low carb tater tots snack| lowcarb-ology.com

Low Carb Parmesan Tater Tots with Chipotle Dipping Sauce

When you want a snack or a side dish that fills in for fast food you can’t lose with these low carb parmesan tater tots. They are crunchy on the outside, tender on the inside, and there is a spicy chipotle dipping sauce to keep things interesting.

Low Carb Parmesan Tater Tots

These cheesy, little puffs of perfection are great for popping in your mouth during the big game, complimenting your favorite burger, or however you want to eat them. The secondary cheese can be varied to change the flavor a bit and you can add onion or finely chopped jalapeno.

Really, the possibilities are endless.

Tips for Low Carb Parmesan Tater Tots

  • Use the dry Parmesan that is usually found in the pasta aisle at the store. I use the Kraft Grated Parmesan in a big green can. It works really well as breadcrumbs and for holding things together plus it has 0 carbs and isn’t terribly expensive. When I want Parmesan on my pasta it’s the good, expensive stuff all the way but for things like this the cheap kind works the best.
  • When I was researching for this recipe I saw a couple that baked rather than fried. When I was recipe testing I put some of this batch in the oven and some in the fryer.
  • Use the fryer. Seriously. The baked ones aren’t nearly as good.
  • I didn’t steam the cauliflower first. I just grated it raw and used it that way. It cooks just fine and I think it soaks up less of the cooking oil, to be honest. Plus it saves about ten minutes?? always a good thing.

Low Carb Parmesan Tater-Tots Dough

  • I put the cauliflower in the processor and pulsed until it looked like crumbs. Next, I put the cauliflower in a colander and pressed with paper towel to get out as much of the moisture as I could.After the rest of the ingredients were mixed in I let it sit for about half an hour to blend flavors and to absorb any excess liquid.
  • Form the tater tots by taking a pecan sized ?piece of the cauliflower mixture and gently rolling it into a cylinder. Gently flatten the ends to make it look like a traditional tater tot.
  • I always fry in peanut oil. It is the lightest oil and I think it works the best. If there is a peanut allergy in your family then use what ever oil you normally do.
  • You can pan fry these in about 1-inch of oil. I deep fried mine.
  • There’s no reason why you can’t make these ahead and heat them back up in the oven if you need to.

Low Carb Parmesan Tater Tots Snack | lowcarb-ology.com

That’s about it. Now all you need to do is to make these addictive, low carb Parmesan tater tots…but you better make a lot because they disappear really fast.

Note: if these are falling apart it is because there is too much moisture in the cauliflower or you haven’t let them sit for the 15 to 30 minutes.

low carb tater tots snack| lowcarb-ology.com
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Low Carb Parmesan ?Tater Tots? with Chipotle Dipping Sauce

Crunchy on the outside, tender on the inside - these low carb tater tots are the perfect accompaniment to burgers or a great snack. They are quick to make and easy to eat! Vary the type of secondary cheese to change the flavor.
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 5 minutes
Total Time 15 minutes
Servings 4 servings
Calories 232kcal
Author Katherine Peters


Tater Tots

  • 2 cups finely chopped cauliflower
  • 1 tablespoon finely minced onion
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmesan I used Kraft
  • 1 egg
  • 1/2 cup shredded pepper-jack cheese
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Chipotle Mayo

  • 1/4 cup mayonnaise
  • 1/2 to 1 teaspoon chopped chipotle in adobo blended to a paste


Tater Tots

  • Chop the raw cauliflower in a food processor until it looks like crumbs.
  • Line a colander with paper towel and add the cauliflower.
  • Lay another paper towel over the top and gently press to remove as much liquid as possible.
  • Mix i the onion, Parmesan, and pepper-jack.
  • Taste and add salt and pepper as needed.
  • Mix in the egg.
  • Let stand for at least 15 minutes. 30 is better.
  • Preheat the oil in the fryer to 360F
  • Form the dough into cylinders.
  • Blunt the ends.
  • Add to the preheated oil and fry until golden.
  • Drain on paper towel.
  • Add salt and serve.

Chipotle Mayo

  • Mix the chipotle and mayonnaise.
  • Let stand for a few minutes to blend.


Calories: 232kcal | Carbohydrates: 3g | Protein: 10g | Fat: 19g | Saturated Fat: 6g | Cholesterol: 70mg | Sodium: 397mg | Potassium: 202mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 275IU | Vitamin C: 25.8mg | Calcium: 262mg | Iron: 0.6mg

106 thoughts on “Low Carb Parmesan Tater Tots with Chipotle Dipping Sauce”

  1. Yum!! I’ve made a lot of Cauli Tot recipes and was never impressed with any of them. This one is a keeper!! I love cauliflower but I don’t like it mashed or in most tot or “hash brown” style recipes. The flavor is just always off to me but this recipe is a keeper! There is still a slight cauliflower flavor but not so strong that it overpowers everything else. These are chewy on the outside and soft on the inside. Excellent recipe! I got 28 tots from the recipe. I used a 10″ skillet and 1 cup of oil (I measured after and the tots only absorb 1/4 cup of that). I did 2 batches but they fry really quick so it didn’t take long at all. Here’s how I did the cauli rice: I prepped it in the morning. I used fresh and grated it by hand using a box grater. I used the small shred blade and then chopped it even more after that. I lined a colander with a towel then a couple layers of paper towels. I let that sit for a while then I pressed paper towels on top to get even more water out. I lined a medium bowl with paper towels and then placed the cauli rice in that. I folded the paper towels over the top of the cauli, covered with plastic wrap and put it in the fridge until I was ready to use for dinner. It drained even more during the day so it was nice and dry! As long as you use a gentle hand when you’re forming the tots, this recipe works great! Thanks for another great recipe!

  2. These are soooo fabulous! YUM! I gotta admit, I didn?t follow the recipe exactly as written. Ouch.. yes, I?m one of those ppl.. totally defiant and a rebel.. but the basic recipe is a fantastic idea!! I used frozen riced cauliflower. The key to this recipe is to dry your cauliflower (not as much as possible.. gotta push yourself further than that). I added a few extra spices to my liking, put in extra fresh onion, a blob of cream cheese n whatever cheese I had in my fridge. I also added a touch of almond flour. I fried the tots in an inch of oil in a frying pan. They held together great but need a careful hand in turning them. Cook with love!! Thank you for a great recipe!! I recommend everyone give it a try!!

  3. Ummm these turned out AMAZING!! I think where most people are going wrong is not getting all the water out of the cauliflower, there is ALOT! I use a tea towel and squeeze that bad boy out until I have to switch tea towels and squeeze again! Also, indont see where people are getting “it takes so long to make.” No, it doesn’t, it literally took me 25 minutes. I always grate a ton of cauliflower at one time and then freeze it into individual quart size ziploc bags. This is definitely a keeper recipe. Even my 7 year old loved it!!

  4. These are amazing I ate them with Spicy Mayo instead of the Chipotle dipping sauce. THEY ARE ADDICTING 🙂 I prepped them one night for my lunch for the next 2 days and I decided to eat 2, one fried and the other baked. It was so good I almost fried and baked the rest of them because the taste was just so good. Now I don’t have to miss tater tots and hashbrowns THANK YOU!!

  5. 5 stars
    These were delicious! I added a scant tablespoon of coconut flour as a binder. I used frozen cauliflower, which I parcooked, then chopped fine, and substituted cheddar cheese for the pepper jack.. There didn’t seem to be much excess liquid. I pan fried 2 small flattened patties in about 1/4 inch of oil. One fell apart when I turned it, but I didn’t use a non-stick skillet. The rest, I refrigerated, and will cook later tonight in a non-stick pan. Thank you for this delicious recipe! I am a very picky eater, and would not recommend it if it didn’t taste exactly as expected.

  6. 5 stars
    I used a bag of frozen cauliflower rice and steamed according to the directions. Once it was touchable I wrang it out using a cheese cloth. Definitely made sure I got a lot of the moisture out. Added the other ingredients and refrigeratorated the mix for 30 mins. Used a cookie scoop to portion it out. Molded them into tot like shapes, then rolled them in unflavored whey isolate. This was a game changer! I had done a test one without protein isolate and it didn’t have the crisp I was hoping for. However, the ones rolled in protein isolate came out absolutely crispy! Definitely the answer I was looking for when eating bunless burgers. Thank you!

  7. Suzanne Johnson-Beever

    4 stars
    I made these and they turned out fine. I strained the water out of my cauliflower three times over the 30 minute waiting period. The onion also added moisture, so I drained them again after adding that. After I mixed everything and went ahead and molded them and laid them on paper towels to pull even more moisture out while they sat for the 15-30 minutes she clearly states they have to sit. I still felt that there was moisture inside when I ate them, but not one fell apart as I was frying them, and they did taste great. I accidentally heated my deep fryer to 375 instead of 360, so mine were a lot darker, but still tasted great.



    I have had great success with getting moisture out of cauliflower (cooked and raw) by using my potato ricer. In this case I am not trying to get the cauliflower riced (too chunky to actually go thru the holes) but it sure does press the water our well and fast without wasting a lot of paper towels.

    I just fill the ricer about 2/3 to 3/4 full, press the water out, then dump “processed” cauliflower in a bowl and repeat till I have the whole batch “deliquified”. Works great.

  9. 5 stars
    We made these last night and they were great. I did have a problem with them falling apart but I have a tablespoon measuring spoon with a rubberized bottom so you can push the food out. I started using that, packed the mixture tight in the spoon and pushed it out into perfect little balls and it worked great. We made a dipping sauce with mayo and sraracha sauce and it couldn’t have been easier. Delicious!

  10. Hi! I just made these and I love them!!! I tweaked the recipe a bit though. I shredded the cauliflower in my food processor and then put it in the fridge for 3 hours. I tried to get moisture out of the cauliflower, but there wasn’t any. I added garlic salt and like 1/4 cup of whipped cream cheese. A lil almond flour and a lil flax seed. They fried in the deep fryer perfectly! Thanks so much for the recipe!

  11. i mixed everything up and than read the reviews so I was afraid they would fall apart so i put them in a frying pan, sprayed with a little pam and used a little olive oil and fried them like i would hash browns and they were delicious. Thank you for the ingredients!!

  12. I made these and they were good! I had my BF press the water out and even then they were still wet after adding the rest of the ingredients. I added some coconut flour to gather up some of the moisture. I pattied them and put them in the oven on parchment paper and drizzled with coconut oil for a crisp, fried effect. My picky 12 year old enjoyed them with ketchup!
    Next time, I’ll pan fry them for an even more crispy texture. I also think I’ll roll them in pork rind crumbs for a little more umph. Thanks for the recipe!

  13. Couple of hints I discovered. First, I have a nut milk bag (got mine on Google) and I put my cooked cauliflower in there and squeeze the living daylights out of it. (I don’t use raw cauliflower–it never holds together well enough for me but I might try it for this recipe.) Next, after I mix everything up, if it’s still a little “soft” I add a tablespoon or so of chia seeds. Wait 15 minutes or so and it firms up nicely. It’s even better the next morning. Finally, whenever I make anything that calls for onions, I use dried minced. First of all, they have fewer carbs than the regular ones and secondly, they soak up just a wee bit more moisture. It’s amazing how well these things work. I can make cauliflower fritters, tots, you name it. Looking forward to making these. I haven’t had time since I saw it on Pinterest.

  14. My daughter has made these, everyone in the family loves these, even the 7 and 2 year old, a good way for kids to eat veggies!

  15. Hi Marye,
    Loved the recipe,
    we added paprika, and a touch of oregano. we had it as a side dish.
    The trick to these not falling apart is the moisture content. Or more so the excess of liquid
    My wife has a trick once cauliflower has been grated set aside with a pinch of salt for around 20 minutes this will draw out the moisture ,then squeeze .out the liquid.

    Secondly like your reader advised once ingredients are ready to form into tater tots squeeze again this will remove the remaining excess liquid.
    Once this is done the mixture will be firm once formed and not fall apart
    Hope this helps

    1. I’m sorry, Holly. Some people have had them come out great and others not. I think it has to do with the amount of moisture leftn in the cauliflower.

  16. This are flipping amazing! First time I made I don’t think I got all the moisture out and I did chill before frying which seemed to help. Making again tonight. One bite and I was in heaven. My 12 devoured and didn’t mind they were made of cauliflower . Thanks for the awesome recipe.

  17. yeah its all about drying them first. i actually microwaved the cauli after ricing it, and then squeezed the hell out of it over and over again, and the outcome was worth it! i suspect the people who couldnt make it work are probably using grated parmesan, rather than the powdered stuff, or theyre not drying the cauli enough.
    note: i used grated cheese, not the powdered stuff, and also added bacon bits and paprika and garlic powder for more flavour.
    this recipe was amazing, and its going to become a staple snack for me. just waiting to see how well they cook after being frozen.

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  19. I made these and they were delicious!
    I added a tbsp of coconut flour in addition to following the directions. The key is to really dry out the mixture. After I fried them they went in the oven @ 400 for 5-10 minutes to crisp up. Yummy!!

  20. I cut this time in half and didn’t didn’t half to drain my cauliflower. They turned out amazing still. I used steamed cauliflower in bags cooked them for time on the bag, used more parmesan cheese and shredded cheese to soak up any water in cauliflower, which in my opinion you can never have too much cheese anyways. You can drain any excess water after you steam your cauliflower but there really isn’t a lot anyways so might be pointless. I chopped the cauliflower in my Blendtec, you can use a regular blender to, I did that as well. Add all the ingredients and then form into tater tot size, I DID NOT FRY, baking dries them out because they are so gooey, and it gets rid of any access water, it also saves you some time of standing there frying. This recipe only took me about 15min. to prep and then about 25 to bake, which isn’t a big deal because I could grill up burgers or make meatloaf while those were cooking. Awesome recipe., but cut out some steps definitely.

  21. I don’t usually comment on recipes, but I made these tonight and they are INCREDIBLE. I followed your recipe exactly and they came out fantastic. My non-low-carb picky eater friend even loved them. I wouldn’t change a thing, and they are so going to be a staple in my house.

  22. Tried these tonight, the first one (test tot) decided to go everywhere and break up. I then changed tactics, I used a cookie scoop and pressed it tight. They stayed together and were delicious. They passed the husband and 4yr old son test. Definitely doing it again!!

  23. They didn’t work for me. I squeezed and squeezed. Also left them sitting 30 min. Might try again in the oven but I’ve yet to find a cauliflower tot recipe that works in oil. Plus the parmesan just stuck to the skillet. I wanted so much for these to be good.

    1. Im so sorry! I don’t know why they work for some people and not for others. I will say that I am using a deep fryer not a skillet and that may be the difference?

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  25. Removing mosture and oil temperature are both key I think. When I made the tots I then put them on paper towel again and turned after setting for a few minutes to get more mosture out. I cooked mine in about 3/4 in of oil in skillet. My problem was took longer to brown than what I expected and don’t think I had my oil hot enought at beginning. So when tried to turn some were stuck and therfore crumbled but I thought they were like loose hash browns and still had great taste. I however did use to much salt too not considering the saltiness of the parmesan. I had them with Bar-B-que pork steack, tablespoon of bar-b-que sauce and it was great. Didn’t make the chipolote dip. I will make again.

  26. I made mine with 1/2 cup of flaxseed meal in place of parmesan cheese. They stayed together and came out great! I used sunflower seed oil to deep fry.

  27. i made these tonight. I’m sorry to say but it needed some tweaking. Great concept but will take some practice to get right. I highly recommend squeezing the excess moisture out while forming the nuggets, otherwise you get fried crumbles. Also they were a bit bland. Skip the Parmesan and just stick with the pepper jack. The parm over takes the pepper jack and you can’t even tell it is in there. Also be prepared to use a lot of salt. I also recommend sprinkling them with seasoned salt once out of the oil but before they cool. Also add plenty of minced garlic. I will likely try this again, knowing some of the secrets, but I think I will stick in cheddar with the pepper jack, some crumbled bacon and maybe a jalepano or two.

  28. Thank you so much for this recipe! My tots turned out awesome. After reading the reviews I was worried but I had already chopped my cauliflower the night before so I decided to go for it. The results were delicious. I chopped the cauliflower and put it in the refrigerator over night without draining the water out and the next day most of the water was gone. I still pressed in a colander like the instructions said but very little water came out. When I was forming my tots I squeezed some water out. My tots turned out perfect and delicious. They did not break apart and I found the whole process to be pretty easy. I am NOT a good cook and was surprised my tots turned out so good. Thank you again!

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  30. I tried these last night and they came out great!! Thanks so much. I spent a lot of time getting the moisture out of the cauliflower, next time I think I’ll use cheese cloth to save some paper towel 🙂

  31. Looking at the ingredients these could easily be made into potatoe pancakes. That’s what I’m going to do. I hope they taste as good as it sounds.

  32. I made them and they were perfect. I used a cheese cloth to drain the cauliflower after I blended it. Once I made the mixture I pressed the moisture out again with paper towels. I used a deep fryer with Canola oil. Also, I made them into little balls. I could be wrong but i feel like it helped keep them together.

  33. Hi Marye!
    Thank you for the recipe. Mine worked about 50/50! Some held together and some fell apart. I did chill them after shaping them but only for a few minutes while the oil heated up. I think I will freeze them next time and maybe they will hold together better. I’m sorry you had any bad reviews as I know how difficult low carb cauliflower recipes are to get the right moisture content so anyone else making it may not do it the same! You need to get so much out but you can remove too much and that doesn’t work either! I appreciate the recipe and the flavor was awesome so thank you. I will let you know if I find that freezing them works better. Thanks again!

  34. I found this recipe awhile back and saved it and planned to make these tonight for supper. After reading the comments, is looks like there was no one that actually got these to work. 🙁 so I am scared to try myself! The picture looked so good too!!

    1. Cindi, I am not sure what the problem is. Obviously they do work – the image is mine. I think that either people are not getting the oil hot enough or the cauliflower mixture isn’t being compressed enough. :/

  35. Made these tonight with high hopes. Sorry to say the we’re not good at all. They did not stay together in tot form. Flavor was not good either.

  36. I agree with Sarah – I tried to deep fried these and ended up with a blob of goo… I followed the recipe – maybe I “over processed” the mix (think mashed potato blobs) or my fryer was too hot? Mine only has on / off 375 degrees. I dropped them in fryer and they bubbled then all of sudden separated. They I strained out a pile of tiny burnt bits.

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  39. Did not go well. The first few fell apart when I put them in the oil. When I did get a couple to stay together they weren’t good. Not worth the trouble!

    1. I am so sorry you experienced that Sarah. If you’d like to message me on the restless chipotle facebook page maybe we could troubleshoot and figure out what happened.

    2. I have to agree with Sarah. It was a lot of work, they fell apart, and I felt weren’t worth the effort. Thank you for the recipe though, but it didn’t seem to work for me.

    3. I am sorry that they didn’t work for you. I think the people that have had the success are the ones that have been able to really get all of the moisture out.

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    1. About a tablespoon of finely minced onion… if you like more onion flavor use onion powder – it adds flavor without carbs. 🙂

  41. The recipe looks great. The recipe says it makes 4 servings. Can you tell me how many “tots” this recipe makes? Thanks!

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  44. Does the nutritional value include the chipole/mayo sause? I only ask because it seems like it should be less carbs than what youre posting,

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    1. 1 star
      This recipe is an absolute train wreck. I followed this recipe to the T and let the cauliflower sit for almost an hour, draining all water and ithe all turned into mush in the fryer. Run FAR FAR away from this….

    2. Im sorry it didn’t work for you Ryan. It sounds like you didn’t completely squeeze the water out of the cauliflower.

    3. 5 stars
      I put the chopped cauliflower in a tea towel , gathered the corners and twisted until no more liquid would drip out. The recipe turned out perfect. I didn’t use a deep fryer…I cooked them in a frying pan with about 1 inch of oil.

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