Air Fryer Cauliflower

Air Fryer Cauliflower is easy to make and so delicious. Seasoned with garlic and Parmesan, this cauliflower recipe is a favorite fast side dish!

air fryer cauliflower in a bowl with lemon wedges and serving spoon

I love cooking cauliflower as a healthy side dish. It’s mild flavor makes it a perfect canvas for your favorite seasonings. When you cook cauliflower in the air fryer, it becomes especially tasty because of the way the air circulates around, browning and crisping the edges. 

This air fryer cauliflower is one of the easiest air fryer recipes, and it is such a delicious way to prepare cauliflower! Air fried cauliflower is lightly browned on the edges and tender in the center. It’s seasoned with garlic and Parmesan for lots of flavor in every bite!

If you love this air fryer cauliflower recipe, you might also enjoy my Roasted Cauliflower.

Ingredients

ingredients for air fryer cauliflower recipe

  • Cauliflower: Fresh cauliflower is best, but you’ll also find tips for how to air fry frozen cauliflower below.
  • Olive Oil: Helps the seasonings to stick to the cauliflower and helps to brown the edges.
  • Salt and Pepper: For flavor. Adjust the amounts to your tastes. You can also add more salt and pepper after cooking.
  • Garlic Powder: For flavor. You can omit the garlic powder if you prefer.
  • Parmesan: The best part! I usually sprinkle on Parmesan after air frying, but you can toss it with the cauliflower before cooking if desired.

How to Air Fry Cauliflower

Here is an overview of how to cook cauliflower in the air fryer. Find the full recipe with ingredient amounts and instructions below.

Preheat the air fryer. Preheating the air fryer helps the cauliflower to start cooking as soon as it hits the hot basket. Rinse the cauliflower and pat it dry. 

Cut the cauliflower into 1 to 1 1/2 inch pieces. To cut cauliflower, first cut it into quarters.

cauliflower cut into quarters

Then cut the core out of each quarter. Finally, separate into florets, cutting large florets into halves or quarters as needed. If there is any moisture remaining on the cauliflower, dry it well.

Place in a bowl and toss with olive oil, salt, pepper and garlic powder. Then put cauliflower in a single layer in the air fryer basket.

seasoned cauliflower in air fryer basket

 Air fry at 380° F for 10 minutes, tossing halfway through the cook time. Cauliflower is done when it is browned on the edges and tender when pierced with a fork. 

air fried cauliflower in air fryer basket

Sprinkle with Parmesan cheese and enjoy!

bite of cauliflower on a fork held over a bowl of cauliflower

Air Fryer Cauliflower Recipe Tips

  • Cut the cauliflower into 1 to 1 1/2-inch pieces, and try to cut the pieces approximately the same size so that they cook evenly. When testing this recipe, I found that smaller pieces burned too easily in the air fryer, while large pieces of cauliflower burned on the edges before the centers became tender.
  • Don’t crowd the air fryer basket. The cauliflower should be in a single layer with a bit of room in between each piece. This allows for the air to circulate around the pieces, crisping the edges.
  • Toss the cauliflower half way through the cook time to help all sides cook evenly. After tossing, shake the basket to even the pieces out into a single layer.
  • Different air fryer models may cook differently, so adjust the cook time as needed.
  • You can halve this recipe if you are cooking for two. As written, the recipe uses a whole head of cauliflower and serves 4.

Air Fryer Frozen Cauliflower

You can air fry cauliflower from frozen. In a bowl, toss the frozen cauliflower with olive oil, salt, pepper and garlic powder. Try to sprinkle the seasonings evenly over the cauliflower before tossing to help distribute them evenly. Air fry in preheated air fryer, as directed in the recipe card below, cooking a few extra minutes as needed. 

More Seasoning Ideas

  • Try other seasonings that you enjoy, such as paprika, Italian seasoning, taco seasoning or curry powder.
  • After roasting, you can sprinkle on lemon zest, red pepper flakes or fresh herbs such as parsley or thyme. 
  • Keep it simple and season the cauliflower with only olive oil, salt and pepper.

cauliflower with parmesan and lemon wedges in a serving bowl

More Easy Air Fryer Recipes

Air Fryer Cauliflower

Easy Air Fryer Cauliflower is a healthy and delicious side dish! Quick to prepare and goes with so many meals!
Course Side Dish
Cuisine American
Keyword air fryer cauliflower
Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time10 mins
Total Time20 mins
Servings 4 servings
Calories 110kcal

Ingredients

  • 1 head cauliflower
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • salt and pepper (to taste)
  • ½ teaspoon garlic powder
  • 2 tablespoons grated Parmesan

Instructions 

  • Preheat air fryer to 380° F for 5 minutes.
  • Rinse the cauliflower and pat dry. Cut the cauliflower into quarters, cutting down through the center core. Cut the core out of each quarter and discard.
  • Separate the cauliflower into bite-size florets, cutting large florets into halves or quarters as needed. Aim to have each piece be about 1 to 1½ inches in size. If there is still some moisture on the cauliflower pieces, dry them well.
  • Place cauliflower in a large bowl. Drizzle with the olive oil and sprinkle evenly with salt, pepper and garlic powder. Toss to coat.
  • Arrange cauliflower in a single layer in the air fryer, with a bit of space between the pieces (cook in batches as needed). Air fry at 380° F for 10 minutes, tossing half way through the cook time, or until cauliflower is browned on the edges and tender when pierced with a fork.
  • Sprinkle with Parmesan cheese and serve.

Notes

  • You can also air fry cauliflower from frozen. Frozen cauliflower may take a few extra minutes to cook.

Nutrition

Calories: 110kcal | Carbohydrates: 8g | Protein: 4g | Fat: 8g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 2mg | Sodium: 82mg | Potassium: 437mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 3g | Vitamin A: 22IU | Vitamin C: 69mg | Calcium: 60mg | Iron: 1mg
Nutrition information is an estimate.
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