This sweet and sour cauliflower is oven baked cauliflower coated in a classic sticky sweet and sour sauce. It's a twist on a takeout classic that's lighter, healthier, and vegan.
This recipe is an easy, simple way to make sweet and sour cauliflower that's ready in 30 minutes. The flavors mimic traditional sweet and sour chicken, but the sauce is lightened up and the chicken is swapped for cauliflower.
The Best Sweet & Sour Sauce
The best part of this recipe is the sauce: it's sticky, thick and just the right balance of sweet and sour.
The sauce gets poured over the crispy cauliflower, which is oven-roasted (not fried), and coats all the nooks and crannies of the cauliflower perfectly!
- Olive oil
- Pure maple syrup
- Soy sauce
- Apple cider vinegar
- Garlic powder
- Oil: avocado oil, olive oil, or any high-heat oil will work best for this recipe.
- Cornstarch: substitute tapioca flour or arrowroot flour for a similar texture.
- Maple syrup: honey can also be used.
- Soy sauce: swap with coconut aminos or tamari sauce to make this recipe gluten free.
- Preheat the oven to 425° Fahrenheit.
- Prepare the cauliflower: remove any leaves from the cauliflower and chop into bite-sized florets. In a medium bowl, toss the cauliflower with the oil. Then toss the cauliflower with 1 tablespoon cornstarch.
- Bake the cauliflower: add the cauliflower in one layer on a foil or parchment paper lined baking sheet. Bake for 10 minutes, flip and bake for 5 - 10 minutes more, until the cauliflower is browned (it will be dark brown in some spots) and cooked through.
- Make the sauce: as the cauliflower cooks, make the sauce. In a small bowl, stir together the maple syrup, ketchup, soy sauce, vinegar and garlic powder.
- Cook the sauce: in a small skillet over medium high heat, bring the sauce to a boil. Turn the heat to low and simmer. In a small bowl, mix 1 tablespoon cornstarch with 1 tablespoon of water. Pour this mixture into the sauce and simmer 3 - 5 more minutes, until the sauce has thickened.
- Serve: in a large bowl, gently toss the cauliflower in the sauce. Optionally, serve with a side of white rice and topped with green onions & sesame seeds.
Bake the cauliflower for 10 minutes, flip it and then bake for 5 - 10 minutes more. Your cauliflower will be dark brown in some spots and should be cooked though.
To make your sauce thicker, simmer it for a couple minutes more. If it is still not thick enough, add an additional mix of 1 tablespoon cornstarch and 1 tablespoon water.
Taste the sauce when done and adjust accordingly: to make it more sour, add additional apple cider vinegar; to make it sweeter, add maple syrup.
More Takeout-Inspired Recipes
If you like this recipe, you’ll love these other plant-based, takeout-inspired favorites!Print