I’m back with a tofu recipe! But not just any tofu recipe. This one certainly isn’t boring, and it’s something that I like to make every week or two.
This week has felt pretty busy for me, and I wasn’t planning on sharing any recipes. Most of my time has been spent on school work and catching up with errands and apartment tasks. There hasn’t been much cooking going on– at least, not the exciting sort of stuff that I want to take picture of or blog about. But after a couple of weeks of consistent posting, it feels strange to go more than a few days without sharing some new content!
Today, I’m a sharing a simple technique that transforms tofu from dull, spongy, and flavorless to something chewy, salty and crisp around the edges. I love making a big batch of this stuff, having some for dinner, and leaving the leftovers in my fridge to eat throughout the week. It loses some of its crispness in the fridge, but becomes extra chewy, making it perfect for salads and saucy dishes.
Start with a block of extra firm tofu. Press the water out. Don’t skip this step– this is critical to good texture.
I like to place my drained tofu on a plate, put a smaller plate on top, and then place something heavy (that I don’t mind dropping) on the smaller plate. Here, I used a salsa jar. I press my tofu for an hour or two, pouring off the water from the bottom plate every so often.
Then, chop up your tofu. I slice my tofu into 4 equally sized pieces before chopping it up, so I know about how many cubes make one serving.
Place the cubes on a baking sheet. Pour one tablespoon of oil over the tofu, then toss to coat. I use canola oil, but any roasting oil is fine here. Experiment with olive oil, vegetable oil, or even coconut oil.
Now, sprinkle one tablespoon of flour over your tofu cubes.
Almost any flour will work. I used coconut flour here, but the slightly sweet flavor is not my favorite. I like using rice flour, all-purpose flour, whole wheat, cornstarch, or gluten free blends for their more neutral flavor and crunch. These other flours also brown more evenly in the oven.
Add a pinch of salt.
Gently toss the tofu cubes with your fingertips, until the cubes are evenly coated in flour. Some flours clump up more than others, and that’s okay. If you pressed most of the water out of your tofu and only used a tablespoon of oil, the clumping will be minimal.
Done? Move the tofu around on the baking sheet until it’s evenly spaced.
Heat your oven up to 400 degrees F.
You’ll cook the tofu in the preheated oven for 30 minutes.
Check your tofu for doneness and flip about 20 minutes in. You will need to use a thin, heatproof spatula to gently scrape your tofu off the baking sheet.
Your tofu should end up looking something like this. Crispy and golden brown. Use it however you’d like! I usually start by tossing it into a green bean or eggplant stir-fry.
Crispy Baked Tofu
- 1 16-ounce block of extra firm tofu
- 1 tablespoon oil, such as canola
- 1 tablespoon flour, such as all purpose or rice
- salt, to taste
- Remove the tofu from its packaging and drain. Place it on a plate, and top with another plate. Place a weight, such as a can of beans or a heavy (non-breakable) jar, on top. Press the tofu for 1-2 hours, periodically draining the water off the plate.
- Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.
- Chop the tofu into 1-inch cubes.
- Place the tofu on a baking sheet, drizzle with oil, and toss to coat.
- Sprinkle the tofu with flour and a pinch of salt, and toss with your fingertips until lightly coated.
- Bake at 400 degrees F for 30 minutes. Check the tofu at the 20-minute mark to check for doneness, and flip the tofu using a thin, heatproof spatula.
- Cooked tofu can be stored in the refrigerator for up to a week, though it may lose some crispiness.