21 easy vegan tofu recipe ideas that are anything but bland

Author: Molly Pickering

Tofu is a staple ingredient in many people's diets across the globe, vegan or not, but still many struggle to get maximum flavour from it. Unlock tofu's true flavour potential with these easy vegan tofu recipes.

What is tofu?

Originating in China over 2,000 years ago, Tofu, also known as bean curd, is produced by pressing soybean curds into blocks.

You can find tofu in a variety of states ranging from silken to extra firm. Silken tofu has a very soft and smooth consistency, this type of tofu is often used to create vegan creams, mousses and other light, creamy dishes.

The firmer varieties have a much crumblier texture and can be chopped or torn. These types of tofu are very versatile and can be used in many different dishes including tofu scramble or vegan curries.

Is tofu healthier than meat?

Tofu is often used as a meat replacement, and for good reason. Tofu is naturally high in protein making it an ideal protein choice in a plant-based diet, it is also high in calcium, magnesium, and iron.

Additionally, tofu can help reduce cholesterol1 and is low in fat. This makes it the perfect meat substitute for those wanting a high-protein diet without the added fat and cholesterol that are often found in meat.

Does tofu marinate well?

Thanks to its porous texture, tofu is a great ingredient to marinate. There are so many creative and delicious tofu marinades that use everyday ingredients that you can find in your cupboards.

Ingredients such as soy sauce, Worcestershire sauce, or balsamic vinegar all work well as the base for your marinade. You can then add herbs and spices and additional ingredients such as ginger, seaweed, or garlic to create your desired flavour.

1. Vegan Sweet & Sour Tofu Balls with Vegetable Fried Rice

There is something about a sweet and sour dish that makes us feel warm and comforted.

The crunch veg paired with tangy pineapple chunks all smothered in a sweet and sour sauce is the ultimate comfort food. Take this classic dish to the next level with these delightful crispy tofu balls.

Light, crispy batter coats the deliciously firm tofu, simple to make and a guaranteed crowd-pleaser this is one of those tofu recipes you’ll make over and over again.

2. Mexican-Style Vegan Breakfast Burrito with Tofu Scramble

Vegan breakfast burritos are the cure to any hangover, especially this Mexican-inspired burrito filled with scrambled tofu.

Using Kala Namak salt (black salt) gives the scrambled tofu an authentic egg taste, while turmeric and paprika add a kick of flavour.

Pack your burrito with the delicious tofu scramble, vegan sausage, hashbrowns, salsa, guacamole and all the other big breakfast staples and tuck in!

Stack of Mexican-style vegan breakfast burritos

3. Smoked Tofu & Vegetable Baguette

Vegan sandwiches can often become repetitive quickly. As much as we love a classic falafel and houmos sarnie, we do love to get creative with our sandwich fillings.

This smoked tofu and roasted vegetable banquette is the perfect lunch time meal and is bursting with flavour. Layered with a savoury olive tapernade and fresh basil leaves, this baguette will quickly become your go-to vegan lunch recipe.

4. Vegan Maple-Glazed Tofu

Craving something sticky, sweet, umami, and simple? Look no further than this vegan maple-glazed tofu recipe!

The golden fried tofu is cooked in a sticky glaze made of soy sauce, maple syrup, and pineapple juice for added tangy.

This simple tofu recipe requires just 5 ingredients and is ready in 45 minutes.

Maple-glazed tofu served with leafy salad

5. Vegan Smoked Tofu & Pak Choi

The combination of pak choi and tofu is a classic one. Add a hint of smoke to this classic dish with smoked tofu.

Smoked tofu has a wonderful taste, this recipe pairs with red peppers and pak choi for a simple dish that is nutritious and ready in just 25 minutes.

You can find smoked tofu in most supermarkets, but if you’re struggling regular tofu will do.

Vegan pak choi with smoked tofu

6. Easy Vegan Tofu Kebab

Spice up your vegan kebabs with this delicious tofu kebab recipe. The marinade is sweet, tangy, and sticky with just a hint of spice.

Flavoured with smoked paprika, chilli powder, garlic and sugar, these kebabs are perfect for any vegan BBQ or dinner party with friends.

Top tip – be sure to soak the wooden skewers before grilling to avoid the wood from burning.

7. Crispy Vegan Tofu, Leek & Chilli Stir-Fry

Looking to use up some leftover leeks? Look no further than this hearty recipe.

Crispy, spicy, warming, and ready in just 20 minutes! This crispy vegan tofu stir fry is a mid-week staple in our kitchens.

This recipe is perfect to use up any leftover veg in the fridge.

8. Tofu Halloumi

Tofu really is a wonderfully versatile ingredient. Transform your block of firm tofu into this delicious vegan halloumi recipe.

Simply marinade your tofu olive oil, lemon, nutritional yeast, and dried mint to recreate the classic flavours of halloumi.

Char on a hot griddle and serve.

Griddled tofu halloumi

9. Tofu ‘Egg’ Patty Breakfast Sandwich

There are so many vegan egg alternatives available, but tofu remains one of our top vegan egg substitutes.

This recipe showcases just how realistic tofu egg can be. Packed with veggies, this egg patty recipe can be enjoyed on its own like an omelette, or packed into a delicious breakfast sandwich like this one.

10. Tofu Pizza Pockets

Looking for a fun weekday recipe? These tofu pizza pockets are a winner for us!

Taking all of the best features of a vegan pizza and stuffing them into a pizza-like burrito, this recipe is a great one to make with kids or friends.

Make sure you use large tortilla wraps to ensure your pizza pocket is covered to avoid mess.

11. Rosemary Garlic Tofu Bites

If you’re hosting a get-together or even just looking for a tasty snack, these rosemary and garlic tofu bites need to be on your menu.

Ready in just 35 minutes, these tofu bites require just 6 ingredients. These taste heavenly when dipped in a vegan garlic aioli.

12. Miso-Roasted Broccoli & Tofu Buddha Bowl with Sesame Dressing

You’ll always be able to find a big jar of miso in our fridge. Miso is a wonderful ingredient that adds so much flavour to any dish.

This buddha bowl recipe is one of our favourite vegan tofu recipes that combines umami broccoli with sticky roasted tofu for nutritious lunch that is ready in just 30 minutes.

Pre-make this dish and enjoy it throughout the week for a simple, health vegan lunch.

13. Smoked Tofu & Watercress Cannelloni

Cannelloni is a classic comfort dish that is simple to make but looks impressive. This recipe takes the popular cannelloni filling of spinach and ricotta and swaps the dairy for delicious smoked tofu.

The blended smoked tofu becomes creamy, rich, and smokey and makes for the perfect cheese alternative.

Serve this with a big side salad for a luscious lunch.

14. Blondies with White Chocolate and Tofu

Tofu? In a dessert? That’s right! This recipe uses creamy silken tofu as the egg replacement to make the vegan blondies gooey and divine.

In addition to tasting delicious, these gluten-free vegan blondies are high in protein thanks to the silken tofu.

Make a batch and enjoy them throughout the week as an afternoon snack or an indulgent yet nutritious vegan dessert.

15. Teriyaki Tofu Bao Buns

Bao buns are great fun to make with the family. Although may look difficult, these fluffy buns are simple to make and can be kept in the freezer to be used for another day.

Filled with a zingy, crunchy pickled slaw made up of red cabbage, carrots, and spring onions and sticky, sweet Teriyaki tofu,  these are sure to be a hit with the family!

Top tip: This recipe requires a bamboo steamer or steamer pot to steam the bao buns.

16. Tofu Scramble

How do you like your tofu in the morning? We like ours scrambled and piled on top of buttery toast!

This is the speediest of tofu recipes as it’s ready in just 15 minutes so is sure to be your go-to vegan breakfast recipe.

You can enjoy your scrambled tofu plain, or with added sautéed veggies like peppers or onions.

17. Tofu and Udon Noodle Salad with Spring Vegetables

Tofu and noodles are a match made in heaven. A big bowl of soft noodles paired with flavoursome tofu is the ideal weeknight meal for when you’re craving something nutritious but equally as delicious.

This recipe marinades tofu in a mixture of tamari, maple syrup, vinegar and garlic before frying so the tofu is caramelised and tender.

Use up whatever left over veggies you have to add some extra crunchy to this recipe.

18. Fresh Tomato Tart with Tofu Ricotta

Tofu makes a great vegan cheese alternative, particularly for softer cheese like ricotta.

Transform your block of silken tofu into a tasty ricotta substitute. This is one of the simplest tofu recipes that blends silken tofu, lemon juice, nutritional yeast and other spices to give the tofu a subtle cheesy taste that is simply delicious.

Cut yourself a slice of this delightful tart and enjoy!

19. Vegan Butter Tofu Curry

This is one of our most popular tofu recipes for a good reason! It’s a vegan take on the classic butter chicken curry that swaps chicken for juicy chunks of crispy tofu.

The dairy-free buttery sauce is filled with traditional spices like garam masala, turmeric, cumin, and coriander that give this dish a warmth that isn’t spicy.

This speedy recipe is ready in just 30 minutes and is perfect for a heart weekday meal or an easy Friday night treat.

20. Vegan Crispy Tofu Nuggets

Sometimes, only a big bowl of tofu nuggets will do. Tuck into this mouthwatering recipe when you’re craving something crispy and golden.

The breadcrumb mixture that coats the juicy but firm tofu is blended with paprika, garlic powder, onion powder, and coriander for a taste sensation.

Enjoy these nuggets on their own or add them to a salad or wrap for extra protein. If you’re looking for tofu recipes to convert tofu-haters, this is a great one to try.

Vegan Crispy Tofu Nuggets

21. Miso Aubergine with Tofu & Brown Rice

Looking for a nutritious dinner packed with flavour? Look no further than this miso-glazed aubergine with tofu and brown rice dish.

The tender aubergine and charred tofu will fill you with the good stuff whilst satisfying your cravings.

Serve in a big bowl with tender stem broccoli for added calcium and protein.

Miso aubergine with tofu and brown rice

Have a block of tempeh but need some recipe inspiration?
Here are 2our top high-protein tempeh recipes.

Reference

  1. https://www.health.harvard.edu/staying-healthy/soy-protein-helps-lower-bad-cholesterol-a-small-but-important-amount

Written by

Molly Pickering

When she's not reporting the latest vegan news, Molly's other passions are tattoos, 80’s horror and good vegan food

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