instructions
You can follow the easy breading instructions above and make cauliflower bites in an air fryer!
- Preheat air fryer to 390 °F for 3 minutes.
- Spray the crisper plate with olive oil and place cauliflower in a single layer. Lightly spray with olive oil to promote crispiness.
- Cook for about 20 minutes or until desired tenderness. You can gently turn the pieces over with a rubber-tipped spatula halfway through, but I often don't need to do this.
Aren't they gorgeous?!
Re-heating and Make-Ahead Tips
Reheating: Cauliflower Bites are best eaten fresh, but can be crisped up again in an air fryer or oven at 350 °F for about 5-10 minutes or until hot. We do not recommend using a microwave to reheat because they will be soggy.
Make-Ahead Tips: Prepare cauliflower and breading 2-3 days in advance and then bread just before baking. The florets may also be breaded a day ahead of time and stored in an air-tight container until ready to cook.
More Cauliflower Recipes
- Mexican "Street Style" Cauliflower - a low-carb version of elote!
- Roasted Cauliflower Rice - from FROZEN!
- Curried Cauliflower Rice - in minutes!
Did you make this recipe?
Please leave a rating and tell us how you liked it!
Parmesan Cauliflower Bites - Just 5 Ingredients
- 3 cups cauliflower florets washed and thoroughly dried; about 1 small head of cauliflower
- 2 Tablespoons butter melted
- ½ cup Parmesan cheese finely grated
- 1 teaspoon paprika
- ¼ teaspoon black pepper
- Preheat oven to 425 degrees °F.
- Toss cauliflower florets with melted butter in a large bowl. Check for pieces that are not coated with butter and toss again or use a silicone pastry brush to fill in those spots.
- Combine Parmesan cheese, paprika and pepper and sprinkle over the butter-coated cauliflower florets that are still in the large bowl.
- Cover with a tight-fitting lid. Gently toss to coat.
- Arrange cauliflower in a single layer on baking sheet sprayed to prevent sticking.
- Bake for 20 minutes or until edges begin to crisp.
- Enjoy hot from the oven!
Air Fryer Instructions
- Preheat air fryer to 390 °F for 3 minutes.
- Spray the crisper plate with olive oil and place cauliflower in a single layer. Lightly spray the florets with olive oil to promote crispiness.
- Cook for about 20 minutes or until desired tenderness. You can gently turn the pieces over with a rubber-tipped spatula halfway through, but I don't need to do this.
This recipe was originally published 1/31/18. It was updated to improve the reader experience.
These look fantastic and will be perfect at our Super Bowl party this weekend! Thanks!
Thanks for your feedback! I hope you enjoy them.
JoanP - did you make them? did people love them?
You gave this 5 stars just because they look great? I'd rather know you made them and actually ate them so you could give a reasonable review.
These are amazing! Tonight I swapped out the cauliflower for broccoli and mushrooms. So good. I didn’t have enough Parmesan so I added pork rind panko and that was amazing too.
I don't see a video, I was really hoping to see how this is done.
Hi! The video of how to make Parmesan Cauliflower Bites is just before the recipe instructions on a mobile device and will appear at the top and then in the side bar as you scroll on a desktop computer.
Do you cook the cauliflower first?
No. Don't cook the cauliflower first! 🙂
This was AMAZING!!! Just made for dinner...a HUGE HIT! Will definitely make again!! Big thank you for sharing! 🙂
I'm so glad you enjoyed it!
If you were to add garlic, how much and what form would it be?
Hi! Add a pinch (1/8 of a teaspoon) of garlic powder.
can i use frozen cauliflower florets for this? have you tried it yet?
Hi! I have not tried this with frozen cauliflower. I'd love to hear how it turns out.
I made this for dinner side dish. Followed exact recipe. It was delicious!
I'm so glad you enjoyed it! 🙂
This was amazing and has become my new go-to cauliflower recipe. I didn't change a thing.
I'm so glad you enjoyed them! 🙂
What kind of a dip could you have with these
Try ranch dressing or dip or a yogurt-based dip like we used for these carrots fries https://www.dinner-mom.com/carrot-fries-and-yogurt-dill-sauce/ except leave out the dill!
I used a Mayo lime and brown sugar dip which I had for the shrimp but was delicious with the cauliflower. This will be a go to recipe for me from now on.
Love the dipping sauce. I'm so glad you enjoyed the recipe.
How are these if served room temp or cold?
They are best hot. We still enjoy them as they cool down and at room temp. I just don't think they would be very good cold. I hope that helps!
Bella Hardy @ Healthnerdy.com
These parmesan cauliflower bites are so Instagrammable and adorable! As you know I made it a short while ago and it was lovely! Thx, Marjory for sharing!
I'm so glad you enjoyed them!!!
Absolutely love them thank you!!
My husband makes an unbelievable dill dip for wings that I usually miss out on because I don’t eat meat. But now - I make these and with the dip they are just wow. Great recipe thank you!
Love that pairing! I'm so glad you enjoyed them.
Can you use riced cauliflower? Or fresh broccoli florets ?
Hi! You could use the same technique with broccoli florets. However, it would not work with riced cauliflower.
I'm excited to try these tonight!
Is the nutritional info for the whole recipe?
Hi! The nutritional information is per serving.
But how much is one serving?
It depends on the size of the florets and amount used. Also, the coating and breading will cover about 3-4 cups of florets. I find the easiest thing to do is make the entire recipe and then divide it between the number of servings desired.
Is seems like this would leave the cauliflower pretty raw, and not soft at all. Am I wrong? If this is the case, could you pre boil first?
Hi! It is soft and melt-in-your-mouth tender! 🙂
Just made this with broccoli and it's amazing! Thanks for such a simple recipe.
I'm so glad you enjoyed it!
Does this work to make a batch and snack on through the week?
Hi! They really are best straight out of the oven. I've never tried reheating. If so, you would need to try that in an oven/toaster oven, not a microwave. I think the best bet would be to have the breading all mixed up so it's quick to prep and cook.
Delicious and super easy to make. I used cajin spice in place of paprika
Thank you so much for coming back with your feedback and tip...great idea to spice it up!
Best ever I had👌 Thank you!
Can you make these in an Air fryer?
Absolutely! I added the instructions to the notes of the recipe card. Enjoy!
if your on 21 day fix would it just count as a green container
I'm not too familiar with the details of this program. However, nutritional estimates are provided. Although this recipe is predominantly cauliflower, there are other ingredients, such as cheese, which would likely go in another container.
I wonder if I could do this recipe with mushrooms?
Sounds like a yummy thing to try!
Can you prep in advance?
You can definitely prepare the breading first with no problem at all. You can probably prep, but not cook the cauliflower a day in advance. You might find that some breading starts flecks off before you bake it, so prepare for that. I have not prepped it all the way, so would love to know how it works out!
I want to try this with some beer battered cod which needs to cook at 475* for 18 mins. Can I cook the cauliflower first and throw it back in to warm back up near the end? I don’t want the cauliflower soggy!
I think that would work! Enjoy!
Can you use breadcrumbs also?
Yes you could!
Can you freeze these and heat from frozen?
You should be able to prep, but not cook, and then freeze. At that point you can cook from frozen. I have not tried it with this specific recipe though. I'd love to know if you do and how it works out! Thanks for your question.
These were great. Mine took 12 minutes in my air fryer. May have to try them with mushrooms next. Thanks for sharing.
I'm so glad you enjoyed them!
Have you tried other seasonings, such as, italian, garlic salt, steak seasoning, etc. Would love to hear about variations.
Mine came out limp and tasteless. I ate them because I hate food waste.
I'm so sorry they didn't work out for you. 🙁
These came out delicious! You can even dip them in marinara. I think next time I'll sprinkle a little garlic in there.
I'm so happy you enjoyed them! Garlic sounds delish!
I just started on South Beach Diet
Today is end of day 2
I am going to bed so happy and satisfied.
Why is everything so good right now?
I made this recipe for my last meal today and I gotta tell ya, I am just not that good in the kitchen. Some people may even say that I should just stay out of the kitchen all together.
Well after making this roasted cauliflower, parmesan yummy appetizer, I have proved them all wrong! I am an amazing cook!
This dish was absolutely delish!
Thank you so much for this easy to make and and tastes so great recipe. THANK YOU 🙏
These were really really good. I added some real bacon bits to the pan and added shredded cheddar and sour cream and it tasted like a potato skin. Thank you for the recipe.
The shredded cheddar and sour cream was added on my plate.
Made this for dinner tonight, it was really really good. We will have this for dinner more often.