Air Fryer Cauliflower Steak Recipe

If you don't often cook with an air fryer, then this easy, excellent recipe might change that. By the same token, if you have never much been a fan of cauliflower, this dish might make you reassess this member of the brassica oleracea vegetable family. And if you do often use an air fryer and you already love cauliflower, there's not much else to be said except "You're welcome!"

Chef and recipe developer Miriam Hahn of YouCare-Selfcare says of this easy-to-make cauliflower recipe, "It makes a great side dish with just about anything. It also makes a nice appetizer. I like to dip it in ranch dressing. You can serve it over rice, too." In other words, this is a dish that can be served as just about anything, from a snack to a side to the anchor of a meal. And it's one you can customize to your liking. "Red pepper would be great in this to add some kick [or] you can drizzle sriracha on as well," Hahn says. "It [would] also great with Cajun seasonings if you want to switch it up."

Appetite whetted sufficiently? Then let's get cooking. Well, first prepping, then cooking.

Gather the ingredients

As noted, there is wide room for your own experimentation and customization with this recipe. You can try the pepper and spices mentioned above or whatever else sounds great to you, but the first time you cook up a batch, stick with Hahn's recipe as laid out here.

You'll need a large cauliflower head, a good dose of olive or avocado oil, a tablespoon of lime juice, and about a half teaspoon each of smoked paprika, garlic powder, pepper, and salt. As for hardware, you'll need a good, sharp chef's knife, a cutting board, some basic measuring tools, a basting brush, and, of course, that air fryer.

Cut the cauliflower into "steaks"

Okay, so there are no actual steaks here. Instead we're dealing with thick cross sections of cauliflower heads cut into the thickness of a good rib-eye or New York strip. To create those, first wash the cauliflower and trim off the green leaves. "You can just pull them off versus cutting" says Hahn, "Just make sure to keep the core intact."

Next, stand the cauliflower on a cutting board stem side down, then cut off about an inch on one of the small ends of the cauliflower head. This piece will most likely break apart – just set this aside for use in another dish. Now cut two or three thick pieces from the head, each slice being between 1 inch and 2 inches thick.

Mix the marinade and coat the cauliflower

Now, in a small bowl, mix the oil, lime juice, smoked paprika, garlic powder, salt, and the pepper and stir until these ingredients have all combined well into a marinade. Next, using a pastry brush, coat both sides of the cauliflower slices with the mixture. You can let it marinate or cook it right away.

If you are going to add spices (like Cajun spices), do so when mixing the marinade. If you will be drizzling on a sauce like sriracha or sprinkling over some red pepper flakes, then now is the time for that.

Air fry the cauliflower steaks to perfection

Lay the marinated steaks in the air fryer basket (or on its removable tray or trays, as the case may be), then set the temperature to 375 F and set the timer to 15 minutes. Half way into the cooking, open the air fryer and turn the steaks over. When the 15 minutes are up, if you want the steaks cooked more, just pop them back in for two or three minutes.

Your cauliflower steaks are now ready to serve and enjoy! While these are best eaten fresh and hot, Hahn says, "You can keep them for a few days in an airtight container and reheat [the steaks] in the air fryer."

Air Fryer Cauliflower Steak Recipe
4.9 from 13 ratings
If you've never been a fan of cauliflower, this air fryer cauliflower steak recipe might make you reassess this member of the brassica oleracea family.
Prep Time
10
minutes
Cook Time
15
minutes
Servings
2
Servings
An air fryer cauliflower steak with a fork
Total time: 25 minutes
Ingredients
  • 1 large cauliflower head
  • 1 tablespoon olive or avocado oil
  • 1 tablespoon lime juice
  • ½ teaspoon smoked paprika
  • ½ teaspoon garlic powder
  • ½ teaspoon pepper
  • ½ teaspoon salt
Directions
  1. Wash the cauliflower and remove the green leaves, keeping the core intact.
  2. Stand the cauliflower on a cutting board stem side down, then cut off about an inch on one of the small ends of the cauliflower head and set the crumbling piece aside.
  3. Cut the remaining cauliflower into 1- to 2-inch-thick slices.
  4. In a small bowl, mix the oil, lime juice, smoked paprika, garlic powder, salt, and pepper.
  5. Using a pastry brush, coat both sides of the thick cauliflower slices with the mixture.
  6. Lay the steaks in the air fryer, set the temperature to 375 F, and set the time to 15 minutes.
  7. After 8 minutes, open the air fryer and turn the steaks over.
  8. Serve and enjoy!
Nutrition
Calories per Serving 175
Total Fat 8.3 g
Saturated Fat 1.4 g
Trans Fat 0.0 g
Cholesterol 0.0 mg
Total Carbohydrates 22.9 g
Dietary Fiber 8.9 g
Total Sugars 8.2 g
Sodium 708.5 mg
Protein 8.4 g
The information shown is Edamam’s estimate based on available ingredients and preparation. It should not be considered a substitute for a professional nutritionist’s advice.
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