These crispy baked broccoli poppers are topped with roasted peanuts, green onions and served with a sweet and spicy honey-sriracha dipping sauce. Yum!
Broccoli has long been one of my absolute favorite vegetables. As a kid, my friends always thought it was so strange that I actually wanted to eat broccoli.
Oh, and apparently I used to call it "frog legs", which is pretty funny since I declared myself a vegetarian by the age of 12. 😀
These days my go-to method for enjoying this wonder veggie is roasted in the oven with just a little olive oil, salt and pepper. But every now and then, it can be so fun to mix things up a bit. Enter: these crispy broccoli poppers.
Making Broccoli Poppers
This tasty appetizer is super quick and simple to make.
First, fresh broccoli florets are coated with panko breadcrumbs, a few simple seasonings and a touch of fresh basil. The pieces are then set on a cooling rack placed inside a baking sheet, misted with a touch of olive oil and then popped into the oven.
By using the cooling rack, the heat can circulate all around the broccoli and it gets perfectly crisp on all sides (and not mushy on the bottom).
After the broccoli is removed from the oven, it’s garnished with a sprinkling of chopped peanuts for a bit more crunch, and some sliced green onions for extra flavor.
But the real magic? The sweet and spicy honey-sriracha dipping sauce. Seriously, this is the ultimate dipping sauce for broccoli.
Made with just a few simple ingredients like sweet honey, spicy sriracha and rice vinegar. The vinegar adds the perfect tangy bite that ties the sauce all together and keeps it from being too cloyingly sweet.
Tips & Tricks
I highly recommend layering a cooling rack on top of your baking sheet to get the crispiest broccoli poppers possible. Just make sure that you are using a wire rack that is safe for the oven - not the kind with the plasticky coatings that can melt at high heat!
Tip: I really like these cooling racks that come with the handle. So handy, and inexpensive too!
This recipe also works really well with cauliflower - you can substitute it for the broccoli or use a mix of both veggies!
You may have leftover honey-sriracha dipping sauce after enjoying all the roasted broccoli bites. But just go ahead and make the full amount anyway, because there are so many ways that you can put it to use.
A few suggestions? Drizzle it over roasted veggies (I think it would be especially good with Brussels sprouts). Use it as a dipping sauce for veggie fries or even baked tofu. We’ve also loved it drizzled over the top of a tasty vegan pizza. The possibilities really are endless!
More Recipes to Try
If you love these broccoli poppers, don't miss these other tasty ideas:
- Black Bean Jalapeno Poppers
- 15+ Vegetarian Appetizers for the Holidays
- Roasted Broccoli with Lemon and Garlic
This recipe was created in collaboration with Nakano. All opinions are my own.
- Cooling rack
For the broccoli:
- 2 eggs large
- 3 tablespoons milk
- ½ cup all-purpose flour
- 1 cup panko bread crumbs
- ½ teaspoon garlic powder
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- 2 tablespoons fresh basil minced
- 5 ½ cups broccoli florets 1½- to 2-inch pieces
- ¼ cup roasted peanuts roughly chopped
- ¼ cup green onion thinly sliced
For the sauce:
- ½ cup honey
- 3 tablespoons sriracha
- 2 tablespoons rice vinegar
- 1 clove garlic minced
- Pinch salt
- Preheat the oven to 400ºF. Line a rimmed baking sheet with foil and then set an oven-safe cooling rack inside the baking sheet. Mist with olive oil or nonstick cooking spray and set aside.
For the broccoli poppers:
- In a small bowl, beat together the eggs and milk. In a shallow dish, mix together the flour, bread crumbs, garlic powder, salt and basil. Working a few pieces at a time, dip the broccoli into the egg mixture, shake off the excess, then place in the breadcrumb mixture, tossing to coat. Place on the prepared baking sheet in a single layer. Once all the broccoli is on the baking sheet, mist lightly with olive oil or nonstick spray.
- Bake for about 15 to 20 minutes, until the coating is lightly golden and the broccoli is tender (but still a touch crisp). Remove from the oven and let cool for 5 minutes. Transfer to a serving dish or platter and sprinkle with the peanuts and green onion.
For the honey-sriracha dipping sauce:
- In a small bowl, whisk together all the ingredients for the sauce. Taste and adjust with additional sriracha, if needed.
- Serve the broccoli with the sauce on the side for dipping. Store any extra sauce in an airtight container in the refrigerator.
I simply love this recipe. Is there a way I can make it without the egg ? any alternative ?
Ashley Jennings says
Thanks so much! Two suggestions that may work - you could try using a flax egg or just try using more milk and sort of press a little more to get the breadcrumb mixture to stick (I actually think something a little thicker like canned coconut milk might be good here!).
The Sunday Mode says
Ah I'm the opposite, Broccolli has never been one of my favourite veggies but to be honest I think if you coated them in breadcrumbs I'd probably devour them. I love the addition of garlic to this recipe as well, I always love anything that includes garlic.
Ashley Jennings says
Too funny! Definitely - between the coating and the sauce these are hard to resist!
I just made and ate these for dinner- whoa! I used almond flour and gluten free bread crumbs and they still baked up stellar. The sauce was INCREDIBLE. Everything I'm looking for in an Asian inspired dish. It was so easy too! I'll definitely be making these over takeout any night. I love that I also don't feel like total garbage. Thanks for sharing!