Kung Pao Cauliflower Balls
Kung Pao Cauliflower "Meatballs" are so good, you won't even believe they're vegetarian.
- FOR THE CAULIFLOWER MEATBALLS
- 2 tbsp. canola oil, plus more for brushing
- 4 c. riced cauliflower (16-oz.)
- ½ medium yellow onion, finely chopped
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- Kosher salt
- Freshly ground black pepper
- 1½ c. panko breadcrumbs
- 2 large eggs, beaten
- 2 green onions, chopped, plus more for garnish
- FOR THE KUNG PAO SAUCE
- 1 tbsp. canola oil
- 2 bell peppers, chopped
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 2 tbsp. cornstarch
- 1½ c. low-sodium vegetable or chicken broth
- ¼ c. low-sodium soy sauce
- ½ c. sweet chili sauce
- 2 tbsp. Sriracha
- 2 tbsp. rice vinegar
- ½ c. roasted peanuts
- Crushed red pepper flakes, for serving
- Make the meatballs: Preheat oven to 400°. In a large skillet over medium-high heat, heat 2 tablespoons oil. Add the riced cauliflower, onions, and garlic, and season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, until tender and light golden, about 7 minutes. Transfer cooked cauliflower mixture into a large bowl and let cool slightly. Wipe out skillet and set aside.
- Add panko, eggs, and green onion to cauliflower mixture and stir to combine. Season with salt and pepper.
- Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper and brush with canola oil. Roll cauliflower mixture into 1" balls and arrange on baking sheet. Bake until golden, about 15 minutes.
- Make the sauce: In the same skillet, heat 1 tablespoon oil. Add bell peppers and cook until soft, 5 minutes, then add garlic and cook until fragrant, 1 minute more. Add cornstarch and stir to combine.
- Pour in chicken broth, soy sauce, sweet chili sauce, Sriracha, and vinegar and whisk until combined. Simmer for 1 to 2 minutes, until reduced slightly. Add cooked meatballs to skillet and toss to coat.
- Garnish with peanuts, more green onions, and red pepper flakes before serving serving.