Crispy Cauliflower Cakes with Yogurt Dipping Sauce

Crispy Cauliflower Cakes with yogurt dipping sauce |

Reason number five hundred twenty-five thousand six hundred why you shouldn’t eat sugar: sometimes your sugar bombs come with company.

Let’s back up. Last weekend, the man and I went camping. And of course, we just haaaaaaaaad to pick up s’mooooooore fixings, because camping isn’t caaaaaaamping without s’moooooores. So we did and we s’mored and brought the leftover fixings home.

If you’re like me, you know beyond the shadow of a doubt that nothing will be right with the world unless you have something sweet to eat after dinner. Nothing! The world must. be. right. So Wednesday, I did one of these: Today kinda sucked. A marshmallow will make the world right. Okay, today didn’t suck that bad, but a marshmallow sounds reeeeeal goooood.

Crispy Cauliflower Cakes with yogurt dipping sauce |

So I reached into the bag of leftover s’more fixings (which of coooooourse was still on the kitchen floor because why would you unpack even though it’s been five days since you were camping?). I got me a marshmallow. I took a bite of el marshmallow. And it was stale, no biggy…but it tasted reaaaaally bad.  Why does this marshmallow taste SO BAD??  Okay, it kinda tastes good….wait…wait…..waaaaaaait.  This marshmallow tastes bad.

You know women. Women have intuition. Women know what’s up before they need evidence. I knew what was up. But I still needed evidence.  I removed el marshmallow from my mouth, and there it was.

A teeny little ant struggling for his life, kicking his little ant legs up in the air. Whhyyyyyy Julia, whhhhhyyyyy?? The ant shouted at me.

I’m sorry! I’m sorry! I didn’t know you were there! Finders, keepers, the marshmallow was rightfully yours…I don’t know why I had to go and take your marshmallow away from you and in so doing, mortally wound you, ant! I said.

Disgust. Disgust and spit and garbage disposal and guilt. Shame. Tail between my legs, I couldn’t help but think the divine heavens were sending me a message. Not only do marshmallows hurt you, Julia….they hurt your roommates. Duh. The divine heavens told me.

I have never been much of an insect killer…especially not with my mouth…so this situation was a bit traumatizing. Did I reach for another marshmallow? Nay. Did I reach for the chocolate in its stead? Yes. The message from the divine heavens was not heeded. Sugar was still consumed. Albeit, no more innocent bystanders were harmed.

Crispy Cauliflower Cakes with yogurt dipping sauce |

What does this have to do with crispy cauliflower cakes? Nuttin’ honey!

I happened upon this recipe as I was flipping through the August Cooking Light. It spoke to me. The crispy cauliflower cakes look like crab cakes and I looooove crab cakes, so I made them.  They taste maaaarvelous (although they do not taste like crab). You MUST make the sauce that goes with them, you MUST! It’s one of those sauces that makes you throw down everything you’re holding (ant-ridden marshmallows included) and sluuuuurp!

Had a rough day? Have cauliflower cake.

Recipe adapted from Cooking Light Crispy Cauliflower Cakes with Herb Sauce and Arugula Salad

Crispy Cauliflower Cakes with yogurt dipping sauce |

Crispy Cauliflower Cakes with Yogurt Dipping Sauce

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 1 hour
Total Time: 1 hour 10 minutes
Author: Julia


For the Crispy Cauliflower Cakes

  • 2.5 cups cauliflower florets
  • 1 russet potato quartered lengthwise
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons olive oil
  • ½ cup fontina or gruyere cheese shredded
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 large egg lightly beaten
  • 3/4 cup gluten-free panko breadcrumbs
  • 3 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese

For the Yogurt Dipping Sauce

  • 1/2 cup plain yogurt
  • 1 tablespoon green onion finely chopped
  • Zest of 1 lemon
  • 1 clove garlic minced
  • Pinch of salt


To prepare the yogurt sauce

  1. Mix all ingredients in a bowl and refrigerate until ready to serve.

To prepare the cauliflower cakes

  1. Preheat the oven to 400?F.
  2. Arrange the cauliflower florets and potato wedges on a baking sheet and drizzle them with olive oil. Bake for 35 minutes, stirring once half-way through. Cauliflower florets should be browned and potato wedges should be soft when poked with a fork. Leave the oven at 400 degrees
  3. Add the roasted cauliflower and potato to a blender or food processor and pulse several times just until mixture is chunky but not smooth.
  4. Pour the cauliflower/potato mixture into a mixing bowl along with the lightly beaten egg, fontina cheese, salt and pepper. Mix well to combine, then form patties out of the mixture
  5. Pour the panko breadcrumbs and parmesan cheese onto a plate and mix together.
  6. Dip the patties in the breadcrumbs/parmesan mixture to coat them.
  7. Place patties on a well-oiled or parchment-lined baking sheet.
  8. Bake cauliflower cakes for 25 minutes at 400 degrees, flipping them half-way through baking.
  9. Serve with yogurt sauce on top.


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  1. Kelsey @aslolife

    Ugh, we also had ants these past few weeks and though I don’t usually like killing things either, I was ready to try anything to get rid of those suckers! I’ve also been eating completely vegetarian + a little vegan this week in an attempt to detox from eating way too much lately and this looks like it would fit right in!

    1. Julia Post author

      We use ant poison, I have to admit. Where I live, there’s just no way of getting rid of them without poisoning the whole lot. It’s very sad but true 🙁 Good luck with your detox – that’s on my roster for this weekend too, so we’ll be enjoying fresh salads and smoothies together! 🙂

    2. Mary Ellen

      If you can find the spot where the ants are coming in, pour a line of cinnamon around that spot… they won’t cross it!

  2. Julie

    Ewww. Sorry, did too much camping when I was growing up. When you come visit us here in the old midwest, there will not be any camping involved. If that makes you sad, I’ll stock up on single ply toilet paper for you. Otherwise, it’s hot showers and food on real plates, and hopefully, no ants will be murdered in the process.

    1. Julia Post author

      LOL! Bring on the single ply, momma! I’ll definitely take hot showers and real plates especially given how hot I hear it is over there during the summer! Also, I think I’m all set on my ant murdering for the time being, so sounds like my trip out there will be wonderfully relaxing! 🙂

  3. Dan from Platter Talk

    Great new look for cauliflower! I’m not a huge fan but would definitely give this a try; and I agree: They do resemble crab cakes in appearance! Great post!! PS: Don’t give up on the smores or camping – it’s all a part of the experience!! 🙂

    1. Julia Post author

      Thanks Dan! I adore camping and s’mores too much to 86 em from my life, but I will say from now on I will be inspecting every marshmallow very thoroughly prior to putting it in my mouth 😉

    1. Julia Post author

      Yup. Ants taste really bad. For being as itty bitty as they are, they have a pretty terrible and robust flavor. 🙁

  4. dishing up the dirt

    Camping and s’mores go together like peanut butter and jelly. Sorry about your run in with the ant. On the bright side these crispy cauliflower cakes sounds divine! we just harvest cauliflower for the first time this season today. I know what I’m making! thanks lady!

  5. Alexis @ Hummusapien

    I love that the veggies in thee are roasted! I bet they’re SO amazing with gruyere. My mom randomly gave me one single potato when I visited home so it would be perfect for these yummy cakes!

  6. Monet

    God bless you. I would have lost it! I don’t camp very often (but I did my fair share in high school!) This is a lovely recipe and one I’m eager to try. I love cauliflower but haven’t bought a head in awhile. Must change! Thank you for sharing!

  7. Kiersten @ Oh My Veggies

    Ahh, you just reminded me that I haven’t read this month’s Cooking Light yet! I need to do that. These look pretty incredible–anything crispy, anything cauliflower-y, I am there! And ants completely squick me out, but now you’ve gone and made me feel sorry for them. Or at least that one in your marshmallow. Sads! 🙁

  8. Trish

    I made these last night for dinner with a side of salmon and made them exactly per the recipe and was amazingly delish! Hubby is a diabetic so I try to find lower carb sides and this was a huge hit.. It’s going to be one of our regular sides from now on, am sure. Thanks!

  9. Heather @ Kiss My Broccoli

    Oh my gosh, I just found this from your Twitter feed and I swear you had me doubled over with the whole ant apology!! Haha! Love it! Ugh, the last time I had s’mores, there was much damage done…to my liver with the bottle of wine I had to wash them all down! Haha!

  10. Sheela

    We made these tonight for the first time. They were delicious! These will definitely be entering our regular rotation.


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