5-Ingredient Baked Cauliflower Tots

Skip the spuds and ditch the deep-fryer in favor of this quick and healthy recipe for 5-Ingredient Baked Cauliflower Tots. Potato-less cauliflower tots, a.k.a. a veggie-packed, slightly cheesy, absolutely easy alternative to the traditional finger food we all know and love. Aside from being the ultimate way to sneak veggies into any meal, cauliflower tots have many redeeming qualities: They're made with only five ingredients. Sweet! They're baked, rather than fried. They're a (nearly) starch-free side dish or snack. Suddenly craving cauliflower? Preheat your oven, grab the veggies and feel free to fancify these tots by tossing in fresh herbs or spices for added zing. Then all that's left to do is dip and dunk in your choice of sauces, from ketchup to roasted garlic aioli and beyond. Phew. An entire post about tots and not a single "Napoleon Dynamite" reference. (Now give me some of your tots!)
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  • Level: Easy
  • Total: 1 hr
  • Active: 25 min
  • Yield: 35 tots
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Cooking spray

Kosher salt

2 medium heads cauliflower, cut into florets

1/4 cup minced white onion

1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese

1/4 cup finely ground breadcrumbs

1 large egg

Freshly ground black pepper

Ketchup, for serving, optional


  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Grease a nonstick baking sheet generously with cooking spray.
  2. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add the cauliflower florets to the water and cook just until fork tender, 5 to 10 minutes. Thoroughly drain the florets, then transfer them to the bowl of a food processor. Pulse the cauliflower for a few seconds just until it breaks down into small pieces (about the size of grains of rice). (Do not overmix the cauliflower or the mixture will be too wet to form.)
  3. Measure out 3 packed cups of the cauliflower and add it to a large bowl. Stir in the onion (see Cook's Note), Parmesan cheese, breadcrumbs, egg, 1 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper, mixing until thoroughly combined. (The mixture should be roughly the consistency of mashed potatoes.)
  4. Using your hands, scoop up 1 to 2 tablespoons of the mixture and mold it into a tater tot shape. Place it on the prepared baking sheet, then repeat the shaping process with the remaining mixture, spacing the tots about 1 inch apart. Spray the tops with cooking spray for a little extra crunch.
  5. Bake the tots for 20 minutes, then flip them and bake an additional 10 to 15 minutes until crisped. Remove and serve with ketchup or your preferred dipping sauce.

Cook’s Note

The onion should to be cut small enough so that it's not too chunky and can be easily mixed into the cauliflower mixture.

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