My dear dumplings. Now that I’ve been in the community for a while, I’m comfortable admitting this to you—in some ways, I’m a lazy cook. What I mean is that I’ll take quick and easy recipes over something fancy any day.
Maybe you can relate. If there’s a shortcut, chances are I’ve found it. I rely on a rotation of go-to recipes, all of which have minimal prep. Most of the time I can’t be bothered to peel and chop oddly-shaped vegetables. Butternut squash is one of my faves, but frankly, in my hands it’s dangerous! You just can’t expect me to chop raw butternut squash without hurting myself! And if sifting is involved in a recipe when I’m in an impatient mood, well, let’s just say that lumps are sometimes okay with me.
So—I’ll also admit—after 12 years of being vegan, I had yet to make a decent crispy tofu. As far as I was concerned, creating the perfect crispy tofu might as well be magic.
Now, to be clear, I’ve prepared and enjoyed many a flavorful stir-fry with some nice golden brown tofu. I love tofu. It’s definitely a staple in my kitchen. Still, I always felt I needed to leave crispy tofu to the professionals. Until now.
I’ve developed a crispy tofu recipe that has flavor as well as oh-so-satisfying texture. It is lightly crisp on the outside and chewy on the inside. It even packs anti-inflammatory properties via turmeric and black pepper. Learn more about turmeric here.
And though it’s completely optional, feel free to add a bit of nooch (nutritional yeast flakes) to this recipe for an extra level of flavor.
What’s best is that this crispy tofu recipe is easy enough that even I can follow through!
This versatile tofu is fantastic in: salads, tacos, bowls—you name it. It’s the new star in my meal-prep routine.
What do you pair with your crispy tofu? Do you love nooch? Let us know in the comments!
Easy Crispy Tofu
- 1 block (about 14 oz) extra-firm tofu
- 1/4 cup cornstarch
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1 teaspoon onion powder
- sprinkle of turmeric
- sprinkle of black pepper
- 1/4 cup nutritional yeast flakes (optional)
1. Preheat oven to 400°F.
2. While the oven is heating, press a block of tofu (you may use a dedicated tofu press, but I just place mine between two plates).
3. In a large bowl, mix cornstarch, salt, garlic powder, onion powder, turmeric, and black pepper. Mix in the nooch at this point too, if you’re including it.
4. Squeeze excess water from tofu and cut into cubes.
5. Gently mix tofu cubes in cornstarch mixture until fully coated.
6. Spread tofu in one layer over a cookie sheet lined with parchment paper.
6. Bake for 25 minutes.
Also by Estella: Vegan Matcha Mini Bundt Cakes
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Photos: Estella Ramirez