Today’s cauliflower tots recipe is a creative twist, with cauliflower rice being swapped for potatoes. We believe this food-makeover idea could receive praise from people of all ages.
Are Cauliflower Tots Healthy?
Yes, they are. These tots are light to snack on and also pair beautifully with protein-rich entrées such as chicken nuggets or meatloaf. (See our Air Fryer Tater Tots Recipe.)
This recipe provides 20.7 grams of carbohydrates in comparison to the familiar tater tots with potatoes. It’s a great choice for when you’re trying to cut back on carbs and white starch.
For the cheddar and Parmesan cheese, feel free to substitute them for low-fat or dairy-free cheese (vegan cheese) if desired, or simply reduce the amount of either type. It won’t alter the overall flavor and texture much.
Our ingredient list may look long, but it takes no more than a single step to combine them together in a mixing bowl.
Cauliflower: We steam cauliflower rice to tender, squeeze excess water out, and then combine them with remaining ingredients to make into tot dough.
Egg and flour: Helps bind all the ingredients in the dough together.
Grated Parmesan and shredded cheddar: Adds a touch of sharpness and melting flavor to the entire dish.
Seasonings: Salt, ground black pepper, garlic powder, onion powder, and freshly chopped parsley add subtle, herby hints to our tots.
Unsalted butter: For a little grease in baking to prevent burning and drying.
Ketchup: Works as a dipping sauce for a tasty finish.
Tips for Making
Technically, there are two simple ways to rice cauliflower at home for tots:
Use a food processor: This is what we do for most dishes with cauliflower rice that we shared on the website. Raw cauliflower needs only 3 or 4 pulses (each pulse lasts no more than a few seconds) to turn to fine crumbs, so be careful not to overdo it and make it a mass.
Use a box grater: For the same reason as above, it’s best to grate the cauliflower on the coarse side of the grater to avoid it from being overly processed.
Also, make sure the cauliflower rice is completely dry and fluffy before mixing it into the tots dough. Otherwise, the tots will turn squashy in the oven and won’t crisp up very well.
How to Store and Reheat
Leftover cauliflower tots can stay well in the fridge if stored properly in an airtight container for up to a week. Make sure they’ve cooled down completely before storing.
Cauliflower tots are also freezer-friendly — they can freeze well for up to 3 months.
To freeze, first, prepare a parchment-lined baking sheet, place the tots in a single layer and freeze until solid. Next, transfer them to a Ziploc bag and put them in the freezer.
Cauliflower tots can be reheated in the oven or in the microwave until warmed through, though they will probably get softer either way. For a crispy exterior, consider bringing them onto the stovetop for pan-frying.
Fill a saucepan with water and bring it to a boil. Place 22 oz riced cauliflower in a steamer basket set over the saucepan and just above the water surface. Cover and steam for 15 minutes.
Remove the cauliflower from the saucepan. Drain and let cool. Transfer the steamed cauliflower to a cheesecloth. Gather the four corners of the cheesecloth into your palm, use the other hand to squeeze out as much liquid as you can.
Preheat the oven to 400℉.
Make the dough: Transfer the cauliflower to a mixing bowl together with 6 tbsp breadcrumbs, 1 oz shredded cheddar cheese, 1 tbsp chopped parsley, 1 medium beaten egg, 1/2 tsp garlic powder, 1/2 tsp onion powder, 0.25 oz grated Parmesan cheese, 1/4 tsp ground black pepper, 1 tbsp unsalted butter, and 2 tbsp all-purpose flour. Mix it up with a spatula so everything binds together.
Form the tots: Pick up small balls from the dough, use your hands to form them into small tater-tot-sized patties and gently flatten them with your palms.
Place the tots on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper, make sure to keep the tots 1 inch apart from each other. Bake for 20 minutes until golden brown.
Remove the cauliflower tots from the oven. Enjoy them hot with 3 1/2 tbsp Heinz's Ketchup.
Amount Per Serving (1 serving)
Calories 173Calories from Fat 63
% Daily Value*
Saturated Fat 4g
Polyunsaturated Fat 1g
Monounsaturated Fat 2g
Vitamin A 149IU
Vitamin C 77mg
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
Tuyet Pham is an award-winning Saigonese chef who believes that joy is the secret ingredient to delicious food. At Healthy Recipes 101, Tuyet personally tests and simplifies every recipe, ensuring maximum flavor with minimal effort. With a background at prestigious French restaurants P’TI Saigon and Le Corto, Tuyet knows how to make every dish exceptional.
Luna Regina is an accomplished writer and author who dedicates her career to empowering home cooks and making cooking effortless for everyone. She is the founder of HealthyKitchen101.com and HealthyRecipes101.com, where she works with her team to develop easy, nutritious recipes and help aspiring cooks choose the right kitchen appliances.
Lizzie Streit is a Minneapolis-based dietitian and founder of It’s a Veg World After All. She completed her MS in Human Nutrition from Drexel University, and is an expert in culinary nutrition, recipe development, and nutrition communications. Lizzie’s philosophy is centered around making nutrition recommendations, and especially the advice to eat more vegetables, approachable and realistic. She is excited to be working with the team at Healthy Recipes 101 to ensure that their recipes are both nutritious and delicious.