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Dorothy Dean presents: Crispy Buffalo Cauliflower Bites

These Crispy Cauliflower Buffalo Bites are so flavorful you might even forget you’re eating cauliflower. (Audrey Alfaro)
These Crispy Cauliflower Buffalo Bites are so flavorful you might even forget you’re eating cauliflower. (Audrey Alfaro)

March Madness is in full swing.

And whether you plan on cheering from your couch, or a friend’s, game-day snacks are a must.

Buffalo cauliflower bites are a nutritious and tasty addition to your usual starting lineup of nachos, dips, pizza, wings and skins.

A healthy spin on a fan favorite, chicken wings, these cauliflower Buffalo bites weigh in at only 150 calories and 6 grams of fat per 1 cup serving, while traditional buffalo wings weigh in at a hefty 430 calories and 29 grams of fat per 1 cup serving.

With those stats, I know who’s a winner in my bracket.

Plus, cauliflower is packed with vitamins, fiber and antioxidants.

And they’re a lay-up to make.

Cauliflower florets are coated in a simple mixture of water and flour, then baked for 20 minutes. They’re then tossed in buffalo sauce and baked again until nice and crisp.

They’re tender on the inside and crispy on the outside and have a definite Buffalo kick. To cool that a bit, I serve mine the traditional way, alongside carrots and celery with blue cheese dressing. Of course, you can serve them with ranch. (But I’m team blue cheese all the way.)

As an appetizer, side dish or late night munchie, these guilt-free Buffalo cauliflower bites are a sure slam-dunk.

Crispy Buffalo Cauliflower Bites

Adapted from www.realhousemoms.com

1 medium cauliflower, cut into bite-sized florets

1/2 cup flour

1/2 cup water

1 teaspoon garlic powder

1/4 teaspoon paprika

2 tablespoons butter, melted

2/3 cup Buffalo hot sauce

1 tablespoon fresh squeeze lemon juice

Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Spray a large cookie sheet with nonstick cooking spray and set aside.

In a large bowl, whisk together flour, water, garlic powder and paprika. Add cauliflower florets and toss until evenly coated. Spread florets onto cookie sheet and place in the oven. Bake for 20 minutes, flipping halfway. Remove from oven.

In another large bowl, combine melted butter, buffalo sauce and lemon juice. Add the baked cauliflower and toss to coat. Place back on cookie sheet and continue to bake for 30-40 minutes or until desired crispiness, flipping once. Remove from oven and let sit 10 minutes before serving. Serve with blue cheese, ranch dressing or your favorite dipping sauce.