Make These Air Fryer Buffalo Cauliflower Bites for the Super Bowl

I am so excited for Super Bowl snacks this year because I am planning to make lots of my snacks in my air fryer and convection oven so that I can have all my favorite crispy deep-fried snacks without all the fat and calories you get from deep frying. In the recipe I’m going to share today, you only use about ¼ teaspoon of oil and you feel like you are eating something crispy and deep fried.

A convection oven is different from a conventional oven because the heat from a convection oven is blown by fans, so the air circulates all around the food, which gives it its crispy exterior--whereas the heat source from a conventional oven is stationary and rises up from the bottom.

An air fryer and convection oven are basically the same thing--the air fryer is just a more compact version that you can keep right on your kitchen counter. I use mine on the regular, but I’m planning to start using the convection setting on my oven more often as well. My friend swears by making a copycat of Raising Cane’s crispy chicken tenders in her convection oven so I can’t wait to try that. 

I love buffalo chicken wings and it is really fun to get these for big parties like the Super Bowl. This year, instead of chicken wings I’m going to try combining two of my very favorite things: Wingstop buffalo chicken wings and Raising Cane’s chicken fingers. Instead of eating the calories from both of those deep fried items, I’m going to get my buffalo fix with some buffalo cauliflower bites that I will make in my air fryer, and I’m going to make some crispy chicken tenders with my regular oven on the convection setting.

It seems to me from asking around that not many people use the convection setting on their ovens, if they even have that capability. I hadn’t heard much about any use of convection ovens until air fryers have become so popular the last few years. After tasting the perfect crispy exterior you can achieve with that convection power, I am sold! Not only does baking in a convection oven make the exteriors perfectly crispy, it also cooks quite a bit faster, so there are so many pros to cooking on the convection setting.

Looking around my kitchen, I saw that even my microwave oven has a convection setting, so make sure you check out your oven and microwave to see what kind of convection power you might have hiding in your kitchen. If you haven’t given in and purchased an air fryer yet, you might not even need to. 

Anyway, I am very excited to make some appetizers this year like my spicy buffalo cauliflower bites. Not only do these buffalo cauliflower bites make a great appetizer for a party, they are also great as a side for a simple busy weeknight meal with some rotisserie chicken. You won’t be able to get enough!

Have you used the convection setting on your oven before? Do you use your air fryer frequently and would recommend that your friends purchase one too? I’d love to know your thoughts about convection ovens and air fryers in the comments below. 

Air Fryer Buffalo Cauliflower

Easy, healthy buffalo cauliflower bites made in the air fryer! Crispy outside, tender inside. Delicious alone or serve with ranch or blue cheese for dipping.

Prep time:
Cook time:
Serving size: 4
Calories per serving: 125

1 large head of cauliflower stem/core removed, cut in florets
1 tablespoon butter
1 tablespoon olive oils + small amt to brush inside of air fryer
1/2 cup buffalo sauces (or more to taste) frank's wing sauce used
1 teaspoon honey
1/4 cup all purpose flour
1/4 cup corn starch
1/2 teaspoon salt or more to taste

Remove the stem and core from the cauliflower and break it into bite size florets then transfer them to a large mixing bowl.

In a small bowl, melt butter then stir in the olive oil, hot sauce and honey and stir until thoroughly combined. Pour the hot sauce mixture over the cauliflower, mixing until the florets are coated.

In another bowl, whisk the flour, corn starch and salt together. Sprinkle a couple of tablespoons of the flour mixture at a time over the cauliflower gently mix until everything is coated.

Preheat the air fryer to 350° for 3 minutes then lightly brush the bottom of the fryer with olive oil. Transfer half of the prepared cauliflower to the air fryer without crowding the basket.

Air fry for 15 minutes total or until the bites are crispy and some edges browned, pausing to shake the basket a couple of times during the cooking process. Optional: to warm the first batch of bites, return to the fryer for 1 minute at 350 degrees.

Serve right away with carrots, celery and ranch or blue cheese dressing for dipping.

Recipe formatted with the Cook'n Recipe Software from DVO Enterprises.

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    Mary Richardson
    Weekly Newsletter Contributor since 2014
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