January 30, 2018

How to Make Crispy Baked Tofu

How to make crispy baked tofu! If you love baked tofu, then you’ll want this crispy baked tofu recipe. A step-by-step guide to perfect tofu every time. 

I want you to love tofu. Sometimes I feel like my mission is to make tofu appealing. Why? Well, it may be one of the most perfect foods. It’s naturally vegan and gluten-free, high in plant-protein and study after study has found that 1-2 servings a day is beneficial in reducing the risk of heart disease, certain types of cancer, protecting bones and reducing the occurrence of hot flashes in menopausal women.

However tofu, like tempeh, can be gross if you don’t prepare it properly. I know, I’ve been there. I spent most of my first year as a vegetarian with soggy, bland tofu dishes. In fact, the first block of tofu I ever bought I ended up throwing away because I couldn’t force myself to actually cook with it.

Well, not anymore. Now I put tofu on just about everything: salads, sandwiches, stir-frys or simply to snack on during the day. Here is my fool-proof recipe for crispy baked tofu every time. 

tofu wrapped in a paper towel

How to Make Crispy Baked Tofu

  1. Press Tofu

    For crispy baked tofu, it needs to be pressed first. To do this, wrap the tofu in a kitchen towel or paper towels and place a heavy object on top, like a pan or canned goods. Alternatively, you can use a tofu press specifically designed for getting the excess water out of tofu. You’ll want to let the tofu drain for at least 15 minutes.

     

    cubes of tofu in a bowl
    2. Cut Tofu

You can cut the tofu into any shape you’d like. For salads and stir-fries, I typically cube it. However, you can slice into triangles or slabs depending on your needs.

tofu tossed with seasonings in a bowl

3. Toss with cornstarch, soy sauce and seasoning

Next, toss the tofu cubes with cornstarch, soy sauce and seasoning. The cornstarch gets the tofu texture extra crispy and the soy sauce and optional seasonings bring in flavor. You’ll want to add some type of seasoning if you are going to enjoy this tofu on it’s own. If you plan on adding it to a dish with a sauce, like a stir-fry, buddha bowl or pad thai, you don’t have to add any additional seasonings as the tofu will absorb the sauce once it’s added. Not a fan of cornstarch? Use arrowroot powder instead.

how to make crispy baked tofu recipe

4. Bake until crispy

Lastly, place the cubes (or other shape) in a single layer on a baking sheet and cook until crispy, about 25-30 minutes. You’ll want to bake in a single layer so that the tofu doesn’t steam when stacked on top of each other.

That’s it! Four simple steps to perfect crispy baked tofu without a deep fryer. Once you try this, you’ll be making this crispy baked tofu recipe over and over again. Enjoy it in these vegan recipes: Peanut Tofu Buddha Bowls, Harissa Tahini Tofu BowlThai Coconut Buddha Bowls, Butternut Squash Tahini Bowls

Watch How to Make Crispy Baked Tofu below:

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crispy baked tofu recipe

How to Make Crispy Baked Tofu

  • Author: Alex Caspero
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 30 minutes
  • Total Time: 1 hours 10 minutes
  • Yield: 4 servings 1x
  • Category: protein, dinner, lunch
  • Method: oven
  • Cuisine: vegan, glutenfree, vegetarian

Description

How to Make Crispy Baked Tofu without deep-frying! This crispy baked tofu recipe is a must-save. Vegan and easily gluten-free.


  • Author: Alex Caspero
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 30 minutes
  • Total Time: 1 hours 10 minutes
  • Yield: 4 servings 1x
  • Category: protein, dinner, lunch
  • Method: oven
  • Cuisine: vegan, glutenfree, vegetarian
  • Author: Alex Caspero
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 30 minutes
  • Total Time: 1 hours 10 minutes
  • Yield: 4 servings 1x
  • Category: protein, dinner, lunch
  • Method: oven
  • Cuisine: vegan, glutenfree, vegetarian
Scale

Ingredients

  • 1 (14 ounce) package organic, firm or extra-firm tofu
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce (or tamari for gluten-free version)
  • 1 tablespoon arrowroot starch or cornstarch
  • 2 teaspoons seasoning of choice (optional, to fit in with the recipe you are using this for. Keep it plain to add to stir-fries or try chili powder to add to grain bowls and salads)

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside.
  2. For crispy tofu, it needs to be pressed first. Wrap the tofu in a kitchen towel or paper towels and place a heavy object on top, like a pan or cans. Let drain for at least 15 minutes.
  3. Unwrap the tofu and cube, then place in a large bowl. Toss with olive oil, soy sauce, arrowroot starch and seasoning, if using, until the tofu is evenly coated.
  4. Place on the baking sheet and bake for 25-30 minutes until golden brown and crispy.

Nutrition

  • Serving Size: 1/4th recipe
  • Calories: 133
  • Sugar: 1 g
  • Sodium: 282 mg
  • Fat: 9 g
  • Saturated Fat: 1 g
  • Unsaturated Fat: 8 g
  • Trans Fat: 0g
  • Carbohydrates: 5 g
  • Fiber: 1 g
  • Protein: 10 g
  • Cholesterol: 0g

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how to make crispy baked tofu

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Meet Alex Caspero

Alex Caspero is a Registered Dietitian, Plant-Based Chef and Yoga Instructor. She aims to cut through the nutrition noise by providing real-life, nourishing tips for body and mind. Learn more about Alex.

23 comments
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    1. Rachael
      September 3, 2021 AT 1:01 pm

      What sort of spices or spice mix do you recommend?

      1. Alex
        September 18, 2021 AT 7:11 am

        I usually use chili powder mixed with onion powder and garlic powder, “Pizza Seasoning” from Penzey’s spices and Mural of Flavor from Penzeys.

    2. Nicole
      April 6, 2021 AT 6:25 pm

      Can I make this in the air fryer? If so, what temp and time?

    3. Ashley
      January 2, 2021 AT 8:51 am

      What a tasty dish!!! I didn’t think I liked tofu, but this recipe convinced me.

    4. Nancy
      October 2, 2020 AT 12:44 am

      Loved this recipe! The tofu texture was great and it was delicious

    5. Em Doc
      February 23, 2020 AT 7:26 pm

      Yum!!! We used 1 tsp Aleppo and 1 tsp curry powder and served over acorn squash and sautéed chard and chickpeas. It was hard not to snack on all the tofu while waiting for everything else to cook!

    6. Thomas
      February 16, 2020 AT 8:47 pm

      Awesome! One of my favorite crispy baked tofu recipes. Thanks as well for your guide, it’s so easy to follow.

    7. Sophie Anderson
      October 30, 2019 AT 6:57 pm

      New to plant based way of eating and found this recipe. I used sesame seed oil instead of olive oil and seasoned mine with curry. Delicious!

    8. Dorrie Berkowitz
      May 26, 2019 AT 6:38 am

      About to try this, but my question is this: In the illustrated step 3 you don’t mention oil. However, in the actual recipe, you include 1 tbs oil with the soy sauce, starch, and optional seasonings. So…to oil or not to oil? That is my question. 😉

      1. Alex
        May 26, 2019 AT 6:10 pm

        Hi Dorrie- I recommend adding in the oil. I find that it really helps with the crispiness of it. However, some people don’t like oil and you can leave it out.

        Thanks,
        Alex

    9. habitat
      April 8, 2019 AT 7:35 pm

      This crispy baked tofu is great! Thanks for your recipe.

      1. Alex
        April 9, 2019 AT 9:15 am

        So glad you liked it!

    10. Renee Fisher
      December 24, 2018 AT 7:53 pm

      Could I use honey instead of the soy sauce? I was really looking for a recipe for tofu with honey – that was just this simple. Any help would be appreciated.

      1. Alex
        December 26, 2018 AT 8:23 pm

        I don’t see why not? Though you might need a splash of soy sauce for salt/flavor. If you try it- let me know!

        1. Renee Fisher
          December 27, 2018 AT 6:00 am

          Yes, will do. I am new to a GF diet, and am eating new foods that are quick and easy. But- am also trying to keep taste. So far so good. I don’t even feel as if I’ve been giving anything up. Mostly because everything I eat is so fresh and satisfying. Except when my neighbor brought over her holiday cookies last night. It was a no brainer. Did not think twice – at two!