buffalo cauliflower dip in a cast iron skillet with a red spoon

Healthy Buffalo Cauliflower Dip Recipe [Gluten-Free]

Have you ever noticed that the best game day snacks aren’t healthy? Have you ever noticed that the only vegetables served at a Super Bowl party are raw and neglected? I’m trying to change that with this healthy buffalo cauliflower dip recipe. 

The classic buffalo chicken dip is a menu staple for game day or the Super Bowl. But in this recipe, I’m swapping out the chicken for cauliflower and a few higher-calorie ingredients for healthier ones. This delicious dip allows you to have not only a vegetarian option but a healthy one as well. 

The best part about buffalo cauliflower dip is that it’s made in one pan. I use my cast iron skillet, which can go right from the stovetop to the oven if needed to reheat. There is no need to turn the oven on with this method; it can all be made right on the stove and ready in about twenty minutes. I’ll walk you through a step-by-step guide on how to turn simple ingredients into a delicious buffalo cauliflower dip. It’s a healthy twist on our buffalo chickpea recipe

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Kitchen Tools:

The good thing about this recipe is that it’s simple to prepare and doesn’t require expensive equipment. You’ll need the following:

  • Medium-sized cutting board
  • Paring knife
  • Cast iron skillet 
  • Measuring Cups
  • Oven-safe baking dish (Optional)
  • Trivet or hot pad for serving (optional)

Step-by-Step Instructions

  1. Mince onions and garlic
  2. Cut your cauliflower into small bite-sized pieces, called cauliflower florets.  
  3. Heat some olive oil in a cast iron skillet over
  4. Add your cauliflower that’s been cut into smaller pieces into your skillet with a tbsp of water.
  5. Cover and allow to cook for 10-15 minutes or until fork tender
  6. Cut up your room-temperature cream cheese or Nuefacchel cheese into cubes
  7. Then mix in your sour cream and hot sauce 
  8. Add salt and pepper to taste 
  9. Optionally, you can add extra seasonings like onion powder, chili powder, or parsley to enhance the flavor.
  10. Mix in your blue cheese and prepare to transfer it into an oven-safe baking dish, or you can leave it in your cast iron skillet.
  11. This is optional, but you can cover the top with cheddar cheese and place the hot dip under the broiler for a minute for the cheese to melt.
  12. Serve while still hot, and enjoy!
buffalo cauliflower dip in a cast iron skillet
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Things to serve with Buffalo Cauliflower Dip

Although it might be tempting to eat it by the spoonful, a couple of items you can pair with your buffalo cauliflower dip will make a fantastic combination. I have a few ideas, but let me know what you would pair it with in the comments below!

  • Tortilla Chips
  • Celery Sticks
  • Sliced Baguette warmed or toasted
  • Warm Pita
  • Pretzels 
serving buffalo cauliflower dip

Buffalo Cauliflower Dip Recipe

Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Course Side Dish
Cuisine American

Ingredients
  

  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 head of cauliflower
  • 1 small onion diced
  • 1/2 tsp Garlic Powder or 2 cloves of fresh garlic
  • 1/2 cup Sour Cream
  • 8 oz Cream Cheese or Nuefacchel cheese
  • 1/3-1/2 cup Frank’s Red Hot depending on spice preference
  • 1/2 cup Gorgonzola Cheese or your favorite blue cheese optional
  • 1/2 cup Cheddar Cheese shredded
  • Salt to taste
  • Black pepper to taste
  • A few sprigs of Chives green onions, or fresh parsley for garnish

Instructions
 

  • Mince onions and garlic
  • Cut your cauliflower into small bite sized pieces, called cauliflower florets.
  • Heat some olive oil in a cast iron skillet over medium heat
  • add your cauliflower that’s been cut into smaller pieces into your skillet with a tbsp of water
  • Cover and allow to cook for 10-15 minutes or until fork tender
  • Cut up your room temperature cream cheese or Nuefacchel cheese into cubes
  • Then mix in your sour cream and hot sauce
  • Add salt and pepper to taste
  • Optionally, you can add extra seasonings like onion powder, chili powder, or parsley to add extra flavor
  • Mix in your blue cheese and prepare to transfer it into an oven safe baking dish, or you can leave it in your cast iron skillet
  • This is optional, but you can cover the top with cheddar cheese and place the hot dip under the broiler for a minute for the cheese to get melted
  • Serve while still hot, and enjoy!

Healthier Substitutions

In place of some high-calorie ingredients, I’ve provided a list of ingredients you can replace for either lower calories or higher protein. If plant-based is more your thing, you can always create a vegan buffalo dip version with vegan alternatives like vegan cream cheese, vegan sour cream, and vegan cheese. 

  • Sour Cream – You can use a light sour cream, or you can swap it out for plain Greek yogurt or blended cottage cheese.
  • Cream Cheese – I enjoy using Nuefacchel cheese instead of cream cheese. The texture is very similar, and Nuefacchel cheese has 1/3 of the fat that cream cheese does. They are usually right next to each other in the grocery store and packaged the same, so you may not even realize the difference. 
  • Cheddar cheese or blue cheese – if you want to reduce the calories in this buffalo cauliflower dip, you can omit these ingredients. They add a nice flavor, but the flavor alone can make this a favorite dip without the extra cheese.
buffalo cauliflower dip in a cast iron skillet

Storing:

Store any leftover dip in an airtight container, and be sure to use it within a week. I wouldn’t recommend freezing the dip, as the cauliflower might become mushy over time.

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Using Up Leftover Dip:

The last time I put this dip out, the entire thing was devoured by three people (me included) in less than an hour. But if you happen to have leftovers, here are some ideas on giving it a second life.

Dress up your grilled cheese a bit and add some leftover buffalo cauliflower dip. It’ll add some texture and spice and a little fiber, too. 

Mix the dip with chickpeas and rice for a healthy twist on our buffalo chickpea recipe

Mix it in with mac and cheese to sneak in some vegetables.

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