Game day usually entails greasy and fried foods, which leave you feeling heavy and lethargic.

Ditch the junk food this weekend, and replace them with these spicy cauliflower poppers, instead. With copious amounts of cayenne and chipotle powder, these bad boys serve double duty: aside from flavor, chile powders contain capsaicin, which boosts the metabolism.

The dairy-free cashew dip is great for cooling down heat.

Whether you serve ’em as a party appetizer or a spicy side dish, they’re bound to be the first things off the table.


Spicy Cauliflower Poppers

(serves 4)


  • 1 large head of cauliflower
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 teaspoons paprika
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon chipotle (optional, if you like it extra hot)

Cashew Dipping Sauce

  • 1 cups raw cashews
  • 1/3 cup water (plus more as needed)
  • 1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1/2 teaspoon Celtic or pink salt


  1. Preheat oven to 425°F.
  2. Put the cashews for the dip in a bowl and cover with filtered water to soak while you make the cauliflower. (Ideally, soak them for at least 30 minutes.)
  3. Chop the cauliflower into bite-size pieces and place in a large bowl. Add oil and spices. Mix well until all pieces are coated.
  4. Place cauliflower on a baking sheet and bake for 20 to 30 minutes, flipping halfway through.
  5. After the cashews have soaked about 30 minutes, drain them. Put them in a bullet blender with 1/3 cup water, apple cider vinegar, thyme, and salt. Blend until smooth.
  6. If the sauce looks chunky, add 1 tablespoon of water at a time until it has a smooth consistency. (This will depend on your blender and how long you soak the cashews.)
  7. Serve as a dip alongside the cauliflower.
For a printable recipe card, see the original recipe, here.

Author: Maria Marlowe is an Integrative Nutrition Health Coach who helps people lose weight or clear up their acne by switching to a real food diet. She posts healthy recipes and meal plans at  She has been featured in Vogue, The New York Times, NBC, Well + Good, and more.

Follow Maria for more healthy recipes on Instagram @MariaMarlowe and Facebook.