This baked General Tso’s Cauliflower is every bit as delicious as the fried version. It’s quick and easy to make and is a super delicious vegan + paleo meal.
The first time I told my handsome man we were having General Tso’s Cauliflower for dinner, his response was, “That’s it?” I watched his face turn from confused to desperate as I confirmed that dinner would be cauliflower and rice. No meat. No other veggies.
I turned down pleas to add some peppers or onions or A.N.Y.T.H.I.N.G. else to the pan. Not that some extra veggies are a bad idea, but this baby’s all about the cauliflower.
What happened to his face after the first bite was nothing short of a transformation. He declared that it was the best cauliflower he’d ever eaten. He started talking about opening a restaurant that sells only General Tso’s Cauliflower. He told me we (read: I) need to make this every week from now on.
The guy’s got a point, this is some damn good cauliflower.
I’ve been wanting to make General Tso’s Cauliflower for a while, but I’ve only ever seen recipes that call for deep frying the cauliflower first. I don’t have anything against deep frying veggies (have you tried Najib’s Lebanese Cauliflower yet?) but I wanted something a little healthier.
Rather than pulling out a pot of oil I used a little trick to make the cauliflower taste like it’s been deep fried when really it’s baked …
By coating the cauliflower in a little corn starch before you bake it, you’ll get cauliflower that is a little crispy and very much like the deep fried version.
It tastes sinfully delicious without piles of calorie heavy oil.???
And then there’s the sauce. We need to go here for a minute, or ten. The other thing I heard from my handsome man, between mouthfuls of General Tso’s Cauliflower, is that we need to bottle this sauce and put it on everything. The guy’s got a point.
It’s sweet with the tiniest bit of tangy and it practically begs you to lick every last drop of it off of your plate. It also winds its way around each piece of cauliflower and sticks in all the grooves. With each bite of cauliflower, you’ll a delicious spoonful of the sauce, too.
This meatless Monday dinner is 1000x better than any Chinese takeout, and almost just as easy. You will love it!
If you make this Baked General Tso’s Cauliflower make sure you snap a pic and tag @theendlessmeal on Instagram so I can like and comment on your photos. I love seeing TEM recipes you create!
- 1 large head of cauliflower, cut into florets
- 1 teaspoon grapeseed oil
- 1 tablespoon corn starch*
- 1 tablespoon sesame seeds
- 4 green onions, sliced
- 1 teaspoon grapeseed oil
- 1 tablespoon finely minced ginger
- 3 garlic cloves, finely minced
- ¼ cup hoisin sauce*
- 2 tablespoons honey*
- 2 tablespoons soy sauce
- 2 tablespoons rice vinegar*
- 1 teaspoon sesame oil
- ½ teaspoon chili flakes
- ½ teaspoon cornstarch*
- If you're making rice, start that first. Note: I like jasmine rice with this recipe.
- Preheat the oven to 420 degrees. Line a baking tray with parchment paper.
- Place the cauliflower florets in a large bowl and toss with the grapeseed oil, then the cornstarch. Transfer the cauliflower to the prepared baking sheet and bake in the oven for 30 minutes, turning halfway.
- While the cauliflower is roasting, prepare the sauce. Add the grapeseed oil to a small frying pan over medium-high heat. Add the ginger and garlic and cook for 2 minutes. Add all the remaining ingredients and bring it to a boil. Whisk until smooth and thick.
- Once the cauliflower has browned, remove it from the oven and place it in a large bowl. Pour over the sesame seeds, green onions and the sauce and toss to coat well. Serve immediately.
** If you eat a plant-based diet that does not include honey, sub maple syrup or cane sugar instead