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4.91 from 10 votes

Vegan Kung Pao Cauliflower

This Kung Pao Cauliflower is packed with flavors! It has the perfect heat, sweetness, and saltiness which makes it so appetizing for lunch or dinner. The recipe is easily customizable and please check out the video on how to easily make this in your own kitchen today!
Prep Time20 minutes
Cook Time30 minutes
Total Time50 minutes
Course: Main Course, Side Dish
Cuisine: Asian, Chinese
Keyword: cauliflower
Servings: 3 people
Author: woonheng


  • 1 medium-sized cauliflower head yields about 4-5 cups of florets
  • 4 slices of ginger
  • 4 dried chilies cut into smaller bits and remove the seeds
  • 3 cloves of garlic finely chopped
  • ¼ cup chopped bell pepper
  • ¼ cup chopped red onion
  • ¼ cup toasted cashews or nuts of choice

Batter (see notes)

  • ¾ cup all-purpose or gluten-free flour
  • 1 cup of cold water
  • ½ teaspoon of salt
  • ¼ teaspoon of white pepper


  • 2 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons dark soy sauce thin version (see notes)
  • 2 tablespoons Shao Xing Wine or vegetable broth
  • 1 tablespoon Chinese black vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch
  • ½ cup water


  • Prepare the sauce. Mix all the sauce ingredients in a bowl until well combined. Set aside
  • Prepare the cauliflower. Cut the cauliflower into bite-sized florets and rinse them over cold water. Let them drain in a colander.
  • Prepare the batter. In a large bowl, whisk together flour, salt, white pepper, and water until well combined.
  • Dredge cauliflower florets in the batter and shake off excess. Fry or air fry the florets until golden brown.
  • Transfer the fried florets onto some paper towels to absorb excess oil (if using the fry method).
  • Heat a large wok or pan and add in a spoonful of oil. Sauté chili until fragrant over low heat, then add in the ginger and sauté until fragrant. Continue to do the same for garlic.
  • Add in the bell pepper, red onion, and stir fry for another minute.
  • Whisk the sauce again (corn starch may have set at the bottom of the bowl) and pour into the above mixture. Then, continue to cook until the sauce is slightly reduced and thickened.
  • Add in the cauliflower florets and toss to coat the florets with sauce. Taste test and season accordingly.
  • Finally, fold in the toasted cashews and give it a quick toss. Serve warm and enjoy!



  • The batter should be thick enough to coat the florets with a layer of coating. If the batter is too runny, add a little more flour.
  • Dark soy sauce has two versions, the thick one is usually sweeter while the thin one is a little saltier. Adjust the taste accordingly.
  • Feel free to replace the Chinese black vinegar with rice vinegar
  • Please sauté the dried chili over low heat as they can burn very quickly.
To air-fry the cauliflower, please check the Black Pepper Vegan 'Crab' recipe.