Anyone who's been living a health-conscious lifestyle will be familiar with the challenge of finding recipes that are both equally healthy and tasty. If you're a fan of tofu, then we have an excellent recipe for you to try.
This tofu stir fry is a fast and easy recipe that you can make with any combination of colorful vegetables. You can even use packs of frozen mixed vegetables (though you may have to drain the excess liquid, as frozen foods tend to absorb moisture). Packages of pre-cut vegetables also work well with a stir-fry.
A stir-fry can be a deliciously healthy meal, too – use vegetables of different colors for maximum nutritional benefit.
The more thoroughly you press your tofu before using, the more flavorful it will be. Later on in this article, we will go into detail about how to press your tofu properly. You can even freeze your tofu if you want a more meat-like texture (see FAQs below).
This recipe serves 6 people.
Ingredients for the vegetables
- 4 tablespoons avocado or olive oil, divided
- 2 pounds extra-firm tofu, pressed
- 4 cloves garlic, minced
- 2 sweet peppers (different colors), roughly chopped
- 2 medium red onions, diced
- Two bags of fresh broccoli florets (12 ounces, or about 5 cups)
- Rice of your choice, or buckwheat, or another grain
- Chopped green onions and sesame seeds for garnish
Ingredients for the sauce
- 2 tablespoons avocado or olive oil
- 1/2 cup soy sauce or tamari
- 1 tablespoon maple syrup
- 4 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 tablespoon chili sauce
- 2 teaspoons fresh ginger, minced or grated
First, you'll want to press your tofu. Tofu acts like a sponge: the more you press it to get out excess moisture, the better it will absorb the flavors of your sauce. Many people don't realize that if their tofu doesn't have any taste, it's because they haven't done this first step. You can press tofu with a tofu press like this, which will take about 5 minutes. Alternatively, wrap your tofu in a clean towel and put it in a colander in the sink. Put a heavy weight (like a bag of rice) on top and leave it for about half an hour: you should see the excess liquid drain out of the tofu block.
- Once your tofu is pressed, heat 3 tablespoons of the avocado or olive oil in a wok or large skillet, using medium-high heat.
- While the oil is heating, cut your tofu into bite-sized cubes.
- Once hot (you can check this to make sure the tofu will sizzle when you add it to the pan), add the tofu. Cook your tofu for about 10 minutes, frequently stirring to brown it on all sides. You should end up with lovely golden tofu cubes. (You may need to cook your tofu in batches, depending on the size of your wok or skillet).
- Remove the tofu and put it on a plate or in a bowl, and set it aside.
- Now whisk together the sauce ingredients in a small bowl, and set the bowl aside.
- Add the remaining tablespoon of oil to the same wok or skillet, and sauté the garlic and onion for about 3 minutes.
- Add the broccoli and sweet peppers, and cook for 5 minutes more.
- Now add the sauce and tofu, and cook for an additional 5 minutes, or till the broccoli is light green and still crisp.
- Serve your tofu stir-fry over your chosen grain, topped with the sliced green onions and sesame seeds, if using.
Note: If you want to use store-bought sauce instead of homemade, you can use 2/3 of a cup of Teriyaki sauce.
Tofu Stir Fry Recipe FAQs
Can I use any type of tofu for this recipe?
The best types of tofu for this recipe are either firm or extra-firm tofu. If you use soft or silken tofu, it tends to become mushy, as it's very moist and will fall apart.
Soft or silken types of tofu are best used for blended recipes such as baked goods, salad dressings, dips, and soups.
Can I freeze tofu?
If you want a meatier, more chewy texture, you can freeze your tofu before making this recipe. You can either freeze the tofu in its package (it will take longer to thaw) or wrap the block in plastic wrap or a freezer-safe bag. Frozen tofu will keep for up to 3 months.
You can thaw your tofu either in the fridge for 24 hours, at room temperature for 12 hours, or in a microwave for 10-12 minutes. If you want your tofu to thaw more quickly, you can cube it before freezing.
Once your tofu has defrosted, press out any excess water (see Method above).
What kind of rice should I serve?
Any type of rice will work: brown rice, wild rice, white rice, even cauliflower rice. Cauliflower rice is an excellent choice especially if you are following a low-carb or keto diet. If you're not keen on rice and would prefer noodles, check out our article for the best low carb noodle options.