Go Back
+ servings
kung pao cauliflower
Print Recipe
5 from 3 votes

Kung Pao Cauliflower

This Kung Pao Cauliflower is flavorful, has tons of texture and just a little bit of spice. It's coated in a sweet and sticky glaze and topped with cilantro, scallions and crushed peanuts.
Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time5 mins
Total Time15 mins
Course: sides
Cuisine: Asian
Diet: Vegan, Vegetarian
Keyword: kung pao, kung pao cauliflower, roasted cauliflower
Servings: 2
Calories: 495kcal
Author: Erin


  • 2 tbsp rice wine vinegar
  • 2 tbsp soy sauce
  • 2 tbsp agave nectar
  • 1 tbsp hoisin sauce
  • 1 tbsp fresh ginger grated
  • 1 tbsp cornstarch
  • 2 tsp toasted sesame oil
  • 2 tsp chili-garlic sauce
  • 3 garlic cloves minced
  • Pinch red pepper flakes
  • 2 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 1 medium head cauliflower cut into florets
  • Salt as needed
  • Black pepper as needed

for topping:

  • 1 tbsp sesame seeds
  • 2 scallions thinly sliced
  • 1/4 cup roasted salted peanuts coarsely chopped
  • 1/4 cup fresh cilantro coarsely chopped


  • In a medium bowl, whisk together the vinegar, soy sauce, agave, hoisin sauce, ginger, cornstarch, sesame oil, chili-garlic, and red pepper flakes until combined. Set aside.
  • Heat the vegetable oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the cauliflower in an even layer, season it with a pinch of salt and pepper, and sear the cauliflower, undisturbed, for 2-3 minutes, or until it is golden brown. Flip the cauliflower and sear for 2-3 minutes, until it is golden brown on the opposite side.
  • Add the sauce and reduce the heat to medium. Toss the cauliflower in the sauce to coat and sauté for 3-4 minutes, or until sauce thickens and the cauliflower is tender.
  • Add the sesame seeds, scallions, peanuts, and cilantro and stir to combine. Season to taste with additional salt and pepper, if desired and serve.


Substitutions: Can use maple syrup instead of agave, and tamari OR coconut aminos instead of soy sauce.


Calories: 495kcal | Carbohydrates: 47g | Protein: 14g | Fat: 31g | Saturated Fat: 14g | Cholesterol: 1mg | Sodium: 1552mg | Potassium: 1112mg | Fiber: 9g | Sugar: 24g | Vitamin A: 255IU | Vitamin C: 143mg | Calcium: 142mg | Iron: 3mg