These air fryer Teriyaki Tempura Cauliflower bites are so deliciously crispy. They use a baked tempura method and are not deep-fried. No air fryer? You’ll also find stovetop methods in the post.
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Crispy, crunchy, and topped with an amazing sauce, these tempura cauliflower bites will become your new favorite snack! Even better, we’re making them in the air fryer, with less than 2 tsp of olive oil.
There is something to be said about creative ways to make cauliflower. From Crispy Cauliflower Patties, to Roasted Frozen Cauliflower, to Quick Pickled Cauliflower, to Instant Pot Cauliflower, you have many delicious options for preparing ghost broccoli. And now? Air fryer tempura cauliflower!
You can use any bottled sauce that you’d like for this tempura cauliflower. If you’re looking for a low-sugar option, check out our homemade Gluten-Free Teriyaki Sauce. Our creamy Vegan Aioli is also a great choice.
Can You Do Batter in an Air Fryer?
Tempura batter does not usually work well in an air fryer. BUT, we cracked the code on how to make it work. Once you dip the cauliflower in the tempura batter, you’ll lightly coat them in panko breadcrumbs.
The panko helps keep the tempura batter in place so you can air fry to your heart’s content. And yes, this will work with other veggies! You could try it with these Air Fryer Green Bean Fries, or Air Fryer Okra. Yum!
Pro Tips/Recipe Notes
- Keep the tempura batter as chilled as possible. You can refrigerate it for up to 30 minutes, but it won’t keep well much longer than that.
- Work quickly in batches of 4-7 pieces of cauliflower at a time.
- If you have leftover raw cauliflower that you won’t use right away, try your hand at Freezing Cauliflower.
Teriyaki Tempura Cauliflower
Make the Air Fryer Tempura Batter
- In a medium mixing bowl, whisk all-purpose flour and cornstarch.1/2 cup all-purpose flour, 1/4 cup cornstarch
- Slowly pour in ice water, gently whisking to combine. Do not overmix – a few lumps are fine.3/4 cup ice water
Making Cauliflower Tempura
- Add panko to a small mixing bowl. Set aside.1.5 cup panko
- Cut cauliflower into bite-sized florets. Pro tip: uniform sizes will cook more evenly.4 cups cauliflower
- In a medium mixing bowl combine 2 tbsp all-purpose flour, 1/2 tsp kosher salt, and 1 tsp garlic powder.1/2 tsp kosher salt, 1 tsp garlic powder, 2 tbsp all-purpose flour
- Toss cauliflower in the flour mixture, doing your best to coat all florets evenly.
- Working in batches, drop 4-7 florets at a time in the tempura batter.
- Using a fork, chopstick, or skewer, pierce a piece of cauilflower and dredge it through the tempura batter.
- Shake off excess batter and transfer cauliflower to the bowl with panko. Repeat with other florets in this batch.
- Gently toss cauliflower in the panko bowl until tempura batter is lightly coated. Transfer to a plate.
- Repeat above process with remaining cauliflower.
- Preheat air fryer for 5 minutes at 400 F.
- Heavily spray breaded cauliflower with olive oil cooking spray. Allow everything to sit for 1 minute.olive oil spray
- Transfer cauliflower to air fryer and cook at 400 F for 6 minutes. Flip and cook for an additional 1-2 minutes if needed.
- Transfer crispy cauliflower to a bowl and drizzle with teriyaki sauce.1/2 cup teriyaki sauce