Healthier Roasted Gobi Manchurian (Indo-Chinese Cauliflower in a Spicy Sauce) is made in the oven, which is easier and healthier than frying! It’s crispy and delicious with a flavorful sweet and spicy sauce.
If you’ve been following my blog for a while, you probably already know that I love Indian flavors.
I’ve shared recipes for classics like Dal Makhani (Indian Butter Lentils) and Lamb Tikka Masala. And I’ve also shared a few dishes remade with Indian twists, like Bloomin’ Indian-Spiced Whole Roasted Cauliflower, Indian-Spiced Roasted Potatoes, and Indian-Spiced Cream of Tomato Soup with Whole Wheat Couscous.
Today I’m sharing my version of Gobi Manchurian. This dish is an Indo-Chinese fusion of battered, fried cauliflower florets in a spicy, sticky sauce that’s commonly eaten in India. I first had it when I was in undergrad at my friend’s house. Her mom was an amazing cook and although she served many dishes that night, I still remember my first bite of Gobi Manchurian.
This dish isn’t something I’ve ever seen on a menu at an Indian (or even a Chinese!) restaurant, so every time I get a craving I have to make it at home. But that means I get to customize it to suit my tastes and even health-ify it.
Gobi Manchurian is an addictive little appetizer, especially paired with a sparkling citrus-flavored iced drink to cut through the spice. Of course, shoving fresh bread in your mouth helps to squelch the fire too.
I’m a wimp when it comes to hot food, so this probably won’t be spicy hot for most of you. Even though the spice level builds up as you eat more, I found it hard to stop! The burning lips are well worth it.
Baked Gobi Manchurian in the Oven
Instead of frying the fritters, I batter and roast them (like Cauliflower Buffalo Wings, which, it bears noting, are pretty fabulous too). This method of cooking Gobi Manchurian in an oven is easy. All the cauliflower roasts in one batch in the oven!
As a total bonus that’s unrelated to the fact that this dish is a bit healthier without the added fat from frying, you won’t have to sweat over a hot stove while your house fills with the smell of grease. If there’s anything that deters me from deep frying it’s those two things!
Gobi Manchurian Gravy
Cook up flavorful sauce (aka Gobi Manchurian gravy) while the cauliflower roasts. The gravy is a little piquant, definitely a nice melding of Indian and Chinese flavors.
Pro Tip: Adjust the heat level of the gravy by adding more or less hot sauce, crushed red pepper flakes, and hot chilli powder.
More Indian Recipes to Try:
- Palak Paneer Recipe (Indian Spinach Curry with Paneer Cheese)
- Slow Cooker Goat Curry
- Indian Chicken Korma
- Masala Dosa
- Instant Pot Cauliflower Pav Bhaji
Did you make this recipe? Please rate it and leave a comment below because I love hearing from you! You can also tag @anediblemosaic on social media. To stay up-to-date FOLLOW ME on Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook. Xoxo, Faith
Healthier Roasted Gobi Manchurian (Indo-Chinese Cauliflower in a Spicy Sauce)
- 1 tablespoon vegetable oil or cooking spray
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 1/4 cup cornstarch
- 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
- 1/4 teaspoon garam masala spice mix
- 1/4 teaspoon hot chilli powder
- 1 clove garlic crushed in a mortar and pestle or grated on a microplane
- 1 teaspoon freshly-grated ginger
- 1 tablespoon low-sodium soy sauce
- 3/4 cup water or slightly more as necessary
- 1 medium head cauliflower washed and cut into florets (about 3 to 4 cups of florets)
- 2 tablespoons low-sodium soy sauce
- 2 tablespoons tomato paste
- 2 tablespoons coconut sugar or brown sugar
- 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
- 1 tablespoon hot sauce
- 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
- 1/4 teaspoon ground turmeric
- 1/4 teaspoon garam masala spice mix
- 1/4 teaspoon hot chilli powder
- 1/8 teaspoon black pepper
- 3/4 cup water
- 2 tablespoons sesame oil or light olive oil
- 1 small-medium onion finely diced
- 3 large cloves garlic minced (or grated)
- 1- inch piece fresh ginger peeled and minced (or grated)
- 1 1/2 teaspoons cornstarch dissolved in 1 1/2 tablespoons water to form a slurry
- 2 scallions green and white parts, thinly sliced (for garnish)
- For the cauliflower, preheat the oven to 400F. Line a large baking sheet with foil and drizzle on and spread around 1 tablespoon of vegetable oil (or spray the sheet with cooking spray).
- In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, cornstarch, baking powder, salt, black pepper, garam masala spice mix, hot chili powder, garlic, ginger, soy sauce, and water (adding enough water so the batter comes together, but isn’t too thin).
- Add the cauliflower to the batter and toss around to coat each piece.
- Pick up a piece of cauliflower, drain off the excess batter, and place it on the prepared baking sheet; continue lining up the cauliflower this way until finished.
- Bake until the cauliflower is tender inside and golden outside, about 30 minutes, rotating the tray once.
- Meanwhile, make the sauce. To do so, in a medium bowl, whisk together the soy sauce, tomato paste, coconut palm sugar, apple cider vinegar, hot sauce, crushed red pepper flakes, turmeric, garam masala spice mix, hot chili powder, black pepper, and water. Set the spicy sauce mix aside for now.
- Heat the oil over medium heat; once hot, add the onion and cook until softened, but not yet browned, about 3 to 4 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add the garlic and ginger and cook 1 minute more, stirring constantly.
- Add the spicy sauce mix and bring to a boil, then whisk in the cornstarch slurry and bring to a simmer. Remove from heat, then carefully taste and add salt as desired.
- In a large bowl, toss the hot cauliflower with the sauce to coat.
- Transfer to a serving dish and top with the scallion; serve.
- You can make the sauce up to 5 days in advance and store it covered in the fridge until you cook the cauliflower. Re-warm the sauce on the stovetop or microwave before tossing it with the hot cauliflower.
- To make sure the cauliflower is crispy, I prefer not to make it ahead of time. However, you can have the cauliflower washed and cut ahead of time so all you have to do is batter it, roast it, and toss it with the sauce on the day you want to serve it.
This post was first published on An Edible Mosaic on April 25, 2014. I updated it with more information on April 3, 2020.
Disclosure: This post contains Amazon affiliate links to products I believe in, which means that even though it doesn’t cost you anything extra, I will receive a small amount of money from the sale of these items. Thank you for helping to support An Edible Mosaic!
Mobasir hassan says
Excellent recipe and helpful details. I am sure to make it and let you know how it come ut. Looking forward for more in future too.
Nice recipe! We all enjoyed it. It has a good spice to it.
It looked amazing, but disappointed us to be quite frank. The sauce was dry, despite of adding a lot of extra water. And it just missed taste, while I added a bit more hot sauce.
Luckily, most of your recipes are great.
We love the Kaeng Kiew Waan Kai (added some sliced bamboo shoots and carrot slices just like our local Thai does)
Easy to prepare and it was tasty
It was tasty. Thankyou for sharing this healthy alternative. :)
I just made this, and it was AMAZING. We had tried manchurian gobi for the first time at a restaurant recently, and wanted to make a healthier version at home. We also didn’t want to use a recipe that relied heavily on ketchup. This was so so good and thank you very much for sharing. We are looking forward to sharing this with friends!
I’m a little late to the game here, but try looking for Indochinese, Hakka, or Indian street food restaurants – those are most likely to serve this dish! We have plenty of places in my little city that serve this type of food. It seems to be a growing trend.
Meena S says
My kids hate cauliflower but love gobi manchurian. I hate to fry and wanted a healthier alternative. I made this last night and everyone love it! Thanks for a quick and painless healthier alternative that is lip smacking good!
Sally Venne says
My husband and I are big fans of Gobi Manchurian and your recipe was absolutely DELISH!!!! We will be making this again and again. Thank you
Oh man this was DELICIOUS. Sort of a lot of prep but worth every second.
I made it exactly like ur recipe above and loved it to bits !!
Thank u so much for a healthier AND tastier alternative !!
Karen Sullivan says
This gobi manchurian dish served with fresh snow peas was a wonderful meal. The prep is well worth the time. I am trying to figure out a way to mix the dry ingredients in a larger quanity so I am ready to make it more often. Delicious.
Anna Johnston says
Ohhhh, looks delish…. But I’m not really a fan of fried vegies, so prob wouldn’t eat this, but I love learning interesting recipes like this one to cook for my fam and friends. :)
My favorite restaurant is an indo-chine restaurant and they made a paneer manchurian with cilantro that is mindblowing. I made this tonight skipping the scallions for cilantro and it was amazing. Surprisingly easy too. Thanks!
Dixya @ Food, Pleasure, and Health says
i just ate chicken manchurian at a restaurant and wondered how can i make this healthier…you answered it for me. thank you! i am going to make it this weekend.
ow! I’ve never had a dish like this but it sounds wonderful! Definitely like the idea of baking vs. frying.
A great idea! Your gobi manchurian looks incredibly tempting.